Current sophomore-- if anyone has any questions, I'd love to answer them!

<p>College Confidential really helped me make my decision as a senior, so I thought I'd come back and answer any questions prospective students/ parents may have, especially since decisions have been mailed out recently. I'm a sophomore female, and I'm very involved in a couple science departments, as well as the outdoor program, music, and french. I'd love to tell you about any general aspect of Whitman life, from academics to scrambles to housing to Walla Walla to the vibe on campus to events-- ask me anything! :)</p>

<p>Thanks for the offer. What would you say are the best things about being at Whitman? And, what about the “not so good” things?</p>

<p>I would say some of the best things are:</p>


<p>1) Liberal Arts curriculum-- it’s been really great being able to take things outside of my major, and to try new things that I had never done before college. I don’t think I’d have had that chance at a bigger university. </p>

<p>2) Being close with professors–It’s really easy to go to office hours and get help on your homework or get to know your professor. I think it makes the material more accessible, and it’s pretty easy to pick an advisor and ask for letters of recommendation.</p>

<p>3) Awesome library and resources-- This might sound trivial, but there are a lot of cool places on campus to study, from the library (there’s a quiet room, too, in case you like silence while you work), to different academic buildings, to Ankeny, to Reid Campus Center. You’re going to spend a lot of time studying, so it’s great that there’s lots of nice places to do so. Also, there are a lot of resources for students; people want you to succeed! In the first half of freshman year, you get a student academic advisor (SA) who can read over your papers, talk to you about your academic options, etc. There’s also a free tutoring center on campus where you can tutor (paid hourly by Whitman!) or be tutored, as well as a writing center that will help you with any papers. I’ve also heard a some about students doing research individually with professors, though it’s not as common as at a larger school and not as specific to an individual’s preference, probably. Finally, one thing that I thought was awesome: a friend and I wanted to go to a conference for our major in Denver, and our advisor helped us get department funds to cover our travel expenses, so we could go to a conference for free! I think it’s great that sort of thing is available at Whitman, and it seems like it’d be a lot harder to swing at a larger school.</p>

<p>4) Attitude toward academics-- People work together! People in class will meet up to study or do a problem set together. It’s common to go to the library with your friends and work. There’s not the element of competition that some schools might have; it’s more that people struggle together to succeed. </p>

<p>Residential Life/Social atmosphere:</p>

<p>1) Friendly-- Most of my friendships happened with people on my floor (I lived in Jewett, though, which tends to be the most social). People have their doors open, throw room parties, and are really open to getting to know people, especially in freshman year. It was really fun, and there were a ton of exciting things going on. ResLife does a solid job at acclimating freshmen, and all of the RAs are great.</p>

<p>2) Meal plan, not so bad-- It does get monotonous, I’ll say that, and I’m happy to be off of the meal plan as a sophomore. But the salad bar was fresh, fruit was plentiful and delicious, omelettes were made to order, and brunch was the bomb (make your own waffle? yes!) Also, Reid Campus Center food is delicious. </p>

<p>3) Policy toward alcohol-- Some parents might not like to hear this, but this is how it is: Whitman has a closed-door policy on alcohol. If you are drinking in your room with the door shut, an RA will let you be, as long as your are not playing drinking games and not being loud past quiet hours. That being said, any alcohol in open containers in public spaces (hallways, bathrooms, lounges) will be confiscated. The reason this is great is that Whitman focuses on a safe environment; they recognize that you’re in college and you’re probably going to drink, and they want you to do so in a place where you can be helped. They don’t want you alone and blacked out at some party twenty miles away because of a strict policy, and they don’t want you sneaking around and being unsafe, because you could get hurt. This policy is great because in the midst of new college students trying out drinking, they can do so where their RA is available to take them to the health center, so no one gets hurt. A couple more things about this: 1) There is a stricter policy for different substances. 2) The health center is great for any and all things; it’s apparently rated as one of the best in the country. 3) Not all freshmen drink, and there is not a constant party atmosphere. 4) Let me just reiterate that this policy is because WHITMAN IS CONCERNED FOR YOUR SAFETY.</p>

<p>4) Green Dot-- More of Whitman being concerned about your safety! There is a Green Dot program in place to prevent sexual harassment on campus (there’s a whole orientation on this, let me know if you want more information). Also, security in general is awesome and will help you out or just chat with you.</p>

