Ah, March Madness. It’s crazy, but it is nothing as crazy as deciding which college to attend! If you have many great colleges on the table, and the University of Rochester is one of them, I strongly suggest that you pick the University of Rochester. Why? I got one word for you: community. The faculty, staff, and students at the University of Rochester want to engage and stay connected with one another through a tight-knit community.
Someone once told me that the students here at the University of Rochester are savage and incredibly unfriendly. I adamantly disagree. Everyone here wants to make new friends. There is no city or college in which strangers approach and shower you with love; that’s just awkward. However, if you are willing to break social norms and begin talking to a stranger in your class or on the bus, then you’ll find yourself making a new friend in no time.
There is an old legend which says that if you ever need help on a homework assignment and you’re in Gleason library, you can ask around and find someone to help you. I can attest this is true. I have been on the receiving end of help, finishing a statistics homework assignment in the final ten minutes before it was due, and I have been on the giving end of help, tutoring a stranger in brain and cognitive sciences before their exam the next day.
The University of Rochester faculty and staff are willing to reach out and help others. People like Dean Burgett, Eleanor Oi, and Professor Niemiec are examples of faculty and staff who love being here and love helping other people love being here. In my experience, Dean Burgett inspired me to become co-vice president of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars (NSCS) because of his speech during my older brother’s NSCS induction. Eleanor Oi inspired me to continue reaching out to others and being a friendly individual because of her own amiable personality. Professor Niemiec inspired me to engage with my peers about the class material, and I now always study in groups.
Now, not all campus organizations are this conducive to making friends. I am also sure that it depends on the social aptitude of the individual and other confounding variables, like the type of people on campus (as aforementioned). However, I am involved in Cru at the University of Rochester, which is a “caring community, passionate about connecting people to Jesus Christ.” I joined this club officially during my junior year of college, and I somehow managed to make two life-long best friends as well as handfuls of other reliable friends. I point this out to say that the students here at the University of Rochester want to create inclusive communities, and they seek to do so in their respective interests through their respective on campus organizations (and there are over 300 to join!).
I strongly believe that my experience generally corroborates the friendly atmosphere of the University of Rochester, and I hope if you’re on the fence about coming here that you at least check out this University to see the camaraderie for yourself. 🙂