University Park, PA
Tuition (in-state)
$28,746 ($16,444)
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 4621 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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5 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: There's lots of great places to eat, a huge diversity of food options, and off-campus dining is often cheaper than on-campus dining.

3 College Sophomore

Weather: The summers are absolutely beautiful and the temperature rarely exceeds 90 degrees. The winters can be harsh and usually last from the beginning of December through March. Spring and Fall are so unpredictable -- it will be like 65 one day and 82 the next. Also, make sure you bring an umbrella and rain boots, as it rains A LOT.

4 College Sophomore

Majors: I have had an internship while at Penn State, though it was not arranged through the college. I interned at Congressman Lou Barletta's district office(PA-11) during the 2012 Spring Semester. It was a fun experience to see the issues that the workers have to deal with on a daily basis. I also plan on doing internships through Penn State. I am hoping for something that could potentially have pay, and a flexible time commitment. I would enjoy working in the office of some public official, perhaps a Mayor or local attorney.

4 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The dorms are getting older, but they're doing a lot of renovating. While the noise and inconveniences are annoying, the dorms are all going to be great. The freshman dorms in East aren't in the best shape, however there are rumors circulating among the BOT that they're going to renovate them soon. The best halls are probably West (if you're looking for a bigger room), Pollock (if you're looking for the most central location) and South (if you're looking to be close to downtown).

3 College Freshman

Drug Safety: While I hear about drug use, I've never been pushed to participate, and I've never seen hard drugs being used... and I'm in the Greek community. People mostly just smoke.

4 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: There's always something to do! But the townies are a bit weird.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Greek Life: So many options and different cultures at each chapter, finding a place for anyone to fit in is easy.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: It's very hard to categorize the quality of the campuses. Most of the freshmen live in East halls (I suggest living here your first year). It's pretty terrible, it has FANTASTIC weekend brunches though. The dorms are small and cramped first year, but if you live anywhere else it is much better. the problem with the other halls is that you don't meet a lot of people there, which is very very important.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Nightlife: There is literally always some party going on. even throughout the week you find people going out. The best part are the different themes! in one night, you'll get on the bus and see people dressed for a paint party, a highlighter party, a beach themed party, literally anything.The parties off campus are fairly easy to get to, but you might have to do a great deal of walking so sometimes heels aren't always the best option (there are a lot of hills). In the winter it's much better just to take a cab, but there's always people walking on frat row so you don't have to spend the money.

3 College Freshman

Weather: During the fall and spring, the weather is fantastic. Everyone is outside as much as possible and there are so many people running or playing frisbee. the winter however, drags on heavily, be prepared to wear a lot of jackets and getting your 'frackets' stolen. (frat jackets)

1 College Freshman

Drug Safety: With the recent scandal at Penn State, the university is doing everything it can to prevent other scandals, drinking, etc. One of the biggest events of the year (State Patty's day) was completely watered down when the university brought police from different counties to prevent any alcohol mishaps.

4 College Freshman

Greek Life: The Greek life at Penn State is respected and a big part of the party scene. There are always parties on any day of the weekend and they are pretty much open to anyone. Although I am not involved in the Greek scene, I still enjoy the life they bring to the social scene.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Facilities: Campus life never ceases to amaze me. The school pride is unparalleled and the social scene is great. they provide a ton of co-op and internship programs and they really want you to succeed in whatever field you choose. When you go here you can really feel the sense of community and the social aspect will never disappoint.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Athletics: The school spirit is unbelievable here. We have the best student section in the country and the football games are more intense than any other event. When you walk around campus, you loose count of all the Penn State apparel you see. There is always a sporting event going on and there is never a shortage of nittany lion pride

5 College Freshman

Facilities: There is always something to do on campus for all interests. I never find myself bored or without something interesting to do. There are a ton of places to eat, study, and explore your interests. The student organizations and fun activities allow you to find your niche and become who you want to be.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Computers: There is a good amount of available labs on campus. They get packed sometimes, but hey, that's finals week for you.

5 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Amazing atmosphere! It's the reason I chose this school!

3 College Junior

Facilities: The academic programs in this school are challenging. Many teachers, not all, force their students to challenge themselves and work for their grades. You will not get As unless you work toward that grade. There are so many classes to choose from and you will not be bored. I learned what I wanted to do not because I was not limited to one set of classes but from the variety of courses I took my freshman year. With the courses and teachers you from networks and connections that could help you in the long run from recommendations to job opportunities. Don't be afraid to go to office hours or ask the teacher's questions. They love when their students actually ask for help and ask for their assistance because they want to see you do well. They are extremely helpful and want to see you succeed at all costs, especially to get your money's worth.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Greek Life: Greek life is a very big part of our school, but I don't see them greatly involved with the community. They are good for parties and for socializing and meeting new people, but you don't have to be a part of the Greek life to belong. Their events are open to anyone and they are friendly towards everyone.

4 College Junior

Guys & Girls: The guys and girls at Penn State are average people. They are very nice, friendly and great to talk to. They will make your time here worth the while from parties to friendships/relationships. But, ultimately it depends on what you are interested in. There is somewhat of diversity, but not entirely. The majority are Caucasian and Asian, but again the people here are very open-minded and easy to form relationships with.

3 College Junior

Campus Housing: It honestly depends which dorm is chosen for you or which one you pick. I lived in Pennypacker, but it wasn't the best experience for me. The girls on my floor weren't the cleanest and my neighbors weren't the nicest, but everyone's experience is different. Also, the location of the dorms is very convenient and gives you access to everything from food to downtown. The East dining halls serves great food, especially the wraps from the Big O, or Pollock dining halls serves a great variety of food from pizza to rice and fish. There is also the HUB and downtown area so there are so many options. There is so much to do and you will be near everything, You may only be a bus ride away, which is free. You will meet great people and friends that will last you throughout your college years and beyond.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Majors: Science major is so hard. They should have more tutoring available in all of the subjects. Hard to find tutors.

4 College Freshman

Academics: It is so hard. The teachers do not curve. They push you to learn.

4 College Freshman

Campus Housing: I had an wonderful time living on campus. I would recommend it to everyone. I just think the police need to go around Pennypacker Hall for the local Penn State football team. They beat up the kids and get away with it. ALot of the local kids on scholarships hate students from other countries.

3 College Freshman

Facilities: There are too many old dorms provided for Freshmens. Need upgrade and put wireless connections. Pay alot of money for old stuff. I pay out of state fees and expect newer stuff.


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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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