4.5 out of 5 Stars
Competitive college with a solid reputation- fantastic alumni connections for career placement. Nice campusDowners
Isolated (albeit 'quaint') college town- ie, in the middle of nowhere. The only thing going on is whatevers happening on campus- Can be a bit stifling by the fourth year. Not as much freedom and independence as would be found in a large university (ie, practically no option to live off-campus, mandatory class attendance...)Comments
If you find the prospect of being 'out on your own' daunting, this is a fairly small university with great educational resources and a good reputation that can offer a lot of individual attention and support. On the flip side, the degree to which the University is involved in your life can feel like another four years of high school (I went to college from a boarding prep school)Would You Recommend
Bucknell uses the Common App and is very selective. They also use supplementary essays and do not conduct interviews.Level
There is a core curriculum students must complete in addition to their individual major requirements. These core classes involve taking classes from each division of the College of Arts and Sciences (humanities, natural science, social science) in addition to different thematic courses. While students are required to take certain types of classes, there are a number of classes that fulfill each requirement, so students rarely have identical classes to fulfill the requirements.
Class sizes vary between about 35 to 7 depending on the course. As students get farther into their major, classes tend to be smaller. Professors are very accessible and genuinely want to see their students succeed. I have found professors are happy to meet with students during and out of office hours. Because of Bucknell's location, we often see our professors in the small town, out of classroom setting and professors get involved in different events on campus. Research opportunities are available across majors and interests. I have found that by approaching professors with a similar interest, students are able to find research opportunities.
Rather than being competitive, students are Bucknell are cooperative and work together. Group projects are common across majors and professors encourage students to work cooperatively rather than against one another. Grading differs between professors, but the syllabus at the beginning of the semester for each class clearly outlines what the professors expect from students and how their individual grading system works. Professors are also available to talk to if there is confusion about grades.
The study abroad opportunities are incredible! There are programs for full semesters, a couple weeks in the summer, to go with Bucknell professors and students, to travel on your own, etc. The study abroad office has approved over 100 programs for students to choose from. With the requirements of different majors, so students find it more difficult to study abroad, but the study abroad office will work with individual students to work out how the student can study abroad. My study abroad experience was the one of the most amazing experiences of my college career!
Bucknell can be as challenging as students want it to be. There are definitely classes that are known to be easier as other, but there are also more challenging courses that fill up quickly. Students get out of classes what they put into classesQuality of Life
Bucknell has a beautiful campus in all seasons. The town of Lewisburg has a small town charm that is welcoming and easily accessible from campus. The area and campus are both very safe and Public Safety on campus is there for the benefit of the students- more interested in seeing we are safe.
There are a variety of housing options on campus and about 90% of students will live on campus all 4 years. Some dorms are better than others, but they are also a lot newer. There tend to be trends in where students live from year to year (e.g. sophomores in the Mods, juniors in Roberts or Greek housing, and seniors in the Gateways).
Overall, students seem to be pretty happy and find ways to get involved on campus.Admissions
Bucknell uses the Common Application, but also has its own supplemental application. The supplement asks addition information about the student's intended major (e.g. why a student picked a certain major, including undecided), what the student hopes to contribute to Bucknell, and a required essay.
In order to be eligible for financial aid, students must first fill out the CSS profile and eventually the FAFSA. All students are considered for merit scholarships in academics once they apply to Bucknell.
There are three times a student may apply to Bucknell. There is Early Decision I due in November. Then, Early Decision II is due in January. The only difference between ED I and ED II is the dealine. Finally, students may apply regular decision.Level
Bucknell's Core Curriculum is as follows: (1) Intellectual Skills—Foundation Seminar, Lab Science, Foreign Language, Integrated Perspectives (2) Tools for Critical Engagement—Diversity in the U.S., Environmental Connections, Global Connections, Quantitative Reasoning (3) Disciplinary Perspectives—(2 from each division; one course must meet each set of divisional learning goals)--Arts & Humanities, Natural Sciences & Mathematics, Social Sciences (4) Disciplinary Depth— The Major(s), Academic Conventions of Writing, Speaking, and Information Literacy, Culminating Experience.
