Philadelphia, PA
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 1007 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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5 College Freshman

Academics: Great variety of academic choices.

4 College Sophomore

Scholarships: Penn's no-loan program is a blessing. It's the only reason I came here.

12 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Computers: Not having a computer is a pretty big disadvantage in class, but there are plenty of computer labs to use. Each dorm has its own lab, and the main library has many available. There are computers available in some academic buildings as well. The entire campus has wireless coverage, but it's spotty around the edges.

7 people found this useful Report
College Sophomore

Athletics: I've never gone to an athletic game at my school. I have no idea what they are like.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Majors: I'm currently working towards an Environmental Studies major. The department is fantastic and the advisors are very friendly. There are plenty of options within the major for specializations and concentrations. I highly recommend it.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Majors: I only just declared so I don't have much experience with the deparment, but the department heads are always sending out email with internship and job opportunities. There are also a lot of invitations to events with in the EES department.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Nightlife: If you're looking for a party, you'll find one. The frats often have something going on, but if you don't have a good girl/guy ratio you won't get in. Try at least 3 girls to 1 guy. The frat parties are gross though, so get involved in an organization and party with them.

2 people found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: I just don't like the city.

3 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: The security itself is very good and fast-responding, but the student health center often has a week's wait for an appointment, and the counseling services 2 months or more.

4 College Sophomore

Academics: The academics are good, but they are incredibly hard. If you don't plan on studying and working your ass off for more than 40 hours a week, don't bother coming. Professors are really hit-or-miss, as they would be at any school. The upper-level classes generally are more interesting and have better professors.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Guys & Girls: Penn is such a big campus that it's really hard to meet people. If you aren't involved in tons of extracurriculars and organizations, you probably won't meet that many people. There are so many activities to choose from and they all require such a large time commitment that it's incredibly difficult to do everything you want to do and still pass your classes. It's very easy to get involved in an organization only to discover you don't actually want to do it, and there's a whole semester or year wasted.

4 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Diversity: There is plenty of diversity on campus, but you find that a lot of people come from the same socioeconomic background.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Scholarships: Penn's offer wasn't initially enough, but SFS was reasonable to talk to and work with, and they eventually gave me one of my best non-merit financial aid offers. They've also been consistent over the years, and there are a number of work-study opportunities. Sometimes it's a little difficult to find work if your work-study grant is low, but there are still plenty of options there as well.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Drug Safety: Alcohol is pretty prevalent on campus, from my perspective. Most people I know drink. However, I feel there's very little pressure to, if that's not your thing, and many campus activities don't revolve around alcohol. I think the university's general attitude is "Please don't do anything stupid," and policies and enforcement are usually in line with that. They've been stepping up vigilance surrounding Fling, however, which put a bit of a damper on festivities this year. But a very small bit - Fling was still Fling, by all accounts.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Health & Safety: It's pretty good. Campus is well-lit. Penn police patrol on and off. You can always call for a walking or riding escort from various place on and around campus. It's just that sometimes we question the response time for and decision process behind what becomes a Penn Alert to let the community know of potential danger. But I've never felt unsafe on Penn's campus and am only a bit wary off. Common sense does oodles for keeping folks safe, and I think Penn Police does the rest.

3 College Junior

Nightlife: There are a couple of bars around campus that are good to hang out with and have varying levels of leniency with fakes. A lot of people like to go downtown, and fraternities and sororities will host downtowns, but that's a pricier way of going out. SEPTA's not luxurious, but it's pretty reliable. I just don't think it runs very late. So then there's cabs, which again ups the cost of going out, but split it and it's maybe only about double SEPTAing.

4 College Sophomore

Greek Life: The campus has Sampson house where most of the Greeks people generally stay.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Transportation: UPenn is a very well organized campus where all the schools are together at one place so a student doesn't need to travel a long distance to reach one school from another.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Diversity: As an Ivy league, it's expected that there are a lot of rich white kids, but there's also a fairly diverse mix.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Majors: Heavy workload and intense environment, but lots of opportunities.

1 person found this useful Report
College Freshman

Majors: Haven't had an internship yet, but I plan to have one in the summer. Lots of people try to get internships very early on.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Convenient, but lots of people choose to live off-campus junior or senior year.

3 College Freshman

Greek Life: Not as huge as with big Southern state schools, but Greek life is the center of the party scene. On the other hand, there are lots of people who don't join who still go to the parties.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Computers: The WiFi fails sometimes, but printing is available in lots of places, and almost everyone has their own computer.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Freshman

Transportation: Very few people use the campus shuttle because it's a hassle, but public transportation is convenient and fairly cheap.


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Outside of the Quad
Outside of the Quad
Outside of the Quad Outside of the Quad So pretty!
Photo by annieshin

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Perry Petra-Wong
Pasadena, Calif.
Philosophy, Politics, and Economics
View all previous student authors

Students seem to be extremely content and do not regret their decision to come to Penn, even though the school definitely has a pre-professional feel. Despite this fact, it is extremely common to find yourself in an intellectual conversation, and the students really do work hard, while remembering that college is about fun as well. The opportunities provided at Penn are astounding; in fact there is almost too much to do. Most students base the reasons for their happiness around the people, the academics, the urban environment, and the endless opportunities. People who enjoy their experience at Penn tend to appreciate city life, socializing, and a busy schedule. Usually, students do not hesitate to endorse Penn, and many feel that everyone should love the school as much as they do.

Many adults call their years as an undergraduate the best four years of their lives. Penn students certainly can not make that prediction so soon, but most would agree that their time at Penn has been the best years of their life so far. Obviously, Penn is not the school for everyone, but the student body consists of interesting, intelligent, and well-rounded people, which creates a stimulating and fun environment for most. If you come to Penn, I can almost guarantee that you will meet fascinating people, find something to be passionate about, and enjoy the benefits of living in a vibrant city. You can also feel confident that an education from Penn will prepare you for what lies beyond your undergraduate years. The Penn Overall Experience is defined by the combination of the rich history and academic rigor of an Ivy League school and the school spirit and propensity for socializing of many other schools. This "work hard, play hard" mentality is what many Quakers, and prospective Quakers, find so appealing.

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

Applicant Status At University of Pennsylvania

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