Location
Chicago, IL
Undergrads
5,377
Tuition
$41,853
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1051 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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5 College Freshman

Overall Experience: It's great, I had lots of opportunities to talk with current students and get to know the university, even though I couldn't visit campus before starting my studies.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Campus police is always there to transport you around campus at night, if you feel unsafe.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: Chicago is a great city and there is always something interesting going on. It's worth just for the museums alone.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Hang out with however you want, no one will usually judge. The only problem I have is that acceptance of other political beliefs is not welcome. The vast majority of the campus is extremely liberal, so any somewhat conservative idea is shot down immediately and ridiculed. Also, international students who aren't from China (they are usually a$$h0l3$) are nice and add to the diversity on campus.

4 people found this useful Report
1 College Sophomore

Weather: I thought the Northeast had bad weather until I came to Chicago. Nuff said.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Campus Strictness: UChicago does not care what you. You can walk up to a UCPD officer with a joint in one hand and a six pack in the other and all they will do is make sure you are heading in the right direction and are safe. Just don't do anything stupid and no bad consciences will follow.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Parking: Parking can be hard during the week. However, on and around campus there is free parking. After 5pm on Friday until early Monday morning, the North Campus Parking Garage is free. However, you do not need a car since there is public transportation, zip car, and of course the UChicago shuttles.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Housing: Good luck trying to find something right next to campus. If you do (I was lucky enough to), the apartments are often smaller and costs more to rent. However, when it is raining, snowing, and below -20F, I am not complaining. Apartments that are 10-20 minutes walking are often larger and cheaper, but are not as easily assessable during the day, such as when you have 1.5 hours in between classes. It is often cheaper to live off campus (costs me bout $1500 less a year) and you do not have to eat the worst dining hall food in the country. Numerous times last year, the dining halls were shut down for weeks due to safety/health concerns and the food is below subpar.

3 College Sophomore

Athletics: No one cares about sports here. UChicago had the first Heinemann Trophy winner, but everyday I hear someone ask if we have a football team. We also have the McDonalds All American Dunk contest here every year, but students do not often show up, just the Hyde Park community. IM sports are somewhat popular, but no one really cares. The athletic facilities are extremely nice though, with Ratner being recently built. Crown is older, but it was renovated and is mostly where the athletes lift and practice in the winter.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: This school is very unique. First, we have one of the latest starts in the country (late sept/early oct) and end the latest (mid-june). In addition, we have the world's largest scavenged hunt. However, the housing system is particularly unique since it has a Harry Potter style of sorting people based upon common interests, which promotes house rivalries, especially ones in the same building. For example, before Pierce was torn down, the houses had a tradition of competing in events to determine which was the best house.

4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Each dorm has its own feel and usually people with similar interests pick the same dorm. For example, athletes often live in Max-P, while more "socially-awkward" students choose to live in Snell-Hitchcock or BJ. Depending on which dorm you choose, the amenities vary. South is apartment style, while Max has suites, and BJ has community bathrooms but is more pleasing to the eye.

5 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: The schools and UCPD do not care about alcohol/drug use. In addition, there is no peer pressure to drink or do drugs; however a vast majority of students drink. I am not into the drug scene, but I do know drugs are easily assessable. Liquor stores do not care if you use a fake ID, so it is worthwhile to get one, but not necessary since your friends can often get alcohol for you.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: On campus, there is no need to worry. The UCPD is rumored to have a small army and only the Vatican has a larger private police force. There is rarely any crime on campus and the students respect each other and their property. However, as you start to head off campus (especially south) it can get sketchy. There are occasional reports of students being robbed at gun/knife point, but the UCPD does patrol around Hyde Park and security walks around campus 25/7. As long as you are aware of your surrounding, nothing bad should happen in theory.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Scholarships: The university grants a ton of financial aid (around $90 million a year), but if you choose to move off campus just remember that they stop giving aid for housing costs.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Computers: While I was in the dorms, the wireless internet speed was around 75 mbps. Around campus, it is around this speed also, but can be spotty in some building. Printing is available, but not cheap. There was/is (not sure) a free printing service, but it was hacked into and all the user info was leaked (uchicago id/password and personal info).