<p>5) General social atmosphere-- Board game nights, movie nights, going out to dinner with friends, having picnics in the wheat fields, going for bike rides, hanging out and playing video games, baking and cooking together, listening to a friend practice violin in his room, playing frisbee outside, doing yoga in the outdoor amphitheater, stumbling upon a knitting party and learning how to knit, going to the farmer’s market… these are the things Whitman is made of!</p>


<p>1) IM sports-- There are IM sports teams for everything, and you can join most of them having no experience whatsoever.</p>

<p>2) The Outdoor Program!-- SSRA (Sports studies, recreation, and athletics, if I’m correct) classes are awesome, and you can work your way up to becoming a leader. The trips are fabulous too, as are the rental prices. Also, if you come to Whitman, you should go on a Scramble (pre-orientation outdoors trip), because they are amazing. Bonus: This year, they added this thing called the Bob Carson fund, which provides $150 for each freshman to use on outdoors trips during their freshman year.</p>

<p>3) Clubs!–There are clubs for everything you could imagine. More info upon request.</p>

<p>Now, my list of not-so-good things:</p>

<p>1) Small campus-- while a small campus can be great at times (you know your professors and see your friends around all the time), it can also get old. It would be nice if there were more people to interact with. Also, it can be very hard to avoid someone, if that situation comes up (which it does for most people).</p>

<p>2) Not so much research-- There’s not a ton of research available for science majors, though some does happen. However, this does give you an edge when applying to summer research projects.</p>

<p>3) Greek life-- Greek life can be great, and is great for some people. It’s an awesome way to meet people and make connections that can change your life. However, staying “indie” can be rough. During freshman year, most people in Jewett rushed, and most people were gone at functions on weekend nights. At the beginning of sophomore year, Greek men lived off-campus in houses, and Greek women lived in Prentiss, and I felt like I didn’t see my Greek friends as much, because they were busy with their chapter. This definitely leads to some hurt feelings for indies at times, when they don’t see their Greek friends as much. However, I feel like this imbalance has evened out by the end of sophomore year, since Greek people end up finding a balance, and indies make more indie friends. This isn’t to say Greek members are completely exclusive–the division between Greek and indies comes more from the fact that the Greeks are so busy with their chapter activities and getting to know people in Greek life, that they don’t have as much time for indie friends. Also, their parties open at 11 P.M. to everyone, which is nice. </p>

<p>4) Walla Walla is a small town-- Walla Walla is very charming; there are delicious restaurants, and a farmer’s market, and the wheat fields, and outdoors activities, and if you’re 21, a lot of wine tasting. But there’s not a ton of plays or concerts, or museums/art galleries, like you would find in a big town. In fact, there is almost no nightlife at all. I’ve heard of some people going to the two bars in town on the weekend occasionally, but really, there’s not much. On the plus side, Whitman brings concerts and events to campus that are great.We have one big concert per semester (this semester we have Allen Stone, in the past we’ve had The Head and the Heart, Macklemore, and St. Vincent), as well as small shows.</p>

<p>Sorry I typed so much, there’s just a lot of really good stuff about Whitman. If you have any other questions, let me know!</p>

<p>How was your financial aid package?</p>

<p>My financial aid package was quite generous. In freshman year, I was able to use Whitman’s financial aid and outside scholarships to cover almost all of my costs. This year, my family paid around $6,000. However, that could be a situation specific to my family, since my parents are divorced, and there are other weird tax things happening, yada yada. My roommate doesn’t have any financial aid, and I’ve definitely heard of people being unhappy with their financial aid packages. On the other hand, I can name people who are here on full scholarship. I think it’s kind of a crapshoot in general; I had a wide variety of financial aid offers when I was applying places. I would say that if the package you are offered isn’t enough, talk to the financial aid office about it. They may be able to help you out if there is a legitimate reason (family is going to be supporting more kids in college soon, large medical bills, etc.)</p>

<p>Career services, internships and job placement?</p>

<p>Any and all impressions on these topics. Thanks!</p>

<p>A senior or graduate may be better equipped to answer this question than I, but my impression is that the career services and internship placement is very good. </p>