Academic advising is great. All students have at least one adviser from the beginning, with most having one for each field of study they major or minor in. I came in undecided and had an incredible adviser. Class size average is about 22, but that number doesn't accurately represent class size here. Only 5 courses are large lecture classes (i.e. General Chemistry), but they split into much smaller lab groups. Many courses have less than 10 people in them. Incredible research opportunities for undergrads because the grad program here is so small. Many of our professors are among the best-of-the-best in their respective fields. 40% of students study abroad in their junior or senior year. Workload is sizeable, but that's what we're here for, isn't it?Admissions
Students are strongly encouraged to visit Bucknell to tour and attend a Preview Session, a lunch visit, or a one-day visit. Bucknell utilizes the Common Application and as well as supplemental essays--some mandated, some optional. We have ED1, ED2, and regular admissions. There are many opportunities for scholarships and financial aid as well.Level
The academics at Bucknell are challenging; I had never been pushed so hard in my life. All of the liberal arts requirements are kind of annoying at first, but if you take the right classes you can find some really cool professors and topics that you learn that you are actually interested in. For my accounting major my adviser does an amazing job of helping make sure that I have the 150 credit hours to sit for the CPA exam after my 4 years at Bucknell. The work load is a lot, but that's where the campus motto of "work hard, play hard" comes from.Quality of Life
The dorms are nice, just your standard college dorms. As sophmores you can get a mod which is 2 doubles, a kitchen, bathroom and living room and there are on campus apartments with more being built right now. Lewisburg is not an expensive place to live, you can grab dinner downtown at one of the restaurants for $10-$15. The campus facilities in terms of athletics and dining are top notch. Lewisburg is a great neighborhood with little crime and has a great relationship with Bucknell.Admissions
Bucknell does not offer interviews, but they do offer something called a "one day visit". The one day visit was a really cool experience because it allowed me, as a high school senior, to actually be a Bucknell student for the day. The supplement for Bucknell has about 4 questions and one of them is optional, however there is no such thing as optional if you want to demonstrate that you are actually very interested in the University. I did early decision because I knew Bucknell was the school I wanted to go to and this was a great way to show the admissions staff that, and coming in early decision is great because Bucknell usually takes around 1/3 of their class through early decision applicants.Level
It's intellectually chanllenging for all the students. The professor generally expect a really high outcome from every student he or she teaches.Quality of Life
Housing is provided four years and everything is withing walking distance. The community is safe and central pennsylvania is well represented.Admissions
Bucknell's unique application questioin is that it asked me to describe three things that I would like the future Bucknellians know and it states that be sure to have fun!Level
Academics is the best thing about Bucknell. Class sizes are a great size, you can access professors very easily. They have a lot of research opportunities during the summer. It is a very competitive school and grading is done very fairly. There are various study abroad opportunities even for engineers.Quality of Life
Housing is offered all four years. It is very clean and safe. The campus is beautiful! The facilities are up to current standards with technology. The library offers all that is asked for. The food is rated one of the best in the country. It is a small town that surrounds the University. There is basically no crime and it is a very safe campus and community. Overall, happy.Admissions
You have to apply with the common application. There is also a supplemental application with several more essays. They offer both early decision and early action applications. They also offer various amounts of financial aid and merit aid.Level
Bucknell has a core curriculum for both the College of Arts & Sciences and the College of Engineering. While they are slightly different, they both require courses to be taken in many areas of study. It is a liberal arts college, and the core curriculum really holds true to that. I have found the classes in general at Bucknell to be intellectually stimulating and rigorous, while not being impossible. Professors are always willing to meet -- whether its during office hours or another time -- I have never had a problem setting up a time that works for both of us. Also, the other students in classes are really supportive of one another. Academics are not extremely cutthroat, but collaborative. Students want to do well, but not at the expense of their classmates.Quality of Life
Bucknell is a great place to spend four years. Even though it is in the middle of central Pennsylvania, it has everything to offer. The facilities and amenities provided by the university are outstanding. The library is great -- there are librarians on staff willing to help with research, an IT desk that can fix any computer issue imaginable, and the library cafe offering coffee and snacks for those late nights.Admissions
Bucknell uses the Common Application, offers two early decision dates along with regular decision, and has a plethora of financial aid and scholarship opportunities.Level
Some departments were remarkably better than others. I was a history and political science major. The professors in the history department were of a much higher caliber than the professors in the political science department.
A major emphasis is placed on the management and engineering departments and I sometimes felt like too much of the resources were devoted to those two departments.
Class sizes are very small, which was one of the biggest perks to Bucknell academics. I developed very strong relationships with several professors and many invited me to lunch or to their homes for dinner. Professors at Bucknell are incredibly friendly and devote a lot of time to working with students outside of the classroom. They are very accessible and seem to enjoy being approached out of the classroom.Quality of Life
Every blade of grass at Bucknell is cut to perfection. The campus is stunning and that makes for a fantastic quality of life. Great care is put into the aesthetics and it made a world of a difference. The facilities are all top notch.Admissions
Part of what sold me on Bucknell was the feeling that I was really wanted there. I heard from Bucknell well before any other school and they made an effort to make me feel desired. I also got that feeling after initially interviewing with an admissions officer. Bucknell made me feel like I was special and that Bucknell was a special place to go to school.Graduation Year
I found classes to be competitive and demanding. Almost all students I encountered are able to think, write, and speak at comparable levels, which makes for a stimulating classroom environment. At Bucknell the student has the opportunity to consider his/her choice of major for a good deal of time. It allowed me to be happy with the academic decisions I was going to make throughout college. The College of Arts and Sciences at Bucknell was of great quality. The professors there all were willing to be helpful and most were eager to teach and ensure that students did walk away with a greater understanding of the material than at the start of class.Quality of Life
Tuition is high but most things around the school are not. Students are highly motivated in school, as well as in the social scene. It makes for an almost country club-type of feel in certain places on campus. Very relaxed but successful and determined people. The school and town have their differences, but they are primarily institutional, like any other school. Students will find the town charming and welcoming. There are great places to eat, drink, shop, and browse as a student, and to feel nostalgic about as an alum.Admissions
I chose to apply early decision through the unique Bucknell application. Before applying I visited the campus once at the close of the summer. Following my visit to the campus I interviewed with an alumni from my hometown, which was pleasant and a nice talk. I found all that I dealt with during the admissions process at Bucknell to be nice and helpful. While knowing that admissions there is selective, I found the staff willing to help, and an atmosphere that minimized undue stress. Following admission I then attended their admitted students day, which made me even more excited to go to Bucknell.Graduation Year