miss misily (jadegreenmoire) wrote in stlawu,
miss misily
jadegreenmoire
stlawu

Another prospie with questions

I'm also an accepted student, who recently visited and now is strongly considering SLU.

I'm a Presidential Diversity Scholar, so SLU is giving me such a good package I'm finding it very difficult to turn down. I was accepted to my original first choice college (Mount Holyoke in MA), and really had not been considering SLU. However, since I visited, I've realized that I really liked the school.

My main concern is the social scene: Aside from the "rich kids" stereotype, I'm worried about the partying: I'm not into drinking/smoking/drugs, and had an overnight on 4/20, so that might not have given me the best impression.

My host did tell me that drinking was a big part of the social life here (as with many colleges), but how bad is it really (the partying, the loudness, etc)? For someone who doesn't drink, will I still be able to find a social niche without having to hole myself up in a substance free quiet hall?

Otherwise, I really like the school, and what it has to offer. Everyone I met was extremely nice, both professors and students, and seemed to love the school.

I'm interested in anthropology and English (and maybe psychology), so if anyone has insight into those departments, that would be great.

Thanks!
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I'll be honest with you. I'm a sophomore here now and sometimes I wonder if I can take it. It's very true that drinking is a big part of campus here. There are people (such as myself) and a few others who aren't that into drinking as well, but sometimes it can be hard to find things to do here that don't involve that sort of stuff.

Don't get me wrong, I love the place and the professors, but sometimes the other students get on my nerves. Residence halls can become loud at times, depending on which one you're in and who your neighbors are. If you're looking for alternative entertainment, some things are put on here, but there's always the three neighboring colleges who do things too.

As pessimistic as it may seem, I hope this helps.
Thanks for an honest opinion; it definitely helps.

I'm just trying to decide whether the positives outweigh the negatives, whether the partying atmosphere will be bad to an extent where I will have a hard time concentrating on my studies/finding a quiet place to study...

I guess my positives/negatives fall around 50/50 right now and I don't think it's enough. I'm still thinking about it, but thanks again.
Well, I'm sure you can. The library's always a great place, as well as the lounges for the individual academic departments. Usually there is a major's room or lounge that you can get a key for as soon as you declare (at least for my subjects - physics and math, I know this to be true).

It's definitely worth it to be here because of the professors and classes.
Oh, that sounds really cool (major's lounge thing), and I really like the library...But I don't know. *still thinking*
I graduated in 2005 from SLU, so I don't have the most up-to-date info; but when I was there, there were definatly things to do that didn't involve drinking or anything. I'm not a smoker (of anything and have honestly never tried smoking anything) nor did (or do I now) drink because of food allergies (in addition to IBS, which alcohol makes much worse) and I had a great time at SLU.

Yes, drinking is a large part of the social scene; but it's very possible to make friends who aren't in to that kind of thing.

The Association for Campus Entertainment (or ACE) always has non-alcoholic events going on. Sometimes is concerts, sometimes it's a game night or poker tournament. The school is really big on hosting events that are non-alcoholic and have something every single friday and saturday night. Plus if you get involved with ACE you can help plan the events and even help decide what goes on on campus.

Once past the freshman year, there is substance free living, so you could have that option.
Yeah, I'd definitely consider sub-free...
Thanks for info on ACE, though, I'd never heard of it before!
I got through 4 years at SLU not drinking and partying. I liked it for the most part.

The anthro department is SPECTACULAR. I minored in anthro, and I loved the professors. Dr. Pomponio is great, and they're all very knowledgeable about their subjects.

Like stlawgal05 said, you have the option of substance free living after your freshman year. I ran the sub=free house for two years at SLU, and I helped run all sorts of alternative programming.

It is a bit of a party school, but like anywhere, you can find people who aren't into it so much. It's not very loud for the most part.

Substance free living isn't so bad, I swear! Some of the best friends I made at SLU were also living in SubFree.
That's definitely good to hear! (all of it)

Thanks :)
You're welcome!

I really had a mixed time -- some bad stuff, and some good stuff there. But I find that the good outweighed the bad. I think you'll find that anywhere you go though.
Count me in with the folks who're saying "not gonna lie..." It's true: if you don't drink or do drugs you have to go a little more out of your way to make your own fun. I didn't, but I was also able to make wonderful friends who enjoyed the same things (and not-doing the same things) as I did.

Personally, I felt isolated sometimes because of this. (I was also a CA, which is like an RA, and I think most freshmen either love or hate theirs-- but anyway, that meant I saw a lot of kids do really stupid things.) It was downright depressing how many kids, especially freshmen, got taken away in ambulances for alcohol poisoning. But people will be idiots everywhere.

I tried to be honest; I absolutely loathed the prevailing social culture there at times. But it wasn't like I was the only nerdy chick on campus :) I was able to make a lot of good friends, I think, because I was forced to find people like me.

