Negatives of ND?

<p>I was accepted early and I'm still trying to decide whether or not to go here so I went to some college student review websites and for the most part most of the students love or loved the school but some complained that a good number of the students were arrogant, condescending, closeminded, and intolerant of other people to the point where they had to transfer. Even though I chose to apply due to the academics, I don't want to feel miserable too. Just wanted some input, preferrably from students who are attending or people who have attended, as to whether or not these complaints have some truth.</p>

<p>Ok, I don't know how to put this nicely. My private catholic all girls high school is a very accepting environment (I was the sole transfer junior year to the school, and everyone was including me off the bat), but there was one girl who didn't really have many friends because she was "dorky" and wasn't very sociable in general. She got accepted to ND and went. When she came back after a couple months to visit teachers, I asked her how ND was because I had applied. She lit up and said she never felt more at home. So someone who was kind of the outcast at a very friendly high school found her niche at ND. I know this isn't a good overview of the feeling there, but it really impressed me and further proved ND's amicable environment.</p>

<p>That's a nice story justbumming, thanks! Any students or alumni have any input? I was trying to think of some other possible negatives and I thought of diversity. I know there's not much racially speaking, but how about economically, socially, etc.? Is the student body really as homogenous as critics say-all white upper class conservatives? If so, are others widely accepted?</p>

<p>I loved ND. It isn't for everyone, but it is for most people. If you are willing to get involved and take advantage of everything ND has to offer I think you will be very happy there. </p>

<p>The diversity is lacking a bit, but they are working on it and I found it to be very accepting.</p>

<p>I will be perfectly honest with you, the only reason I worry about you at ND is because you seem to be looking for a reason not to go. If that is the case, you WON'T fit in. If you are willing to go for the ride and enjoy the awesome opportunity of going to ND, then you will do fine.</p>

<p>I am attracted to ND irish68178, don't get me wrong, I'm just in the process of comparing schools. Thanks for your input! I really want to know for sure if this is the right school for me, so I think visiting will help. Anyone have any suggestions of places to see on my visit?</p>

<p>From my experience here (I'm a freshman), most everyone here loves the school, but there are some few that really dislike it, I've even met some people who hate it. I dislike ND for a couple reasons too. Main reasons are: the atmosphere here. I feel secluded from the rest of the world, sheltered off, like I'm not independent, cause there's nothing to be independent from living on bubble campus like this. I feel like my life now is exclusively Notre Dame, which some might enjoy, but I don't. South bend really sucks as much as people say, which is a lot of what makes it this way. Also, diversity is an issue to. Compared to myself, most everyone here that I've met come from pretty wealthy backgrounds, most everyone here is white catholic. Im not trying to discourage you from coming. What I look at as negatives, some might take in as positives. Also, a lot of what makes this school the ideal place for some, I'm more or less indifferent about. Like tradition, dorm comeraderie (sp), catholicness. I really don't care about this stuff much, but you might. It's all about what you personally want in a college. lol. Sorry, I went on a bit of a rant there, but you wanted negatives, right? lol</p>

<p>Do you think you are treated differently because of your race?</p>

<p>Look, I have to tell you, I was desperate to get into ND and I couldn't be happier. If, when you visit, you have any doubt about attending here, I'd suggest going elsewhere. There are a lot of people that want your spot in the incoming class - maybe as desperate as I was - and I know how they feel. I think a 98 % retention rate speaks for itself, but if you are not happy with the fact that it is a catholic university or whatever, leave the spot for someone who has spent much of their academic career to date dedicated to getting in ND. Just my opinion.</p>

<p>"Also, a lot of what makes this school the ideal place for some, I'm more or less indifferent about. Like tradition, dorm comeraderie (sp), catholicness. I really don't care about this stuff much,"</p>

<p>Don't mean to pick, but the things you mention -- the tradition, dorms, and Catholic identity -- are what make Notre Dame unique among schools with comparable academic reputations. And Notre Dame is unquestionably a somewhat sheltered environment. It's not an urban campus, and not within walking distance of traditional college town amenities. Presumably you knew these things going in, so why on earth did you apply to and then decide to attend ND?</p>

<p>i am a junior right now and i've never wanted to go anywhere else but ND... maybe the early "brainwashing" technique of grandparents, aunts, and uncles played a partial role....but i've been to ND at least once a year for football games and ive stayed with my cuz, and I got that feeling several times... like there was nowhere else for me... I loved the whole environment and everyone i met was extremely friendly. Driving onto campus with the leaves changing colors and lining the main road and looking down at the beautiful dome excited me..i know its the only place i want to go because when i was on campus i felt--even when visiting for a couple of days-- that i was a part of a long-reaching family, something bigger than myself and my ambitions... I also knew that any negatives to the school wouldnt compare to the positives.. i'm working at school and my grades every day with one thing on my mind: NOTRE DAME</p>

<p>Have you visited? this is really important and if you dont immediately get that feeling i was talking about, maybe you should seriously consider another school.</p>

<p>Thank you for your informative and candid reply korean<em>halfbreed, I'm sorry you feel you are in a bubble. Everyone else, thanks for the posts, I'm taking everything into consideration. Yes, DomeGuy, the retention rate is impressive. I think in order to get a true sense of the environment and the students I just have to visit. Claremarie, i think there are other reasons to apply to ND despite its location and sheltered environment, i thank korean</em>halfbreed for being honest and I don't think he should be poked at for his honesty.</p>

<p>No griffon, I haven't visited but I'm going to and I'm really anxious because I've heard good things. Like i wrote before, I believe I have to experience it firsthand before I make my decision. Apparently it's not for everyone.</p>

