Trinity's Reputation

My daughter, who is a high school junior, really liked Trinity College on our recent college tour of New England and mid-Atlantic institutions. We are from California and although we are aware of the high regard in which the NESCAQ colleges are held, we don’t know a lot about how Trinity’s specific reputation has fared over the years. It and Connecticut College look to be the easiest to get into in the league and I wonder why that is. Although my daughter really liked the vibe and feel of the campus, I worry about some of the comments made in earlier threads about it being a party school and an exclusive student body. Any thoughts or experiences would be appreciated. Thank you!

If any Trinity students or grads happen to be looking at this site, I would LOVE to see some responses to @frutsun’s question. Thanks!

My daughter, who graduated from a West Coast high school, just completed her first year at Trinity. She loved it. The classes are typically small and the professors are approachable. Trinity also offers merit aid. While there are parties at Trinity, the college provides many alternative activities that are fun and well-attended. My daughter does not drink or do drugs. She says she has never felt pressured to do so. She is very happy at Trinity. I think the key to her success has been a willingness to work hard and connect with her professors and other students.

This recent racist ranting by a Trinity professor probably is not helping the college’s reputation:

@Horus: Trinity is probably the least SJW-friendly of America’s elite and semi-elite LACs. How ironic it is, then, that the school is about to enter the national consciousness as a hotbed of irrational leftist discourse.

@lulee1 Thanks for sharing your D’s experience. What is her intended major? My S likes the arts and will interview this summer. We visited last fall and liked the school. The alumni network and career services appear strong. Did your D participate in any of the programs for first years. We like Interarts and they also seem to have nice pre orientation programs.

@magnetnh My daughter’s intended major is neuroscience and she participated in the Interdisciplinary Science Program. She currently is doing summer research, which is an option for ISP students. I would highly recommend participating in one of the pre-orientation programs. My daughter did three and she enjoyed them all. Pre-orientation allowed her to ease herself into campus and college life. She made a lot of friends in those programs that she has kept through her first year.

Love the replies! @Lulee1, what was it that motivated your daughter to attend Trinity? If you don’t mind sharing what other places she was considering and why she opted for Trinity, that would be interesting to hear. My daughter will be a HS senior this Fall and is interested in LACs in the west and east, and would prefer one that’s in (not just near) a city. There aren’t a lot of those; hence my interest in Trinity.

@Brother Ray 24 My daughter chose Trinity mainly for two reasons. First, she had a fantastic interview with one of the admissions counselors. After the interview, she told me Trinity had moved to the top of her list. Second, she was offered merit aid, which I jokingly describe as enough to make Trinity almost affordable. An invitation to visit Trinity a few weeks before decision day sealed the deal for her. She went alone (I did not want to influence her impression) and came back certain that Trinity was the place for her. She has asked me not to identify the other colleges she considered. But I will say two universities in the West offered her substantial merit money and two other east coast colleges offered her admission but no financial or merit aid.

@Lulee1 Thanks so much for all you’ve shared. This school and Holy Cross are on S18 top list. He will interview in a couple of weeks. There is an ad rep that visits his HS and I’ve been told is quite nice. I was split as to whether S18 should interview on campus or with the rep at his HS in the fall. Even posted here on CC but I think I will let him interview on campus. Any tips your D could provide for the interview would be appreciated. Did she provide a copy of her resume? Or go blindly into the interview?

@magnetnh I don’t recall if my daughter took a resume to the interview. What I can tell you is that she and the admissions person had a long two-way conversation. She told me they discussed many things, both Trinity and non-Trinity subjects. I would recommend that your son come prepared to fully participate in a meaningful two-way conversation. For example, she brought up Trinity’s party reputation and its reputation for having a lot of wealthy boarding school students. She asked about the neighborhood’s relationship with the college. But they also talked about high school stress, social justice issues and leaving home. If my daughter were interviewing this summer, I’m sure she would ask about the sociology professor who was put on leave this week.

It is my understanding that Professor Williams’ words were taken out of context by “Campus Reform” - a dubious website which ironically claims to promote free speech on campuses, but in reality targets professors who call attention to white privilege. It was reported to the alumni by the President of the college that the article referenced above resulted in severe harassment and death threats for the professor and his family. Thus the President wisely put him on leave to protect the campus. (As an alum, I feel confident that the current President is leading the school with a calm, wise, steady hand and is truly trying to act in the best interest of all the students at all times.)

My 1st yr dau is loving TC. She attended a pre-orientation program (highly recommend) and made good friends with common interests. She is not into the party scene & finds plenty of other activties to do instead. She’s joined student govt & a women’s rights grp as well as community org. She said while some do party, she’s never felt pressured to do so. She said students are actually pretty serious about their studies…good students don’t stay good students by partying constantly. She’s enjoying her classes so far and finds the professors knowledgeable and approachable. Overall thrilled with the decision to attend.

Thank you everybody!! Your insights have been invaluable!

@frutsun Is your D still interested in Trinity and Conn? My S will be visiting them both in November and will most likely apply RD along with Holy Cross. Seems like you are on the West Coast so not sure if you will visit. I can report back from S visits.

@magnetnh I am not the OP but my D is interested in these two schools and would like to hear what you learn on your visits.

My S was at Trinity this weekend and loved it! He is now thinking ED but as an FA family we have to decide within next few days. He loved the location (but we are city people), the diversity, the resources, the students who hosted him and even the class he sat in on which was Calc and he is an arts major. I am not crazy about binding ED but we will have to consider his wishes.

@magnetnh yes, my daughter has applied. She was all set for ED2, but then got a deferral from Tulane on her ED1 app and she’s hoping there’s a slim chance she could still get in. However, Trinity is a close second. She loved it more than any other NESCAC college by far. I hope she is accepted. She also applied to Conn. Good luck to all of you!

My daughter attended Trinity. She was challenged in the classroom, participated in one of Trinity’s amazing study abroad program, did an internship which had her in the statehouse lobbying to get a bill passed, and participated on a varsity sport. She made lifelong friendships. She and all of her friends got great jobs upon graduation and all see each other on a regular basis. Trinity was life changing for my daughter.

@magnetnh Did your son end up applying regular decision? Trinity has initiated a new financial aid program this year through which they provide a financial aid package to low income students which automatically renews each year. I applied ED 2 as an international student and could only afford to pay $5000 per year, and Trinity met 100% of my need! My package doesn’t even include any loans! That’s almost a full ride, so I’d say they’re definitely more generous this year. I hope your son gets in!

I’m really concerned regarding Trinity’s reputation as a party school and regarding drug use since I’m definitely not a party person and don’t do drugs at all. Worried whether I’ll be able to make good friends who don’t pressure me into partying a lot or doing drugs. @Lulee1 I’m curious as to what the admissions counselor’s answers were to your daughter’s questions regarding Trinity’s reputation. I’m an international student and couldn’t afford to visit, but I loved the programs Trinity offered (I hope I get a place in the ISP), the campus, generous FA and focus on international students, which is why I ended up applying ED 2.