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Reviews 242 total reviews with an average rating of 3.8

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4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Amherst is a quiet place in general and there's not a lot going on that could harm me.

4 College Freshman

Overall Experience: The professors are very enthusiastic and very qualified.

4 College Freshman

Overall Experience: People in the New England area know Amherst and hold it in high esteem.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The freshmen dorms are great. The renovated dorms are better than the old ones. It's a mix of old and new.

4 College Freshman

Athletics: We have a great football team and there's a lot of emphasis and health and well-being.

4 College Freshman

Overall Experience: Everybody here is super enthusiastic and so bright.

5 College Sophomore

Diversity: Amherst has made a huge effort in the last decade or so to create a more diverse campus, and it's done a great job. Isolated incidents of intolerance are condemned by the whole student body and administration. Amherst is a place where you can meet and be friends with many kinds of people.

4 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: Alcohol is widely consumed. Weed is used by some students regularly and many students occasionally. Other drugs are used by a small amount of students and are generally not seen by the general population and will probably not be offered to you, although, on such a small campus, you can find them if you're trying.

3 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: I feel very safe on campus, and I definitely feel that the AC Police are there to protect students, not punish them. The campus health center, however, I have found generally unhelpful and inconvenient. They have unreasonable hours for serving a student population that is in class during the day (they close for a full hour during lunch and close for the day at 4:30 pm). The process for getting a prescription there is so convoluted and difficult that I've just started getting mine at the CVS in town.

5 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: There's a huge variety of courses, and there's always more courses that I want to take than I can fit into my schedule. There's no gen-ed requirements, so you're pretty much always taking classes that you're really interested in. Professors are passionate and always happy to talk with you. Most classes are challenging, but you can get an A if you put the effort in.

4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: The alumni network is very strong and many students utilize it to help find internships and post-graduation jobs. Pretty much everyone I know who has graduated has had a job, grad school or some other plan lined up by the end of the year.

3 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: The physical condition of most dorms is great. They're well maintained, clean, and usually spacious. The furthest dorms from campus are still only about a 10 minute walk through a safe area. Furthermore, dorm RCs are, at least in my experience, helpful when you need them, but not too nosy or heavy handed. Generally, if you don't regularly make a mess, cause dorm damage, or disturb your hall mates, they will give you a pass on most things. Room draw can be a stressful process, especially if you have a big group, but the college seems to be doing all it can to streamline it and make it as fair as possible. I do think that many of the dorms are lacking in amenities, especially upperclassmen dorms. It seems a little basic to put things like water fountains and vending machines in all dorms. Some of the common rooms are also under furnished and not containing many incentives for students to gather there. Something like a ping pong table or foosball would definitely turn many common rooms into more of a social space rather than a place for one or two people to quietly study. Also, several dorms don't have elevators, so if you suffer an injury during the school year, good luck? Finally, the social atmosphere in dorms can be very hit or miss. Some freshman dorms (particularly when the whole building is sub-free) form close bonds and stay friends throughout their time at Amherst. Others (Pratt) seem to have trouble forming a community.

1 College Sophomore

Greek Life: Amherst College no longer has official/off-campus-but-still-open-to-the-administration Greek life. There are a couple underground frats which still live together and throw parties, and their membership is generally known to most students, but they have no official events or organization. It's unclear how long they will last with this status. There are no sororities. Recently, a pilot program of five social clubs have been founded. These are basically co-ed fraternities that are directly controlled/funded by the college. The aim of these is to provide more social options for Amherst students and encourage students to meet people outside of particular interest/activity groups (BSU, GAP, orchestra, sports teams) while not letting them develop the apparent exclusivity of the former fraternities. Time will tell if these clubs improve social life at Amherst or just further increase the way that students here tend to categorize themselves and ignore potential relationships outside their existing groups.

4 College Sophomore

Athletics: Our sports are very good, often winning national/conference championships, but games are typically not very well attended. I get the sense that people generally only go if they have a friend on the team or if it's a particularly important game (NESCAC finals, Williams game, homecoming). Socially, being on a team, varsity or club (particularly frisbee and crew), is generally very helpful, and a lot of teams seem to exclusively socialize with themselves or other athletes, leading to what some call an athlete-nonathlete divide. There's definitely certain areas of campus that are seen as where athletes hang out, or where athletes live. It will be interesting to see if the demolition of the Socials and decrease of suite-style housing will do anything to bridge that divide. On the administrative side, there's definitely been complaints about lack of funding for club and intramural sports, in which a lot of people participate, particularly when it comes to field time. Club sports are administered and funded by the student government, but people seem to think it would be better to consolidate all athletic activities under the athletic department. Overall, though, Amherst has many opportunities for students to get involved in sports at different levels, and it is easy to start a new intramural league for anything that isn't already available.

4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: Not everything that I expected, especially socially, but I definitely feel that I'm getting an excellent education.

2 College Sophomore

Party Scene: too much drinking it is not positive at all

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: too much drinking

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Health & Safety: we hear about things more in the news than from the administration

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: class size is excellent variety of classes is good

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: houses vary greatly as to location and improvements

1 College Sophomore

Greek Life: it is not available except in underground which is grounds for expulsion

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Athletics: hours of availability for non athletes are very limited

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: as a liberal arts school you would think people would be more tolerant of those with different ideas. However "different ideas " only applies to the vocal minority. As a white, male, republican I am continually berated , was told that would negate me from residential counselor , and criticized for having conservative political association

5 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Overall Experience: The Freshmen quad is amazing. It's beautiful, central and a great way to meet the peers in our class. Plus, all the freshmen dorms are nice inside as well.

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Overall Experience: I was accepted at my school as a transfer student from a community college, and it has been a super smooth and easy transition. The faculty at my school are so educated and welcoming. All of the students there have also been very welcoming to the other new transfers and myself. It is an amazing school academically, and it's also so small and beautiful. I love it there and I would definitely choose it again.

6 people found this useful Report
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Students usually don’t choose Amherst because of its academic reputation, although a sound reputation is a must when the competing schools are Harvard and Williams. Rather, students come here because of the promise of experiencing an eclectic array of stimulating peers, professors, classes, and activities. Some become disillusioned, not finding their niche within the abundance of opportunities and freedom. Some succeed in familiarizing themselves with the ways of this place, find that they’re having the time of their life midway through college and become depressed that this whole thing is going to end soon. Chronologically speaking and with clear generalization, freshman year can go by in a rush, with everyone immersed in the whole college experience with their freshmen friends and classmates. Sophomore year can be the most challenging, since a lot of people go through “sophomore slump”—a state of mild or not-so-mild depression caused by the sad fact that all their freshman friends suddenly are not living in the same dorm but are now in far corners of campus. Also, many sophomore students are conflicted by the sudden need to decide on a major and to get serious about their lives. Junior and senior years are usually better and calmer, since most students have settled into a chosen major and formed a group of close friends across distant campus dorms. Upperclassmen, then, can be free to concentrate on studying and having fun.

The key to living here is perhaps keeping yourself open and receptive to new and unfamiliar experiences, opinions, and values. You’ll gain a lot more if you communicate openly with that odd-looking and opinionated girl from Dallas or that too-cool-for-school-looking guy from Philly, rather than choosing to be repulsed by Amherst’s oddities. A place like Amherst, with so many accomplished and bright people threading its grounds, is bound to have more oddities than the average university. Even though few people come to Amherst College for the sole purpose of meeting new people, learning from everyone, exploring themselves and so on, most students do admit, however reluctantly, that Amherst is both fun and a unique learning and growing experience that can be found nowhere else.

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