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Overall School Rating
41 Ratings

4 out of 5 Stars

32
3 Stars
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2 Stars
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41 Student Reviews

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“Wonderful school. We Are”
October 2017FORMER STUDENT
Uppers

City in the middle of nowhere...FILLED WITH COLLEGE AGED STUDENTS! Great combination of academics and the joys of "the best four years" of your life.

Downers

Can get a bit cold in the winter, and the school prides itself on never(!) closing. But that just makes the warm months more appreciated :)

Comments

Visit the school. Check out the academics first and foremost, but consider taking in a football or hockey game as well. I wasn't a football fan (at all) prior to college, but the experience of being at a Penn State home game is perhaps unrivaled--(and ranked by Sports Illustrated as one of the top 10-sports related experiences to have before you die). Compare the whole vs. the other schools you're considering, and go with your gut (even if it's not Penn State). The academics, campus, people...all wonderful. The camaraderie? I dare you to compare it to the other schools you visit. It's in a league of it's own, and simply tremendous. Last but not least, do a YouTube search for "THON" -- watch a few of those videos, and see what the student body at Penn State is about in just a few short -- unbelievable -- moments.

Would You Recommend

Yes

“Good University”
March 2017CURRENT STUDENT
Uppers

big

recruiting

opportunities

lots to be involved in

prestigious organizations

business fraternities

support from faculty

Downers

bureaucratic administration

some classes too large

flawed classes

some political leanings supported

Comments

cookie cutter

little ability to do things your way

high demand from employers

lots of opportunity

Would You Recommend

Yes

“Penn State University Park”
November 2016CURRENT STUDENT
Uppers

Penn State is a large school which means there is a diverse range of opportunities to choose from

Downers

The difficulties that come with navigating all of the opportunities that are available really limits how much you can truly explore

Comments

Know what you want to study or possibly study before you get here. Going to Penn State for Business or Engineering is great, but if you want to switch your major to something chances are PSU will have it, but it doesn't mean it is in the same tier of excellence as the major you originally intended

Would You Recommend

Yes

“Penn State”
June 2015FORMER STUDENT
Uppers

alumni network and career fairs helped place me in my first job after college

Downers

large student population requires one to get involved to make friends and take advantage of what the school has to offer. Can be daunting For some

Comments

great professors that care about their students and make themselves available for advice, additional help, etc.

Would You Recommend

Yes

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

Most of the general ed classes at Penn State are really big, like around one hundred students in a lecture hall. There are several TAs (Teacher's Assistants) in each class, who are upperclassmen who did well in the class and have come back to help current students. So I always had several resources if I needed help with my schoolwork. As I finished my general ed requirements and moved into classes particular to my chosen major, class size became much smaller and I found that I talked a lot more with my professors and not with their TAs when I had concerns. My advisor was awesome and very helpful and I was constantly stopping by her office to confirm classes I was planning to register for in subsequent semesters, talk about my GPA, etc. Penn State faculty in general is very eager to see students succeed. I found that if ever I needed help or advice with anything I was working on, several staff members made themselves available to talk with me in person, by e-mail, or by phone. My workload was very reasonable, not to say that I didn't study hard. I found that I was easily able to keep on top of my studies while having an active social life, although there were nights I spent busting out papers that I would rather have been downtown with my roommates. The same is true for grades: An 'A' is totally achievable, but you have to take your schoolwork seriously if you want to get it. I did not choose to study abroad while in college, but my sister who also went to Penn State did study in Argentina for a semester.

Quality of Life

State College, PA--where the main campus of Penn State is located--is the nicest, safest town. There are so many dorms on campus and lots of apartments just off campus for students to live in. There are also several other apartment buildings throughout the town. There are two big libraries, one on campus and one downtown, just off campus, available to students. The food is excellent. Because the university is so close to downtown State College, there are so many restaurants and tons of bars within short walking distance of every dorm and downtown apartment. There is a bus system that travels throughout the town, so it's easy to get to campus even if you do choose to live further away. State College is a really happy place. I went to Penn State for six years and I really believe there's no place like it. I really miss it now that I've graduated.

Admissions

The application process was fairly simple for me. I filled out an application and also sent in my high school transcript and my SAT score. I don't remember needing to write an application letter.

Graduation Year

2009

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

Very competitive, large class sizes, notable faculty, heavy workload

Quality of Life

A lot of fun things to do

Admissions

Application and essay

Graduation Year

2010

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

Very challenging. When I speak to my friends who have pursued similar degrees at other public universities, Penn State has math and science requirements that are much more rigorous. The academic advising I received at Penn State was incredible - my former adviser became a mentor and friend - we still keep in touch. Core courses like Bio 101 were huge - but more specialized classes were much smaller, making it much easier to interact with professors and classmates. I also had an opportunity to travel abroad to study in Russia with most expenses covered by funding secured by the College of Ag Sciences.

Quality of Life

Great facilities, beautiful campus with plenty of green areas and beautiful buildings. Unfortunately, very expensive to live on campus.

Admissions

It's been a while, but I remember the application being somewhat long. The essay section was challenging but gave me an opportunity to express myself openly. Getting into the University Park Campus on my first year was not easy as space for first year students is limited.

Graduation Year

2007

2011VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

General requirements for everyone and college specific. General requirements include speech, two english classes, gym classes, and a number of credits in science, international studies, philososy, etc. There were many research opportunitues, and study abroad opporutnities. I chose to spend a summer in Italy. Workload for architectural engineering was fairly heavy. Faculity was very notable, yet easily accessible. General education classes were large while major specific classes were small.

Quality of Life

the community is a small college town. It was affordable and safe with excellent facilities and library. There were unlimited resources.

Graduation Year

2008

2010VERIFIED STUDENT
Admissions

application, optional essay.

Graduation Year

2005

2010VERIFIED STUDENT
Academics

A Schreyer Honor's College degree is equivalent to an ivy league degree in terms of prestige and notability. An average size professor to student classroom ratio is 1:17. There are general requirements that must be fulfilled by all students before graduation in Math, Science, Art, Humanities and Writing. All professors are required to provide an hour of office hours for every hour they are in class teaching. There are MANY study abroad opportunities and all students should take advantage of them. Grading is based on the course, college and professor. Most classes are pretty competitive.

Quality of Life

State College, PA is the top-rated safest small town in America. We have 3 branches of police presence here. The food is great and there is a wide variety. The library has over 5.5 million volumes and we also have access to all library material at any other Big 10 school. The dorm and apartments could be better quality but they are livable.

Admissions

Rolling application process. Essays optional. Penn State University is the most applied to school in the country with over 100,000 applicants each year.

Level

4

Graduation Year

2010

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Uppers Downers Comments Would You Recommend

Academics Quality of Life Admissions Level Graduation Year