Monthly Archives: February 2013

Loyola University Maryland

I wouldn’t say that I was necessarily excited to visit Loyola. I had never heard of it before signing up for my Northeast trip and the acceptance rate is pretty high so I knew that it didn’t have an outstanding reputation or anything. Not that a school’s reputation is what actually matters, it’s just often the factor I can most easily judge before visiting.

Before I talk about the school, I want to say that I really liked what I saw of Baltimore. It was unlike any other city I’ve been to. I loved the way it was set on the water and it was surprisingly clean where I was. Also, they had the coolest Barnes and Noble EVER:it had super cool escalators and it was so big! I really want to go back and see the whole city. It was so pretty!

The school is really close to downtown and it’s also about 5 minutes away from Johns Hopkins. Its proximity to Hopkins is actually why I justified its small size of about 4,000. I figure that even if students from the two schools don’t mingle all the time, there will always be more kids to meet. I’d actually really like to know if the students do socialize with each other. Another cool thing about it being close to Johns Hopkins is that Loyola students can take some classes there. I don’t know the details but it seems like it would be fun to take classes at another school. I personally didn’t get to visit Johns Hopkins but I really wish I had.

Loyola is gorgeous. I was utterly shocked by the sheer beauty of the campus. It’s like a park. This is the street you drive in on:

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So the admissions office was in a beautiful, comfy house. I don’t know if it truly was a house but it’s definitely designed like one.

See! Maybe?….That darn nature always getting in the way…

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Everyone in admissions was so nice and hospitable to us! The info session was great and I liked everything I heard. They talked about how many students study abroad and that it’s a big program there, which is something I really want to do. I don’t know where I want to go, I just know I want to go!

This picture is taken from the area outside the admissions “house”:

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We went into the food/student center which is to the left of the admissions “house” in the second picture. It was very modern and well-kept. It just felt very comfortable to me, like it would be easy to live there. There weren’t too many students out and about while I was there, but it became clear that the ratio of guys to girls is definitely a bit off. Unfortunately there are more girls than boys, but it’s probably not that big of a deal. Something else I fear is the lack of diversity. I didn’t see many students so it was hard to tell, but the numbers show that it’s pretty homogeneous. This is by far the strongest negative for me. However, from what little I picked up, the atmosphere of the students felt relaxed and they seemed nice. Goodie!

Here’s the business building:

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We went inside the business building, it was beautiful and updated. We also went in some dorms. Sadly, I don’t have any pictures of the dorms but I remember liking them! The room we saw was a stereotypical double. It  definitely was not bad or gross (no mold or rotting food…pheeeeww!) The dorms that we went to had a lot of grass and paths surrounding them and it was close to the library. The library was very underwhelming. Unlike everything else we saw it was outdated and just sorta sad. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t atrocious or anything like that, just not fantastic. Also, our lovely tour guide told us that there is a really small college right next to them that shares the library. Interesting.

There were more complexes of dorms on either side of the main part of campus and they all looked nice.

Puurrtyy

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The campus seemed very bike-able to me, which I really liked. The one thing I didn’t like however was that the gym is somewhat far from main campus. I just looked at the campus map and I believe it says it’s 1.5 miles away…poop. I guess running there is your warm-up!

Here are a couple more shots of main campus:

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Here’s a field that’s located right past the student center/ food court.

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At the end I really wanted to buy a shirt or something, but I couldn’t find anything I liked. But have no fear! Remember how I said they were so nice? Well they gave us each a little, free backpack! YAY FREEBIES!!! (Fun Fact: I’m super cheap.)

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At the end of our tour they had us fill out a comment card. This is great for two reasons: 1) I love surveys, an exorbitant amount. It’s weird. I know this. Moving on. 2) I love when schools care about how they performed when it comes to prospective students. I like to know that it’s something they have concern for.

When I got in the bus afterward my friend asked me what I thought, my answer was: I want to apply there.

This was the first time this happened for me and it was really exciting! I felt sure about something and it felt so stable! Also, I feel comfortable with my chances of getting in so it was very reassuring for me to find a safety school that I actually really liked!

Today I am less sure whether or not I will apply there. This is simply because I’m not sure if it is rigorous or demanding enough. I have also heard that partying is a central focus–this is up at the top of my ‘no-no’ list, right up there with homogeneity.  I’m certain that many intelligent students go there but I really have no idea what the academic atmosphere is like; this is something I would like to learn more about.

Oh and also, they sent me the best piece of admission mail I have ever gotten… which means a lot considering how much mail all those schools send out! It was modeled after a newspaper and it was sooooo unique and interesting–I absolutely loved it!

It was at this school I learned to keep my mind open to as many schools as I can, regardless of reputation, popularity, or other worthless characteristics. Just because I have never heard of a school does not mean I should immediately disregard its possibility of working for me. This was a very important lesson for me to learn early on and I have Loyola to thank! Thank you Loyola!

 

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