South Bend, IN
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1081 total reviews with an average rating of 3.8

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4 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: Check Out Mishawaka & Granger – There are some really cool places off-campus to eat, you just have to look for them. Lula's cafe is right off of campus and provides a laid-back atmosphere with really good food. Going a little further into town you'll find all the typical chain restaurants like Chili's, Olive Garden, Steak and Shake, and Bar Louie, to name a few. Granger also has some hip places like Uptown Kitchen and SoHo.

4 College Freshman

Drug Safety: The drug scene at Notre Dame is pathetic. People who didn't drink in high school buy 2 cases of beer and consider that throwing a party.

6 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Athletics: If you're not a fan of Irish football before coming to Notre Dame, within a week you'll be indoctrinated into a lifestyle of jigs, fight songs, and the "1812 Overture." Football, although a huge part of life at ND, isn't the only sport where we excel. Irish fans cheer for a wide variety of successful sports, and you're more than likely to find spirit wherever you go.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Dorm Life – If you enjoy summer camps, you'll love living on campus at Notre Dame. If you're like me and hated camp, you're probably not going to enjoy dorm life. Halls are single-sex and rivalries are intense. A lot of people enjoy the feeling of camaraderie that comes along with hall life, but I guess I'm just bitter.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: Great School – I love it here. Greatest place on earth to be on a football saturday.

3 College Sophomore

Transportation: most things take place on campus. If not, cabs and buses are available.

4 College Freshman

Nightlife: Parietals Cut Things Short – The night life on campus is better than I expected. There are a lot of dorm parties - RAs and Rectors in guys' dorms follow the general policy "if the door's closed, it's none of our business." There is a nightclub on-campus open to all students, and the student center is open all night and often has live music going late into the night. The only downside is parietals - girls are not allowed in guys' dorms (and vice-versa) past 2 am, so parties have to either disperse or move off-campus.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: South Bend has more attractions than your average suburban town, and especially with the addition of the Eddy Street commons there are plenty of places to go. Unfortunately, there has been a lot of tension between the town and the university - Notre Dame students are generally disliked by the South Bend population and the police will go out of their way to make the lives of the students miserable. There were over 70 arrests for off-campus underage drinking in the first two weekends of the 2010-11 school year, and there were many reports of police abuse during those arrests.

3 College Senior

Weather: The Fall is beautiful, but the winter times can be frigid. We're talking highs in the negatives.

3 College Senior

Parking: The parking lots are in fairly convenient locations and most times you can find a good spot.

4 College Senior

Guys & Girls: Everyone on campus is extremely oriented towards community and making the University the great place that it is.

5 College Sophomore

Campus Dining: The Best – Not only do the two dining hall provide Notre Dame students with a variety of food, student's FlexPoints can be at several different cafes around campus, as well as in the LaFortune student Canter. The dining hall is only repetitive if YOU make it repetitive; try out another cafe or a different dining hall that would offer something else.

3 College Senior

Campus Strictness: Just Don't Get Caught – ND keeps South Bend police off campus- as its own city, SB police have no jurisdiction there. If you're not 21 and want to drink, keep it out of sight and you'll be fine. Off campus, cops are dicks- stay away from them. Excise police is obnoxious.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Drug Safety: People smoke weed here, but if you're not in that crowd, you'd never know it. Alcohol is prominent but kept in dorms and out of sight of the RA's, AR's and rectors. Off-campus parties are decent, but no ecstasy raves.

3 people found this useful Report
5 College Senior

Campus Dining: Dining Halls ROCK – Notre Dame's dining hall food is simply incredible- they have nearly every variety of any kind of food you could like. With two dining halls located on campus and a variety of small snack places, who could ask for more?

4 College Senior

Off-Campus Housing: Tons of Options! There are apartment complexes literally circumferencing the entire campus. Most students are quite satisfied with off-campus. Most of the complexes are geared primarily towards Notre Dame students, and this relationship between the apartments and students works well.

5 College Senior

Computers: There are a plethora of computer labs, and finding a computer is never too big a problem due to the sheer amount of labs there are. There are Windows, Macs, and Linuxs available. Most students have a laptop too, and the Office of Information Technology does a great job in assisting with any computer related problems. Wireless internet is stellar. Printing is very convenient, with printers in most dorms and most buildings.

