I saw that the last time a large thread was made about my school was back in '04 or 05. I think it is high time for a bit of an update, so I will walk you through some of the things about RIT! Please ask me any questions you may have about the university. I will periodically check back.
A little background note about me-
I am finishing up my sophomore year studying Web & Mobile Computing within the Information Science and Technology department of the Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences. I am a girl (I mention this because of the concerns regarding the gender ratio that I will get into later). I will be writing code for an aerospace company in Colorado this summer for my first of two required internships. I scored a 1320 on the SAT, had a 3.6 HS GPA (but dual-enrolled in a university for chem, physics, CS, math, and English classes during high school and maintained a 4.0 in those) and was originally admitted for CS. I was also accepted into similar schools, such as RPI.
I will try and go through each of the sections mentioned in the previous post and write the updated version of it.
- Academics. RIT has 9 colleges, including the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID. I'll brush on this soon!)
- College of Applied Science and Technology (CAST)
- Saunders College of Business
- Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences (GCCIS. My home.)
- Kate Gleason College of Engineering
- College of Health Sciences and Technology
- College of Imaging Arts and Sciences (CIAS)
- College of Liberal Arts (COLA)
- College of Science
- National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID)
The academics here at RIT are no joke. Yes, everyone here has a couple classes here and there that make us question why on earth we are required to take them (shout-out to ISTE 260 and NMDE 111), but they are few and far between. Most people I know here take their academics seriously, but this depends on the people you surround yourself with. The professors I and my peers have had for the most part care very much about their students. They know what they are doing with the material, and they want to help you understand it. Many of them are top-notch, and they expect work from their students. There are professors that I like so much I will stop by their office hours simply to talk to them because it is enjoyable to bounce ideas back and forth. I have genuinely enjoyed most of my classes, even the “weed out” courses.
As a freshman, I was even able to get involved in a paid research project with a couple of professors in the Software Engineering department that focused on accessibility in mobile applications. I simply expressed a passion to learn, and was brought on so that I could do so.
RIT’s co-op program is one of the best in the nation, and I have been very satisfied with the experience at the career fairs and employers recruiting on campus.
RIT is academically on an upward trajectory, which is really exciting to take part in. We are now ranked #97th by U.S. News for National Universities. For individual programs, though, we fair better. All of our design programs, most computing programs, and engineering programs are top-ranked. My major is in the top 10% in the nation, according to College Factual. Definitely check out their data for individual disciplines. Our new president, Dr. Munson, is also pushing to bring RIT to preeminence.
I won’t attempt to give my classes a letter grade like the last reviewer did from their visit, as a lot of factors tie into the learning experience. For specifically the rigor and quality of the professors, though, I would say we fair very well.
Also worthy of note, we are on semesters now, not quarters.
A note on the published acceptance rate-
Acceptance rates have become tied to how people perceive a school’s prestige. Keep in mind that RIT admits by program, and some programs have much higher acceptance rates than others. Animation, for example, has a <3% acceptance rate. There are 50 seats in that program. Liberal arts, on the other hand, has an easy standard for admission. Engineering and computing majors are tough, but not overly so. The published acceptance rate is the average across all programs.
Admittedly, I do think we accept too many people, but that is a longer conversation for another time.
Ah, Brick City. The appearance of campus was a con for me when I was a prospective student- I wanted the lovely old academic halls found at familiar New England colleges. Because the Henrietta campus was built 50 years ago, we don’t have any of the original buildings from the Rochester location. Instead, we got ugly brutalist brick buildings. Yay!
All recent construction has been much improved, though, and the newer areas of campus are genuinely nice. The bricks become oddly endearing in a way.
Dorms - I don’t particularly have much to say about the dorms because I never had to live in them and only visit. I do know that we have had issues in recent years of not having enough space. They strike me as pretty standard college dorm living, though.
Food - Honestly, students complain and I don’t understand. We actually have a decent variety of food, especially compared to other colleges! My favorite part is when RIT brings in local food establishments on different days of the week. Butter chicken day is Thursday from the Indian restaurant. Best day of the week.
School Spirit - I actually have found the school spirit to be fine! Most people I know are happy they decided to attend here, and we do love our D1 hockey team!
- Problems Let's talk weather. It will affect you differently depending on where you are from. I am from Massachusetts and have honestly been underwhelmed by the winters here. The only awful part is the wind. Everyone. Hates. The. Wind. But we have tunnels connecting places, so that makes it better. If you are from somewhere warmer, it'll be a rough adjustment.
Gender ratio. I don’t actually view this as a huge problem, but people seem worried about it. It’s not terrible for the school overall (I believe we are like 60/40-ish? Maybe better than that now). Most girls are not in Gleason or Golisano (engineering and computing), but if you are concerned about your son being able to date then I would say his first problem is not the ratio. If he is a decent, non-creepy human being who socializes, he’ll probably be OK.
I have found the number of girls in my major to be a little annoying, but not something to be super caught up on. It is better than 2005, certainly. We normally have no less than 4 in a class. WiC (Women in Computing) also exists now. They do an awesome job supporting the girls in Golisano.
NTID students are stuck in dorms for three years if they want to keep their scholarships. This is ridiculous. Everyone else can move out after freshman year.
Parking. If you are a commuter and don’t have a reserved pass, parking can be tough.
- Social Life Join clubs. We have oodles of them. Diversity is rather good, in my opinion. Greek life is very friendly and not super stereotypical! Leave your door open freshman year. Don't be that shut in guy that nobody gets to know. RIT students are generally super friendly and willing to talk. I will occasionally sit with random people I don't know for lunch, just because. We have people of all sorts, seriously. NTID offers a really unique experience too! Coming here for school has been the first time that I have had deaf students in my classes, and I am learning a few signs and have friends in NTID.
Rochester as a city is becoming a neat little place. There are some super great spots to go to if you have a car. Just be willing to go out exploring. I can definitely recommend some places.
Overall I am happy with my decision to attend here. I realize RIT has its flaws, but I am proud to be a part of this school. I am growing here.