Oh, and Anthropology and English are both great, especially Anthro. I loved the classes I took in both fields (and i took a lot, though i didn't major in either) were excellent. Don't have any firsthand experience with psych, but I've heard that's excellent as well.

Anyway, let us know what you decide, will you???

:)
SLU sounds like a great school, but yeah, the social culture really worries me--I'd heard the negative stereotypes, but was actually surprised by how friendly everyone was when I visited. So I guess this is a good thing. But hmmm, what you said still worries me. In person, I tend to be really shy, and I get the feeling that if I don't find my niche quickly, I will end up sitting in my room and being antisocial much of the time, heh.

Thanks for the advice though! --& I'll certainly let everyone know what I decide! :)
I graduated 2004, so my info might be out of date

I never did drugs and rarely drank (and certainly never to excess). Not gonna lie, that environment is definitely there for those who want it. However, as one who didn't really want to be a part of it for the most part it wasn't a problem. Sometimes it was difficult to handle loud drunk people coming in at night, but particularly at the end of my career there I was in the scholars floor (which was in a nice dorm that no one ever went into) and it was the best year there.

There are plenty of rich, ridiculous students who feel they deserve the world handed to them in a martini glass. However, that's not everyone. It'll be the same at any campus - it's what you make of it. Best thing to do is to join clubs to meet a variety of people. Some of my favorite memories from SLU involve playing endless games of Life with my friends on a Friday night. You won't be alone.

And if you hate it - you can always transfer. It's not a lifetime commitment (but they are lifetime memories).
Aww, Life's always fun :)

Yeah, I'm definitely keeping the transfer option open, since SLU gave me so much money that I won't feel like I wasted too much if I tried a year and didn't like it. At the same time though, I sort of want to go somewhere where I know I'll have a solid four years.

Thanks for advice!
I loved my time at SLU - not all of it of course, but for the most part I really did enjoy my experience there. I'd intended to go there for, at most, two years and then transfer. I promptly forgot that and only remembered when I was starting my junior year. I wouldn't have left for anything.
Having gone to SLU and then come to the Holyoke area for grad school I'd still say that SLU was where it's at! The partying and drinking are thingss that you'll encounter in almost every single undergraduate school. The other thing is that since Holyoke is an all-girls' school, the few girls I've met from there all seem to be dying for dates and looking to come to UMass and Amherst for a little social life.

As far as SLU goes I was in English major (though I graduated in 2004) and never went to any of those crazy parties or took drugs or anything of the sort. I thoroughly enjoyed my time there and the professors are great because they're all really into getting to know the students and making sure you're doing okay. They're the biggest bunch of kooks to be gathered in a small area but they're all fascinating teachers in their own ways. If you decide to go there, definitely take a class with Sid Sondergard (see his sneaker collection!) John Jaunzems (you'll meet his imaginery friends Wesley and Griselda who help him make his points) and if you prefer the writing side of things try Natalia Singer.

Anonymous

April 27 2007, 17:02:51 UTC 10 years ago

Yeah, actually one of the things I really like about Mt. Holyoke is the Five College Consortium-MHC itself feels very quiet, which is nice for people like me-but if the girls want to find a party, it's easy to find one at UMass, etc.

The professors sound great! I didn't meet any of the ones you mentioned, but the ones I did meet were all really friendly; I spent dinner talking to a biology prof about Harry Potter, lol. This is definitely something I liked better at SLU, that when I visited they really let us interact with the teachers. At MHC they really didn't.

*sorry, anonymous comment was me
I admit that I felt at first as though all social life revolved around drinking and so on at SLU, but that was before I really found people I clicked with, who went on to become some of my closest friends to date. We all hung out pretty often just to chat, play Life or watch movies. And discuss Harry Potter ad infinitum, hehe. There's just a feeling at SLU, once you've found your own particular group, that's small and cozy and comfortable.

I have to say it was the best time of my life.
Yeah there's partying and such, but I bet you're going to find that the party scene exists at most undergrad schools. And you're right...probably visiting on 4/20 gave you a more extreme version of partying at SLU.

In general, I found the other students at the school very friendly. Some people come to SLU already knowing people, maybe through siblings, friends, or former classmates. I didn't know anyone when I came (I think I'm the only person from my high school who came to SLU). That was a bit awkward at first, but I'm not exactly the most outgoing person either and still made great friends and did some fun activities. Actually, some of the best friends I had I didn't meet until my second semester of freshman year or until sophomore year.

I was an English major and had great classes. They were small and you really got to know the professor and other students in the class. I was a Presidential Diversity Scholar too.
I've definitely considered the fact that every college has partying, etc--It just feels like so much of the social life revolves around it.

Everything else sounds great, though, and the Presidential Diversity scholarship is just so much...