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Reviews 828 total reviews with an average rating of 3.7

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3 College Sophomore

Campus Food: Cafeteria Food – Dining Hall food is awful. There are times when it can be bearable, but I actually lost weight... 10 pounds, in fact. Granted, I was a special case and had other things going on, but I'm far from being the only one who disliked the food. Whatever you do, stay FAR AWAY from Commons. Miss Anita at the front is really sweet, but unfortunately I can't eat her for dinner, making the venture quite worthless. Hillel is good for the extra $2, and Kings Court is small and thus rather underrated. Hill is the best dining hall overall (though not saying much), and Hill Brunch cannot be missed. I do actually get excited for the chocolate chip pancakes. Thankfully, there are Dining Dollars to use at Houston Hall, ABP, and Subway, for reasonable prices. And when all else fails... plenty of restaurants at which to eat/get delivery.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Sophomore

Local Area: Philly Is the Perfect Location – I knew I had to come to school in a big city because I was sick of the lethargy of suburbia. I came to Philly and it was the *perfect* choice. West Philadelphia is a great community, and for all the whispering about its safety, I feel perfectly fine... there are of course just some places that you don't go at night, especially alone. University City is such a nice area and there's a lot to do just in walking distance that it's easy to forget that the city is larger. But it is... between Center City's fun nightlife, parks, and eclectic restaurants/shopping; the beautiful history in Old City, and the charming neighborhoods in South Philly (not gonna lie, North Philly scares me)... this city has been perfect for me. The reason I pin it as the perfect city is that for cheap I can travel by bus to New York or DC and be there within 2 or 3 hours, respectively (with the train, even less time). Philly's a great city, but it's also a hub for the 2 greatest cities on the Northeast coast.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Academics: The Libraries Rock – Penn Libraries aren't as luxurious as HYP's, but there's a wide range from which to choose depending on your study habits. You can study all night if you so desire, even if the surroundings are a bit austere. But there are also little carrels in Van Pelt (the main library) you can use on the upper floors where it is silent... and comfy couches on the lower floors with a bit of a higher noise level (but not too much). Fisher is absolutely gorgeous: the most beautiful building I have ever seen at Penn, and great to study in (just don't get caught coughing, sneezing, or breathing too loudly)

4 College Sophomore

Transportation: Everyone Complains About SEPTA, but It's Great – While it may be true that one can sniff the stench of urine on SEPTA, it's quite cleaner than some NYC transit and quite efficient. You can get essentially anywhere you need using public transportation, and each way is only $2 - less if you buy tokens in a pack. There are several stops around campus for local transit. Also, buses like Chinatown, Bolt, and Megabus can take you to NYC, DC, Boston, Pittsburgh, etc, for cheap. There is never any need for a car, especially because parking can be a costly nuisance in the city. Still, some kids do have them, particularly the older ones who drive home regularly.

4 College Sophomore

Party Scene: Be 21+ or You're on-Campus Forever – I have a great time going out at Penn, be it on campus or off. Thursday and Saturday nights tend to be the best, but Fridays can be really good downtown. Some of the frats are known for their parties, but if the atmosphere of natty light, basements, and jungle juice starts to get old, there are plenty of bars around campus that are great both for Happy Hour and the night. Of course, Center City is always fun and it's even in walking distance, although with SEPTA or a cab you can be in all the hotspots for cheap. And there's a lot to do in Philly at night.

4 College Sophomore

Academics: There Are Truly Brilliant Professors Here – I have taken classes with the former head of the US Civil Rights commission, a renowned constitutional scholar, an ex-professional dancer... all sorts of creative, interesting, very accomplished, and very smart people. They are especially plentiful at an institution like this, so it's merely up to us as students to seek them out.

4 College Freshman

Campus Food: It's Ok – It's fine. The dining halls are pretty good - better than most schools. There are food-trucks out on Spruce street which are really good. There are a lot of great restaurants around campus. Reading terminal market isn't too far, if you take the trolley.

4 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Excellent. Has escorts at night for security. HUP is obviously one of the best hospitals. There are safety issues outside of campus though.

5 College Freshman

Academics: Professors are extremely approachable and easy to talk to. It is very easy to get a research internship around here. There are also several excellent interdisciplinary programs that make Penn unique - the market for people who specialize only in one pure field is saturated. Today's industries, especially in technology, demand for employees and entrepreneurs who have an interdisciplinary background. Penn prepares you for that.

5 College Sophomore

Academics: Most Extensive and Excellent Network Opportunities – There are just so many great opportunities at Wharton.

3 Recent Alumnus

Academics: Limited by Broadness of Scope – My program (Liberal Arts) had students from a lot of varying backgrounds and levels of scholarship, and I felt the time it took to get everyone on the same page often meant there was less time to go in depth into the material. However, the classes I had with less students, or with more an esoteric interest base to start with, were excellent. I would assume students studying in more focused programs experienced more rigorous academics.

3 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: Drinking is very visible on campus, and the Penn Police don't really care about anyone drinking, as long as no one is out of control or being dangerous.

2 College Sophomore

Diversity: At Penn, there is a lot of diversity in race and hometown, but very little diversity in economic status. Obviously they are outliers, but for the most part, most people fit the Penn stereotype.