3 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: South Bend is not exactly a bustling mecca of activity, cultural events, or attractions. The only real reason to leave campus is to visit friends' houses off campus, and maybe the occasional trip to Target or Meijers. There is a ton of stuff going on campus though, and even though it is quite a bubble, it is very enjoyable. Now I am spending a summer in South Bend and I'd consider it a relatively safe town, but apart from grocery stores and such, I still haven't exactly found any sort of area attractions or activities to take advantage of.

4 College Sophomore

Transportation: It Works – Parking is allowed for just about everyone and isn't difficult to obtain. On the weekends most students going off campus walk or take cabs (which are $2 per person for as many people as you can fit in a minyvan). This year, Student Government also started a free off campus bus route that runs weekend nights and covers the most popular off campus routes/locations.

4 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: The term "Notre Dame Bubble" doesn't exist without a reason; on campus safety is not a concern. Every dorm, as well as after hours academic buildings, requires a key card to enter. I rarely, if ever locked my room inside my dorm. Crime is virtually non existant and if you ever feel unsafe walking around campus, NDSP has a safewalk program that you can call for a free student escort. Overall, ND is great towards disabled students as well, providing free scooters for transportation, help in the dining halls, and a remarkable level of accessibility for a campus that includes so many old buildings.

5 College Sophomore

Facilities: With tree lined quads and the majority of new and old buildings built in a traditional Collegiate Gothic style (yes there are some ugly buildings from the 1950s and 60s), Notre Dame is recognized as having one of the most beautiful campuses in the nation, as well as two of the most widely recognized collegiate landmarks in the world. Two gyms serve the entire student body, athletic centers are all new or recently renovated and there are usually two or three new buildings opening any given year. The walkability of campus is a big plus and the University is in the midst of renovating the library. Sustainability is becoming a integral part of the Notre Dame mission, with most of the new construction seeking some level of LEED certification and old buildings being constantly retrofitted and updated.

5 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: People Are Great – I feel so lucky to attend school here. Not only have the academics challenged me and helped me to grow and learn, I have also become more responsible and motivated. Most importantly, the people here are genuine. They are generally confident in themselves, and do not feel a need to prove themselves to others. The professors bend over backwards to help, and the students are a support system for one another.

Recent Alumnus

Greek Life: Not Available on Campus – Notre Dame does not have a Greek system (although each dorm has a mascot, etc. and students generally stay in the same dorm as long as they are living on campus -- typically through junior year and sometimes through senior year. The dorm functions as a pseudo-greek system that, in my opinion, has all the advantages of greek life without any of the negatives).

3 Recent Alumnus

Diversity: People of Similar Interests – Notre Dame attracts students of similar interests to the school. Many students strive to attend the school based upon the tradition of the University, and therefore, many students come from families whose members have attended the school or whose members have been long time football fans. Due to Notre Dame's Irish Catholic identity, the majority of these students attend to be Catholic, Irish, and financially secure. Notre Dame does, however, attract students from other backgrounds. It is interesting to note that while walking around campus, many students form groups containing a similar race. This probably draws from students' involvement in clubs based on ethnicity, where the students form friendships. This is not, however, always the case. I personally have never perceived deragatory feelings based upon ethnicity (although, I am a part of the white majority).
Overall, while most people at the school come from a similar background (financially well off, conservative, Catholic, straight), diversity does exist, and as a general rule there is not degredation if someone does not "fit the mold". The only area where students noticably oppose someone in terms of diversity that I have seen on campus is sexual orientation.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Academics: Professors Very Accesible – Most professors are very accessible and willing to help outisde of classtime.

1 person found this useful Report

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Basilica of the Sacred Heart
Basilica of the Sacred Heart

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Alex Barker
View all previous student authors

"Wonderful," "amazing," "special," "family"-these are the most common words that students use to describe their times at Notre Dame. The University has a unique atmosphere that is embraced by many; the campus is basically self-contained, the dorms are all very close-knit, and there are truly strong connections between students. While the weather may test your survival skills and the administration may try your patience, the Notre Dame experience is unlike any other you'll ever have. The school's tradition and history create an environment where you'll feel welcomed the moment you step foot on campus.

Notre Dame is not an easy school, and it's important to remember that academics are huge. Above all else, you need to be willing to study and focus, or you're not going to make it through the University's workload. Students here are universally dedicated to their studies, and campus life reflects it. This is not a party school. Students may find themselves frustrated by the value system or the lack of outside activities. The best recommendation for Notre Dame is to visit and check out campus life firsthand. Often, the atmosphere alone is enough to sway your feelings one way or the other.

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Applicant Status At University of Notre Dame

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