Because I'm a sophomore and residential counselor and pseudo-former tour guide(long story). I know my stuff.
Did you get in?
Then ask me questions. I'll have an answer to most of them.
Were you waitlisted?
My answer to you is: Good luck. Last year we over-accepted the Waitlist by 50 students because...no I don't have an explanation, I'm still mystified at how they screwed that up. Maybe modestmelody knows the answer to that.
Answers to common questions:
NOTE: I am tired. I think there are grammar errors in here. Give me a break, please.
What's the weather like?
Cold. But you get used to it really quickly. I'm a Seattle-lite and we have mild weather there. I learned the hard way my freshman year that apparently if you step outside during the dead of winter right after taking a shower, your hair freezes over. But then you start wearing skirts when it hits 50 degrees, because, compared to the rest of winter, it might as well be 90.
What's the social scene like?
There's a niche for everyone. If you want to make friends here, you will. I promise. Not just from my own experience, but watching my freshmen this year and friends this year and being friends with upperclassmen. There's such a variety.
What's the drug scene like?
Do what you want to do. Don't do what you don't want to do. I don't drink--it makes me sick. My body can't process it. And I've never been pressured and have a very thriving social life and have been really close friends with people who drink a lot without a problem.
What are the dorms like?
In terms of actual buildings---better than most universities in the nation, worse than some of our peer institutions. Not going to lie. Though my friends from Harvard try to be polite, they kick our ass in quality of dorms and I will gladly admit that. The same way I try to be polite when visiting my other friends elsewhere, till they hold their hands up and say "dude, I've seen your room. Yours is a gazillion times better." But are you really choosing your college based on the size of your dorm room? Because ours is good enough for it to not matter.
In terms of administration--Our ResLife is one of the chillest and most accommodating ResLife's ever. Got a roommate issue? No problem! You can swap, no questions asked! This year we overloaded with 50 freshmen. Did they stick 3 into converted lounges that could easily be spacious triples? No! "We feel like dealing with one roommate is enough for the freshman transition," our boss boss told us during training, while explaining to us why some kids ended up with some of the largest doubles Brown has seen and kitchens in their rooms without a third roommate. If they can accommodate you...they will.
What's the pre-med program like?
Dude. Stop making your college choices based on being pre-med. Wait till you've soldiered through Organic Chem before committing to this path. Also, there is no official program, but people who stick to the pre-med courses usually do a pretty good job getting into Med School.
What are the students like?
Too. much. variety.
Is everyone super liberal?
In terms of being aware of diversity, I would say so. I thought I was open-minded before attending and was known for being one of the most accepting in terms of "differences" amongst my social circle, but even Brown pushed me further. Have you ever heard of the word heteronormative? If not, you will at Brown.
There are conservatives here. Yes, conservatives are minorities here, but I would argue that this is true of most our peers too.
What's Greek Life like?
If you like it, you'll find it. If you don't, you'll make it through 4 years without having it affect your life at all. 10% of Brown students join some kind of Greek Organization, which is low---but also keep in mind that we have a decent number of 'alternative' Greek organizations, such as Alpha Delta Phi, which is the co-ed literary society, and St. Anthony's, a co-ed literary fraternity, which isn't even part of Greek Council or on Wriston Quad.
What's the food like?
Eh, the all-you-can-eat-buffet cafeterias are what you'd expect from an all-you-can-eat-buffet. I wasn't a fan, but I've visited friends at peer institutions expecting a change--only realize they had the exact same meals. I think there's some vendor out there servicing them all. But the other options, such as Jo's, the Gate, The Ivy Room, and the Blue Room are pretty nice. I still eat there occasionally with straight cash. And if you get creative, even the main cafeterias can be pretty good. And you're going to Brown. Use that brain of yours.
Is everyone really preppy?
Is everyone really competitive?
No. People help each other out here. Even if they're both premeds. When I fell sick freshman year and spent a couple days in Health Services(the night nurses there are sooooo nice), I had plenty of friends who, without being asked, brought my stuff by and homework I missed and just came to provide company.
What are post-grad prospects like?
