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Questions about Amherst

Payton34Payton34 Registered User Posts: 13 New Member
edited December 2008 in Amherst College
My little sister is transferring to Amherst this fall and I just have a few questions that can probably be best answered by students (or parents of students).

1) What is the dorm situation for transfers? Will she be put in with freshman? Will she have her choice of dorms? Which are the nicest dorms?

2) While she is tolerant of people who do, she doesn't like to smoke or drink. I've heard that Amherst has dorms that don't allow alcohol. A) Is there a negative stigma associated with living in these dorms (ie nerdy)? B) Which are the nicest of these dorms?

3) What is the fastest route to get to Amherst by air? I'm not concerned with the most convenient or the lowest price. If I had to get to Amherst ASAP and price was not an issue, what is the best (fastest) way? (I'm on the west coast)

4) Do most students have and/or need a car? We're debating whether or not to send her off with a car. Is the parking situation such that she wouldn't have to walk far from her car to her dorm?

5) Are there any cell phone providers that don't get good reception in and around Amherst?

Thanks for you help!
Post edited by Payton34 on

Replies to: Questions about Amherst

  • CatfishCatfish Registered User Posts: 725 Member
    1) Transfers are put in with upperclassmen (i.e. not on the freshman quad). I'm not sure how the housing process works for transfers. My guess is that she'll have a place to put her preferences on the housing form and she'll get assigned to one.

    2) A) There's not really any stigma, although people who live in sub-free tend to form their own social group apart from non-sub-free people, mostly because it's an obvious group of people to hang out with if it's a Saturday night and most people are at parties.
    B) The only upperclass sub-free dorm right now is the 4th floor of Morrow, which is quite nice (renovated in last 5 years, wood floors, 15 second walk from both the dining hall and the library). Seligman may also be open as a sub-free dorm (it's closed this year) if there's sufficient demand. I haven't gone inside and it's a bit farther away from the central part of campus.

    3) Bradley Airport (Hartford CT/Springfield MA) is the airport of choice. It's 45 minutes from campus and has flights from all over the country. Chicopee airport is a bit closer, but far smaller and has far fewer flights available

    4) Cars are nice to have, but not necessary. You can take the PVTA bus to any of the other 5 colleges, Hampshire Mall, Northampton, and elsewhere for free. A car can be convenient, especially if she's planning on leaving campus a lot and doesn't want to wait for the bus. I don't have a car myself, but from my friends that do it seems that parking is not much of a bother. There's a lot within 5 minutes or less of a walk from every dorm

    5) Verizon has a tower on campus and I think AT&T does as well, so they both get very good reception and are by far the most popular (which is important because they both offer free in-network calling, which means you don't use minutes if you call your friends). I don't know about reception for other carriers
  • GA2012MOMGA2012MOM Registered User Posts: 5,440 Senior Member
    I know you asked about air transportation, and Catfish answered, but once your sister lands she needs ground transportation to campus. Pioneer Valley Transportation provides shuttle service, you just need to call and tell them your arrival time and they will be there to pick you up. I second Verizon, D has it with great service and as Catfish said the in-calling keeps her minutes down.
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