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Brown atmosphere

IrishcaliIrishcali Posts: 298Registered User Junior Member
edited May 2006 in Brown University
Everyone who knows my daughter thinks she should consider Brown. Her father was accepted there, and chose another school, but still considers it one of the best. My daughter does have Brown on her "list", but would like to know a little more. Short of visiting, which we will do this summer, what are some of the intangibles at Brown? What makes it special? Is the Greek system strong? Thanks for any info!
Post edited by Irishcali on
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Replies to: Brown atmosphere

  • sarah_leesarah_lee Posts: 22Registered User New Member
    At the Brown U. message board, there've been a few posts addressing atmosphere (both people and weather).

    http://messageboard.chatuniversity.com/brown/default.asp?action=9&fid=958&read=30523
  • beprepnbeprepn Posts: 829Registered User Member
    Happiest student body.

    Nobody has to take a class that they don't want to (well, except in their major!).

    A grading system that does everything possible to encourage exploration.

    Advisors that actually advise.

    Ruth Simmons!

    Lousy financial aid.

    A LAC without most of the downsides of a LAC.
  • dcircledcircle Posts: 1,846Registered User Senior Member
    brown actually has some of the best financial aid in the league. after princeton and harvard, brown was the third ivy to replace all loans w/ grants for students w/ the most need
  • MarianMarian Posts: 9,432Registered User Senior Member
    Our family visited Brown recently and learned that the Greek system is small but does exist. What made Brown special in our eyes was the focus on undergraduates and an atmosphere of respect for undergraduates -- and their priorities, interests, and dreams -- that seems to be lacking at some other schools.

    At some of the other Ivies and schools of similar caliber, I have gotten the impression that the attitude is "If you think you can make it here, apply. If you're good enough, maybe we'll let you in, and if you're willing to work like crazy, maybe you can survive here. If you can, you've proved your worthiness. But you're going to do things our way."

    At Brown, it was more like, "We already know you're worthy. Duh. We wish we could take all of you, but we don't have room. So you may get turned down. If you do end up here, people will work with you to help you figure out how to achieve your goals. You'll work hard, but you'll be doing it in the service of your own dreams. At Brown, people do things their own way."

    Also, on the day we visited, the information session was run by an admissions officer who was quite possibly the most attractive, adorable, personable specimen of long-haired, laid-back 30-year-old male human that any of the girls and moms in the room had ever seen. (Think Orlando Bloom in glasses. But much more articulate.) I'm surprised that the entire audience didn't drown in puddles of female drool (and probably also gay male drool; he was the sort of guy who appeals to both constituencies). If you get this guy, be careful. It's awfully hard to be objective when you're overcome with lust.
  • BuggzBuggz Posts: 39Registered User Junior Member
    Financial aid is pretty darn good for those who really need it...my friends who were accepted to Brown received excellent financial aid, seriously! Brown has been good with that...
  • ILoveBrownILoveBrown Posts: 1,521Registered User Senior Member
    Marian's description of Brown's attitude is a great one. I'm really glad that came across during your visit.

    And who was this guy? Do you remember his name? :)
  • SBmomSBmom Posts: 5,725Registered User Senior Member
    Marian, maybe you could start a thread for hottest admission officers? You know, for when it is a tossup whether to visit school X or school Y, it could be a helpful tiebreaker.

    ILoveBrown, maybe an internship in Admissions? ;)
  • MarianMarian Posts: 9,432Registered User Senior Member
    Sorry, I don't remember his name. Under the circumstances, I was having enough trouble remembering my own. ;)

    Another thing that came through loud and clear during our visit was that Brown is a place where people of all backgrounds and persuasions and attitudes accept each other. In fact, mutual respect seems to be central to the culture of Brown.

    This was made especially clear during the campus tour. At one point during the tour, someone asked the tour guide whether students at Brown felt pressured to drink alcohol. The tour guide reacted with the sort of horror you would expect to see if someone had suggested that Brown students drown kittens for fun. It's not that the tour guide was upset by anything having to do with drinking; instead, she was appalled by the thought that Brown students would EVER pressure other Brown students to do ANYTHING. Evidently, at Brown, this is Simply Not Done.

    My daughter, who realizes that she is far more conservative politically than the typical Brown student, found this attitude very reassuring.
  • beprepnbeprepn Posts: 829Registered User Member
    the information session was

    "...just think of it as buying a Lexus every year, except you don't get the Lexus."

    At the time, LOL, now it brings a tear to my eye.
  • darkstarrisingdarkstarrising Posts: 153Registered User Junior Member
    to mariane:

    please. everyone drinks. sex god power? get over whatever scripted response you received from your tour guide. also, try not to come across as a 16 year old swooning and preparing to give yourself up for ravishment because the prom king looked at you. christ.
  • modestmelodymodestmelody Posts: 4,651Registered User Senior Member
    Darkstarrising, try **** somewhere else, because what your saying is a complete lie.
  • mgcsincmgcsinc Posts: 1,169Registered User Senior Member
    Okay, so darkstar isn't completely right, but isn't really lying either.

    The truth is that peer pressure does exist everywhere, even in our most free of colleges, Brown. The idea that "Evidently, at Brown, this is Simply Not Done" is not entirely accurate - it can't be! What is true is that pressure of that kind is much more looked down upon here than at a lot of other places, and that you will do just fine not drinking here, as I have explained before.
  • ILoveBrownILoveBrown Posts: 1,521Registered User Senior Member
    darkstarrising -- Please be respectful on this board. First of all, not everyone drinks at Brown. If you're a student here, then you'd know that, and if you're not a student here, then you're not qualified to say. Second of all, if you don't like the fact that she finds a guy attractive and wants to post about it, just don't respond. Keep your condescending and inaccurate comments to yourself.

    (FYI SexPowerGod not Sex God Power)
  • sreissreis Posts: 752Registered User Member
    how difficult are the classes? do students work hard, and do they discuss intellectual ideas openly? it seems from the 'philosophy of brown' i have read that it is not very demanding or that encouraging really.
  • dcircledcircle Posts: 1,846Registered User Senior Member
    brown doesn't force every student to have a homogenous experience, but does require rigor at the end of the day. brown also doesn't accept students who don't demonstrate a high level of intellectual curiousity and independence because if you don't have these things you will have a hard time succeeding w/ the open curriculum.

    as a result, the brown student body is fiercely independent and highly intellectual--most brown students believe that the fact that everyone is doing something different academically makes their experience even richer (and much prefer this to a premolded core)
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