Location
Harrisonburg, VA
Undergrads
17,086
Tuition (in-state)
$17,932 ($4,642)
Admission Difficulty
Average
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Reviews 1739 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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5 College Freshman

Off-Campus Housing: There's a really wide variety as far as quality and cost

5 College Freshman

Transportation: So easy to get places, just a little harder on weekend nights

5 College Freshman

Athletics: Always a lot of alumni which is nice to see

5 College Freshman

Nightlife: There's always something to do.

4 College Freshman

Computers: You can definitely find labs and printers if you need them, but I just think it's easier to have my own computer

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: Harrisonburg was kind of built around JMU and you can definitely tell.

3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: Weekends you can definitely tell there's a lot of drinking but you can choose not to be a part of it because there are definitely other things to do. The drug scene isn't super noticeable

4 College Freshman

Academics: Classes and Professors are mostly good and you can pick how hard you want to make it for yourself.

3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: A little hard if you don't have a car but I haven't heard many bad things.

5 College Freshman

Diversity: Considering JMU is in Virginia, it's pretty diverse. People are very accepting and open.

3 College Freshman

Greek Life: Some groups are definitely better than others, but their parties are usually good and some of them are very nice.

4 College Freshman

Weather: Superrrrrrrr windy sometimes, but other than that it's usually beautiful.

4 College Freshman

Campus Housing: I personally like living on campus. Everything is relatively close. Depending on where you live you could have at most like a 30 minute walk to class, but that would be from one side of campus to the other. The dorms are decent. Every one of them has their positives and negative. Bluestone dorms have air conditioning and are very nice, however, they only have wifi on the first floor, so you have to use an Ethernet cable. Hillside dorms are okay, that is where the freshmen football players live, and they are close to dukes and top dog, have a/c, but they also don't have wifi. The village is older, they don't have a/c (although all the tv lounges will have a/c by next year) but they do have wifi all over the building; they have suite style so there are 3 double rooms connected by a common area and two suites share a bathroom so its only 12 people to a bathroom opposed to a whole hall; it's also in the middle of campus so it only takes at most 10 minutes to walk to any class, and its near the stadium and the gym, and the bus station. Lakeside is near Mrs. Greens and the stadium; they have bigger rooms and this is where the sophomore football players stay, they only have 6 people to a bathroom. Skyline is really nice; they have big lounges and a microwave on every floor; they have bigger rooms, wifi, and a/c (I think). Lastly, Rockingham is an off campus dorm for upperclassmen. It used to be an old motel so the rooms are 33% bigger with a private bathroom, a/c and heat, big closets and drawers, a balcony (if you're on the second floor) or porch (if you're on the first floor), convenient parking, they allow microwaves in the room and they offer super singles, so you could have all of that to yourself!

3 College Freshman

Greek Life: I am not particularly familiar with much of Greek life. I know that there is an OBVIOUS split between black Greeks and white Greeks. In the white frats and sororities, they have rush weeks and students go through all these processes and the majority of them end up in a frat or sorority. Most people join them so that they can go to parties because after rush week a good majority of Greek parties become mixers and non-Greeks are no invited. The way the non-Greeks view the Greeks depends on the frat or sorority that they are a part of. Greek housing is available for the white sororities on Sorority Row, but that's it. The black frats and sororities have a more complex way of joining. However, afterwards you are a brother or sister for life and you meet all kinds of people and you experience all kinds of new things with your brothers and sisters. They are more welcoming when it comes to non-Greeks, so after all the probates, everyone is still able to go to all the parties. They help create a fulfilling atmosphere for the minorities at JMU by hosting parties that everyone can get into, hosting events that bring everyone together, and giving students the opportunity to choose which family they want to be a part of, if any. However, the difference between white and black Greeks is mainly after the reveal. Once white Greeks know which frat or sorority they are a part of, they mainly spend their time with their people, partying with their people all becoming best friends within their frat or sorority. They may also put down other frats or sororities that are not them. Black Greek life is different in that after the probate, or reveal, individuals continue to hang with any other friends they may have. Since none of the parties are exclusive, they continue to party together and they continue to fellowship together. Many events hosted by one frat or sorority will acknowledge others that are present. It is expected for everyone to come together as Greek life no matter what.

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: There is no campus crime. I feel completely safe on campus; a good reason why I decided to live on campus for at least 3 years. We have police patrolling the campus all the time and campus cadets and SafeRides and the blue light poles. Everyone has the numbers to all the emergency services on the back of their JACards which are used for practically everything.

2 College Freshman

Weather: Being in the mountains, it is extremely hot in August and September when we first get here. However, when the winter hits, it hits hard!! The weather is very bipolar here, like one day it will be raining then the next it will be snowing, then it'll be sunny outside and blazing hot, then the wind will practically blow you away!

4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: We have a fairly good amount of off campus dining options. The cost is about the same as anywhere else. However, it is not very convenient because most places require you to have a car to get there. I don't know about some places but I know IHOP has student discounts on Wednesdays. Students get half off when they dine in (but all you really have to do is sit at the table, order, and ask for a to go box). We have about 3 McDonalds, Wendy's, Dairy Queen, Bob's Burgers, an Ethiopian cuisine place, Kline's, 2 Taco Bells, Qdoba, Sweet Frog, Chik Fil A, Chipotle, Sheetz, and more!!

