1. Where do Oles eat when they need to get off campus?
2. How often do students go to the Twin Cities or Mall of America?
3. How many students have cars?
4. Is there more time for weekend excursions during Interim?
5. Is there skiing nearby?
6. Are bikes available on campus for anyone to use? Can you store a bike in the dorms or is it left outside? Is that safe to do?
7. How much interaction is there with Carleton or other colleges?
Thanks for your help in answering truly the oddest set of questions!!!!!
1. People go out to eat in Northfield. It has plenty of restaurants for a town its size.
2. People do not go to Minneapolis or the Mall of America as often as you might think, because there is plenty to do on campus. Usually only a few times per semester.
3. Less than 50% have cars. Students cannot have cars unless they need one for work, an off-campus service project, commute to campus, or for medical reasons. Students living more than 200 miles away may store their cars on campus, but license plates must be removed. The rules are intended to maintain a residential campus.
4. There is more time for weekend excursions during interim.
5. Welch Village ski area is nearby. A few other areas are nearby, like Afton Alps near Stillwater. They won't wow anyone used to mountains, but it is an enjoyable way to spend time during a long Minnesota winter.
6. They do have a relatively new bike-share program. You cannot store a bike inside. Theft is not a concern, but you may not want to have a bike outside in the snow all winter.
7. People sometimes go to parties at Carleton; not so much the other way around. Academically, students can take courses at each other's campus, but it is difficult due to the different calendars. Sometimes professors at St. Olaf or Carleton teach courses on the other campus. Interaction with other colleges occurs at athletic events. A lot of people have friends at nearby colleges like Gustavus, and the University of Minnesota is 35 minutes away in Minneapolis.
I'm glad that someone came to answer your questions. My D almost went to St. Olaf.
In the end it just had winters too similar to what she had lived in for 18 years and wanted out.
We visited a lot of schools, and I will say, Northfield does have lots of neat/good/reasonably priced restaurants, but it absolutely had the best campus food! People from Northfield actually go to eat there.
St. Olaf is my DD's first choice school, but we're waiting to see what kind of aid she gets from St. Olaf vs. her other apps. We are totally in love with St. Olaf--I love their webcams, the clear mission statement of the school (I dare you to try to find an Ivy League school's mission statement!), their purpose, and how well they dot their i's and cross their t's. Also their website--best college website I have seen so far. Our fingers are crossed!!!!
Our D also loved St Olaf but she could not get past the thought of the long winters. Of all the colleges we visited, it was my favorite. Great academics, campus and wonderful bond between the students. It was also nice to see the students and professors eating together in the cafeteria and working out in the gym. It really is a unique campus community.
I will also agree that St Olaf had the best campus food of the schools we visited. Good luck catpb.
Thanks, Bobby; I hope your daughter is loving her college experience! Are you as a parent pleased with the education, advising and opportunities at her school? How big is her school?
My sense is that smaller schools (I consider St. Olaf to be on the large side of small) are much better at getting to know their students. I have heard the St. Olaf president say to prospective parents like myself that he puts great value on helping students not just graduate, but to find their place in the world as well, which IMO is a step beyond what most schools try to accomplish. Do you have any insights into this topic?
D has not yet started her college experience, she is still a senior. The college she has committed to is also a LAC with a student population of approximately 2700, a little smaller than St. Olaf.
I would agree with your statement that in general, LAC's provide a greater student-faculty relationship because of their size. Since St. Olaf is truly a residential campus with very limited off campus housing, their is a great bond between the students and the students and faculty. It is a very casual atmosphere where it is common to see the professors and students eating lunch together or seeing the President of the school working out at the gym along side the students. I think this creates a unique campus culture. This close interaction with the professors, both in and out of class, can only benefit the student.