Location
University Park, PA
Undergrads
37,917
Tuition (in-state)
$28,746 ($16,444)
Admission Difficulty
Average
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Reviews 4649 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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5 College Sophomore

Athletics: If there is one thing that describes the athletic scene at Penn State, it's total student involvement. There is nothing that compares to Beaver Stadium and Football; it's an experience like no other. Everyone goes all out for school spirit. Even if you're just playing club sports, Penn State has a great selection and it's a lot of fun

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: The atmosphere at Penn State is one of pride and community. There is so much to do here, and it's not just drinking and football games. There are other sports, such as our 2012 Sweet 16 Women's Basketball team, and plenty of free and cheap concerts, comedians, and guest speakers. The restaurants downtown are great, and the nightlife is definitely fantastic. There's just so much to do and see, and so many people here that there is someone and something for everyone.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Academics: Psychology Dept – In the Psych Department, there are great professors and many opportunities for research. Our department is even rated third in the university in professors' teaching quality. There is a lot of flexibility in scheduling classes, as there are so many to choose from. The workload varies by class, but I find I learn more in classes when I have to work harder.

5 College Student

Facilities: Not once have a met a student that does not want to talk to you. Everyone at PSU is friendly and wants to help you. When I visited there my first time, I got lost and asked a group of upperclassmen for help. Rather than ignore me, they helped me find the building I was looking for and showed me nothing but respect.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Greek Life: I am apart of TAU PHI DELTA we are the only forestry fraternity dedicated to the outdoors in the nation. Just being Greek gives us an advantage to be able to get out and be recognized and make a difference. Greek life is more than what people hear about, like party's and stuff like that. We are required to make a difference and do community service and most Greek life chapters go above and beyond to help there community and other people in the state as well as nation for us.

5 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: So Many Choices. Penn state has so many choices for off campus dining. The best part is, most of them deliver right to your dorm!

3 College Sophomore

Weather: Its Cold in the Winter – Its very cold and rains a lot, but its way to fun to pass up

5 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Good Food and Staff – The food is great and very variable. the staff takes good care of the students. Living on campus is very convenient

4 College Sophomore

Majors: I love some of my classes. You really need to ask juniors or seniors about good professors before you take a class though.

3 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: There area bunch of different things to choose from. A great plus is this website called lionmenus that has all restaurants on it that will deliver to you.

3 College Freshman

Computers: There are computer labs everywhere in addition to computer stations with printers in public spaces such as academic buildings or the HUB just in case you need to print something out between classes. Furthermore, many computer labs are 24 hours and more often than not they are in convenient places for students such as in a residence hall or dining commons. They're always staffed by a tech assistant if any difficulties or questions were to arise. The only issue is that the tech assistants are often under trained and have a tendency to fail to help you.

3 College Freshman

Campus Strictness: Punishments Are Reasonable – Policies are clearly outlined and explained by resident assistants and at orientation. They are further explained and outlined on things such as newsletters in the bathroom or in public areas. Everyone is warned of the severe consequences for prohibited actions such as candles in the residence halls. If someone is caught, they are swiftly called in to talk for disciplinary action. People are usually given a warning the first time and an actual punishment after the first offense.

4 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: For as long as I've been at Penn State, I've never felt scared or worried walking around during the daytime or nighttime. The campus is small and lit up at night so I feel safe. I also feel safe and secure because I know no one on campus is going to bring me any harm.

4 College Sophomore

Diversity: At Penn State whether it's professors or students, everyone is open to help one another. This campus feels like home because no matter what race you are, people are willing to help and befriend one another. People on campus also don't judge by economic background, sexual orientation, religion, or political beliefs. It feels good to be at a campus where everyone is friendly to each other.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Campus Strictness: Penn State is known as a party school. The school is pretty lenient because the kids are good with keeping up with their party/academic responsibilities. Ultimately, its up to the student to determine how there going to be socially. The school just want the school to shame the school publicly.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Computers: There are several places where you can use computers. There are several labs available with computers. There's also bountiful amount of computers in the library. Anytime you need help, whether it be help with citation work or how to use a particular software, the staff is always there's to help you or there's a live chat program on the computer you can refer to which is very helpful.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Freshman Dorms – The dorms at Penn State are great. They are very clean and relatively close to classes or transportation. The internet is very fast as well.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Local Atmosphere: The atmosphere at Penn State in general is so lively! The people are so friendly and welcoming. I am going there from Virginia, but it feels just like home. I will be living close by campus which is also close to another university in York which means there are a lot of students that make up the community.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Diversity: It is one of the MOST diverse campuses i have ever seen in my life! There are even flags out on campus that represents the students ethnicity.

3 College Freshman

Transportation: Buses Are Ok – Busses come every 8-10 mins during classes, every 15 other times. We just got new busses

3 College Freshman

Guys & Girls: Big school, a lot of attractive people, a lot of unattractive people too

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Very Safe – Crime is rare and the campus environment is safe. You can walk around at night by yourself on campus or if you don't feel safe, call for an escort. Security guards are constantly walking around at day time and night. Of course, robberies and vandalism have happened, but as long as you don't put yourself in an obviously dangerous situation and walk alone then everything will be fine. Personally I feel very, very safe wherever I am.

3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: College Town – If you are looking for a relatively quiet college then this is the place go to. The surrounding town is pretty quiet when the students are not here, but once the year starts the whole campus is bustling with activities. You can't get bored because there is always something you can and go on campus. Buses can take you to a mall and Walmart, basically anything you need you can get. If you like the city you might find it a bit boring at first but it's definitely less distracting than somewhere like NYC (4 hour bus ride away).

5 College Senior

Facilities: I was able to join a research lab as a freshmen and just submitted my thesis a few weeks ago (I received grants to fund a study that I designed). Almost every week when I read the New York Times Science Section I read about research done by a professor at Penn State.

5 College Senior

Academics: Penn State (University Park campus) is a great place to get an education. I am a graduating senior and loved every moment of my 4 years at Penn State. PSU offers the best of both worlds: PSU is a powerhouse in academic research and also has great school spirit and active alumni. As an out-of-stater who did not know much about the school before applying, I am glad that I chose Penn State because I have never seen more school spirit or tradition. I am grateful that I was able to be an involved student and a leader on campus. We have been through a lot this past year, and we are all proud to be Penn Staters. It is true, we do bleed blue and white, and we wouldn't have it any other way.

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Pattee Library and Mall
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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

James Bunting
Hometown
Whitehall, PA
Major
Journalism
View all previous student authors

Despite common reservations about the location and climate, most Penn State students are fiercely loyal to their alma mater. Penn State boasts one of the largest alumni populations in the United States; graduates are proud of their degrees, and employers recognize the University’s name immediately. Although the campus is located in a very rural area, school is technologically up-to-date and on the cutting-edge of current research.

Aside from academics, PSU is also known for its social scene, especially in relation to sports and parties. Nittany Lion football—home of the 2008 Big Ten Champions—is a national draw and a point of pride for both the University and the town of State College. For anyone interested in playing or watching varsity sports, PSU is a top choice. Penn State has also been ranked highly by many polls and “party school” surveys as one of the top party schools in the nation. While it certainly isn’t the wildest town, these rankings are definitely accurate. The small-town setting and large-school atmosphere makes for little else in the way of entertainment, so it can be hard to avoid encountering the party scene during your time as a student. Still, the mix of work and leisure seems to work well for most of the student body, and academic standards at Penn State remain relatively high. It’s easy to spend four years at Penn State as an ever-serious student, focused completely on whatever you choose to study. With so many opportunities to relax nearby, balance and moderation are some of the best skills to learn from your four years in college.

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