In Seattle, good architecture (not as good as UM, but good), gorgeous scenery, close to mountains and right on a lake with a channel to the ocean. Hard to beat.
In Seattle, good architecture (not as good as UM, but good), gorgeous scenery, close to mountains and right on a lake with a channel to the ocean. Hard to beat.
I would say Indiana- A+ but i go there and it feels like home even tho im from South Bend.
Notre Dame- B-/C+ its just really small and not nearly as special as people make it sound.
Michigan- A i love going to games up there. Its a great atmosphere.
Pepperdine is by far the best A++++++. Words dont describe it
Indiana's campus (A+) is like the exact opposite of Purdue's (F-).
I like to "collect" college campuses. Every time I am in a new city or town, I make it a point to visit the local college campus and hang out.
I get extra points if I can get into their football stadium and on the field. This used to be a lot easier pre 9-11. You could walk on into the stadium and on the field at just about every school.
Just curious for the folks who just gave letter grades to campuses, what were your personal observations that led to those grades?
but would like to:
- Notre Dame/South Bend
- LSU/Baton Rouge (only if I can see a night football game)
- Ole Miss/Oxford
I'm with you. I love visiting college campuses and usually do try and at least mosey around if I'm somewhere and I have the chance to. Since you asked:
- Virginia: obvious bias, but I'd have given it that grade the first time I visited as a HS junior. Beautiful buildings, beautiful landscaping, beautiful landscapes, scads of history, gorgeous style throughout, easy to get around. The buildings don't overwhelm with their size. Brick sidewalks everywhere. Very light vehicle traffic. Excellent college town.
- Cornell and UGA also epitomize "college town" for me. UGA is very similar in many respects to UVA. Cornell has that amazing Gothicy architecture and beautiful natural features all around.
- Washington is incredible. It's in a big city but it feels like a college town. Again, beautiful architecture, and the mountains are fantastic. They really knew how to take advantage of their surroundings when they built that place.
- Some schools like Maryland, Penn State, and Syracuse have certain parts of campus, the older parts, that are really cool, and they get ugly as you leave those areas. The part of town that surrounds Cuse is real iffy. College Park is a suburban dump and State College has nothing there.
- Harvard is really neat inside Harvard Yard. And Cambridge is busy, busy, busy. Almost too busy, actually.
- Minnesota is big. It's got a really nice main mall area and a couple other nice parts but otherwise it's awfully urban, the buildings are just huge, and the south side of campus across the Mississippi is like the North Campus at Michigan - an architectural mistake.
- The service academies are nice but utilitarian, although I'm a huge fan of the USAFA chapel.
- Boston College would be graded higher if it were bigger. It's surprisingly small. Same for the Citadel, minus the surprise. The Citadel is kind of your stereotypical old military academy, which I like.
Schools I want to see, in no real order:
- Notre Dame
- Virginia Tech (blasphemy, but all the buildings are the same style, very military-academy looking, and it actually looks like it'd be really neat.)
- Missouri. (The six columns left over from the burned-down building are cool.)
- Ohio University. My mom took my little brother on a college visit and says it's a lot like UVA.
- Miami (NTM.) Been there once, in the dark. Looked nice and people always have nice things to say.
- North Carolina
- Iowa State
Ever watch the games at the alumni bar?
Tried it once. Only about 4 people were there and haven't been back. Now I watch from home in St. Charles.
EMU-C-....I've been commuting there for four years, and yes Ypsi is a shit hole but due to sheer proximity to Ann Arbor some of that charm rubs off.
UCF-B...only saw it at night time, but does have some nice buildings and cool people/nightlife
SVSU-D....took a visit to saginaw with my parents, tiny campus with tiny dorms that had several buildings under constructions
UIC-B...flew threw it and it looked pretty nice
...parents and extended family are renting a place in Palm Springs next week...so looks like I'm missing out on the chance to see UCLA and USC
Michigan State, B
Penn State, B-
Florida State, B+
Miami (FL), B-
Notre Dame, B-
To be honest, it's hard to remove my experience on the respective campus when basing my ratings. Also, I didn't get much further than the tailgating lots and football stadiums of some of these.
