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Reviews 2389 total reviews with an average rating of 3.6

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2 College Sophomore

Greek Life: Frats are kinda a big deal. You don't have to join one though.

3 College Sophomore

Party Scene: Partying can happen all the time.

3 College Sophomore

Administration: I think they do a standard job of administrating.

3 College Sophomore

Scholarships: It's difficult to find scholarships.

3 College Sophomore

Campus Food: The food is pretty standard dining hall food.

3 College Sophomore

Campus Housing: The U of Iowa is a great place to go to school. But the campus is very strung out.

4 College Junior

Scholarships: Every year I have applied for financial aid and have had no problems with the process

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: housing closest to campus is certainly more pricey- i'm paying about 650/month next year- but worth it. great location and great quality.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Party Scene: theres so many options for party-ers, ranging from football games to thursday nights out on the town. house parties are popular for freshman and sophmores.

5 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: many chains like buffalo wild wings, chipotle, panchers, jimmy johns ect. but also there is mondos, cactus, and shorts where many college students love to go and sit and eat. many of the bars also have great menus, the summit, dcs.

3 College Junior

Administration: I would say that this campus is very strict with underage drinking, specifically at the bars downtown. If you are underage you arent allowed to be in bars 1 minute past 10 pm. Also, parking is very strict and you will get parking tickets if you leave car for even five minutes.

5 College Junior

Campus Food: I love the food on campus. One place that you can use a food swipe at that many people dont know about is the River Room. it's fresh food that you see the workers make right in front of you, located in the IMU and then you can bring it to a table and continue studying.

5 College Junior

Campus Housing: I loved living on campus in the dorms freshman year. I lived in slater which is on the west side, across the river. People who have never lived over there say its a sh***y location, but everyone who did loved it and we all became one big family. its a little farther, but the food is better in this cafeteria, its closer to the rec center and there are buses that run constantly and pick you up right outside of slater dorm. Overall, living on campus freshman year was the best decision i made.

3 Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Housing: I love my apartment! It is very cheap and affordable and way cheaper than dorms, but with every pro, comes a con. I live about half a mile from campus, in a run down apartment, which costs me about $1055 with all utilities, divided up by 3 people and better internet, coming to a total cost of $375 per person. Having this option is nice, but I wish I had moved into an apartment sooner. But not all is great with off-campus housing. When something breaks or is wrong, my landlords take their time to take care of the issue. I had a leak in my bathroom ceiling for a month before they found out that a pipe had busted and needed to be replaced- which lead to 2 weeks of maintenance to fix. They also overcharge if they think it was trivial and that we, the tenants could do ourselves. For people newly introduced to the apartment scene, it seems rather insulting to do this. On top of that, they require co-signers for anyone who has not rented before and they do a credit check on them. Parking spaces are another $310 per year, and paid up front, but there is on street parking that alternates everyday, except Sundays. With all that said, it's still way better than other places. I like my off-campus housing and there is even a site to look up potential roommates and/or places to live- way better than the on-campus housing matching.

2 Recent Alumnus

Party Scene: To be honest, I don't really party and that is why I call it bad. If you are up for partying, it seems that parties and bars are booming starting on Thursdays and go through Sunday morning. During finals and prior to the semester starting, the party scene picks up more than usual. People go drinking and partying after all their finals are over. The busiest times to go to the bars are the weekend prior to classes starting, the week of finals, and the weekend after finals. Sometimes breaks and holidays offer additional business for these bars and the party scene, but not always.

3 Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Dining: The off-campus dining isn't bad, but could use some work. Mainly I hear people complaining about not having a Burger King closer to campus or that we need a Denny's in town, but I could care less. I usually cook my own food, but sometimes the food options are nice. There are plenty of places that offer different food types from all over the world. This area is particularly famous for having plenty of places that serve Asian cuisine, but don't expect it to be very cheap every time. The most famous place off-campus is located in the Old Capitol Mall and it is called Seoul Grill, which serves Korean food. It is really popular among both Asian and non-Asian students, but usually is only open around lunchtime and closes when school is not in session. The dining of Iowa City is always changing and food establishments come and go.

