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Reviews 549 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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4 College Junior

Overall Experience: There is a great science department for such a small school.

3 College Freshman

Campus Food: Not much variety since there is only one dining hall

1 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The dorm are pretty well updated unless you live in Kildahl. Also, if you have a roommate from the Twin Cities area or Rochester, expect to have a single as a freshman. They will go home every weekend

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Majors: I liked being a psych major at the beginning, with the broad courses, but once the courses became more seminar-structured it felt like the prof.s didn't know what they were talking about, so they just made the students discuss instead.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Diversity: There seems to be some diversity on this campus, ie. people coming from different parts of the world, but everyone is pushed to fit the mold once they arrive, if they don't already.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Academics: I just answered this in the last section.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Academics: Except for one really unfair teacher (Minda Orina from the Psych department) most of my classes were of reasonable quality. Sometimes I thought there was an excessive amount of class discussion when I would have preferred lectures, but that's just me. However, I didn't think the teaching was that outstanding compared to classes I've had in high school or community college courses: definitely not worth the tuition.

2 people found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Local Area: Northfield is way too small and hard to get to from campus due to the weather, so usually it's not worth it to even go.

1 College Senior

Guys & Girls: Why did this site only ask me to rate guys? I'm bisexual. Anyway, in general, people care a lot more about work than their social or dating life, and people don't seem to care about having fun. I'm not just talking about drinking or partying, I'm talking about artistic things too like being creative and just joking around in general. Everyone is so concerned with being nice and politically correct, that they lose their senses of humor and willingness to have a good time. If all you're concerned about is looks, the population is reasonably attractive, but good luck finding someone genuinely interesting who isn't looking to transfer.

2 people found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Health & Safety: My friend needed gauze and disinfectant ointment when she returned to the hospital after getting stitches. They did't have disinfectant and they made her pay for the gauze though she was told before it was going to be free. The nurses as St. Olaf don't know what they're doing, it's better to go directly to the E.R.

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Overall Experience: I already wrote all I have to say. If you're looking for a homogeneous conservative traditional Lutheran environment, and you love working hard and being politically correct for fun, this might be the right place for you, and I don't fault you for that. But if you're looking for anything else, going to this school is a huge mistake!!

1 College Senior

Overall Experience: Oops I already wrote this in the last section...

1 College Senior

Overall Experience: Overall most of my professors were good, but everything else about the college was horrible. I thought I could just go to a college if the teaching was good, regardless of the quality of life but I was wrong. St. Olaf hides behind a facade of looking so well-kempt and professional, but if you look closer, most of this is an illusion. For example, there are posters all over the place for events that don't actually take place, or of they do, no one is there. Also, all the computers appear to be macs but have windows operating systems. St. Olaf does everything they can to make extra money off its students: they start shamelessly asking for alum donations before we even graduate, and there is a fine for basically everything, even dropping a class, which gives wealthy students a huge advantage. The narrow-minded culture and lack of diversity, the general ignorance and intolerance of anything not mainstream, and the snobbish entitled population made living at St. Olaf a nightmare. The only thing that proved to me that I wasn't going insane was when I went on study abroad an finally encountered normal people again, which was like a breath of fresh air. Do not go to this school if you value your sanity, you can find good teaching at other schools, it's not worth it.

3 people found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Off-Campus Housing: I didn't live off campus but I tried to and it was really hard to find anywhere close enough to the school. Even if you have a car, the weather makes transportation an issue.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Senior

Off-Campus Dining: It's hard to get anywhere off campus, and once you do the options are quite limited. Tokyo grill is really good though!

1 person found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Administration: Where do I even begin? One friend of mine got penalized for violating the honor code with no proof, another got accused of sexual assault with no proof. My friends tried to start an honor house with a great pitch but our house got taken by kids whose parents were big donors. I was told I could graduate early, and a semester later they told me they made a mistake, but at that point it was too late to transfer. The reason for the retention rate is because 1) it is EXTREMELY hard to transfer, and 2) there is so much propaganda about how great the school is once you start going there that it's easy to buy into, with nothing to compare it to. This school should tell prospective students what it is: an old fashioned conservative lutheran school with a vapid vanilla closed-minded upper middle-class population. I don't know why they pretend otherwise. Pub safe wouldn't do anything about a dying kitten me and my friend were trying to get out of a tree. I came to the school having been told that the art dept. hosted weekly figure drawing sessions, which was a lie. When I tried to get figure drawing started again, I was accused of being a threat to the club's "existence" lol. There are over a hundred clubs listed on the website a good half of them don't actually exist. My friends and I started a club, which is now one of the most interesting clubs on campus: this is super sad because all we do is watch music videos. When we tried to start a more interesting club, one that networked with other clubs and sponsored free workshops, apparently that was too edgy for the administration. The administration does absolutely nothing about unfair grading or unfair treatment of students on the part of the staff. I was fired from my job for a completely invalid reason, after working there as a reliable employee for two years, and the administration did nothing about it. Being at this school makes you feel physically and emotionally trapped and helpless.

3 people found this useful Report
1 College Senior

Party Scene: Normally I love to party but the party scene sucks, people compensate for the fact that it's a dry campus by getting sh*t faced whenever they get their hands on alcohol. People always going to the hospital. And if you don't have a car, don't even think about leaving campus with the weather.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Scholarships: I don't have anything to compare it to but I did receive a good financial aid package.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Campus Food: I don't know why people rave about this food so much. Maybe it's good for the midwest but I'm from the east coast... I'm pretty easy to please when it comes to food but caf food is just meh. Not much flavor, way too many potatoes.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Campus Housing: The housing was fine... Weird storage rules for moving in and out, there's no real time to settle in and you immediately get kicked out after classes but living in the dorms wasn't bad.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Overall Experience: I am so happy that I have chose St. Olaf and I believe that it's a great school for students who are looking for getting admiited by med schools.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Overall Experience: School thinks thoroughly for students' future, it even has a great plan for pre-med students and tons of internships. IS and IR courses are great too, there are many topics you can choose. Couldn't be better

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Health & Safety: Students are nice here, and Olaf is small and safe, sexual assult is really serious and I think it doesn't happen or rarely happens/

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Athletics: I enjoy my P.E. classes and we win Carleton everytime!

5 College Student

Greek Life: Don't really understand what's Greek life...

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

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It's not uncommon at St. Olaf to run into second-, third-, or even fourth-generation Oles. This fact, coupled with the school's outstanding retention rate, shows that there is obviously something that keeps drawing current students, alumni, and their children back to the Hill. Sure, if you ask current students walking across campus in mid-February about their overall experience of St. Olaf, they probably won't extol many praises. But if you catch them when it's over 45 degrees, you're sure to hear nothing but great things.

Despite the long winters, the course work, and the stress of life in general, campus is an extraordinarily happy place to be—and it shows. The zombification of students that occurs at other schools (bags under the eyes, clammy hands desperately clutching coffee tumblers, etc.) is a rarity at Olaf. Even in the dead of winter, most Oles are good-humored, friendly people who seem overjoyed to be right where they are. St. Olaf really offers students a wholesome four years, and not "wholesome" in the cheesy way. The school makes a point of nurturing the entire individual. You aren't seen as an academic machine, but as a person who needs a social and spiritual life in addition to a scholarly one. Olaf truly is a healthy place to be.

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