Why I’m Glad I Chose the University of Rochester

Hi! My name is Carolyn Richter, and I’m excited to begin writing as an Admissions Blogger for the University of Rochester. As you may have read in my bio, I’m a current sophomore planning to double major in marketing and creative writing with a minor in journalism. I moved cross-country from Silicon Valley to New York to attend Rochester, but I’ve been fortunate to find a second home here at the University.

Since this is my first blog post, it seems fitting to share some of the reasons why I’m happy I’ve chosen to attend Rochester. Although there are plenty more than I can cover in one article, here are a few of the things I love about the University of Rochester.

1. Flexible curriculum

My eclectic course schedule for Fall 2019

 

When I was a high school senior, an aspect of Rochester that I really connected with was its philosophy of following your passions and enjoying the process of learning rather than just trying to meet your course requirements to get a degree. No matter what school you attend, you’ll probably encounter a handful of classes that aren’t your cup of tea, but I definitely think the flexible curriculum at Rochester reduces the risk of running into this.

Through the flexible curriculum and cluster system, I’ve been able to study both business and English without feeling pressured to choose between two seemingly disparate fields—and it’s cool to meet peers who have combined interests even more dissimilar than my own. The interdisciplinary focus of Rochester’s education leaves me feeling like I can accomplish what I want to in four years without worrying about whether I’m straying from a traditional path; instead, I’m left feeling like I’m actively encouraged to make my own.

2. Classroom dynamic

Hylan 202 (generally used for math classes)

 

Many courses at Rochester have smaller class sizes (especially in the humanities department), and I love how this creates a more tight-knight atmosphere inside our classrooms. Last semester, I even took a poetry class with only seven students in it, which was a great opportunity to work more closely with my classmates and professor. Rochester has a fair number of larger lectures as well, but students have a wealth of resources available, such as the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, office hours, and study groups, to get more individualized attention if they’re ever feeling lost in class.

Aside from that, I feel really lucky to be surrounded by so many gifted, hardworking people on campus, and I think the unique talents and perspectives of my peers bring a really special dynamic to our school. Everyone I’ve encountered here seems sincerely excited about what they’re studying, which leads to a more fun, engaging atmosphere in our classrooms.

3. Campus environment

Flags hanging above Hirst Lounge, representing current students’ citizenships

 

Another thing I really love about Rochester is the sense of community I’ve felt within the student body. I’ve met so many great people here, and I’m grateful to attend a school where it’s easy to see the kindness in my peers. Whether you’re trying something new or just working to get better at something, at Rochester, I feel like you can explore the things that matter to you knowing you have the support of your fellow Yellowjackets behind you.

I also appreciate how the students here seem genuinely eager to help each other out. In my experience, even in a class like calculus (where I’m definitely not the best student), my classmates have been willing to go out of their way to explain things to me whenever I’ve asked for help. This is an aspect I really admire about the University; although there are strong academic programs at our school, I’ve never felt like students here were too competitive or that schoolwork was the only thing people cared about. People seem to truly care about and respect each other here, and that has helped make our campus feel like home to me.


While I’m still only a sophomore, I’ve had a great time at the University of Rochester so far, and it’s been a pleasure to continue finding things I love about my school the longer I attend here. I can’t wait to share more about Rochester in my future blog posts!

About the author

Carolyn Richter

Hi! I’m a member of the Class of 2022 planning to pursue majors in marketing and creative writing with a minor in journalism. I was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, but I’m thrilled to share my experiences about the second home I’ve found at the University of Rochester. On campus, I participate in the Campus Times, Forté Campus, and Hatha Yoga Club.

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