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Reviews 5677 total reviews with an average rating of 3.8

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4 College Senior

Campus Quality: There are 838 student organizations in University Park (main campus). It ranges from sports, greek life to music/arts, politics, multicultural to honor societies.

3 College Freshman

Transportation: The campus buses are cheap which is great, but they are always crowded. Also, the $1.50 charge for each way on the buses to Target and other places seems like a lot, especially for a ride that takes three times as long as a normal car ride.

4 College Freshman

Academics: The academics at Penn State are phenomenal. Penn State offers a wide variety of classes and most of the professors are really good. They all have office hours that you can go to for any questions you might have. Despite what some people might think, not all of the classes at Penn State are huge. Once you get past your General Education classes, the classes are mostly all small.

4 College Freshman

Academics: I am an Engineering major and Penn State is probably one of the best schools to go to for this major. PSU has an extraordinary alumni network which will provide so many people that I can network with to help me get a job in my major. Also, PSU provides unique hands-on experience for Engineers. In addition, a large amount of employers recruit new employees directly from Penn State.

3 College Freshman

Diversity: At PSU, there is a large amount of diversity. There are people from all over the world. I believe that the campus is about 50/50. Half of the students are white and the other half of the students are some other nationality. As a whole, the campus is very accepting and welcome to diversity.

5 College Freshman

Campus Quality: The student life on campus is great. There is always something to do and there are thousands of organizations on campus that you can join. If there isn't already an organization that you would like to join, then you can create your own! One of my favorite events to participate in, as a student, are the home football games. They create such a sense of pride and joy in our university and they unite all of the students as "one team."

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: There are plenty of housing options on Penn State's campus and the housing process for living on campus in very easy. Freshmen are guaranteed on campus housing, but everyone else has to enter a lottery in order to get on campus housing. The dorms are not too bad. Mine has plenty of space for me and my roommate. Pretty much every dorm except for East Halls, is a good option. The social atmosphere is hit or miss. Some places it's good, others it's not.

3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: There is a large variety of off-campus dining options near my school. From my dorm, they are also within a short walking distance. Some of the places can be on the more expensive end, but my school also gives out a lot of great coupons to use at most of the dining places. One of my favorite places is The Waffle Shop, which is relatively cheap and has a great breakfast.

3 College Freshman

Campus Quality: My school's Women in Engineering Program has and will provide me with many opportunities. This program will allow me to network with hundreds of other students and alumni. It will also allow me to network with hundreds of employers which will hopefully help me get a job right out of college.

4 College Junior

Administration: The police patrol day and night, but protection gets higher at night time because of the partying. Because the bars and clubs are strict it kind of gives the police an easy job, but there are still those people that slip through the cracks and police enforcement is used. I feel safe on campus always seeing a patrol car everywhere I turn.

4 College Sophomore

Technology: The labs are pretty good, they have both Macs and PC's, whichever you're more comfortable with.

3 College Junior

Party Scene: Nightlife for students who are 21 or older is wonderful. There are multiple bars and clubs with transportation close to make getting home easier. There are a few 18 and older nights or events, but alcohol consumption is very strict and kills the mood when bouncers are being jerks. All in all the night life is full of thrills and fun with a group of friends.

5 College Sophomore

Local Area: Great small town but with everything you need. Buses go to local mall and shopping centers.

3 College Freshman

Local Area: Penn State is just an all around college town, so most of locals are college students. But there isn't much to do around here except partying and drinking. There are a few recreational halls around but not many. There also aren't very many places to shop. A bus needs to be taken in order to get out of town, but it is very safe at Penn State.

