Local Atmosphere

Tuition (in-state)
$16,722 ($10,466)
Admission Difficulty
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3 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: It so a normal town. you can find stuff to do when you want to.

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: There are many palces around the school. You can always have fun, go out to eat, and shopping with friends.

3 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: Its a rural; but populated, town 50 mins from Metropolitan life.

2 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: Big Rapids is a small city and there really isn't all that much to do. It's also pretty isolated so the nearest 'big' cities are at least 45 minutes away. The main attraction is tubing on the Muskegon river in the summer.

3 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: downtown area close to arena and parks, libraries, and museums


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Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Lauren Moore
Temperance, MI
View all previous student authors

Big Rapids is described by more than half of the students as being "a small town with plenty of charm." With that being said, most students do not plan on staying in the area following graduation from Ferris. For students, it is seen more as a college town than a place to start their careers.

One of the better things about Big Rapids is that it is a relatively safe place (being such a small town). There are great parks and recreation in the area, and the scenery is something to see! The only downfalls to the area include no real great shopping areas (unless a student wants to take a little under an hour drive to Grand Rapids), no professional sports, and a lack of very interesting nightlife.

The town is extremely accommodating to the students, especially the businesses. Though there are people who live in Big Rapids, the city is composed mostly of students. Therefore, some of the businesses actually offer discounts to students on certain items. There are a few nearby schools that Ferris students interact with, especially on the weekends. The closest school that most go to hang out at is Central Michigan University. Also, less than two hours away, there is Michigan State University.

Facts & Statistics

Fun Local Trivia
  1. Big Rapids' early history was associated with logging.
  2. The name "Big Rapids" comes from the many river rapids in the region.
Points of Interest
  • Card Wildlife Education Center
  • Jim Crow Museum
Shopping Centers
  • RiverTown Crossings (Grandville)
  • Woodland Mall (Grand Rapids)
Movie Theaters
Carmike Big Rapids Cinemas
213 S. Michigan Ave
Big Rapids
(231) 796-5646
Major Sports Teams
Grand Rapids Griffins: American Hockey League
Distances to Nearest Major Cities
  • Detroit: MI: 3 hours, 20 minutes
  • Grand Rapids: MI: 55 minutes

Student Polls

Rate the local atmosphere on the following topics    Based on 74 responses

Very poor
  • Cost of living
  • Dining
  • Friendliness of locals toward students
  • Museums/cultural attractions
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Parks and recreation
  • Professional sports
  • Safety
  • Scenery
  • Shopping
  • Transportation

What is the local atmosphere like at your school?    Based on 73 responses

  • 15% Painfully remote.
  • 10% In or near a big city, but there's not much to do off campus.
  • 47% Small town with plenty of charm.
  • 19% Vibrant college town. There's no big city, but there are plenty of things to do off campus.
  • 10% City living at its finest. There's always something fun and interesting going on.

What is the proximity to other universities? Is there much interaction?    Based on 72 responses

  • 49% There aren't any nearby schools.
  • 10% There are nearby schools, but students do NOT interact much.
  • 42% There are nearby schools that students often interact with.

Can you see yourself living here after graduation?    Based on 72 responses

  • 44% No way.
  • 51% Maybe, if I could find a good job.
  • 4% Totally.



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