4 College Student

Transportation: You're Well-Served – Philly, as a huge and major American city, is pretty comfortable concerning public transportation. Moreover, security and transportation services for students at Penn are extremely convinient.

3 College Student

Administration: Don't Worry Too Much – College is, after a lot of hard-working, time for fun and social life. If you like drinking, do it, but don't make it crystal clear for everyone that you're often drunk. It's just a matter of being discrete and moderate. Have fun in way that you'll feel good and won't bother anyone. That's the best advice not only if you're going to Penn, but anywhere else.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Student

Off-Campus Housing: Living on campus is definetely the best option at Penn, specially because of safety matters. Although you'll be able to count on some Penn security help off-campus, the campus is likely to be place where you can feel 100% safe at Philly. Moreover, the social advantage of living on campus in very unique and you wouldn't like to miss the chance of increasing the likelihood of meeting amazing people everyday during 4 years.

4 College Student

Scholarships: Give Me the Money – Excellent experience because their technology is quite up to date.
Only allow the students to come into the office when the letter of their last name is being served.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Student

Parking: Please, Leave a Space – Parking is horrible but remember, we are across the street from the University of Penn Hospital and this makes for difficult parking.Permit cost are outrageous costing 250.00 a month. Ticketing and fines in this area can range from 50.00-350.00 if your car is towed. Forget about parking spaces, they literally do not exist. No one in their right mind will drive or try to park in this area. Philly car share is available to students, and they are quite accessible for students.

5 College Student

Greek Life: Social Life With the Greeks – Greek life is quite enormous on Penn's campus, but it does not affect the social life on campus because there are many other activities in which students participate. Greek students are viewed as, groups that want to enjoy life on and off campus. There is plenty of Greek housing available in the University City area. Most of the Greek houses are beautiful four bedroom stone houses, which are close to campus

4 College Freshman

Campus Quality: Very Unique Majors, and Very Bright Students – Majors like Biological Basis of Behavior, Sealth and Societies, the Vagelos program and the Huntsman program are very unique to Penn and great opportunities. The students are incredibly smart and engaged.

4 College Freshman

Athletics: Sports Are Fun but Not Central – There is a good amount of support for sports teams, and there are lots of great traditions.

3 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Housing Is Not Guaranteed – Many students are unable to get on campus housing, and need to go off campus. Often these houses are very nice, but having a whole year lease is a pain.

5 Recent Alumnus

Overall Experience: Best 4 Years Ever! I had a fabulous time at UPenn! I was very happy with the academics, research opportunities, extra-curricular activities, and student life in general. The administration really listens to students and responds to their wants and needs. I was able to find my niche in the performing arts community (theater and dance), but felt at home in professional student groups and just hanging out around campus. I'd choose it again in a heartbeat!

2 people found this useful Report
3 Recent Alumnus

Guys & Girls: Guys Look Better Than Girls – On average, just walking around campus, you'll notice that guys tend to be better looking than girls, but there's still plenty to look forward to. There's a wide variety of backgrounds and interests, so you'll be able to find someone you'd like to date whether you're artsy, sporty, geeky, or all about high-rollin'.

4 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Local Area: Supermanageable City – Philadelphia has all the benefits of a big city in a manageable size. The areas of University City, Center City, and Old City are all very walkable, with easy subway and bus access. The city offers great restaurants, including a bounty of BYOBs, as well as great cultural activities at places like the Kimmel Center and Theater District. For history buffs, Philadelphia has few cities that compare, with many "firsts" of the U.S. and of course, the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall. It would be nice if it was easier to get to areas like South Philly, which offer a great neighborhood vibe and different aspect of the city culture.


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Outside of the Quad
Outside of the Quad
Outside of the Quad Outside of the Quad So pretty!
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Overall ExperienceWhat's this?

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Students seem to be extremely content and do not regret their decision to come to Penn, even though the school definitely has a pre-professional feel. Despite this fact, it is extremely common to find yourself in an intellectual conversation, and the students really do work hard, while remembering that college is about fun as well. The opportunities provided at Penn are astounding; in fact there is almost too much to do. Most students base the reasons for their happiness around the people, the academics, the urban environment, and the endless opportunities. People who enjoy their experience at Penn tend to appreciate city life, socializing, and a busy schedule. Usually, students do not hesitate to endorse Penn, and many feel that everyone should love the school as much as they do.

Many adults call their years as an undergraduate the best four years of their lives. Penn students certainly can not make that prediction so soon, but most would agree that their time at Penn has been the best years of their life so far. Obviously, Penn is not the school for everyone, but the student body consists of interesting, intelligent, and well-rounded people, which creates a stimulating and fun environment for most. If you come to Penn, I can almost guarantee that you will meet fascinating people, find something to be passionate about, and enjoy the benefits of living in a vibrant city. You can also feel confident that an education from Penn will prepare you for what lies beyond your undergraduate years. The Penn Overall Experience is defined by the combination of the rich history and academic rigor of an Ivy League school and the school spirit and propensity for socializing of many other schools. This "work hard, play hard" mentality is what many Quakers, and prospective Quakers, find so appealing.

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

Applicant Status At University of Pennsylvania

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