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Reviews 1212 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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5 College Senior

Overall Experience: Northwestern has given me the opportunities to learn professional skills outside of the classroom through networking, internships, and student group participation.

7 people found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: NU focuses on students as people, not grades

8 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: Loved my time at Northwestern. The people, resources, and location are fantastic.

Downsides that are intrinsically linked to the benefits of Northwestern.

1. It's a research university - this means a lot of cool research opportunities, speakers/events, and some professors who are both passionate about their work AND good teachers. On the flip side, no one is holding your hand past the 1st quarter and sometimes you get a weird prof who rants about his/her research rather than teaching what should be a straightforward intro thermodynamics course.

2. It's expensive (tuition & rent in Evanston) - well-regarded private school in a nice city/suburb with it's own trappings (lakefront/parks, restaurants, shops) AND prox to Chi/CTA access.

Perspective: econ & engineering major who also dabbled in some poli-sci & philosophy classes: Engineering classes are challenging but students are increasingly collaborative as you get into your niche/major. If you're smart & can attend/engage in lectures, struggle through problem sets/projects (make friends!), and cram 2x/quarter for a midterm & final, you will survive (w/ some stress and loss of sleep). My co-op/work xp was awesome & McCormick flexible w/my work schedule. Econ is a huge major - classes had great grad student TAs that recapped lectures and helped with problem sets in weekly discussion sections. Professors/lectures generally good, occasionally great.

Social scene: Fairly diverse community. Good opportunities to stick with your HS activities (for me, concert band/orchestra and club sports) while branching out & trying new things (ESW, multicultural groups). Dorms are OK, res colleges available if you want to make a passion or interest a part of where you live. Greek scene prevalent & benefits everyone looking to party, but you're not in the minority if you're not involved. Pretty good house party scene off-campus & Chi looms to the south. I met a lot of incredible people & made some amazing friends.

37 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: I have only attended one class, however the class is comfortable, easy to find, teacher is informative and explains in detail our assignments.

7 people found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: I have been very disappointed in my choice of Northwestern. The school breeds stress. There are constant exams and assignments due on the quarter system, the classes are very hard and are graded harshly on a curve. Most students simply care about getting into med/law/grad school and just care about grades and doing extracurriculars to look good on a resume. The winter months are brutally cold. The school is extremely expensive with not enough financial aid for the middle class. There have been numerous mental health issues and suicides recently. We were rated as having one of the worst student quality of life by the Princeton Review for good reason. The school cares more about money than it does about its undergrads.

31 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: There are many unique individuals that make it an enjoyable experience. The professors are approachable, and everyone wants to succeed.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: Comparably, this school contains more accepting people. I changed my personality, embraced freedom and had a blast meeting new people and trying new things. The classes are challenging and I get to take classes in things that I'm interested in, for a change.

6 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Overall Experience: It is a great university, but at times the administration can cause certain problems.

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Overall Experience: My school is academically rigorous but still allows time to explore subjects outside of majors, to join extracurriculars, and to have a social life

4 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Overall Experience: So far it has taken me some time to become accustomed to the highly competitive nature of the school. Coming in, I knew Northwestern University was one of the best schools in the nation, but the kind of competition that I have experienced during my freshman year was not the kind I expected. As my freshman year went by, I found myself more focused on what I was learning in class, whereas my classmates were more focused on the grade they obtained and the marketability of their classes and their degree. This is a generalization of the attitude that is found on the campus but as it is a generalization, it does not true of every student on campus.

16 people found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Administration: No positive or negative encounters as of yet.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Scholarships: Received an appropriate amount of financial aid.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Many perks for residential communities, clean facilities, close to my classes, made a ton of friends.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: As a Northwestern student, off campus living is often worth it since there are no apartment-style living options on campus. Though some apartments and houses can be a bit far from campus, there are plenty of options that are close in proximity. However, the closer the apartment, the more expensive it often is.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Party Scene: The party scene is really up to individual students and the social circles they find themselves in. If you're in Greek life, it's pretty easy to always find things to do. However, if you aren't in Greek life and you don't necessarily enjoy frat parties or have friends in Greek life that invite you to events, the party scene on campus can be pretty bland. Fortunately, Chicago has some great party spots, but you often have to be 21 to get into them.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: If nothing else, Evanston is good for eating. There are plenty of options for dining outside of Northwestern, and there is always a new place to try.

