Facilities

Location
Medford, MA
Undergrads
5,167
Tuition
$44,666
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews

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4 College Sophomore

Facilities: The fitness center, dining halls, and many student dorms are great. Aesthetically, the academic quad and President's lawn cannot be beat, especially with the colors of fall or fresh snow of winter. Some of the freshman dorms are pretty run down, however, and some of the buildings, while nice on the outside, are unremarkable on the inside.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: At Tufts, you'd be pressed to find somebody that doesn't defy a stereotype. I am constantly amazed by the diversity of what my class has accomplished, and the willingness to try anything that interests them. Academically, we have some of the best science programs and our International Relations program is one of the best in the country. Athletically, the focus is atypical... it often seems that our quidditch and ultimate frisbee teams have more of a campus presence than varsity football.

4 College Junior

Facilities: Most facilities are in good condition, although some could use a bit of updating. Library and gym are especially nice.

5 College Junior

Facilities: Tufts is truly the best of both worlds. You get the feel of a small-medium size college in a suburban area, but still have quick access to a big city. Academics are challenging and interesting. Campus is very social and there's always something going on.

4 College Sophomore

Facilities: Tufts is a classic New England liberal arts school. Some genius decided to build it on a hill, which is had when you're navigating campus in between classes with a backpack full of books when it's -2 and snowing out, but it does keep the students relatively fit and active. It has beautiful sitting spaces, and the campus looks amazing in fall in spring (winter lasts from November-March, which is a large portion of on-campus time). There is a nice flow of energy, our campus center is beautifully designed, but there are only about 3 hubs for students, so you do run into people you know every day. We have the cannon and Jumbo, which are nice focal points, and a lot of greenery when it's sunny. Everything sort of lights up. Our library is nice form the outside, and has lots of places to study inside, but not necessarily beautiful (Ginn Library is much nicer).

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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 144th
    Best Library
  • 175th
    Best Performance Venues
  • 196th
    Greenest Campuses
  • 341st
    Best Student Centers
  • 866th
    Best Athletic Facilities

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Chris Cote
Hometown
Ipswich, MA
Major
International Relations
View all previous student authors

Tufts takes a lot of pride in its campus buildings and facilities, and they are always well kept and well maintained. There has been a flurry of construction over the past 10 years, with more new buildings and renovations every year. Still, students who wish that Tufts could compete with the facilities at larger, more well-endowed schools can always find room to complain.

Generally, students complain that the buildings are a little too small. There are minor problems with overcrowding, but with such a small student body, this is only noticeable during busy times. Some of the recent additions, like Dowling Hall and the Tisch Library, have greatly improved students’ quality of life. There is something new on campus every fall, and Tufts is steadily trying to keep up with the growing needs of the student body. As far as meeting these needs, the school has come close, but hasn’t quite hit the mark yet. A water park on campus wouldn’t hurt.

