University Park, PA
Tuition (in-state)
$28,746 ($16,444)
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 4268 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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4 College Freshman

Guys & Girls: There is a large variety of people to choose from!

3 College Freshman

Weather: It is impossible for classes to get cancelled. No matter what the weather is. And Ill be honest the weather is rather bizarre here.

5 College Freshman

Academics: It is very difficult. Chemical engineering is arguably the most difficult college major, so the workload is tough. However the professors are nice and are open to let undergraduates work in their labs. The facilities are excellent too, could use a little bit of updating but still top of the line

5 College Freshman

Academics: As the number 11th ranked engineering school in the world, the academics as you can imagine are exceptional. They are difficult due to the work load, but they definitely teach you what you need to know.

5 College Freshman

Facilities: Penn State is a one of a kind school. There is no other school that you could ever compare Penn State too. The atmosphere at Penn State is the most welcoming and so are the people. Penn State makes sure that the provide all that the can whether it is on campus or off ranging from hangout places to great education. No matter who you are Penn State has a place for you to fit in and make great memories.

4 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Penn State is big on nightlife. Downtown is always crowded on the weekends

4 College Sophomore

Transportation: Transportation around town and the surrounding area is decent. Buses run frequently

3 College Sophomore

Scholarships: The Financial aid process is arduous but expected. I would of like to have gotten more considering my circumstances

4 College Freshman

Academics: What drew me into Penn State was how enthusiastic each and every professor is about the subject he/she teaches. When your professor comes to every class ready to teach, the student become ready to learn and are more engaged in the topic.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Campus Dining: You will never go hungry at Penn State! There is always food available to you. Particular dining halls often have somewhat of the same thing but if you get tired of the same food, there is always a number of options (either in the same hall or by traveling to another hall)! If you get tired of EVERYTHING on campus, you can always travel downtown by jumping on the free transportation provided and grab anything your in the mood for such as McDonalds, Chilli's, Panera Bread and so much more!)

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Academics: I'm currently an intended Business/Marketing major for the Smeal college of Business here at Penn State. I love the Smeal College of Business! There is definitely no other college that I would want to be enrolled in. The professors are dedicated and love the work they take in. They all work well with students and only want the best for everyone. There are TONS of business related organizations, and events to take part in here on campus to further expand your experiences and knowledge in a particular field!

4 College Student

Majors: I am loving the classes I chose, the professors are great

4 College Student

Majors: I am attending PSU do to the field of study that I am choosing as my career path, environmental engineering/sciences. I am extremely happy with the classes I have chosen as we as the professors who teach the classes. I would do it again in a heart beat.

4 College Student

Majors: Right now I am doing dual enrollment, attending both High Shcool and College. I am determined to keep my grade point average at 3.75 and higher, this has been my goal through the course of my education.

3 College Freshman

Weather: The snow is awful here in the winter which makes getting to classes difficult and they will very rarely cancel class. The only way classes will be canceled is if the professor themselves cancels it. But fall is absolutely stunning with all the trees that cover campus. Summer is great around here too usually, so the beginning of fall semester is always nice and warm.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Academics: I think a lot of our professors are very kind and considerate, but their are a handful that are not so much. I'm only into my second semester here and i've already had my fair share of both. The work load varies all on your major and courses you choose. Some classes are very hard and have a lot of work that some of my smarter friends are in. The order for registering for classes goes by year, athletics, honors, and then by how many credits you've previously taken. It's as fair as it can possibly be. No matter what everyone is not gonna be satisfied. The library is usually where a lot of students choose to study, but every one of the buildings have nice quiet areas good for studying.

4 College Freshman

Academics: Well since I'm only in my second semester and I haven't even completely declared my major it's rather easy. I have been following my recommended academic plan for the major of hotel, restaurant, and institutional management and so far I really can't complain about any of the classes you have to take for it. You don't need much math so thats a major plus.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The dorms here at Penn State Behrend are not exactly anything to brag about. Especially the Freshmen ones. in comparison to other friends dorms that i've seen at their schools, ours are very small with very limited storage space. Having no air conditioning in the summer is a killer too. The social atmosphere of them are great though! Lots of people leave their doors open for visitors anytime and people are always hanging out in the lobby. I'd recommend living on campus to everyone, especially if your a social person. Don't commute! I live 3 miles down the road from the school and living on campus was the best decision I ever made!

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: This branch in Erie is small enough to feel like you know or at least have seen everyone around at some point. It's rather homey to me and I feel like their is such a diversity of people here thats it's nearly impossible to not be able to find a group to fit into. To me even the jockey upperclassmen are still friendly and will give you a kind smile when passing by. Everyone makes an effort to be nice to one another and I never see anyone really putting anyone else down. It does create a nice atmosphere around here.

4 College Freshman

Guys & Girls: The campus literally has the gambit of all personalities, type of dress, interests that you could possibly be looking for- from the traditional east coast prep/suburban kids to international students (who have interests and tastes that are interesting to compare to other student's). Relationships, as much as any girl want to hear romantic things, is almost always noncommital. "Relationship" or "dating" can be scary words for a lot of people. Hooking up (making out or of the sexual variety) is very common every weekend.

4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: I appreciate all the local options, but all off campus restaurants do tend to have more real world prices, meaning that going out obviously requires more money than you would spend at the dining commons.

3 College Freshman

Greek Life: Sororities don't have houses, only floors in Pollock dorms and 60-70% are definitely classic sorority girls (they have their own nickname on campus). However, for all of those characteristics, sororities and frats participate a lot in fundraising for THON since it is the Panhellenic Dance Marathon. Boys tend to join frats if they want to actually get into frats on the weekends for parties because there always has to be a 3:1 girl to guy ratio

4 College Freshman

Academics: Coming into a state school, I wasn't really sure what to expect out of Penn State's academics, not to mention the whole Sandusky scandal was just being sorted out. I was pleasantly surprised by what the school had to offer though. There's incredible course variety, and the advisers, at least in my experience, are extremely knowledgeable and know how to get you where you need to go. Unless you want to to something ridiculous with your major(s), the course loads should be very manageable, and the professors are nice and literally do everything they can to help you succeed.

4 College Freshman

Academics: The Eberly College of Science at Penn State is incredible. The facilities here are state of the art (the Millenium Science Complex looks like something out of the future). The instructors are passionate, and the courses aren't that difficult so long as you go to class, do your work, and listen to what the professors have to say (you'd be surprised how hard that is for some people). They'll almost always give you the keys to succeeding in their class. As far as continuing opportunities, the school is so large that the availability of internships and such is impressive. I secured one internship my first term of my freshman year, and am now staying over the summer for a second. I also believe the acceptance rate here to medical school is around 80%, which is like three or four times the national average.

3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: The drug scene at PSU is, as is expected of such a large school, noticeable, but it's also relatively benign. Kids like to go out and drink, but in my experience most are relatively responsible and stay away from hard drugs. It seems kids are more out to be social and have a good time than "get wasted".


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Pattee Library and Mall
Pattee Library and Mall

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

James Bunting
Whitehall, PA
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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