Location
University Park, PA
Undergrads
37,917
Tuition (in-state)
$28,746 ($16,444)
Admission Difficulty
Average
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Reviews 4635 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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1 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: If you got money to pay for quality restaurants then good for you otherwise burgers and pizza.

3 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Isolated crimes outside of campus but limited to other counties. Students need to pay attention to surroundings which they do not.

1 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: No one makes eye contact. Everyone has headphones on their ears. For me it was miserable. Not everyone is the same. Young crowds love it. Don't start fights or cops will lock you up. During games students get drunk and act like idiots.

1 person found this useful Report
College Freshman

Campus Housing: Don't live in a campus housing. I heard you can get housing in your major so you can get involved with others within your interest. None for me unfortunately.

3 College Freshman

Transportation: Airport is good but expensive. Close proximity to hotels and restaurants. Busing on campus is ok but off campus I don't really know.

College Freshman

Drug Safety: Perhaps marijuana but I don't know the area and I don't go to parties. Just smoking and drinking.

2 College Freshman

Off-Campus Housing: Mediocre if you don't live in a nice apartment. Do some research and pick a place that you like. Also you may notice but whenever you are near downtown you will get lots of noise on the weekends. Annoying but no one seems to care.Landlord tells me I must call police if loud. No way I am going to interfere. I can care less as long as they don't knock on my door. Housing is poor. No A/C. Too warm during night. Heat makes room hotter. I prefer controlling temps. Bike racks so bicycle would be great option if you don't want to walk but walk if it is too windy. Safe neighborhoods. Parking costs too much with apartment rent. Not worth buying campus parking pass either. Rip off. School always finds a way to make money.

College Freshman

Athletics: Never been to a game. Football is big turnout. Expensive tickets to get. Lots of fans. What you see on Tv is what you get. Great spirit but I don't have any of it. Student organizations is something you must force yourself to join and you must always to pay to participate in an event. Lot of glitter but no glamour.

College Freshman

Majors: I didn't participate in internship so I can't give any judgement.

1 College Freshman

Majors: Current program makes me miserable. I wanted to go into
science major but have to take Math all over again. Now I am looking into journalism. Advisers are nice and helpful.I should have spent more time on figuring out my major instead of rushing to apply to the University. They say you get a job within 4 months you graduate but mostly ground level. Political Science has little to do with courts,laws, and laws. Just liberal arts classes you don't need. I wanted to go to Law school but you can major in Business and get into Law school just take writing courses.

2 College Freshman

Facilities: Internet connections problem in class. Microphone doesn't work. Lots of walking from one building to another. Large auditoriums where classes are held people leave trash all over the place indoors. Certain classrooms are nice like the Business Building and Science Life Building. Library is ok but you have to go early or on weekends during football games.

2 College Freshman

Academics: Most of my classes involved essays and research papers. I like presentations and projects on powerpoint. Summer was horrible I couldn't get my group to participate on a timely manner. Last minute deal.

1 College Freshman

Academics: My original major was Political Science. My adviser was nice but I realized it wasn't for me. Had difficulties during the summer and I wished I started the Fall of 2013.Lots of people in certain class. If you are young you may find a few friends. Older people just out of luck. It is sad when you want to go away anywhere else but here. Great for older folks with family but not alone.

College Freshman

Scholarships: No scholarships.Foreign competition.Good luck and try,

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Freshman

Overall Experience: Older than peers. Isolated.Off campus students loud.

3 College Freshman

Campus Dining: It's college food and I love buffets so this works for me. If you do not eat a lot, the dining plan will not benefit you. East wings, West's nachos and cookies, North fro breakfast, Pollack for dinner and South for fresh food.

1 College Freshman

Scholarships: PSU does not give out financial aid until you have done work here at Penn State. Maybe later if you get great grades, you can get something.

2 College Freshman

Parking: Parking costs a lot but you can usually find a space. As a freshman, you do not really need a car. Transportation is aplenty.

4 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: State College, PA is the safest college town in America. The locals love Penn State as much as the students do, and there is a very strong respect between both parties. Downtown is just one street over from campus and is not only a popular living spot for upperclassmen, it's great for a unique small-town shopping experience and one-of-a-kind restaurants. I came as a kid and now as a student, I still love walking down College Avenue on Saturday mornings.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Athletics: Penn State football is very important here (although it's not everything by any stretch of the imagination, NCAA). Sports are an avenue where we can exhibit some of the extreme Penn State pride we have, and PSU fans are second to none. Always out in big numbers, no matter what team. Each sport has their own student following, and the facilities are absolutely incredible.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: It's a large school, there's alcohol in downtown State College, no denying that. But, that being said, if you're not into the party scene, staying away from College Avenue (the divisor of State College and Penn State) really decreases your chances of all the drug related activities that happen.

4 College Freshman

Overall Experience: Penn State is the ultimate college experience, and I just don't mean what happens on weekends. No matter what you're in to (there's tons of stuff to do if you're not into partying) Penn State makes you feel like you're part of something bigger than yourself: one of 40,000 students and over a half billion living alumni...that is really a special thing. Nothing even compares to the pride we all have in our school, plus the education and networking opportunities are second to none.

3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Everyone is very accepting. There are groups of people from all over the world, I've never seen an outcast. There are a growing number of people not from America, which you will notice in the walking patterns, it seems American traffic patterns are acutely constructed, which you would never know if it was all homogenous, so there, a built in lesson.

4 College Sophomore

Academics: Its all there if you ask nicely. Access to research, labs, etc. is very easy if you have genuine interest in it.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Academics: Workload is high so make sure you like your major. If you don't smile sometimes when you're doing homework and when you learn something, you may be in trouble.

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Pattee Library and Mall
Pattee Library and Mall

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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