- Class: Junior
- Major: Mathematics
- High School:
- Transfer Student: N
The best part about UR is the campus and the academics (later.) Other than a few months in the winter, the campus is absolutely beautiful and because the good weather is so scarce, when it is here everyone is outside either studying or throwing a football around or just hanging out and its a great dynamic. Obviously if I could change something it would be a shorter winter season. The campus size is perfect; about 15 minute walk from end to end. The student body could be a little bigger, but it's still ok. There still hasn't been a day where I walked around campus and recognized most of the people that I saw, which I think is very important coming from a high school class of 100. There are two distinct reactions when I tell people I'm at Rochester and the difference stems only from whether or not the person has heard of Rochester before. Those who have know what the school is about and respect it. Those who don't either think it is a state school or some terrible academic school that's in the middle of nowhere. Although some might not call this a college town I think I would and here is why: there are hundreds of quality restaurants within a short driving distance of campus as well as an area where there are about 15-20 bars/clubs where you can go on the weekends. Also, there are many other schools around here (St. John Fisher, MCC, Keuka, SUNY Brockport...) so interaction is not just limited to UR students. I don't have a strong opinion on the administration as I haven't had much contact with them, but there aren't many large events on campus that they have to deal with so their job is pretty hard to screw up. There is not much school pride and that is because there are many people who do have a problem with our horrible weather, or our large proportion of "nerdy" students or the fact that with the exception of a select few, our sports teams aren't very good.
I still get surprised when my professor makes such an effort to learn the names of every student in the class. There are exceptions to this of course (classes of over 100 students) but I had a few teachers that remembered the names of 70 students in the class. This is a school where people go to class, even if there is a crazy party the night before so needless to say there are close relationship with the teachers here. Students study alotttt. This was quite intimidating when I first got here because it is so competitive. With the exception of some easy classes, most grades are on a curve and therefore you are competing with your classmates and when most students study 15-30 hours a week, it is intimidating. However, this is not a school where students try to succeed by stepping on someone else's back (a friend of mine got their textbook stolen at another University of the week of finals just so they wouldn't do well on the final exam.) Every class offers support from TA's and from the professors (office hours) and I found that in most classes the students come together to form large study sessions which can be very beneficial. I am a double major in Math and Economics. It is very common for people to choose that double major so I ended up taking many of the same classes with the same people. That is even more true with other majors that have less flexibility such as Engineering where there is a strict class schedule and so you are likely to take almost all your classes with the same people throughout your four years. Economics and Math are both very flexible not only in terms of what classes to take, but when to take them and so you are rarely faced with a situation where you have to take a class that you absolutely don't want to and that brings me to my next point. The lack of academic requirements are my favorite part of the academic life here. Some people choose a liberal arts education for a reason but if you choose to go to a non-liberal arts school I feel that you shouldn't have a liberal arts-like education and that is what rochester does. Outside of your major, there are almost no requirements and that leaves students with the ability to choose what they want to learn and for those that have only one major, that leaves them with plenty of room to explore the curriculum and study some interesting things they've always wanted to learn.
I think the socio-economic backgrounds of the students are very diverse. As far as racial and ethnic backgrounds, it is a bit less diverse. There are still many international students here but the majority of the students come from the northern NY area. Socially, there is quite a barrier between the less social studious types and the students that go out on the weekends to bars and frats. I think the person who would stand out at UR would be the goth, extreme type. Although there are "nerdy" kids here, they aren't very outgoing or rebellious. Four tables at the dining hall look like this: the first is the football team, they just got back from practice, are very loud and arrogant. The second table is a sorority, they aren't quite as loud but every once in a while will do something weird like clap in harmony or laugh really loud and everyone will turn and look. The third table are the less social, good students and they keep to themselves and every once in a while you will hear a glimpse of their conversation and it revolves around World of Warcraft. The fourth table is a mix of the first three tables and consists of a few boys, a few girls and they will talk about recent news around campus and around the world and sports news and what is going on this coming weekend and how wasted they got last weekend.
The Best Things
The Worst Things
Too small of a population of students that are social.