What do these different adjective mean when describing colleges?

<p>I'm filling out a survey for the college councilor, but I don't understand what some of the words in the section mean. I know the literal meaning, but can anyone give examples of colleges for each, or help me better understand it?
What type(s) of environment would you prefer at your college?
-preppy
-cosmopolitan
-laid-back
-traditional
-artsy</p>

<p>There are some other more straight forward ones, can you help me better understand these ones?</p>

<p>Some of these make sense than others as descriptors for an entire school.

[quote]
preppy

[/quote]

School could be mistaken for Abercrombie and Fitch commercial. People who aren't from the prep school bubble might feel marginalized.

[quote]
cosmopolitan

[/quote]

School is located in Manhattan.

[quote]
laid-back

[/quote]

People care less about grades.

[quote]
traditional

[/quote]

Old-school frat culture.

[quote]
artsy

[/quote]

Is an art school.</p>

<p>Examples</p>

<p>-preppy (College</a> Trad: Sewanee: The University of the South)
-cosmopolitan (NYU)
-laid-back (Urban</a> Dictionary: UC Santa Cruz, U Hawaii Manoa)
-traditional (Penn</a> State Fraternity & Sorority Life - Alphabet & Terminology)
-artsy (Tapped</a> In: The Bennington Blog)</p>

<p>You might ask the counselor what he/she thinks of when he/she uses those words. That would lead to a more meaningful conversation about the type of environment you are looking for - if indeed that does matter to you at all.</p>

<p>Preppy = Country Club atmosphere. Many students are wealthy/upper class (or want to appear that way). Lots of emphasis on social status. Students tend to dress up in stylish, name-brand clothing. </p>

<p>Cosmopolitan = Global atmosphere. Geographically diverse student body, with many international students. Typical of many big-city schools.</p>

<p>Laid-Back = Relaxed atmosphere. Students aren't cut-throat competitive with each other, so there's not a lot of stress or pressure academically or socially.</p>

<p>Traditional = Stereotypical College atmopshere. The kind of colleges portrayed in movies and TV... Collegey-looking campus, fraternies/sororities, big sports scene, etc.</p>

<p>Artsy = Hippie-ish atmosphere. Students and faculty tend to be liberal, creative, and non-traditional.</p>

<p>Lets add a few more adjectives to the list that you might find useful when thinking about schools and their different cultures:</p>

<p>Granola: this is more 'hippie,' liberal, social activism/social justice, non-competitive, environmentally aware, reputation for socializing with dope (as opposed to booze) (Oberlin would be an example)</p>

<p>Quirky: tends to be individualistic, no informal dress code, no frat scene, no big sports scene, harder to characterize because students tend to do their own thing (Carleton, Grinnell, Macalester - midwestern LACs come to mind)</p>

<p>Intellectual: students are intense, academically driven - stay up late to talk about 'ideas' - U of Chicago and Swarthmore are typical.</p>

<p>I don't think of artsy as being 'hippy-ish' by the way. (That's granola). Arty schools general have a lot of kids who are interested in the arts. They may or may not be 'hippy-ish.'</p>

<p>Consider too some of the characteristics that could strongly define a school community - religion, single sex, tech school (like MIT, Georgia Tech, Harvey Mudd), political culture (how liberal vs. how conservative)</p>

<p>Note that many schools combine several of these adjectives. For example, Vassar is often described as artsy and intellectual. Reed is intellectual and quirky.</p>

<p>
[quote]
Preppy = Country Club atmosphere. Many students are wealthy/upper class (or want to appear that way). Lots of emphasis on social status. Students tend to dress up in stylish, name-brand clothing.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Preppy has several different connotations and it is important to determine which one you are talking about. |</p>

<p>If you are talking preppy as in old-school northeast prep, High WASP subculture, then students don't dress up at all - in fact, clothing is more utilitarian, often passed down; your brother's topsiders, your mother's navy cashmere sweater with the small hole in it tied casually around your waist, that type of thing ... the repp tie fished out of the bottom of the book bag for dress up. Think Hamilton, Bowdoin, maybe Williams.</p>

<p>If you are talking preppy as in Southern subgroup, then you're talking Lilly shift dresses, lots of pink and green, and everything quite darling. Think Sweet Briar and Hollins and old-school UVA.</p>

<p>If you are talking preppy as it gets used today, it can simply mean affluent upper middle suburban polished, which is a whole different animal. That's where you get the Abercrombie & Fitch, but neither of the above type subtypes would consider A&F preppy <em>at all.</em> Unless it was their grandfather's sweater from the old, old, A&F before it became a teen magnet.</p>

<p>^ Ha...I can remember when Abercrombie & Fitch was where you went to get outfitted for an African safari...like the kind of adventure Theodore Roosevelt would embark upon. Today's A & F...same name, completely different company.</p>

<p>^ Ha! I remember when Banana Republic sold pith helmets by mailorder. Today's BR - same name, completely different company...</p>