Miami (OH) B+
Univ Phoenix A+
UCSB: A+, I like UCSB the most of the SoCal campuses. I don't understand how anyone graduates from that place. I would spend all my time at the beach.
Pepperdine: A-, I worked across the street from Pepperdine for 9 years. Having a window view of the ocean ain't bad. But, there's no campus there. There's really no place to hang out except for a small outdoor mall type place. I did see Nikki Sixx there.
UCLA: B, there are some nice spots, but really it's just too crowded for my tastes.
USC: C, imagine going to school at the University of Detroit. It's sort of like that. Much too urban for me.
CalTech: A-, It's alright, but Pasadena gets way too hot for me.
UC Irvine: B+/A-, I think they filmed one of the Planet of the Apes movies there, so it gets extra points for that.
Georgia Tech: C, same as USC
Harvard: B+, I like the old buildings and historic charm of the surrounding area.
MIT: C-, I know, it's just down the street but you can tell it was built much later than Harvard and has a real cold, impersonal feel to it. I'm an engineer, but I didn't feel like I was going to Mecca when I visited MIT.
Nebraska: F, just wanted to take a potshot at them before they fully join the B1G. Seriously, we drove past the stadium on a cross-country trip and it's just blah.
Not to mention that it's in the middle of Oklahoma...
Crap, meant to comment to the guy who wrote about Oklahoma State.
prettiest "campus" and best "setting." Pepperdine's "setting" is ridiculous. The only thing it's missing are the Beach Boys singing on the beach 300 yards away. I'd argue UC-Santa Barbara is even better (parts of campus are literally ON the beach). Neither, however, has a campus, buildings, or architecture that exactly wow you.
The most underrated / unknown might be the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken. Unbelievable views of Manhattan--you almost feel like you can touch the Empire State Building.
on U dub, UNC and Rollins College.
Attended 2 of the 3.
But all pale in comparison to A2.
MSU: B to B-
Oklahoma: C. It's not really a part of the surrounding town- which isn't much of a college town anyway- and the stadium is just plopped in the middle of campus. And there's no visitor parking to speak of.
Northwestern: B because of its location on the lake.
Central Michigan: D
Central Oklahoma (grad student there): C, looks exactly like Central Michigan
Ohio State: F times infinity
Bowling Green: C to D
Eastern Michigan: C
Western Michigan: B to C
Michigan Tech: B, small campus and gorgeous yet remote location
Northern Illinois: C+
Indiana State: D to E because it's in Terra Haute, Indiana
Notre Dame: Strong B
Colorado: A to B, like someone said, like Michigan only with mountains
Albion College: C, appealing quaint small college feel but the town smells funny
North Texas: Okay, i've never visted it, but I've driven past it and every time I do, I point out that they have a more-than-epically-horrible football team.
Wow, the first two grades to come in for A&M were a B+ and a B-. I was all set to give it a C-, and figured I'd still get accused of shilling for my employer. We really have no natural beauty to speak of, and a distinct lack of greenspace (despite being a huge campus). Most of the pre-WWII buildings are attractive, but kind of quirky. The buildings that were constructed from the 50's to the 80's could probably be swapped with those of a Soviet campus somewhere and no one would notice. We are undergoing a miniature building boom at the moment, and most of those are large, interesting looking buildings. Definitely an improvement on the previous standard.
Some other campuses I've visited while down here:
Texas - B-
Some attractive buildings, but very closely packed together. Also, whenever I've been there, it's felt sort of run-down and a little trashy.
Rice - B+
Very quiet for an urban campus. Was there on a weekend, and honestly it was too quiet. Fairly pretty though.
Houston - D+
Went to a Houston Dynamo game last year (they play on campus) and UH is in a rough part of town. They have a couple of new buildings that look nice, but I was unimpressed overall.
UT-Dallas - F
Just a travesty. It's an odd mix of modular classrooms and unbelievably ugly buildings.
UM - B+
Stanford - A
Indiana - B+
Notre Dame - B
UCLA - B
USC - C
MSU - C+
Minnesota - C
ASU - B-
UM - A = not just the campus, but the surrounding areas are great for running/active lifestyle.