<p>me neither...everyone is entitled to their opinions....but as for me...
Strong of heart and true to her name
We will ne'er forget her
And will cheer her ever
Loyal to Notre Dame.</p>

<p>alright napoleonspade....good luck and i hope your experience is amazing...kind of a bummer you didnt visit during football season--even during this past disaster of a season--because it is a truly amazing experience...even if you are not a football fan its a blast</p>

<p>I think ND is a very accepting place overall, though obviously if you "stand out" in different ways (ie homosexual, extremely liberal, etc), it might be harder to find your niche. That being said, there will always be someone who shares a similar view.</p>

<p>One thing I do think ND could work on is diversity. Compared to peer institutions, ND is like vanilla ice cream. Sweet, rich, and white. It's not that people aren't accepting of different backgrounds/races, it's just that bc the school IS so white and homogeneous, different types of people are turned off, in favor of more diverse schools such as Michigan, UNC, etc.</p>

<p>I also think that because of the strong Catholic sentiment (which overall I definitely find to be one of its strong-points), different opinions are not always welcomed in the way they would be at other elite universities. That's NOT to say that you can't speak your mind, because you can. But people are more likely to pass of radical/liberal ideas as "hogwash", rather than actually considering what you have to say. For example, Berkeley (as liberal as it may be), started the Free Speech movement, which in essence ended the Vietnam War. That would not occur at ND. But at ND, you'll have professors offer you a seat at their dinner table, something that is more rare at larger universities.</p>

<p>ND is a steal. Every school has their pros and cons, but I have never, and I mean never heard anyone complain about their experience there. Good luck!</p>

<p>"Claremarie, i think there are other reasons to apply to ND despite its location and sheltered environment, i thank korean_halfbreed for being honest and I don't think he should be poked at for his honesty."</p>

<p>It's not a poke. I just cannot understand why someone who doesn't really like the dorm life, the Catholic identity, the midwest small town location, and the alleged lack of diversity, would have even considered Notre Dame, because he was bound to be disappointed. </p>

<p>Sort of like someone who doesn't really like big cities, "Jewishness", and the lack of other Korean students who nevertheless decides to attend Yeshiva. </p>

<p>It just doesn't make sense.</p>

<p>Alright then, let me word it differently. It's different being a prospective student compared to actually attending. Maybe ND's strong academics could have persuaded him, however upon actually living there, he experienced things differently than he could have perceived occurring just by solely visiting or reading a fancy pamphlet. It's simple. I also believe it's unnecessary to bring up pointless analogies because you are not contributing to the conversation at all, just being annoying by trying to argue with a poster (halfbreed) whose not even responding to you..probably not even trying to dignify your responses. And it's okay that you "just cannot understand" because that's what being closeminded does to someone. ( I read your past posts, and that's what I couldn't help but conclude) I'm sorry but I just had to laugh upon reading "alleged lack of diversity." Really...I'm sure ND is ranked as one of the lowest schools for diversity for no reason at all.</p>

<p>In reply to your comments claremarie, I completely understand what your trying to say. But apparently, I was pretty naive coming into Notre Dame, and I was so caught up in the hype and excitement of all that I had heard about Notre Dame that I expected nothing more but to love the place. And Frosh-O and all the dorm events at the beginning of the year only fed that glorified vision I had of ND, but as the year went on, I realized that I was just caught up in the moment, and this stuff really doesn't matter to me as much as other things do. Also, to the OP, you should definitely visit the school, and that will most likely help you a lot in getting an idea of whether or not this is a place you want to be. That's something I didn't do, and this also contributed to me being a bit naive. Not cause I didn't feel it was important to visit, my family just can't really afford to fly across the country like that. But like I said, I think I was just caught up with the hype and my expectations, a large part of which came from people like those on this board raving about all the positives and never talking about the negs. Thats why I'm trying to give you a more complete perspective from the other side of the fence, so you will know more what to expect. I'm not saying you wouldn't love it at ND. Most people do, I'm just saying there's a chance you might not, and you wanna try to figure out which side you stand on before you decide to come. And I'm glad you appreciated my candid response. I hope my comments will help you become more confident and comfortable in whatever decision you make.</p>

<p>"as the year went on, I realized that I was just caught up in the moment, and this stuff really doesn't matter to me as much as other things do"</p>

<p>Well, that makes a bit more sense. It's not so much that you didn't realize what sort of school Notre Dame was, but rather you didn't fully understand what sort of person YOU are, and what would ultimately be the most important parts of a university experience for YOU.</p>

<p>But even if you had visited, you probably would have had the same impression you had during Frosh-O and the beginning of the school year -- "this is a GREAT place!" -- so it's unlikely that you would have made a different decision. Visits are essentially snapshots of a campus -- you're just not there long enough to form a real impression of the complete undergraduate experience. And, of course, most people you run into will be trying to convince you to come. </p>

<p>So much of the college experience depends upon your roommates and the other people you live with, which is pretty much a random draw. Maybe you would get a different perspective on the school by switching dorms or roommates for next year.</p>

<p>Not sure what you mean by "diversity." Notre Dame is about 76% non-Hispanic white, compared to 74% non-Hispanic white in the US population as a whole. Although the percentage of blacks (5%) is well below the US black population as a whole (12%), the percentage of Asian students (8%) is twice the national percentage, and the percentage of Hispanic students (14%) is also higher than the national population.
There are students from every state in the country, from major metro areas to tiny midwestern towns. Nearly half the students receive need-based financial aid from the university, which means that they are not rich. (Indeed, the parents of many students who do not qualify for such aid would not consider themselves rich either). </p>

<p>Yes, the vast majority of students are Catholic, but so is 25% of the country.</p>

<p>Many universities that boast about their diversity may have students of all different colors, but whose (mostly liberal) political and social views are actually very similar.</p>