3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: This is an alcohol free campus, so, when the RAs do their rounds and find alcohol paraphernalia or find you drunk, they write up students. Depending on how you are written up depends on the punishment. If you are caught straight up drinking alcohol or with a can/bottle/cup in your hand with alcohol in it that will most likely be a strike from Judicial Review and after 3 strikes you're out! However, if you are in a room that has an empty beer can on the floor and no one claims it everyone is written up and the first time they are all sent to Round Table which basically just talks to students about having other options other than drinking. I don't know the punishment for weed because I have never encountered anyone who got in trouble for weed, but I would assume it was just as bad, if not worse than the alcohol consumption. Availability of alcohol is limited to under age students because there of course isn't anywhere on campus for students to get alcohol which means they would have to find someone 21 or up and ask them to make a run to the ABC store or take them, and the closest ABC store REALLY checks IDs because they know a college full of underage drinkers is fairly close by.

3 College Freshman

Computers: As far as I know we have 2 computer labs. There is Ashby Computer Lab and students have to have a specific reason for going there. This computer lab is mainly used for taking the MREST, a mandatory test that all students must pass to graduate. Also, there is a computer lab in Rose Library, or ECL. There are computers available in Carrier Library, but students typically don't use these for long periods of time. Printing on campus is okay depending on how much you print. It is 10 cent per page printed and so if you print a lot it'll probably be easier to just buy a printer. Many of the dorms have wireless but depending on the dorm depends on where it is. Many dorms just have wireless on the first floor and many of them have it all over. Some just have it in the lounge. Network reliability is solid and the speed is fast, however, the network does tend to shut down when everyone begins to register for classes. The need for a computer is definite! There are not enough computers on campus to rely on not having your own. The school does not supply students with computers, but they do sell them at the library for a decent enough price, although I believe you can get them cheaper at a store.

College Freshman

Majors: I do plan to have an internship. It is a part of the athletic training program here at JMU. Students are given the opportunity to work at schools outside of JMU in the local area such as the elementary, middle, and high schools, and the surrounding colleges like Bridgewater to help determine which field best fits their desire. I have not held any professional training positions.

5 College Freshman

Majors: I am applying for the Athletic Training program. This program is the reason I decided to come to JMU in the first place. I hadn't considered anything else. Of all the Athletic Training programs in Virginia, James Madison's is the best! They have a 100% BOC passing rate and it teaches you many things other colleges don't such as how to use the machines like E-Stim. This program, which only admits 18 people every spring semester, allows the students to work next to certified athletic trainers to assist with the athletes and it gives them a personal feel of the daily life of an athletic trainer, where students are allowed to treat athletes, monitor rehabilitation, take inventory, and help train students who desire to be in the program! I plan on being an Athletic Trainer for a profession football team. The only concerns I have is that there are not many of those positions available.

4 College Freshman

Transportation: For local transportation, we have a steady bus system that offers paper bus schedules and a bus app in the Apple and Android Play store. The schedules are extremely accurate and the bus drivers are very nice. These buses don't cost anything and will generally take students to all places associated with JMU (around campus, local shopping centers, apartment complexes, etc.). For long distance transportation, JMU is not really near many stations. They offer a weekend bus that leaves on Friday afternoons and come back Sunday nights for $70 round trip. They also offer ZipCar, which is a car rental service and ZimRides, where students with cars that are going home offer to take people home who live in the same general area.

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: It really is mostly a college town I haven't really had too much interaction with locals. The scenery is beautiful though and I love looking at the mountains everyday.

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: I haven't heard of anyone in my personal group of friends having any issues with things like sexual assault, robberies or anything like that. Even though I am a girl and walking around by myself at night can seem scary I have never felt unsafe while on campus.

5 College Freshman

Academics: I obviously have no experience with what my major would be like at another school but I heard great things about the education program here before coming and it did not disappoint. I have only taken a handful of classes for major so far but they have been great the teachers are excellent- really willing to help you understand the material and succeed and have a lot of personal experience and tips with how to handle children and your own classroom. I have heard that you are pretty much guaranteed a job out of school and JMU makes sure to give you classroom experience starting sophomore year- next year I will be tutoring students for one of my classes.

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Wilson Hall
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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Sandra Jolles
Hometown
Great Falls Virginia
Major
Media Arts and Design
Grad Year
2015
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JMU offers a strong community, with students displaying an overwhelming amount of pride. You'll find you will love this school simply because every other student carries that same love. This sense of spirit is infectious. Harrisonburg has been named the "friendly city" by students, faculty, parents, and townfolk, and it’s no surprise why. Each year offers unique experiences that keep you coming back for more. JMU might not be charmed with the best football team in college history, but with the overwhelming amount of pride and zeal displayed at each game, it seems the perfect team for a enthusiastic school.

One pitfall might be the lack of nearby attractions or activities to enjoy on a weekend night. This can result in a many people resorting to parties as their means of entertainment. While Harrisonburg is by no means urbanized, you'll find some of your best memories on the nights you spend with your peers. Whichever friend group you click into, you'll find a little piece of yourself on this campus.

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