MSU - B = they'll talk it up as a great campus even though it isn't, but it does have some aesthetic charm. Plus, the river through campus is pretty nice. E.L., though, is about as generically ugly as you can imagine.
Harvard - A- = Obviously a great school but is very cramped. Cambridge is a very cool town and Boston obviously rocks, so they benefit from the proximity a bit.
MIT - A- = See Harvard above, but a little more space. The infinite corridor does mess with you.
BC - B+ = Very cool little campus considering about 3/4 is on a hill. Near Boston helps.
UWashington - A = Just an awesome campus and the views are astounding. Stadium layout may be the prettiest in the country.
OSU - C = Just meh. Far worse than MSU in terms of layout, and there are areas around the campus that would scare the sneer off of Dantonio's face.
Columbia U - B+ = Currently a student, so maybe a bit bias. Campus itself is VERY cramped, but you can get anywhere in the city via the trains and Morningside Heights has some charm.
ND - B- = Just nothing special. The campus itself is beautiful in the fall, but there is nothing else there to do. Plus, they played Rudy in their bookstore on a loop, so they lose points for that.
Fordham U - A-= A very cool little campus, especially given that it is smack-dab in a not-great part of the Bronx.
NYU - C = You only know it exists because of the banner that hang from windows. A great location, but very meh buildings.
UChicago - B- = admittedly only there once at night, but seemed quaint. Definitely not a place you want to be alone at night, but okay right near the school.
GVSU - B = Seemed nice. Rolling hills and all. Kind of like State, but less Sparty-fueled idiocy.
Using B as my average or a meh... because... well, because its my opinion and I can.
First rating is on campus alone. Second on surroundings (town/city and beyond).
UM - A-/A (lived there, attended)
UVA - A-/A (live there now). Campus is beautiful and historic. Landscaping is a discredit to the University. Charlottesville is amazing, including the natural beauty surrounding the town.
MSU - B+/C (lived there, attended). Beautiful landscaping. Architecture is unimpressive. E.Lansing... well, lets just say I'm glad I don't live there any longer!
ND - B+/C-
NW - B+/A (lived there). Evanston and access to Chicago are great!
UNC - A/B Chapel Hill is a pretty neat place, just not much to it
Duke - A+/D Durham = terrible; Campus is absolutely beautiful
IU - A/B
UI - B/B+
Purdue - B+/C- Was surprised, after hearing about how horrible Purdue was for years, at how nice the campus is
VMI - B/B+ Lexington is a cool little town
USMA - A-/C- West Point is an impressive place to visit
USAFA - B-/B Architecture is meh, but the surroundings are beautiful. The Springs is urban spraul meh
UW - B-/A
NCA&T - B-/D
N.Ill - C+/C+
SIU - B/C
W&M - A-/B+
JMU - C+/B-
Loyola (downtown Chicago) - B+/A Great location! Lots of fun to be had
Penn State: C
Notre Dame: C+
San Diego State University: A
UC San Diego (A long time ago): C+/B-
NMU: C- (Everything about Marquette except campus is great.)
CU Boulder: A+
UF - B+
ASU - C
FLAGLER - B+ (cool location)
DEPAUL - B-
ALMA - F
VANDERBILT - D+
MSU - B
U of M - A-
TOLEDO - C+
UofM - A. The feeling was confirmed this week when I took my son up for a visit and we toured the campus. If you went there, you have an emotional attachment to the university that I can only assume other people get when they visit their alma mater. Only theirs sucks compared to ours.
MSC - C. It's like one giant Dollar Tree
Notre Dame - B -love the quad and the stadium. The dorms are hot and small (spent time there at a football camp in the summer of 83). Football Saturdays are pretty electric. The grotto is nice too.
Wayne State - D. Yikes
UCLA - A. I'm originally from SoCal so I have a biased opinion.
USC - C. If you attend a school where kids on the football practice field get hit by a stray bullet, your school sucks.
Pepperdine - A. When you can sit on the front lawn of your school and peer out over the Pacific Ocean, your school doesn't suck.