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Transportation: The university has a shuttle program that runs from 5pm to 3am daily. In addition, they just added a day-time shuttle for students to get to class quicker. Also, the CTA has two free buses for UChicago students. On and around campus, there are many Zipcars that are affordable and often available. About 10 minutes from campus, the Metra will take you to the Loop and back for $6 and the CTA has buses that take you to and from CTA trains and of course around Chicago. Union station will also take you to Indiana (say you want to visit Notre Dame) or around Chicago.

3 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Majors: I have been a research assistant in a psychology lab for a few quarters now and I have learned a lot about research. In addition, finding an internship is not too difficult. The university has programs where researchers, businessmen, etc. come to UChicago to look for students who want an internship. In addition, just having an uchicago email address often gets potential employers, researchers, etc to respond quicker.

3 College Sophomore

Majors: It is mostly a like-hate relationship. I like my courses and professors, but when I take my midterms and write my final papers, it is a hateful and abuseful relationship.

3 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: There is not a ton to do in Hyde Park. The university does not hold many events, so outside of the few bars in Hyde Park and frat parties, there is not much to do. A quick taxi/bus/train ride will bring you to any upbeat neighborhood in Chicago, where bars and clubs are plentiful. Hyde Park is a nice neighborhood that has a good attitude towards the students. In addition, I find the food in Chicago to be lackluster, but it is often cheaper than where I came from.

4 College Sophomore

Greek Life: Take it or leave it. Within the Greek community, there a range of fraternities to join that focus on different ascents of Greek life. For example, some fraternities exists solely for parties while others focus on charity, brotherhood, etc. There are only a handful of sororities, but they do not have houses. The Greeks often get along, with healthy rivalries in IM sports and charity events. However, non-Greeks either do not care about or unfairly look down upon Greek life.

4 College Sophomore

Nightlife: Almost every weekend, there is a frat party and if not, someone you know is having an apartment party. Dorm parties are allowed, but are under loosely monitored by the RA. However, they usually do not care about underage drinking and neither does the UCPD. If you wish to find a bar/club, there are a few decent ones near campus and the Metra, CTA, or a taxi can take you downtown or to northern Chicago.

3 College Junior

Scholarships: There are a lot of forms, but the people at the financial aid office are very helpful.

4 people found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Weather: It rains a lot and they don't call it the Windy City for nothing.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Drug Safety: Most students will make the right choice as far as drinking and drugs go.

4 College Junior

Academics: They tailor degrees for the careers of the student's choice.

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Entrance to Hull Court
Entrance to Hull Court

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Liane Rousseau
Hometown
Cincinnati, Ohio
Major
English Language and Literature
Grad Year
2012
View all previous student authors

The University of Chicago is a unique place, and you won’t find a common opinion about the school. Some people will say it’s too nerdy. Others will say people are pessimistic. And even others will claim that they didn’t have access to the city of Chicago. The truth is the school is what you make of it. The academics are challenging—there is no way you can coast through; however, they’re also manageable. You will definitely meet great and interesting people in your classes. You can also develop fantastic relationships with professors that you’ll still have in 20 years. You will learn more than you ever thought possible, and just the process of discovering a new way to think will have a lifelong impact.

At U of C, there is an opportunity to be social on so many different levels. You can get involved in a new organization or try Greek life. While there might not be a raging party going on every night, that doesn’t mean you need to stay holed up in your room, pouring over calculus problems. There is enough of a party scene if you’re willing to take risks and try hanging out with different people. If you don’t have anything to do on campus on a Friday night, you still have the entire city of Chicago at your disposal. With so many events going on downtown, it’s impossible to be bored. If you don’t learn to use public transportation, you will feel a little stuck in Hyde Park. However, once you get your feet wet and experience your first CTA train, you’ll never fear public transportation again. Most people come out of this school looking back at Hull Gate and thinking, “It was worth it.” You’ll have your ups and downs. There will be nights you throw a textbook across the room or go through an entire pint of Ben & Jerry’s. However, in the end, this place is special.

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