Iowa City, IA
Tuition (in-state)
$26,279 ($8,057)
Admission Difficulty
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Reviews 2195 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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4 College Junior

Athletics: I'm not apart of any of the athletic teams on campus but I do use the recreational facilities provided by our school on a daily basis. We have a new rec center that is really awesome to work out in, and I am grateful that it is free for students to use. There is also a field house with plenty of basketball, badminton, etc. courts that are free to use. We also offer a wide variety of intramural clubs, and classes that you can join at a student rate if you're interested.

5 College Junior

Local Atmosphere: I love the atmosphere of Iowa City, it's one of the main reasons I decided to go there. It isn't by any means a small town but it has a small town vibe that I love with lots of restaurants to choose from and a really vibrant nightlife. There are also lots of sporting events that you can attend throughout the year, and a large shopping center about 10 minutes from campus. From my experience everyone that lives in Iowa City is really friendly and they welcome the students with open arms.

5 College Junior

Overall Experience: My overall experience has been really awesome. All of my teachers have been really great and helpful with any of the questions I have had with the coursework. Most of the teachers will even go out of their way to schedule time outside of their office hours to meet with you if you really need some extra help. There are also plenty of tutoring centers and study groups you can join if you prefer studying in a group atmosphere.

College Junior

Overall Experience: I haven't graduated yet so I don't know exactly how much value I will get out of my degree but from speaking with other graduates of my college I believe I am set for a really great career in my desired field.

4 College Junior

Scholarships: There are tons of scholarships that the school offers on a need basis, so as long as you apply and are in need you should be able to receive at least some help with your tuition.

3 College Junior

Health & Safety: Iowa City is an incredibly safe place to live. Sure, sexual assaults happen once in a while, but they happen in every town across the United States whether we'd like it to or not, there's nothing you can do to stop that. Most of the assaults that happen around Iowa City involve copious amounts of alcohol and a misunderstanding, so as long as you travel with friends when you're going out and try your best not to make silly decisions you should be safe. Also, definitely don't take drinks from strange boys in frat houses, sometime people are more trustworthy than others so learn how to read the situation so you can stay safe.

4 College Junior

Greek Life: Personally I'm not apart of a Greek organization but many of my friends are and they really enjoy it. I've never had any trouble getting into any of the Greek parties even though I'm not apart of any chapter but if you're looking to make a lot of new friends and aren't ready to get a place by yourself I would definitely recommend getting involved in something like that. It takes up quite a bit of most people's time but they really enjoy themselves.

3 College Junior

Campus Strictness: Our campus isn't very strict when it comes to anything at all. Of course its better not to tussle with the city police, or run into the security guards if you're drinking in your dorm room (which is definitely not allowed). But overall they give plenty of warnings and second chances so try not to push your luck too much.

4 College Junior

Facilities: I love the facilities on campus, whether its finding the perfect study spot during midterms or spending time at the University Recreational Center, there are always plenty of nice places to go to. During the fall there's nothing better than going to the homecoming football game or seeing the parades go through the center of town. They have also recently renovated the library so its really nice and quiet to spend an evening studying in, or you can reserve one of the rooms to have a group study session in! I feel blessed to be spending four years at such an awesome University.

5 College Junior

Majors: I'm apart of the college of Engineering and I love it there. Even though I've spent many a night at the engineering building studying, I wouldn't change my degree for the world. The friends I have made through the school are people that will be in my life forever, and it has given me incredible internship opportunities the past two summers.

5 College Junior

Majors: I've worked for GE and CareFusion which are both medical device companies. I've really enjoyed working at both companies and I have learned so much about working in the field. Especially when it comes to these two companies, I would highly recommend taking an internship with them if possible. Over the last two years I've learned about device documentation, test protocols, and how to interact with my peers in a professional environment. I would absolutely recommend having at least one internship during your college experience before going out into the work force.

3 College Junior

Diversity: There are a lot of exchange students that go to my school particularly from Asia, but since it is a Midwest school you get a lot of the typical Midwestern diversity which isn't saying much. Apart from a small Hispanic population our school isn't the most diverse school on the planet.

5 College Junior

Guys & Girls: People in Iowa City are generally extremely friendly and noticeably athletic. Coming from an east coast background you really can't do much better than a college town in the Midwest. It is extremely easy to make friends and believe it or not most people are incredibly attractive. Must be something in the air.

5 College Junior

Nightlife: Nightlife in Iowa City is like none other. You are guaranteed to have a blast no matter where you go downtown.

3 College Senior

Overall Experience: A lot depends on your major, but if you come to Iowa with friends that you already have, if you are able to find groups or activities that you are strongly interested in, or if you are so good with your academics that you don't care about social pressure, you will probably have a good experience. This is especially true if your strong interests include football or alcohol.