Oregon State B- Of course it rained while we watched Oregon State beat UCLA back in 89. The students tore down the goal posts and carried them up and out of the stadium, right through campus. That was pretty cool. The buildings had an Ivy League-ish appeal to them.
Stanford A - I like the California architecture with the red tile roofs and stucco siding.
Cal Berkeley B I thought some of the buildings reminded me of Angell Hall and other Michigan buildings. But...you know how sometimes a smell or aroma immediately reminds you of a specific time or place. Well Cal Berkeley falls into that catergory for me, and not in a good way.
Ohio State C cuz it's in Ohio and it blows......and it's in a capital city which generally screams "dump."
Ohio B - I didn't spend any time on campus but we drove past it on our way to North Carolina last year and I thought it was situated in a very picturesque setting in a valley in one of the few hilly regions of Ohio. Maybe the sun was hit it just right...I don't know.
Michigan: A. The only thing holding it back from an A+ is the disconnect between Central and North Campus. Fantastic place to go to school
MSU: B- Looks pretty but is too spread out and really only has one spot to go out thats worth anything. Also some of the dorms are down right scary
PSU B I really liked the campus. Beautiful new campus center and its all built up on one hill area. A lot of housing off of one half while the athletic campus is on the other side. Not a great city but still a lot of fun to visit.
OSU D- Fuck getting full beers thrown at you off balconies as you walk to a game. And apparently you're gay for drinking Sam Adams instead of Natty Light... good times.
Purdue B- Okay campus but nothing to do there and in the middle of nowhere
Fordham B+ Surprisingly nice campus in the Bronx and their Manhattan Campus is small but in a great area right by Lincoln Center and Central Park
NYU C There is no campus but just being in that part of NYC is a lot of fun
Columbia B+ Manages to put a nice campus in a not so nice area. Just a subway ride away from anything.
Wisco B. I really wasn't that impressed with the campus parts that I saw but it was definitely a fun time.
Iowa- C+ Just there for a football game but I didn't like it at all. Kinda trashy
ND- B Beautiful campus with nice buildings and a great spot to walk around but South Bend is just awful as a city.
Harvard B+ Nice, small, pretty campus with good architecture and everything self-contained.
MIT B+ Very weird looking campus but I like it. A lot of strange history that is intriguing to me.
George Mason C+ Not a very nice looking campus. Granted I visited after the DC blizzard last year but its far out from really anything.
UCLA: A- slightly cramped, but being able to wear shorts and a t-shirt in January is awesome. Much more hilly than I expected
Illinois: B+, love greek row and their bar scene. They also have white castle inside their stadium
Wisco: B+, not the biggest fan of urban campuses, but Madison is a pretty fun place
Iowa: B, Girls were surprisingly good looking
Purdue: C, fairly average. Enjoyed the trains giving tours while I was there
Michigan State: C-, too spread out.
Northwestern: C-, based mostly on their athletic facilities.
Arkansas: D-, built into the side of a huge hill. Only one work out facility for the entire campus. Architecture is vomit inducing. Residence halls look like they were built in the 70's. The entire campus also smells like its deep fried.
OSU: Flush twice, its a long way to Colombus
Michigan - A
UChicago - A- (area is too dangerous)
UC Boulder - B (town is cool but campus is bland)
Colorado State - B (nice views)
Air Force - B+
Tulane/Loyola New Orleans - B+ (Mardi Gras floats pass down your street)
LSU - C+ (I really hated Baton Rouge and that campus)
NYU - NA (I couldnt really tell what their campus was my friend just pointed to some buildings that looked like all the other buildings in Manhatten.
90 % of Princeton looks exactly like the Law Quad. Agree with some others UC- Santa Barbara holds classes on the beach -how do you get anything done there?
