South Bend, IN
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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5 College Sophomore

Diversity: It's the straight, white, Catholic, Republican DisneyLand. With that said, diversity is keenly stressed throughout the school and, to be honest, no one cares if you're anything different since in the end, you're all Domers

3 College Sophomore

Diversity: While ND has taken steps to increase ethnic diversity on campus, the school is still very much mostly white, upper/middle class, and Christian (specifically Catholic). That being said, my roommate of 2 years is African American, and he seems happy here. There are many cultural productions, such as Asian Allure and Latin Expressions, that help to share different cultures that students might not normally experience.

Campus isn't very political, unless you count the occasional Viewpoint (newspaper opinion section) Wars that occasionally ignite. 80% of students are Catholic, but there is no pressure whatsoever to participate in religious life if you do not want to.

3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Most people you meet are Christian. Religiously, I would say that the diversity is poor at Notre Dame. That being said, I am not very religious and I don't feel pressured to go to church or engage in religious events. If you are religious, there is a lot for you to do though. If you are not Christian, you might find the Christian aspect overwhelming, but the students are very respectful of other religions. I am sure you can find a bunch of religious sects within South Bend, so I wouldn't worry too much.

Racially, Notre Dame was way more diverse than I expected. I thought it was basically going to be all white. I was very wrong about this. There are Asians, Hispanics, African Americans and more. I have a friend from Ecuador and another from South Sudan. People really do come from all over the US and all over the world.

As far as socioeconomic aspects, I would say most people are middle class or upper class, but there is a fair share of lower class people as well. Since there aren't many things that people spend a lot of money at ND, people don't really notice what each other's financial situation is. Your economic background is not something to really worry about.

Politically, almost everyone is conservative, but people are pretty democratic on social issues. The university is way more conservative on social matters than the student body.

To address sexual orientation, I know plenty of gay and lesbian people on campus. People are accepting and the administration makes efforts to build a community for gay/lesbian/transgender students. My roommate was lesbian and she is one of the coolest people I met on campus.

3 College Senior

Diversity: I guess most of my friends all have the same opinions, so I have never felt isolated in my beliefs, but I've head that Notre Dame is relatively intolerant.

5 College Sophomore

Diversity: Notre Dame works very hard to make sure the campus is as diverse as possible.


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Rankings View more rankings . . .

  • 12th
    Most Conservative Schools
  • 1379th
    Most Open-Minded Schools
  • 1383rd
    Most Liberal Schools

Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Alex Barker
View all previous student authors

If Notre Dame wanted to change its mascot, it could replace the Fighting Leprechaun with a white kid wearing a crucifix-roughly 80 percent of the student population is white and Catholic. Nevertheless, the University is continuously attempting to reach out and attract minority students. Quite a few minority students do choose to attend Notre Dame, and many minority groups band together in alliances that act as celebrations of ethnicity. While these events are popular and promote ethnic understanding among students, everyone agrees that the University is trudging along a long and winding road to diversity.

At Notre Dame, the ratio of white students to minority students is 35 to 1. This lack of diversity is one of Notre Dame's greatest weaknesses. No matter how diligently the University wrestles with this weakness, its success in attracting minority students has always been marginal. Although Notre Dame is not a campus that promotes discrimination, many non-white students may sometimes feel out of place. The ethnic alliances provide minority students with some comfort, but, despite this, the University receives low marks for diversity.

Facts & Statistics

African American
Native American
Historically Black College/University?
Tribal College?
Out-of-State Students
Common States of Residence
  • California
  • Foreign countries
  • Illinois
  • New York
  • Ohio
Student Age Breakdown
Under 18: 1%
18-19: 32%
20-21: 34%
22-24: 15%
25+: 18%
Female Faculty
Male Faculty
Faculty Diversity
African American: 2%
Asian American: 7%
Hispanic: 5%
International: 4%
Native American: 0%
White: 81%
Unknown: 0%
Gay Pride
Overall, Notre Dame’s campus is rather conservative, but homosexuals are given a voice on campus (The Standing Committee on Gay and Lesbian Student Needs) and are treated with respect by fellow students and faculty, alike.
Political Activity
Political organizations on campus include Amnesty International, College Democrats, College Libertarians, College Republicans, Model United Nations, ND for Animals, Progressive Student Alliance, Right to Life, and the Women's Resource Center.
Economic Status
Generally upper-middle to upper class.
Most Common Religions
Minority Clubs on Campus
Ethnic and cultural organizations at Notre Dame include the African Students Association, Asian American Association, Asian International Society,

Student Polls

How would you best describe your personal political beliefs?    Based on 43 responses

  • 9% Libertarian
  • 2% Not sure
  • 9% Very conservative
  • 30% Conservative
  • 30% Moderate
  • 12% Liberal
  • 7% Progressive/very liberal

How would you best describe the political beliefs of campus as a whole?    Based on 43 responses

  • 2% Libertarian
  • 16% Very conservative
  • 56% Conservative
  • 21% Moderate
  • 2% Not sure
  • 2% Liberal
  • 0% Progressive/very liberal

How diverse is the student body in the following areas?    Based on 44 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How diverse is your personal circle of friends in the following areas?    Based on 43 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

How accepting is the campus community as a whole toward someone who falls into the minority (ethnic, sexual, or religious)?    Based on 44 responses

  • 5% It's hard to be a minority here.
  • 7% The campus is split on its acceptance-not all minority groups are as accepted as others.
  • 66% Most students are accepting, except for a few rare cases of intolerance.
  • 23% Very accepting.
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