<p>We have a Student Engagement Center ([Student</a> Engagement Center- Whitman College](<a href=“]Student”> which provides volunteer opportunities, internships and job postings. They also help students with career skills, such as building and formatting a resume, and having good interview skills. Additionally, they provide a service called “iEngage,” which, if you sign up for it, sends you jobs postings for both on-campus and off-campus jobs available for current undergraduates, as well as job postings for graduates. </p>

<p>As far as internships go, Whitman has a program (I think through the Student Engagement Center) that can provide funding for students who have unpaid internships. I think departments do a good job at advertising internships for their specific fields; I’ve seen tons of posters in the science building about research opportunities that tell you where to go to apply. I also have several friends who have gotten internships from their professors or from their professors’ connections. I’ve also heard about internships in the Walla Walla community that are advertised on campus; for example, I went to a presentation in which an engineering company, Key Technology, was recruiting science majors for summer internships. </p>

<p>Overall, it seems like most students have no trouble finding internships and jobs after school, though many choose to go on to graduate school or join the peace corps/ similar project after graduation.</p>

<p>whitman2015, this is really awesome information. Here are a couple of additional questions if you have time:</p>

<li>You mentioned the SA program – did you actually benefit from it as a first year student, or if not, do you know anyone who did? In what way?</li>
<li>I understand the place is kinda small, but do you think it is big enough that someone can avoid constantly running into people from their high school (which sends a handful of students to the school every year)? I mean, if you’re going to go to the middle of nowhere, you don’t want to feel like you didn’t escape your hometown.</li>

<p>I’m glad I can help!</p>

<p>1) I don’t think I benefitted from it as much as some other students, mainly because my SA was a humanities major, and I mostly had science homework which she didn’t have experience with. However, she helped many people in my section with their essays. Also, there was a different SA in my building who WAS quite science-oriented, and he would occasionally help me with physics problem sets. However, as far as my science coursework went, if I was confused, I tended to go to a professor’s office hours or work with a group of people on my floor, just because there was a better chance they knew what was going on. In the case of general essay writing though, I think the SA’s were very helpful.</p>

<p>I guess the main way I benefitted from the SAs was their academic planning-- at the beginning of the semester, they helped us with choosing a reasonable course load, and then would check in with us throughout the semester to see how it was working out. My SA stopped me from taking an extra class that would have put me at 18 difficult credits first semester-- I’m glad I had someone to advise me not to take such an overwhelming course load, so I could spend my first semester making friends and transitioning to college life rather than living in the library. She also hosted little academic activities to help us stay organized, such as a “party” where we got a weekly planner (a big sheet of paper with the days of the week) and filled out our schedules and colored the planner. We also took a quiz to find out our learning style. </p>

<p>In general, I feel like the SAs just set a good example for how to balance your academics. My SA studied a lot, but would also practice violin in her room, or hang out and bake cookies with the section, or invite us to her dance recital, or go out with her friends. It was nice to have a resource (both academically and socially) that was more experienced, but not put in the same leadership position as an RA.</p>

<p>2) I would say, that depends. I know a girl from my high school (an acquaintance) who is a year ahead, and I see her (just in passing) MAYBE one every week or two. That’s because she’s an english major who is involved in debate, whereas I’m a science major who does other things. But the best part about running into her at this point is that there is no expectation that we are friends because we came from the same place. At first, there were the awkward this-is-a-small-school-so-let’s-say-hi-and-ask-about-each-other-when-in-reality-we’re-not-friends pleasantries, but after about a semester, we just basically ignored each other, because we were never friends in the first place. I feel like at some point, ties to high school kind of fade away and you start to view people you used to know from HS in the new context of Whitman.</p>

<p>On the other hand, you might see them a lot if you guys have the same major or do a sport or club together, or whatever. That being said, there are just a handful of people from your school, out of hundreds of students you have yet to meet! You’ll make a ton of new friends from different places, and you won’t be restrained to your group of high school friends. My boyfriend is from a well-known high school in the Seattle area, and he has introduced me to people that he went to high school/middle school/elementary school with. But really, he mainly hangs out with people that he’s met from his freshman year section and his extracurriculars. </p>

<p>tl;dr-- If there are a handful of people from your high school coming, will you see them? Yes. Do you have to be friends with them? No.</p>

