Campus Quality

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Campus Quality


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5 College Sophomore

Campus Quality: I go to arguably the prettiest school in the country. The campus and its facilitates are beautiful. My only complaint in that area is that handicap accessibility to some buildings is limited. The food is about as good and easily accessible as college dining can get, although sometimes I would appreciate a little more variety, especially during the winter months. The athletic facility is top notch. While the lab facilities may not be quite as advanced as those of a large school, students have an amazing amount of access to the equipment, probably much more than most undergraduates.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Quality: Tiny college, a really friendly group of kids (though many are introverts--hard to make friends at first) huge focus on writing, but especially analytical writing. (People come here to do creative writing but most of the english classes are analytical.) Campus facilities are state of the art, I think.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Quality: The facilities here are a huge bonus. All the main campus buildings (not the dorms. definitely not the dorms.) are really amazing. My favorites are probably Peirce dining hall, Gund Gallery, and the Athletic Center. The library is not as pretty from the outside but its cozy and full of secret places on the inside. It's super easy to find a study space on campus too. Kenyon has a lot of weird and really nice traditions, which they talk about on their website.

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Campus Quality: Our school is absolutely beautiful. The architecture is awesome. Kenyon has a bunch of traditions that bring the student body together. There are lots of campus activities to participate in.

5 College Junior

Campus Quality: It's super small so the community is really small and tight-knit. Professors are exceptionally accessible and get to know students really well. Kenyon has a lot of history and traditions that make it feel like a really special place. Students are very intelligent without being overly competitive and cut-throat. Also, it's beautiful and it looks like Hogwarts.

1 person found this useful Report

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Recently named one of the most beautiful college campuses in the world by, Kenyon's campus literally can't be beat. The older buildings have a classic college feel, with stone walls and impressive stained-glass windows. The new additions, such as the art gallery and North Apartments, have legendary architect Graham Gund's influence. These facilities are state-of-the-art and tend to be very light and airy.

Because there isn't a student union at Kenyon, the bookstore has become a hangout. Everything from shampoo to staple guns to gummy bears are sold there (books, of course, too), and there are comfy chairs in every corner. Other areas that serve as student hangouts are the library atrium, Gund Commons ballroom, and the third floor of Ascension Hall. Many students are excited about the recently completed $60 million Kenyon Athletic Center, which opened up much-needed space on campus for athletics and offers a gorgeous workout room. The facility features a pool, tennis court, indoor track, and pro shop. Rosse Hall is the main venue for speakers and large-scale musical performances. Behind it is the smaller Storer Hall, which functions as a rehearsal space for the campus orchestra and a venue for smaller performances. The Bolton Dance Studio accommodates the small number of dance majors, and two theaters are reserved for all plays and drama classes.

