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Williams vs Dartmouth

jidjidjidjid 0 replies1 threads New Member
Asking anyone who has visited either campus. The plan was to visit schools after being accepted, but can I'm Asian male from from CA. What is the culture differences between them? Read that Dartmouth has a strong frat presence. Do you need to join a frat to have a decent social life? Is the hazing process difficult? What is the time commitment to being involved in a frat?
17 replies
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Replies to: Williams vs Dartmouth

  • MaybeIvy2020MaybeIvy2020 147 replies16 threads Junior Member
    My friend, a '24, chose Dartmouth over being recruited for Williams. I can get you in contact with him, if you'd like!
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  • DustyfeathersDustyfeathers 3674 replies85 threads Senior Member
    Personally the frat atmosphere alone would keep me from recommending Dartmouth but that's just me. Google the Rolling Stone article about Dartmouth's frats. Things might have changed since then but frats remain a significant part of the atmosphere as far as I know. While both schools are woodsy (I use that word rather than isolated because I like the woods), Dartmouth has more incidences of untoward events because of that factor. Yes, Dartmouth offers skiing too, and it's beloved by many, but D is known for raucous parties plus it developed an atmosphere that led to the recent professor/student scandals. I'm putting this information here so that you can evaluate these things for yourself.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/06/us/dartmouth-sexual-abuse-settlement.html

    Williams to my mind hasn't had these issues. Others may know more than me.

    To me the question is, given an equal level of isolation, which school handles it in the manner that you prefer?
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  • shuttlebusshuttlebus 732 replies1 threads Member
    If you like outdoor activities, Williams has a very active Outing Club. https://woc.williams.edu/getting-involved.
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  • Bill MarshBill Marsh 505 replies5 threads Member
    Dartmouth has the reputation for being politically moderate while there have been reports coming out of Williams of political correctness and censorship run amok. (I say that as apsomeone who hates the term “political correctness”.) Academically it doesn’t get much better than Williams.
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  • AlwaysLearnAlwaysLearn 460 replies17 threads Member
    edited April 23
    Both are outstanding schools, so there is probably no wrong choice.
    Yes, Dartmouth has a strong Greek life presence, but more than half of the students are not in fraternities or sororities, so please don't feel like you will need to join one to have friends, have a social life, fit in, etc. I know students who are very happy at Dartmouth and are not in fraternities or sororities. People I have come across from there are generally friendly.
    I feel like Dartmouth's culture/vibe is a little more laid back than Williams. And I mean that relatively speaking, because obviously you will have rigorous academics at both.
    edited April 23
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  • MWolfMWolf 2780 replies14 threads Senior Member
    You have no wrong choice here. Personally, I would recommend Williams because of the frat culture at Amherst. Otherwise, it is the difference between a Liberal Arts College, and a research university, though one which is pretty small, and which has many more characteristics of a liberal arts college than do most research universities with that high level of research.
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  • compmomcompmom 11884 replies82 threads Senior Member
    I like both Williamstown and Hanover but Hanover has more going on I think. The area around Hanover is beautiful, with the river nearby. Williamstown is near North Adams and MassMOCA and has its own Clark museum, the main reason I have visited

    Tough choice. Is frat life really still strong at Dartmouth? That seems to be the main concern expressed. I had hoped things had improved.
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  • PublisherPublisher 11573 replies155 threads Senior Member
    No wrong choice.

    Do you prefer a school with 4,400 undergraduate students plus several hundred graduate students or a school with less than 2,100 undergraduate students ?
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  • MaybeIvy2020MaybeIvy2020 147 replies16 threads Junior Member
    edited April 24
    Dartmouth also has a very active outing club (DOC) and it's the oldest outing club in the nation.

    Through the DOC, you can do so much (skiing, canoeing, etc) and the DOC provides any equipment you'd need. The incoming class also has the first year trips where freshman have the opportunity to bond over a 5 day camping/hiking trip before their start at Dartmouth.

    Both Williams and Dartmouth are amazing schools. Do you plan on going to graduate school? If so, Dartmouth has amazing resources nearby and on campus that provides lots of opportunities and experience (DHMC, Geisel, Tuck, etc).
    edited April 24
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  • sybbie719sybbie719 20987 replies2055 threads Super Moderator
    Dartmouth and Williams are more similar than they are different. They both are amazing places to attend school. Both have cohesive communities of people who love their school.

    At my house my personal choice was Williams because like most of you i leaned toward no frat life. She visited Williams 3x and i thought she would be attending.

    However, it was my D’s choice. While there is no frat life, they are not at a loss for drinking at Williams. She chose Dartmouth because she said that she did feel the difference between 4000 and 2000 students.
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  • gotham_momgotham_mom 84 replies2 threads Junior Member
    Full disclosure: my child will attend Williams and did not apply to Dartmouth due to its strong Greek life. I am sure that there are many lovely students at Dartmouth who are conscientious and smart, regardless of whether they participate in Greek life. That said, I was deeply concerned by this news item about students returning to live in their frat and sorority houses despite the college and the town of Hanover asking them not to: https://www.vnews.com/Some-Dartmouth-students-returning-to-live-off-campus-33818584
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  • PublisherPublisher 11573 replies155 threads Senior Member
    edited April 27
    An above poster wrote: That there is a frat at Dartmouth which frequently has "milk and cookie nights".

    What's in the cookies ?

    Darty ?
    edited April 27
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  • Gogreen19Gogreen19 86 replies0 threads Junior Member
    edited April 27
    @Publisher

    They are fresh baked with chocolate chips. That particular frat is one of the wholesome ones. They usually just talk to each other and have fun, substance free.

    I fail to see why you thought it was anything else, given the context.
    edited April 27
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  • PublisherPublisher 11573 replies155 threads Senior Member
    Just an attempt at adding a bit of levity to the discussion.
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  • Gogreen19Gogreen19 86 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Ah, i see @Publisher. My apologies.
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  • AboutTheSameAboutTheSame 3187 replies48 threads Senior Member
    @Publisher forgot to apply the humor font. One of my frequent failings as well. Your answer was an excellent one @Gogreen19; I never feel the need to chime in when you offer such a thorough and balanced view of the college.
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