<p>Thanks for the great info, whitman2015!</p>

<p>Yes, thanks so so much whittie’15!</p>

<p>Anytime! :)</p>

<p>Move out questions from the parent of a first year. How does summer storage work at Whitman? Is there enough space? Do things need to be placed in boxes, or can you store a suitcase? Do most students take care of this during the days after classes end and before graduation? Do parents typically help with this? Anything else we should know? My son is assuming it will all work out!</p>

<p>Summer storage is super easy, at least for first-years! There is a period between the end of finals and graduation (dubbed “Camp Whitman”) when students can take care of moving out. All the student needs to do is pack their things in boxes (or suitcases) and label it (the RA will give instruction on what needs to be on the label), and then ask their RA to open the storage room for them to move their stuff into it. If you have larger objects (hampers, lamps, etc), they don’t need to be in boxes and you can just put a label on them. There was definitely enough room for my stuff, and I didn’t hear about that being a problem for anyone. Parents don’t really need to help out with this-- I did it alone in a couple of trips, or people ask their friends to help. The physical part of moving things to the storage room is really easy; it’s the packing up of all the stuff you own that’s the hard part! Luckily, the week of Camp Whitman leaves plenty of time for packing and having fun.</p>

<p>Hi! I m a HS student, who would like to know more abt Whitman.
Before, I read an article abt liberal arts college, jus wanna see that is Whitman similar to them.

  1. Are there many hippies in Whitman, because refer to the article, it claimed that there are many hippies in liberal arts college.
  2. What clothing do Whitman students usually wear? Refer to the article, it claimed that there are lots of ppl who wears high-heel and even dress up like a star to skl.
  3. Jux wanna know that is Whitman really environmental-conscious? Because I am kinda want to study environmental science in the future.
  4. Are there lots of rich ppl in Whitman? Refer to the article agn, it mentioned that there are lots of rich ppl, like sons or daughters of a great writier or CEO of a company in Wall Street. So i jux want to know whether ppl in Whitman are rich or not.
  5. What are the stereotyped students in Whitman. Plz describe
  6. Lastly, I acknowledge that i m kinda nerdy who doesnt reli want many parties. Is Whitman the right college for me?

<p>Sorry that it’s taken me so long to respond; it’s been pretty busy here!</p>

<p>1) I would say that Whitman’s student body is generally relatively outdoorsy, concerned with the environment, and quite liberal, so if those are the characteristics you mean by “hippie,” then yes. Are there people walking around in 60’s floral who haven’t showered in three weeks? Not so common. I wouldn’t say that all liberal arts colleges are hippie, though, if that is the matter at hand. I’ve heard Middlebury is relatively preppy, and when I visited Vassar, it had a more east-coast vibe. On the other hand, I think Reed is more “hippie” than Whitman.</p>

<p>2) Whitman students wear a variety of clothes. I see many people rocking the North Face and Patagonia, while plenty of people wear the standard mall fare (American Eagle, Forever 21, etc.). Others dress down, in athletic wear, or jeans and a sweatshirt. A fair amount of girls dress fashionably, in the sort-of hipster-trend way. There are definitely not as many people who get “dressed-up” for class as you would find in a larger school in a larger town, such as USC. But people do look nice when they go out on the weekends, and what not. I would say that no one “dresses up like a star to ski…” People here understand functionality and what to wear outdoors.</p>

<p>3) Whitman is FABULOUS for environmental cause and environmental studies. We have a campus climate group that also organizes several “break-out groups,” which are like student-run projects such as Bike Share (allows students to borrow bikes hourly), Mug Share (borrowing mugs from the coffee places on campus to reduce the waste from disposable coffee cups), solar panel initiatives, and more. There’s also an organic garden club on campus. In sophomore year, you can live in an interest house called the “Outhouse” which puts on environmentally friendly inspired events and deals with the campus recycling weekly. As far as academics go, I’ve heard wonderful things about the major here, and there’s a ton of combined majors you can do as well. You should check out the Semester in the West program, which is an awesome academic opportunity to travel across the west and learn about the environmental issues at hand. One of my good friends went on it this year (it is offered every other year) and learned a ton, made friends for a lifetime, and had a blast.</p>

<p>4) There are probably some rich people at Whitman, but literally no one is showy about it or anything. People aren’t walking around flaunting Gucci bags. That being said, Whitman does have a higher price tag than state schools, and so it probably does have more “well-off” people than University of Nevada. On the other hand, tons of people are on financial aid, have to work many hours a week, or are international students who can’t afford to go home every break. Overall, I think there’s a range of people from different economic backgrounds, but most people tend to be from middle/middle-upper class.</p>