Facts & Statistics

Service & Maintenance Staff
Campus Size
1,000 acres
Student Centers
The middle of town is Kenyon’s true “student center,” but the closest thing on campus is Gund Commons.
Campus Library?
Main Libraries
The connected Olin and Chalmers make up “the library” on campus.
Popular Places to Chill
  • The bookstore
  • The manicured lawns across campus
  • The patio in front of Farr Hall
Bar on Campus
Gambier Grill (behind the bookstore)
Bowling on Campus
Coffeehouse on Campus
Middle Ground Café
Movie Theater on Campus
"Green" Initiatives
There is a move to cut down on student water and electricity usage.
School Slang
  • Allstu: An email sent to the entire student body
  • The Atrium: The lobby of the library
  • AVI: AVI Foodsystems, the campus's food provider
  • The Bank Box: A Black Box Theater located next to the post office
  • Beta Rock: A South Quad boulder held sacred by the fraternity of Beta Theta Pi
  • BFEC: The Brown Family Environmental Center
  • The Bullseyes: Two rooms with big, round windows at the top of Old Kenyon that function as party spots for frats
  • The Deuce: Large triple in Hanna used by the D-Phis for Wednesday night parties
  • Division: Wings of the historic dorms allotted to fraternity members
  • DormCest/HallCest: Hooking up with someone else in your dorm or on your hall floor
  • Gates of Hell: The two stone pillars that mark the entrance to South Campus
  • The Grill: The Gambier Grill, the local bar and takeout restaurant
  • The Hill: The general Kenyon area, which is set up on a hill
  • The Horn: The Horn Gallery, a performance space
  • Hot Rods: An all-night sandwich chain run out of gas stations
  • Hunan: Hunan Garden, a Chinese restaurant in Mount Vernon
  • Middle Path: The path that runs the length of campus
  • Milk Cartons: Off-campus houses that look like milk cartons
  • New Aps: The new apartments
  • Philo: Philomathesian Hall, on the second floor of Ascension
  • Phling: Philander's Phling, a campus-wide formal held every February in Peirce
  • Pink House: A pink house where the Phi-Kaps hold their parties
  • Pizza Huts: Off-campus houses that look like Pizza Huts
  • The Pub: Philander's Pub, which serves pizza and is located in the basement of Peirce
  • Sexile: Temporarily kicking out your roommate to hook up with someone
  • Shock Your Mama: An annual near-naked party thrown by the swimmers
  • The Verne: Mount Vernon, the neighboring town
  • Frat Tables in Peirce: Peirce Dining Hall can often serve as a microcosm of Kenyon social interaction. The tables are long enough for people to sit with their extended groups of friends, and fraternities have their own unofficially designated table. The Dekes sit near the entrance, Delts near the conveyor belt, and Betas sit on the heater. There is no real threat for crossing these undeclared boundaries, but a sign of true assimilation to Kenyon is learning which tables in Peirce belong to whom.
  • Freshman Sing: Freshman Sing functions as the unveiling of the freshman class to the rest of the school. On their third day of freshman orientation, the entire freshman class lines up on the steps of Rosse Hall and belts out four Kenyon anthems to everyone standing below. Once they have completed these first four songs and earned the respect of the rest of the school, everyone joins in for a final anthem, and they officially enter the Kenyon community. Freshman Sing can also be used as a preliminary way to scout out the hot frosh.
  • Friday Afternoon Drinking Club : The Friday Afternoon Drinking Club, or FADC, is not at all school sponsored, but it still draws a fairly large crowd. Held in various locations around campus every Friday at 5 p.m., it has become a mainstay for campus drunks. If you want to kick off the weekend early or at least come drunk to dinner, two dollars will get you all that you need at FADC.
  • The Gates of Hell: The cornerstone of all Kenyon superstition is the two stone pillars, with a post in the middle, that mark the entrance to South Campus. They were nicknamed because they lead to all of the school's academic buildings, and because they are rumored to be the actual gates to hell. The traditions around them are endless. Some people refuse to walk through the gates at all. Some people never touch the post; some people always touch the post; and some people urinate on the post. There are those that obey the laws of traffic, always going through the righthand "lane," and others that laugh at all these silly traditions.
  • Ghost Stories With Professor Shutt: Humanities professor and campus legend Tim Shutt gathers students around a bonfire every Halloween for a terrifying trek through Kenyon's supposed haunted history. Going year-by-year and dorm-by-dorm, Shutt goes through every death and murder that has ever happened in Kenyon's history, and then tells how the victim presently haunts the school. Even those with the strongest of constitutions have been known to sleep with the lights on after this event.
  • Philander's Phling: Kenyon is a school with a lot of formal traditions, and a generally informal attitude toward dress and decorum. The formal and informal meet at Philander's Phling, which is an annual winter formal thrown by the school. The ball is held every February, and is one of the most anticipated events of the year. It is also the only time that students really need to worry about looking like Lords and Ladies (but not about acting like them).
  • Summer Send-off: The school throws Summer Send-off in early May as a sort of last hurrah before finals begin. The day starts with games and barbecues in the South Quad, and ends with a concert by a fairly big-name band. Students begin their drinking very early in the day and often don't stop. This is the one day where a person can drink before lunch without getting dirty looks. Whether or not you partake in the debauchery, this is the only day where the entire campus appears truly united.
  • Vendors on Middle Path: When the weather is nice, and sometimes when it's not, area merchants will set up stands on Middle Path and nearby Farr Hall for student shoppers. Middle Path usually features Amish goods, such as scarves and baskets, as well as fresh local produce. Farr Hall, which is next to the bookstore, usually features slightly more commercial vendors, usually with a hippie twist. There is one man who frequently comes by to sell jewelry and incense, and occasionally used records.
Urban Legends
  • Paul Newman donated the $60 million for the athletics facility.
  • Playboy once voted Kenyon the most promiscuous school in the country.
  • The basement of Sam Mather Hall contains the actual gate to hell.
  • When the church caught fire, the flames burned downward.
Favorite Things To Do
A lot of Kenyon's favorite activities involve simply hanging out with friends. Whether you park your scooters in the Gund patio or sit in the benches outside Farr, the school very often resembles an admissions booklet. Students sit and read magazines in the bookstore, study as groups in the library atrium, and hold hands on the bench at Sunset Point. When it snows, people sled down hills on lunch trays. There is always some event to go see, whether it is a student-produced, senior-thesis play, improv and sketch comedy, or a speaker. The campus's three a cappella groups are immensely popular, the concerts are always packed, and students will go out of their way to see them do teaser sets at various coffeehouses and fundraisers. The Kenyon Film Society (KFS) designates a theme every week (musicals, black and white, Sean Penn) and shows three movies a week on Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. Sporting events can usually reel in some spectators, depending on the sport and the weather, and any event offering free food pretty much guarantees attendance.