4 Recent Alumnus

Administration: I'm not too particular with this because I've never ran into the police other than a suspicion of drug use in my dorm, which they found nothing and to this day do not know who may have done any drugs in my dorm (an off-campus dorm- apartment style dorm). I have no qualms with the strictness of drugs, alcohol or the like, but the parking is horrible in the city. Parking usually in lots, in garages, and on the street. On the street is the worst for being strict. Meters are everywhere and have an hour or 2 limit. They allow drivers to pay via coins or by card. $0.25 per ten minutes and if the limit is reached, you get a ticket. They have employees of the city that will mark your tires and come back about an hour or so later and if you have a marked tire, you will get a ticket. It is also nearly impossible to find a spot because there are not enough parking spots in the near vicinity to allocate all students that have vehicles. This is why I never park on campus until after 6pm and before 2am.

2 Recent Alumnus

Scholarships: First off, I'm a first generation college student so the entire process was new to me. I had to take control of it right from the beginning because my parents and the rest of my family had no idea how it worked. I didn't even know the existence of financial aid until I was 23 years old. While I would love to say that I always got the right amount of aid, I feel that with the rising costs of college and the dorm trap placed on major universities, this one included, there should be some leeway. Furthermore, some programs get no additional money. If a student receives their first Bachelor's degree and then they want a certificate, it can take up to 3 additional years, depending on the certificate. They are still considered an undergraduate for all financial aid purposes and even in the libraries, but are treated like they have graduated for federal grants, a bad catch 22. This wouldn't bother me that much if the financial aid office at this university would inform students when they are reaching their limits of financial aid and treat each student as a person and not some crook. I would walk into the financial aid office and the secretary would always interrogate me before I could speak to a financial aid counselor for a more in depth discussion of my issues and concerns pertaining to my individual financial aid. My two visits were particularly problematic because I was told that I would not get aid, then told I would for the following 3 semesters because I was a special case, only to have it taken away a semester later and being conveyed as misinformation. I was left to pick up the pieces to pay for my final year of my certificate program.

3 Recent Alumnus

Campus Food: I scoff at this. I didn't mind the campus food mainly because it was way better than the food at my parents' house. Plus, getting access to way healthier food in abundance is nice. Sad, but true in my particular instance. I live off-campus now and miss the campus food, but it is quite expensive, considering it costs a student about $8 per meal on a meal plan and $10 per meal without the meal plan. I can eat for a month off of the cost of 10 meals and the lack of availability to take out/leave with leftovers, leaves me to believe that the dining could be way better.

2 Recent Alumnus

Campus Housing: While the school at first glance looks nice for incoming students, but taking a walk around and actually checking for this type of stuff makes it worth it. I'm not too particular with messiness, but a lot of the buildings need work and/or completely replaced. The college does not want to do so because of historical value. Because of this, money is spent to restore old buildings and not take into consideration the possibility to build a better one. There are better options when considering housing, but not by much. I have successfully found an off-campus apartment that costs about $1025 + electric, which brings it to $1055 on average. I wanted better internet, so I paid an additional $65 for 100mbps, which is more than 5 times the campus's speed. Divided up by my roommates, it comes out to about $375 each per month. If low quality apartments are both cheaper and better, why live on campus other than having everything right there? I lived in dorms for 3.5 years and was sadly disappointed in the roommate matching and selection. There needs to be a better system and I believe it all starts with the college's administration.

4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Housing: Cheaper to live in dorms, however, apartments are great

4 College Freshman

Party Scene: Always something to do on the weekends

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: Don't really eat off campus often to know

3 College Freshman

Scholarships: I have applied for scholarships but haven't gotten any. I really need also since I am paying out of state

3 College Freshman

Campus Food: The food is average at best

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Overall ExperienceWhat's this?

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Most students who come to the University of Iowa are happy with what they’ve found, and few are willing to trade their experiences for anything else. With a combination of solid academics and a college town atmosphere that caters to the social scene, UI students find themselves in a well-balanced environment. Iowa isn’t an Ivy League school, but it does provide a strong education with a focus on career choices. Iowa is not a party school, but its students know how to relax and have fun while keeping up with their workload.

Since it is such a large institution, UI can seem faceless and intimidating at first, but this quickly dissolves as the tight-knit social scene among college students presents itself. With a huge variety of clubs, sports, and other activities on and around campus, plus Iowa City’s bars and downtown area, there are as many ways to meet people and make friends as there are people to meet. Students who have the worst experience at Iowa—or at college in general—are the ones who don’t become involved with things that are going on around them. While Iowa City might not be somewhere you decide to stay for the rest of your life, it can be the ideal atmosphere for getting a college education and learning to live on your own. The experience of the University of Iowa is largely what each student makes of it. There is plenty to learn and take advantage of at UI, both in and out of the classroom.

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