3 College Junior

Administration: While the administration allows students ample opportunity to organize and voice their opinions, at the end of the day, the administration gets the last word. If you're coming in as a student hoping to be an influential activist, Northwestern probably won't fulfill that for you.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Scholarships: I personally have had a great experience with financial aid at NU. They have consistently helped my family as much as possible. However, I don't think my experience is representative of the average Northwestern student experience. I have several friends who have struggled with obtaining aid while demonstrating need or extending aid after taking time off for personal reasons, which is unfortunate. It really all depends on luck.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Campus Food: While there is a lot of food available to people who live on campus, the hours aren't great.

3 College Junior

Campus Housing: The housing at Northwestern really depends on where you are on campus. There are some dorms that are particularly high quality, and others that aren't. If you're looking for a really close-knit social life in the dorms, residential colleges are the way to go. You apply specifically to live in them and there are typically tones of activities like formals, munchies, and fireside discussions planned throughout the year to engage residents and help them get to know each other. However, there is not much diversity in terms of what is available in Northwestern housing and most of the dorms are classic single, double, and triple style, resulting in many juniors and seniors choosing to live in apartments off campus. Overall, Northwestern housing isn't the greatest, but it definitely isn't the worst.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Student

Campus Food: On a scale from one to ten, I would personally rate the school food here at a six. It is defiantly not the best food, but it is not the worst. The variety is not prevalent. It seems to have a repeat meal schedule each week. There have not been any noticing issues with any shortage of food, so the meal plan, when it comes to financing, is good.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: There are so many good places to eat in Evanston. Food can be expensive depending what you want, but you can generally find whatever you're craving for a good price and great quality. Everything is walking distance and the variety is great. Plus Chicago is only an el ride away and has some INCREDIBLE food.

4 College Freshman

Party Scene: Parties are frequent and easy to get to and can be a lot of fun if you go to the right place with the right people. As a freshman, your choices are generally either dorm-drinking (which can be very fun), frats (which can be fun but can also be gross), or off-campus parties (often used as fund-raisers and cost $5, but sometimes free).

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Administration: Academic rules and policies are enforced so as to ensure honesty and integrity, and social things like drinking/smoking are pretty easy to get away with as long as you're smart about it and don't bother anyone else.

4 College Freshman

Campus Food: The food can get monotonous after a while, especially if you only eat at whatever dining hall is closest to you. However, if you're willing to walk a little bit and change it up, there's normally something good somewhere for every meal. The food has almost never been bad, only boring or repetitive.

1 person found this useful Report
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Overall ExperienceWhat's this?

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At Northwestern, schoolwork can seem overwhelming at points, but students don’t let that stop them from having fun. After spending the school week doing long readings, writing papers, and taking ever-present midterms, students have a knack for finding ways to kick back and relax. This does not always include partying. For those who want to party, the option is always there. If partying is not your thing, there are movies, cool coffee shops to check out, and all of Chicago's cultural offerings just a short "L" ride away.

Northwestern students are generally happy with their choice of school—there is a retention rate nearing 100 percent year after year. There are the usual complaints (cold winters, hard classes, and lack of sleep, to name a few), but everyone has their reason for choosing NU, and the reasons usually do not disappoint. Most students like most aspects of their life at Northwestern. The mid-size student body (8,000 undergrads) allows you to meet new people in various activities or classes, but you are guaranteed to see familiar faces every time you walk outside or eat in a dining hall. Different aspects of the school can be hit or miss, depending on what you’re looking for, but the people you meet and the friends you make will greatly enhance your experience. Students come from many walks of life, but the differences in backgrounds are hardly noticeable on the surface. Everyone has similar goals for the future, and everyone will go places after they graduate. This is Northwestern, after all.

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

Applicant Status At Northwestern University

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