<p>5) Stereotype: Hippies and hipsters. But not hipsters in a mean and stuck up way. Just hipsters in the mason-jar-toting Radiohead-listening way.</p>

<p>6) Whitman has a nerdy scene and a party scene. You could join Greek life if you want. But you will find a TON of people who want to play WoW, go to Renaissance Faire with you, LARP, watch ****ty science fiction movies, and study hard. Not everyone parties on weekends, and that’s totally cool. I would recommend living in North or Lyman to find people of similar interests.</p>

<p>Thanks for doing this. I have a few questions that I hope you can help with.

  1. I like to watch movies a lot, especially art house, foreign, and older films. Do movies like that ever play on campus, or would I have to search elsewhere for my film fix?
  2. What kind of music do kids on campus listen to, generally? I realize this may be kind of hard to answer because tastes vary, but if you have any insight on this it would be appreciated
  3. Is it possible and/or common for students to double major?
  4. Is it easy to start a new club at Whitman?</p>

<p>Whenever you get around to answering these, I thank you in advance for answering!</p>

<p>Hi- I am also a student considering Whitman pretty strongly, but trying to make a final decision. </p>

<li><p>Do you have any additional information on Sorority life and rushing? I am pretty sure I will be rushing regardless of the school I attend but I do not know a lot about Whitman’s system. Do girls only live in Prentiss sophomore year with their sorority? What are the differences between the four sororities? (Which ones are known for partying, etc?)</p></li>
<li><p>What do you know about the 3-2 or 3-3 programs? </p></li>

<p>Thank you!</p>

<p>1) I’ve heard that sorority life at Whitman is some of the best around, mainly because Whitman sororities are committed to not hazing their pledges, and really basing their judgments for who they offer bids to based on personality fit, not superficial qualities. If you rush, you will most likely get a bid from one of the four sororities (and their respective nick-names): Alpha Phi (A-Phi), Kappa Kappa Gamma (Kappa), Delta Gamma (DG), and Kappa Alpha Theta (Theta). I’ve only heard of a couple of people who never got any bids, and it’s because they were gossipy and mean.</p>

<p>Basically how rush works is that there is a week where you attend activities and get to know the girls in different sororities, tour their sections in Prentiss, etc. After some activities, you preference your top picks and they preference you, and then you’ll get invited to more activities with them and narrow it down from there. Sometimes people complain about rush, but only because it can involve long days, and it’s not nearly as cool as frat rush, where the guys get to go on free rafting trips, are taken out to lunch, etc. But you meet a lot of cool people, and there is absolutely no hazing or pressure to make a decision.</p>

<p>If you join, you’ll most likely live in Prentiss sophomore year. Most people live in section, unless they are an SA or RA, or if they are in an interest house that really pertains to what they love. But it would look kind of weird if you decided to NOT live in section and instead live in a regular dorm on campus.</p>

<p>While the sororities have a wide range of girls with different interests, here’s how the stereotype breaks it down: Kappas are the girly-girls, probably known for partying the most out of the bunch. DGs are more sporty and outgoing. Thetas are the academics. A-Phis are a mix, though I definitely get a hipster-y vibe. All the sororities party-- they have functions with frats that sometimes are dry and sometimes have alcohol. If you don’t drink, that’s totally fine, and people will not judge you or pressure you at all, at least in my experience. I think the best thing to do is to get to know the girls in the sororities at the time once you’re here on campus so you can get a better idea of where you fit in.</p>

<p>2) That depends on which program. I know a LOT about the 3-2 engineering program, because I strongly considered it. I don’t know so much about the other programs, besides that they are rarely done. My friend was thinking about doing 3-3 law, but apparently it hasn’t been done in like, 30 years. </p>

<p>Are you interested in the engineering one? Because that’s a whole spiel that will take me a while to describe, and I’d hate to blab on about it if you’re not interested!</p>

<p>Thank you so much! I am interested in anything you know about the engineering 3-2! What is the process and how would I initially show interest and start/register for the right beginning classes? Also, once in it are you guaranteed a recommendation and placement in the second college? </p>

<p>Totally unrelated: What is your advice on picking a residence hall and meal plan? </p>

<p>Thank you so much, this is all SO helpful!</p>