3 College Senior

Overall Experience: Again, it depends on your major. Obviously, a business, engineering, actuarial science, or pharmacy degree is going to have more job prospects than most liberal arts majors, but there is a really good career center here. It is free to get help with making a resume, finding internships and jobs, practicing interviewing, and career counseling.

4 College Senior

Nightlife: There is a lot to offer here that most cities of our size don't have: theatre, music, famous performers, clubs, dancing, independent movies, and festivals.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: The University of Iowa has a gorgeous campus, with several modern and resourceful buildings. The library has a large amount of study spaces and sound-proof rooms which any student may use. It also contains several computers scattered about, along with a computer lab around the corner. Also on the first floor, there is a dining area with food that can be bought with regular money or with school flex dollars. On the higher floors are more computer labs, books, and several study spaces that get quieter the higher you go.

Another building I find very impressive is the Recreation Center. It has a smoothie/food store at the bottom with delicious options for everyone. It also has a rock climbing wall, a weight-lifting area, a pool which contains a lazy river, a hot tub, and a small rock climbing wall, and an Olympic sized pool with a diving area. The upper two levels contain any kind of workout equipment imaginable, and a full track and basketball courts.

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College Sophomore

Majors: I haven't had an internship yet, so I cannot comment on what a typical internship is like. I do have friends with internships who find them worthwhile and enjoy them. I plan on having some sort of a medical internship in the future but I am currently focused on the neuroscience research that I began in my first semester of college. I have no concerns about finding an internship though because I know that the hospital associated with the University of Iowa is fantastic and I look forward to getting an opportunity to be a part of it and to help people. I also have met several students who got internships at the hospital so I know that there are opportunities available as long as I push myself and work just as hard as I always do.

5 College Sophomore

Majors: To get into my programs (I am double-majoring in Neurobiology and Human Physiology), all I had to do was meet with my Pre-Medical advisor and discuss my interests. From there I worked with him to choose the majors that were most interesting to me and best suited to my future goals. I did not encounter any difficulties along the way. My advisor was very helpful and interested in my wants/needs, making it easy to reach a decision. Once I had made a decision, all that was necessary for my admission to the programs was getting some paperwork signed and processed.

My only tips for admission would be to show that you are well-rounded. Although I didn't have perfect grades in high school or a perfect ACT score, I was well-rounded in other areas, making up for the fact that the regular components colleges usually seemed to look for weren't perfect. I suggest worrying less about perfect grades and instead doing something (or lots of things) that you are passionate about. The work and commitment you put into these will show through. For example, I was a gymnast all throughout high school and I practiced 16-20 hours a week and along with competitions. I was also the Secretary of Spanish Club, the Co-Captain of Worldwide Youth in Sciences and Engineering, a member of Key Club and the National Honors Society, and I even participated in Forensics when I could. On top of all of these school commitments, I was an active member of my church, having gone on three week-long mission trips and regularly speaking in church services, and I volunteered as a mentor to Special Education students participating in a musical during my free time. These made up for my slightly less-than-perfect GPA and ACT score.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: There is a good amount of variety as far as dining options go, but the healthy options are of low quality and make it even easier and more desirable to eat unhealthy food. It is difficult to find healthy food that is fresh and/or cooked well. The unhealthy options, however, are excellent. Overall the dining food is average.

3 College Sophomore

Campus Strictness: The RA's are very good at helping us with anything we need and inforcing rules.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: There's so many places on campus to go and so much to see.

4 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: There are emergency buttons all over campus spread out to make us feel safe and there's cameras everywhere. When there is a sexual assault everyone on campus gets an email.

4 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: Different options are all around each corner if we ever get tired of cafe food


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Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Kelly McPhee
Naperville, IL
View all previous student authors

Most students who come to the University of Iowa are happy with what they’ve found, and few are willing to trade their experiences for anything else. With a combination of solid academics and a college town atmosphere that caters to the social scene, UI students find themselves in a well-balanced environment. Iowa isn’t an Ivy League school, but it does provide a strong education with a focus on career choices. Iowa is not a party school, but its students know how to relax and have fun while keeping up with their workload.

Since it is such a large institution, UI can seem faceless and intimidating at first, but this quickly dissolves as the tight-knit social scene among college students presents itself. With a huge variety of clubs, sports, and other activities on and around campus, plus Iowa City’s bars and downtown area, there are as many ways to meet people and make friends as there are people to meet. Students who have the worst experience at Iowa—or at college in general—are the ones who don’t become involved with things that are going on around them. While Iowa City might not be somewhere you decide to stay for the rest of your life, it can be the ideal atmosphere for getting a college education and learning to live on your own. The experience of the University of Iowa is largely what each student makes of it. There is plenty to learn and take advantage of at UI, both in and out of the classroom.

Admitted Students' GPA/Test Scores More on admissions . . .

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