Stanford - A
Berkeley - B+
San Jose State - C
UCLA - B
USC - C+
CMU - B-
EMU - C
WMU - C
MSU - B -
Northwestern - B
Indiana - B
Penn State - B-
Minnesota - A-
Wisconsin - A-
Marquette - B
Cincinnati - B
Xavier - B-
BGSU - C
Cleveland State - C
Case Western - C+
Harvard - A-
MIT - B+
Providence - B+
Brown - B+
Texas - B
Stetson - B
Depaul - C
Loyola (Chicago) - B-
Maryland Eastern Shore - B-
1. Cornell, as long as you're not there under five feet of snow (even then it's beautiful)
2. SDSU and USD in San Diego: The latter has superb architecture and a view of the Pacific that's the equal of Pepperdine (another great spot)
3. UNC and Duke: Both really beautiful settings, especially Duke, which is like living in part forest/part botanical gardens. Plus the climate has long high points during the school year. Chapel Hill is a good surrounding environment for the university (Durham not so much).
4. Among the Big Ten/Eleven/Twelve etc., Madison is my choice for best, with Michigan and Indiana following, then Happy Valley and Northwestern.
There are also some small schools (e.g. Bowdoin in Maine, the Naval Academy and St. John's in Annapolis) that are really picturesque.
Notre Dame A- (so many trees hard to appreciate the architecture)
University of Chicago A
Michigan B++ (love it but architecture too hodge podge, some beautiful places though)
Virginia B (most over-rated)
William and Mary A+
Georgia Tech B-
Washington (St Louis) C-
My daughter attended Alabama. While Tuscaloosa won't win any beauty contests, the campus is absolutely beautiful.
For schools where I've taken classes or visited:
One Seeds: Princeton, Harvard, USMA-West Point, Michigan
Two Seeds: McGill, Georgetown, Emory, Boston College
Three Seeds: Fordham, U Mass-Amherst, MIT, Syracuse
Four Seeds: Columbia, Yale, Rutgers-New Brunswick, Villanova
Five Seeds: Tufts, Boston University, American University, The Citadel
Six Seeds: Holy Cross, Eastern Michigan, Florida Atlantic-Boca Raton, Northeastern
Seven Seeds: NYU, George Washington, SUNY-Albany, SUNY-New Paltz
Eight Seeds: RPI (Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute), Fairleigh Dickinson-Teaneck, Ramapo College (NJ), Temple
Tough call giving USMA-West Point the edge over Michigan, but Grant and Eisenhower get the nod over Gerald Ford, even while the speech that gave us the Peace Corps trumps the speech that gave us expansion of the war in Afghanistan.
Emory may rated too high, but its soccer pitch and all that Diet Coke gets it a two seed. In the Jesuit class, BC over Fordham for the two seed, only because there’s a D-1 hockey arena there, but they’re somewhat interchangeable (for proof see the film "Solitary Man" with Michael Douglas and trade the Flutie Aura for the Lombardi Aura). MIT over Columbia because they don’t have a Head of the Hudson Regatta, and the Head of the Charles Regatta remains a nice event -- and there's that Facebook thing.
Despite being snow-covered for most of the regular school year, Syracuse gets a three seed for having the nation’s largest on-campus, indoor football stadium where crowds for basketball games occasionally outdraw crowds for football and the Newhouse School’s facilities for the nation’s future broadcasters. Boston University has less grass than your average Phish concert, but gets a five seed among the city schools for being within walking distance of Fenway Park, having great views of the Head of the Charles, a performance center that's almost as good as Hill Auditorium and its TWO on-campus hockey arenas, including the one where Mike Eruzione, Jim Craig, Jack O’Callahan and Dave Silk played (see the film "Miracle".)
Northeastern gets a 6 seed over NYU and George Washington among the city schools, only because its renovated hockey arena is where the Celtics and Bruins once played – and it’s within walking distance of Fenway Park. FDU’s basketball gym (in Hackensack, NJ – the town saved by Superman in the first Christopher Reeve film) is where LeBron James had his coming-out party for college recruiters, NBA scouts and an ESPN film crew at the abcd Baketball Camp after his sophomore year of high school. If you're
I've been to a few campuses, mostly in the East. Rutgers was alright. MD I've been to several times. Penn State was pretty cool and I got to drive by Beaver Stadium, that place is huge.
Solely based on propoganda and PAC-10 school commercials during games, many of those campuses are pretty nice.