During the week, you can work in the library, go jogging down the Kokosing Gap Trail, or swim laps at Kenyon Athletic Center. At night, there is a plethora of Kenyon-sponsored "dry events" to complement the drinking and Greek scene.
Student Organizations Web Site
Student Newspaper
The Kenyon Collegian
Clubs and Organizations on Campus
Clubs and organizations are a major part of Kenyon life. Because Gambier is so remote, becoming involved on campus is a part of the experience. The most popular clubs are those with a service component, such as volunteering at the local elementary school or cleaning up the local woods.
Student Activities Offered
  • Campus ministries
  • Choral groups
  • Concert band
  • Dance
  • Drama/theater
  • International student organization
  • Jazz band
  • Literary magazine
  • Model UN
  • Music ensembles
  • Musical theater
  • Opera
  • Pep band
  • Radio station
  • Student government
  • Student-run film society
  • Symphony orchestra
  • Yearbook
Air Force ROTC: No
Navy ROTC: No
Army ROTC: No
Did You Know?
There is a carnival at the beginning of the year where students can sign up for clubs and organizations.

Student Polls

Rate the campus facilities in the following areas    Based on 22 responses

Very poor
  • Athletics/recreation
  • Classrooms
  • Computer labs
  • Dining
  • General aesthetics/architecture of campus
  • "Green" buildings/initiatives
  • Housing
  • Lawns/green space
  • Library
  • Modernity of facilities
  • Performing arts
  • Science/research labs
  • Student center
  • Study spots
  • Visual arts (work spaces, galleries)

How would you describe the student center/union?    Based on 16 responses

  • 19% The student center is state-of-the-art and the hub of student life.
  • 62% The student center is great but isn't central to student life.
  • 12% The student center serves its purpose but is not a popular hangout.
  • 6% The student center is in need of a major renovation.

What is your overall opinion of your school and the campus community?    Based on 20 responses

  • 50% I love everything about my school and have a lot of campus pride.
  • 45% I like mostly everything about my school, but there are some things I wish were different.
  • 5% The school community is okay-we're all just here for an education, nothing more.
  • 0% I hate my school and have no school spirit.



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