Facts & Statistics

Service & Maintenance Staff
250
Campus Size
150 acres
Student Centers
The Mayer Campus Center
Campus Library?
Yes
Main Libraries
  • Five other department libraries located on campus
  • Tisch is the main library
Popular Places to Chill
  • Brown & Brew
  • The Campus Center
  • Dorm common rooms
  • The President’s Lawn
Bar on Campus
Hotung Café in the Campus Center
Bowling on Campus
None
Coffeehouse on Campus
  • Brown & Brew in Curtis Hall
  • Hotung Café in the Campus Center
  • The Rez in the Campus Center
Movie Theater on Campus
Film Series offers weekly movie showings
School Slang
  • A Cappella: Singing without accompaniment.
  • CSL: Committee on Student Life.
  • Dewick: When going to eat at Dewick, someone may ask you, "Do you want to Dewick it?"
  • Double-Jumbo: Someone who has attended Tufts both as an undergraduate and graduate, or professional student.
  • Downhill: Using the library steps as the dividing line.
  • E: Short for "Engineer."
  • ELBO: Elections Board.
  • Ex College: Experimental College, a program that brings in outside experts to teach classes.
  • Flip Cup: A drinking game played by two teams. The game proceeds as a relay.
  • The Hill: Walnut Hill, where Tufts is located.
  • Jackson College: The name of the Tufts' college for women (from before the University became coed).
  • JumboFOB: Electronic signal keys used to enter some dorms.
  • Light on the Hill: A number of school traditions and songs derive from this phrase that initiated Tufts' creation, when Nathan Tufts vowed "to put a light on the hill."
  • O-zone: Where you live if you're on the basement level of a dorm.
  • Pax Et Lux: Latin for "Peace and Light," and is part of the Tufts symbol.
  • P-Row: Professors Row.
  • Quad: Area of grass surrounded on all sides by buildings.
  • TCU: Tufts Community Union; student government groups, TCU Senate, and Judiciary.
  • TEMS: Tufts Emergency Medical Service, the group of student-EMTs on call for emergency service.
  • Uphill: Using the library steps as the dividing line.
  • Wren Bugs: The special species of bugs that live in and around Wren Hall.
Traditions
  • Candle Ceremonies: There is a big candle-lighting ceremony during Freshman Orientation and Senior Week. The traditions are derived from the Nathan Tufts vow to "put a light on the hill."
  • First Night: The first night of Freshman Orientation, the entire class and A=alumni gather in the Gantcher Center for dinner and the story of Jumbo. Watch out for indoor fireworks.
  • Frisbee Golf: Watch out for flying Frisbees! There is a Frisbee golf course on campus, and it is only known to members of the ultimate Frisbee team. They aren't trying to hit you in the head with the Frisbee, they just want it to land on Jumbo's nose.
  • Naked Quad Run: In the 1960s, students who were living in West Hall (the last all-male dorm on campus) were told that women would be moving in the next year, and they decided to protest. They ran naked around the academic quad, and it has been a tradition ever since. The event traditionally takes place on the first night of reading period in December, usually with some amount of snow on the ground.
  • Painting the Cannon: This is the best form of advertising on campus. Every night, students are allowed to paint the cannon, though painting may only be done in the dark. Students then guard the cannon until dawn. If you don't, it is free-game to anyone else to paint over.
  • Pancake Breakfast: This used to happen after the Naked Quad Run, but now due to a number of incidents with naked pancake throwing, the event has been moved to a study break during reading period in the spring semester.
Urban Legends
  • "Rape Steps" - These steps are behind the Hillel Center and lead down to Boston Avenue. They say that the design of these steps was given to an engineering student as his final project. He was supposed to design them so that they would be easier for women to run up than men if they were being chased, and the steps were designed to be the exact stride of a woman, calculated from a number of biological factors. However, an empirical study will show that men can run up these steps twice as fast as women. The stride length is difficult for women, but men can just jump two steps at a time.
  • Direction of the Tufts Cannon - There is a replica of a U.S.S. Constitution cannon on the Tufts campus. It is said it points at Harvard, but no one really knows where it points.
  • If you can get a penny to land on the nose of the Jumbo statue, you're supposed to have good luck on your finals.
  • School Color Selection - In the first 30 years of Tufts's existence, the graduating class was allowed to pick their own school colors, and every year they changed. After 30 years, the administration decided it was time to settle on one set of colors. When the administration told the senior class that they would pick the school's colors for eternity, they didn't believe them, and thought it was a joke. That class picked the worst color combination they could come up with: baby blue and dark brown. Those remain Tufts' colors today. Tufts says the school colors represent earth and sky.
  • The Gravit Stone - This is a stone plaque cemented near the library roof. Legend has it that Tufts contracted a company in the 1960s that sold it this stone to bury outside of East Hall. The stone's properties would keep airplanes and missiles away from campus, apparently a strong worry during the Cold War. The Tufts Mountain Club realized the ridiculousness of this idea and wanted to move the stone. Finally, the administration had it cemented in its present day location.
  • Wren Bugs - This is a unique species of bug that supposedly only inhabits Wren Hall. No one has seen much of them lately, and they may have been exterminated, or at least gone into hiding.
Favorite Things To Do
The a cappella scene at Tufts is huge, and you’ll see postings for shows for one or a few of the University’s six groups throughout the semester. They kick off the year with the Orientation Show the night after students arrive back on campus in the fall. Tufts' seasonal carnivals draw many new activities to the campus. There are all types of events going on in the Campus Center on these nights. Poetry readings and solo guitar acts are also popular fare around campus. The Concert Board hand picks musicians to come play at Tufts. There is usually a fall rock show, winter jazz show, and "Spring Fling." The end-of-the-semester dance shows by Tufts Dance Collective and Spirit of Color are generally packed to the capacity of the auditorium. Here, you have a good chance to see all your fellow students "shake it around." Check out free weekly films offered in Barnum Hall. Every Friday night, Hotung Café has music and dancing, but you're more likely to see the crowds there on a Thursday night for local bands. In addition to the drama department, there are several student-run theater groups on campus, so Tufts' stages never remain empty for long. Each group produces major and minor productions, so keep your eyes peeled. Chill with friends in a dorm room, grab a coffee at Brown & Brew, check out a play or movie on campus, or watch an a cappella show
Student Activities Offered
  • Choral groups
  • Concert band
  • Dance
  • Drama/theater
  • Jazz band
  • Literary magazine
  • Marching band
  • Music ensembles
  • Musical theater
  • Opera
  • Radio station
  • Student government
  • Student newspaper
  • Student-run film society
  • Symphony orchestra
  • Television station
  • Yearbook
ROTC
Air Force ROTC: Yes
Navy ROTC: Yes
Army ROTC: Yes

Student Polls

Rate the campus facilities in the following areas    Based on 31 responses

Very poor
Excellent
  • Athletics/recreation
  • Classrooms
  • Computer labs
  • Dining
  • General aesthetics/architecture of campus
  • "Green" buildings/initiatives
  • Housing
  • Lawns/green space
  • Library
  • Modernity of facilities
  • Performing arts
  • Science/research labs
  • Student center
  • Study spots
  • Visual arts (work spaces, galleries)

How would you describe the student center/union?    Based on 36 responses

  • 6% The student center is in need of a major renovation.
  • 11% The student center serves its purpose but is not a popular hangout.
  • 69% The student center is great but isn't central to student life.
  • 14% The student center is state-of-the-art and the hub of student life.

What is your overall opinion of your school and the campus community?    Based on 34 responses

  • 9% I hate my school and have no school spirit.
  • 6% The school community is okay-we're all just here for an education, nothing more.
  • 50% I like mostly everything about my school, but there are some things I wish were different.
  • 35% I love everything about my school and have a lot of campus pride.

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