The following reviews are the views of students or alumni at this school and are unrelated to the school data and other editorial content on usnews.com. These reviews neither reflect nor impact a school's position within the Best Colleges rankings.
The best thing about Montana is that it's really diverse. The University is a partner university to a lot of schools across the world so if you see a lot of diversity. I think my school is just right, but it could be a little bit bigger, just to give more space for the classes. Some of them are in buildings that make no logical sense for them to be in. I think there's a lot of school pride, we've got a good football team, so that kind of spurs everyone into a good school spirit mood. I think an unusual thing about Montana is that there are lots of deer on campus, not often during the day, but a lot at night and we've also got the mountain right behind campus with a trail up to a large 'M'. The thing I'm going to remember the most from my school is my friends that I've made, and also my father's stories about HIS college days and living on campus.
I thought the school would seem much larger than it actually does. I cross paths with people I know all day long, although there are certainly more unfamiliar faces than familiar ones. I transferred here from NYU this past fall because I missed the west and the mountains, so in comparison, Montana seems pretty small and cozy. The people here are, for the most part, incredibly, wonderfully friendly. Again, maybe that's just my impression coming out of New York City and NYU, but I don't think a kinder, more generous student body exists. At first, I really did not think that I would like the city of Missoula. It seemed awkward and depressing when I first came to look at the school. However, Missoula has grown on me and I have come to absolutely love it. Culture abounds in ways that you would not expect it to-- we have many ethnic restraunts (and most of them actually really good) from sushi to Thai to Indian to Mexican to Italian, there are some great, hip clothing stores (Betty's Divine), some really nice (and surprisingly inexpensive) salons (Sorella's), and great local events like a beautiful weekly farmer's market and "First Friday" which is a gallery walk all over the historic downtown with plenty of free food, wine and beer. The nightlife here is definitely small town, but if you just accept it for what it is it's great. Most off the bars are real dives, but despite their grittiness can be really fun. Nicer, more college-oriented bars are Bodega and the Iron Horse Pub. Missoula has an enormous amount of school pride and you don't want to mess with this school's football fans. The Griz (UM's team) / Cat (Montana State's team) rivalry is historic and people from all over the state flock to Griz games because it is the closest thing to a national team they have. Overall, Montana is a much more fun, excciting, welcoming place than I expected it to be.
Some would say that the U is nicely nestled in a quiet college town and that we have little to no problems with the 'outside' (off campus) world, but this romantic depiction couldn't be further from the truth. The way I see it is that the University of Montana is a bustling mecca of politics and grabs for funding where a student body of over 14,000 students vie for seats in classes through their tiered registration allotments. Furthermore, the University of Montana is alive with activism and embraces the community of Missoula's fervor for education in the realms of food, politics, and ecological practices. Is the U too big or too small? I think it's just right, but the administrators believe it's too small... Over the past years, there have been more and more buildings going up on and around campus, increased grabs for the land surrounding campus that will ultimately end up in the attempt to widen the span of campus both geographically and educationally.
honestly i am not currently involved in all the u's activities but i will say this. people take you seriously when you say you are going to school at the u. this is definetly a college town. if you don't like football and womens basketball get out! i don't spend much time on campus but if i did it would be in the library. if you're an outdoor person you will love it! if not you will learn a lot about yourself. my experience so far at the u is just the transition of the typer of characters you will meet in class. i have never felt more like myself. i can be a dork and it is o.k.
Montana... as the school goes, we are definately a smaller campus (only about 12,000-14,000 students at any given year), but we've got it all!. no other campus, I mean NO other campus has "the oval". Its a huge green space smack in the middle of campus right in front of university hall, and its always packed with people on a decent day. just like everybody else, we've got monster gym area for students with full athletics, racketteball, basketball, wieghts, running track, machines, climbing wall, open rooms for whatever, a smoothy bar, and tvs infront of all the cardio stuff and all of it indoors and open year round. we've got the student's building with food courts, game room (also huge with over a dozen pool tables, ping pong, and other stuff), a movie theater, and other stuff. thats all on campus. off campus is anything and everything else - you wanna go see a concert, check the reels of them from locals to internationals (elton john and the rolling stones headlined last year) and from country to pop to punk to raggae to whatever. in missoula the nightlife is downtown - an easy walk from campus with multiple hotspots, or just start at one end and work your way back. the best thing about graduating from montana is that any time your wearing UM or Griz stuff and another UM alum spots you they'll let you know it; it sounds a little off hand but when your walking around in Fresno or downtown New York or bummin around Daytona beach and somebody yells at you outta now about the U, its a good feeling to know you've got generations of people with so much school pride... its like having distant family (or maybe just drinking buddies) everywhere. SICK
The best thing about UM is the closeness to outdoor activities, you can be in the wilderness 30 minutes after leaving school. I wouldn't change anything! The school is just right, its not too big where you feel like a number. People often think there is nothing in Montana and why would I choose to go there? I spend most of my time in my dorm room between classes doing homework. Certainly a college town, you can bike anywhere and there are many bars to go to downtown. The Montana administration really looks out for the well being of students. The biggest recent controversy is how far the UM Productions is bending over backwards to bring Elton John back for a concert. Griz Football games=School pride. There is nothing unusual about Montana unless open skys scare you :-). I will always remember backpacking with the Great Burn Study group my freshman year to remove knapweed, quite a fun experience. A frequent student complaint is not enough parking, but UM has an excellent bus system, so students should utilize it more.
Belinda JuniorReviews provided by: Unigo