We're heavily recruited and do pretty fantastic in grad school admissions of all kinds.
"Commonly Asked Question: What are the reputations of the different freshman dorms?"
It doesn't really matter because you don't really have a choice in it. But for curiosity's sake...sorted by campus
It's. a. maze. I haven't figured it out yet. At this point, probably never will.
--Most freshmen live here.
--Most freshmen live here.
The "party" image it has is a hit or miss depending on what part of the many halls you are on.
Perkins: I lived here my freshman year. It's in the southeast part of campus and my freshman year they accidentally didn't go east enough on the freshman orientation map and so we...weren't on it. "Off-Campus Freshmen".
--Wooden bulletin boards.
--Nicest lounge with 2 flat screen TV's and another third normal one, plenty of couches and tables to play Risk on and TV's.
Some people claim you make up for the isolation with "closeness". Your mileage may vary with this one, though. A year out, I only retain a single friend from my entire unit--the rest of mine are from different units(and/or class years).
If you are friends with seniors, as I was, the location might turn into a bonus as a fair number of seniors live in on-campus housing near Perkins.
Small and from what I can see plenty of ppl who lived in Wayland are still close this year. Next to Wriston.
--Kind of ridiculously close to the Ratty. Kind of ridiculously close to everything.
--Nice sized rooms
--Athletes stay in your room during the winter.
--On Wriston, which means it's loud on weekends.
Also small and cozy. Located on Lincoln Field.
--If your class is on the main green, you can leave 2 minutes till and still be one of the first people there.
--Close to everything
--Really nice doubles.
--Athletes stay in your dorm during the winter.
--Church bells on Sunday morning
--Sinks in doubles, omg.
--Very spacious doubles
--Long walk from good ol' North Pembroke
New Pembroke #3 or #4
One of my very optimistic and cheery best friends lived here her freshman year and she says so with pride...
But did I mention that she's really optimistic and cheery?
--My friend says she found a group that got very close. But they consist mainly of cheery and optimistic people. They would've been happy just about anywhere I think.
--New Pembroke is avoided like the plague during housing lottery and is considered one of the dumbest architectural choices ever made at Brown. If we could deal with the hypothetical housing crunch, most people are very much in favor of bulldozing the entire thing.
I don't actually know much about MoChamp. There's a nice lounge downstairs. A really nice one. And the RC's who are there this year are pretty cool. But that doesn't help you much.
Funny, I live right next to it this year yet I know like...nothing about it...
PRIVATE BATHROOMS. Kind of. Well there are all these little nooks and the ratio is about 2 rooms(one double of freshmen and one single for an upperclassman) to each bathroom. So 3-4 ppl per bathroom. And it's a single bathroom that locks and everything. Pretty fantastic. Lots of upperclassmen in this building, though.
--In my opinion, the best bathroom situation a freshman could ask for.
--Really spacious doubles.
--On the bottom floor is the V-Dub and a gym.
--For now, the housing crunch has turned our spacious lounges into ridiculously large doubles.
Brown is about 53% female-- so definitely not many more girls than boys.
Fairly large, close knit international scene. While I know many internationals and they certainly interact with the other students on campus quite a bit, I also find that they all know each other as well. Buxton International House is a very popular program house on campus.
And Keeney is not a maze... it's a big, digital 8.
I'm aware that it's mostly an 8, but the stairs and levels are weird. I can never figure out where in the 8 I'm in...because I'm an idiot at navigation of hallways. Oy.
Boy/girl scene? Hmm...like modestmelody said, slightly more girls, but not dramatically so. Are you referring to the dating scene? Hit/miss. Some people are in relationships--usually of the friends first variety. A lot aren't. And there's little (if any) dating in the going out on a date sense.
The number of students seems low because the graduate school is small. Other universities' grad schools are probably a lot bigger. The undergrad schools are usually around the same size. Search and you shall find. That being said, my D, a soph at Brown, says she sometimes feels like she knows everyone, or, at least, recognizes everyone she meets. I don't know if that is actually true, or if she keeps to the same daily routine that others also keep to. So there.