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Penn State is definitely safe. They have a lot of measures that you can take if you feel unsafe at any time. For example, if you don't feel safe walking at night, you can call the campus police and they will escort you to your destination. Personally, I feel very safe at Penn State and haven't ever felt as if I were in any danger at all.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Dorm life can be nice at Penn State, depending on which building you live in. East has a lot of freshmen, so if you're looking for a lot of other freshmen and wild partying then East is the place to go. South and Pollock are close to downtown, so it can be a little noisy. However, it is a little quieter there, but the party life is still pretty alive there. West is quiet and is a good place to study, but downtown is extremely close if you wish to party. North is pricey, so I don't really suggest living there. I would suggest living in either East, South, Pollock, or West if you're going to stay on campus. Everywhere else can be pricey. Penn State doesn't guarantee housing, so it is chosen based on a lottery system. It is, however, relatively simple to request a housing contract. The actual buildings can be a little disgusting because some of them are kind of old, but they are relatively clean on the weekdays as they are cleaned daily. Once the weekends come around, however, it can be pretty gross. People at the dorm are relatively friendly.

3 College Freshman

Administration: The campus itself isn't that strict about anything in particular. Dorm life is a bit stricter here. Overall, however, Penn State is relatively laid back about drinking, smoking, etc. As long as you don't make a huge scene, the police won't usually go out of their way to hunt students down and interrogate them.

4 College Freshman

Party Scene: Nightlife is very diverse at Penn State. If people are looking for a good nightlife, Penn State is the place to be. There are a large variety of bars to choose from, and there are constantly parties going whether it be the weekdays or the weekends.

5 College Sophomore

Athletics: Penn State athletics is very involved with community service and giving back! Most of the sports are top in the nation so you cant go wrong with the athletics. Also they are fun to watch! The facilities are top notch and its hard to find better.

2 College Freshman

Diversity: There seems to be little diversity on campus. There is some but I feel like it is very little. There are different organizations that embrace the different cultures and backgrounds on campus.

2 College Freshman

Drug Safety: Most students on campus have some sort of drug in their dorms at a certain time during the year. A lot of students drink on campus and off of campus. There is a lot of underage drinking that goes on.

3 College Freshman

Campus Food: There's a good variety of places to eat on campus as well as several commons to go to if you want to eat, but the reason I didn't grade it an A is because not every commons has great food.

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: I feel safe on campus because there are a lot of campus safety officers patrolling on the weekends to make sure nothing happens to you or anyone else.

4 College Freshman

Academics: I'm a chemical engineering major, and the opportunities so far have been wonderful. In my first semester of my freshman year, I was given the opportunity to work in a Chem E lab, and to get research experience.

5 College Freshman

Athletics: Obviously, everyone has heard of Penn State football. Contrary to most beliefs, it does not take over the lives of the students, but merely provides a great way to improve school spirit. We also have many other wonderful sports teams that the students love to support. One Team!

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Pattee Library and Mall
Pattee Library and Mall

Overall ExperienceWhat's this?

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Despite common reservations about the location and climate, most Penn State students are fiercely loyal to their alma mater. Penn State boasts one of the largest alumni populations in the United States; graduates are proud of their degrees, and employers recognize the University’s name immediately. Although the campus is located in a very rural area, school is technologically up-to-date and on the cutting-edge of current research.

Aside from academics, PSU is also known for its social scene, especially in relation to sports and parties. Nittany Lion football—home of the 2008 Big Ten Champions—is a national draw and a point of pride for both the University and the town of State College. For anyone interested in playing or watching varsity sports, PSU is a top choice. Penn State has also been ranked highly by many polls and “party school” surveys as one of the top party schools in the nation. While it certainly isn’t the wildest town, these rankings are definitely accurate. The small-town setting and large-school atmosphere makes for little else in the way of entertainment, so it can be hard to avoid encountering the party scene during your time as a student. Still, the mix of work and leisure seems to work well for most of the student body, and academic standards at Penn State remain relatively high. It’s easy to spend four years at Penn State as an ever-serious student, focused completely on whatever you choose to study. With so many opportunities to relax nearby, balance and moderation are some of the best skills to learn from your four years in college.

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