Location
University Park, PA
Undergrads
37,917
Tuition (in-state)
$28,746 ($16,444)
Admission Difficulty
Average
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Reviews 4696 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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5 College Freshman

Nightlife: School Is One of a Kind – PennState is ranked one the safest places to live (#3). They have the state police, and their own private police force. "Blue Lights" are great for making sure you are always connected. Parties are often, safe if the student in considerate of themselves.

3 College Freshman

Weather: Weather in Pennsylvania is difficult. It can run from very rainy to very dry. PSU seems to be on the average side. Sunny very often, temperature fluctuates with the seaons.

5 College Freshman

Scholarships: The Finacial Aid process went very smoothly, no problems at all unlike other schools i applied to (i.e. Cornell, UR, RIT, UB).

3 College Freshman

Diversity: PSU has a mixture of many different religions (including the many places for those religions to worship). In addition to that, they also have a large ethnic basis. There more White Americans than other ethnicities, however, they are balanced out by the ample amount of others.

5 College Sophomore

Nightlife: I love the nightlife here, it's amazing. I find it hard to believe that anyone can be bored, because there's always something to do.The best places to go if you're under 21 are Frat Parties or apartment parties. They're usually a lot of fun, and they have really great music. There's also Levels nightclub, which is open to anyone 18 and over. I've heard it's really a lot of fun, but the lines are usually extremely long. The Cata Buses run until about 3 am, I believe, on weekends. It's usually very packed and filled with a lot of hilarious, crazy students. If you're going off campus, most students take a taxi, because it's easier get around in the night. Sometimes it takes around half an hour to actually get a taxi company on the phone, but they usually arrive very fast. If you're not into the party scene, then there's usually activities in the Hub, such as movies.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Diversity: Mechanical Engineering – Mechanical Engineering tought want to finish this year

3 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Depends on Where You Live – Campus housing varies from spot to spot. West housing has the best food, north has the nicest rooms, east is closest to the stadium, and south has the best quad. They each have their ups and downs. Overall, the quality of the on-campus housing is good.

4 College Junior

Overall Experience: Convenient and Accessible – I am a student in the world campus and have found the courses to be valuable to my career, and accessible and convenient. The expense, however, is severely limiting

4 College Sophomore

Transportation: Buses, Buses Everywhere – There are two different bus lines that loop around Penn State Main all day that are free and run from I think 6am to 2am. There are also several bus lines that charge a mere $1.50 that can take you to off-campus locations. There's a bus tracker app you can download to see where the buses are, but sometimes it's not always reliable and the buses get off schedule. Mega Bus stops at the Walmart parking lot if you need to get to places like Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, or New York.

4 College Sophomore

Computers: Penn State has several different computer labs. Each computer has relatively fast Internet and they have programs installed that would otherwise need to pay for if you downloaded them yourself. Every lab has two or three printers; most people have their own personal computers and printers that they bring because the computer labs can get crowded with people checking Facebook.

5 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: Cultural Food Abounds in State College – The State College area offers several cheap, privately-owned, high-quality restaurants, along with popular chains. You can find just about any type of cuisine from Asian food to Mexican to Austrian to All-American, Italian and Indian. Most places participate in the Lion Cash system so you don't have to carry cash. The best places are The Deli, The Corner Room, Cozy Thai Bistro and Herwig's Austrian Bistro.

5 College Sophomore

Athletics: Penn State offers pretty much every sport there is and if it's not offered you can start your own team. They have four different gyms on main campus. All the sports teams have a coaching staff and sports nutritionists, trainers. Students are eager to attend and support all athletic events. Intramurals are offered for all seasons - indoor and outdoor - and are very popular.

3 College Student

Transportation: Buses Galore – Cata buses are very useful around campus. Some will take you off campus for a small fee of $1.50 each way. There are lots of bus stations that you can catch a multitude of buses to different places to get home (NY, Pittsburgh, Newark, DC, Philadelphia...). There is also a local airport, which is expensive. It doesn't hurt to know an upper classmen with a car on campus though- faster than the buses and doesn't cost a thing.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Student

Weather: Randomly will storm, a lot! Weather is usually cold and rainy. Winters are dreadful, summers are really hot. Spring is really nice but those spring showers happen often.

4 College Student

Academics: Professors can be iffy but the academics are perfect! Everything you can possibly want is offered, although some classes can be very challenging- especially the weed out courses (large freshmen classes- usually sciences and upper math levels that require a C or better for certain majors such as engineering or other medical fields)

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Student

Campus Housing: West Is the Best, East Is the Worst – I was lucky enough to live in west which is right next to the library and close to many classes. The rooms are the largest and the quad is beautiful! East is home to all the freshmen so it is very busy and the rooms are cozy, but still a decent size compared to other college dorms I have scene.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Student

Academics: Challenging Yet Fun and Worth the Hard Work – I'm In Architectural Engineering. This is a very hard major that only takes a certain number of students and is a rigorous 5 year program. The classes are very challenging but if you know you want to go into it, I have herd it is well worth it in the end. TAs and teachers are helpful, and some of the architecture classes can be very small so you get to know everyone well.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Athletics: We Love Sports!! Sports are very important at Penn State especially football! We have great school spirit and there is always a crowd to cheer whatever team on. The facilities are also wonderful, we have three gyms to work out in. All the sports have pretty great success either varsity or IM.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Computers: Labs Are Good! The computer labs at Penn State are very good. They really only crowded during midterms and finals week but we have many, many computer labs so you can almost always find a spot. You get allotted a certain number of sheets being allowed to print for each semester but it's actually a lot and going over isn't really a problem. The speed and wireless connection is alright but you can only receive wifi if in the common areas. Having a personal computer and printer is a great idea!!!!

5 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: Stop by the Corner – The Corner Room is walking distance from campus right on the corner of East College Ave and South Allen Street. It is a great place to eat that is not fast food yet still very affordable. It has everything from big juicy burgers to delicious pastas and soups. My friends and I loved going here to take a break from on campus dining yet we didn't break our banks. It has a great atmosphere and great staff. Definitely a restaurant to check out when visiting State College.

1 College Freshman

Scholarships: The school sponsored scholarships like most schools, is very slim.
The biggest (only) real hope is the Bunton Waller scholarship, which has a salary cap. It is also restricted to underrepresented minorities.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: It All Depends on the Residence Hal. Best - Worst

West, South, North, East.

East Halls Suck. Overall, they're quite fair.

3 College Freshman

Guys & Girls: The girls out here are great. Forewarning, you'll find basically every kind of girl out here at Penn State. Take that with a grain of salt ;)

4 College Freshman

Nightlife: A Variety of Options – There is a variety of options. There are fraternities, apartments, houses, sports teams houses; bascially, name anything and you can find it. Greek life seems like a big part of campus, but you don't have to join it to find something to do.

1 person found this useful Report
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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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