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Reviews 5099 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: State College Downtown – Downtown State College is full of life, and prosperity. Many of the students who do not wish to eat at the dining halls tend to hang out downtown to enjoy a fresh meal. Though the prices are on the high side, downtown provides a wide variety of different foods. Some of the stores provide students the chance to use Lion Cash, which acts as a credit card for students. One of the best places, and hot spot for many students is the Corner Room, located at the corner of East College Ave., and Allen St. They provide a menu for students interested in using Lion Cash. Their meals are great, and priced fairly decent.

4 College Senior

Drug Safety: Penn State is a very fun school due to the bar scene downtown. Most nights you can easily see people that have been drinking walking the streets. Walking through town, you can always find a party.

4 College Senior

Athletics: Football Is Religoiusly Followed – Football at PSU is religiously followed. Even though there are many sports at PSU, football is the most popular and Penn State is also the home of Beaver Stadium, the biggest stadium in America.

5 College Senior

Health & Safety: Amazing Security on Campus – Penn State is one of the safest campuses in America. The town of State College was rated as one of the safest places in America. Police cars patrol the streets and the campus around the clock.

3 College Junior

Drug Safety: There are not a lot of hard core drugs seen at Penn State but dont go to a frat or apartment party and expect to smell or see weed... Alcohol is EVERYWHERE. It's a party school, peer pressure is large to drink here.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Health & Safety: Top Pick for Safety – Voted one of the safest campuses in the US! I feel totally safe walking around downtown at night alone. Police are always on the prowl which makes me feel that much safer. There are rarely reports of dangerous crimes.

4 College Junior

Local Area: Happy Valley – State College is an excellent college town. Has everything you could ever need and want from pizza, chinese, subs to fancy sit down, stores gallor and even a theater. It doesn't get the name Happy Valley for nothing! excellent place to live. One of the safest college towns in the US too!

1 College Freshman

Campus Food: the food here is worst at best the state doesn't believe in funding for good food and students often have to go off campus for a reasonable meal that won't make you sick

2 College Sophomore

Parking: Have not had much need easy to get around without the expenses of a car.

5 College Sophomore

Technology: Computers are not hard to find and always in working order.

3 College Freshman

Parking: Hard to Acquire – Parking is sometimes hard to acquire. Most of the time guests have to park in parking garages and that can be inconvenient, costly, and a hassle when trying to find a spot.

3 College Freshman

Weather: Bring Your Rainboots and a Heavy Coat – During my stay at penn state, it is constantly raining and it is cold --> this is my rating for fall semster

3 College Freshman

Academics: The classes are excellent and there are so many choices, but i had a hard time adjusting. Especially going into the main campus, it is literally a snow globe.
Also when it comes to the classes at times it can be very large and it is nerve racking when the class does not have alot of split up work, instead alot of the grades are dependent on just test. If you flunk one it is hard to come back, and end with a high grade
Penn state is not my cup of tea

4 College Senior

Party Scene: All of the bars downtown are for people 21 and over. There is an occasional under-21 night at indigo, the only dance club in town. For people under 21, the best place to party is at a friend's apartment off campus or at a frat. Frats have gotten pretty strict about who they let in though, so get to know a brother. For the over 21 students, there are tons of bars to choose from and there's something going on every night of the week.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Athletics: Tons of School Spirit – With the name Penn State comes great fan support and school spirit. At each home football game, approximately 100,000 people from all over the country come to Happy Valley to watch the game. Other sports are fun to watch here too. Most sporting events are free for students, with the exception of football and mens and womens basketball.

3 College Senior

Diversity: Rich Kids in Greek Life – There is a good mix of backgrounds in the general student body. In smaller groups, like Greek life, most people are from a privileged background. Most students in Greek life have their expenses paid by their parents, and look down on other students for not being as rich as them. People from lower socio-economic groups are here on partial or full scholarships, which sometimes causes them to be looked down upon.

4 College Freshman

Technology: What You Need – The computers on campus are fast and get the job done. Specific ones even have extremely complex programs on them.

3 Recent Alumnus

Administration: It's Not Bad – It's easy to stay out of trouble if you are smart and control yourself.

4 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: Live on-Campus While You Can – Living on campus is definitely easy. Food options are available all over and at all hours of the night. Freshman year, live in East if you don't want to get any sleep and South or Pollock if you want to have the option of being in a slightly quieter building.
Housing is always really helpful and prompt if you have any problems with your room.
Cost wise, living on campus is probably about average and comes out to being about the same as living in the majority of off-campus apartment buildings.
The housing process is easy as long as you get a contract.. a decent number of people don't get them and then they're kind of screwed because most of the apartments downtown are taken at that point. You also don't get your assignment until August which is a little frustrating. The contracts are given out in a lottery and have nothing to do with who you are or special circumstances (unless you're an athlete or in a special living option).
The social aspect is nice because you get to know the people on your floor pretty well in the dorms, and they're right there if you want to hang out.

1 Recent Alumnus

Weather: The weahter at Penn State is HORRIBLE!!! It's always grey, always raining or snowing, always cloudy. You will FREEZE in the winter. It really isn't fun and I'm not over exaggerating.

3 Recent Alumnus

Transportation: Public transportation sucks. The only thing CATA is good at is runing the white loop for drunk students who live on campus to get to frat parties without having to walk way too far when its cold out. And, its always cold out because spring doesn't start until May in State College.

3 Recent Alumnus

Party Scene: Nightlife= drinking. If you're underage, you will be drinking at Frats, if you are over 21, you will be drinking downtown. No one does anything else. Bars and apartment parties get boring, expensive and fattening.

3 College Junior

Scholarships: I feel that getting help for tuition is all depending who you talk to. Not everyone is equally as helpful

1 College Junior

Administration: I think they are too strict with the alcohol. They should relax

4 College Junior

Local Area: Fun Night Life – If you looking for anything to do on the late-night, Penn State is the place to be. The fraternity life is vibrant, plenty of places to eat, things such as laser tag and friendly people add to the atmosphere.


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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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