Eckerd College
Saint Petersburg, FL, USA

Reviews

Eckerd College
3.58 Average Rating

Tess from Morton Grove, IL

a current student here
36 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Eckerd College is a very small liberal arts school in St. Pete, FL. The best part about attending a small school is that the class sizes are smaller, which enhances learning. You actually get to know your professors (which are all very helpful) and they get to know you. All my professors are more then willing to help during their office hours and really try to help you succeed. Eckerd College has an exceptional Marine Science program right on the water front with a hands on approach to learning. Eckerd is also very focused on having well rounded students that are familiar with a variety of subjects.
Am enjoying being here
If you like warm, sunny, and sometimes wet weather then you will be very happy at Eckerd College. The scenery at Eckerd is very different then the average college campus. On my way to class I pass by Eckerd's South Beach right on Boca Ciega Bay, palm trees, pelicans, hammocks, people playing volleyball, an occasional dolphin in the distance, and much more. Eckerd College has its own waterfront program where students can take out kayaks, sailboats, and fishing equipment, as well as sign up for wake board trips, wind surfing lessons, boat trips, and more. The students, teachers, and other campus workers are all very friendly. There are tons of clubs, activities and special events to keep anyone having fun. The food here is alright. They try to have variety. There is a salad bar, soup, pizza, sandwich section, cereal, vegetarian, grill, world foods and comfort food section.
Bang for the buck
One of the draw backs on EC is that it is pretty expensive. However, most students get some sort of scholarship. I would say with the setting, activities, and quality of education at Eckerd that it is probably worth all the money. Lets face it college is expensive where ever you go. The best way to get your money's worth is to GO TO CLASS. Try not to party during the school week, and don't go to the beach until your homework is done.
Tips for prospective students
If you decide to come to Eckerd it should be for the right reasons. Don't Just come here for the sun and the beach, come here if there is a program you are interested in. Eckerd is still a college. The Florida atmosphere can make it hard to focus, so make sure you are ready to work. Also, I recommend bringing a bike or a car because otherwise it can be hard getting off campus. There are some buses that take you off campus but they can be confusing. Or at least make a lot of friends with people that have a car.
Great for these types of students
There are a lot of science majors and people that care about the environment. Eckerd trys to be very Eco friendly. Eckerd is also pretty good for art, language, politcal science, international relations, etc. There are many opportunities to study abroad. EC has a special three week winter semester for sophomores thru seniors where you get to go abroad (trips to japan, new zealand, italy, argentina, new mexico, etc.) or if you want to save money they offer some on campus classes. Freshmen have an on campus autumn term before the upperclassmen get here to help them get used to the campus. If you are into american football this isn't the place for you. Eckerd has no football team, but there are most other common sports. However, our D2 sports teams aren't very good. I love Eckerd Tritons! We just aren't very good... There is no Greek life, but our dorms are named after Greek letters... There are a lot of people who drink alcohol, but there are also a lot of people who don't. Who ever you are you will fit in somewhere at Eckerd College.
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Deborah from Abilene, TX

a current student here
24 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Eckerd is a small liberal arts college on the water with a reputation for sending graduates straight into jobs, internships, and prestigious graduate schools. This is because the professors and classes (small usually around 12-25 students) are designed not only to provide expected information on areas of interest, but to build skills that help students to think differently about their place in the world. Once you get past the intro-level courses which are pretty basic in any college, you can enroll in classes that are more interesting and engaging. Like any school you attend, you get out of it what you put in. So if you prefer a smaller, more fun and intimate college where you can form close relationships with peers and professors, and if you utilize the resources the school provides, then you can definitely gain an education that matches your goals and helps you succeed.
Am enjoying being here
Really there isn't much to complain about a school that not only has quality classes and typical educational resources, but allows students to kayak, wake board, swim, tan, and sail, etc. at the Waterfront for free! There is the Yellow Bike program in which bikes are located throughout campus for you to ride to and from classes and wherever on campus. I can lay-out while doing homework on Kappa field and take a break to walk 30 seconds to South Beach on campus and lay in the hammock. It seems like fun is always on nearly everyone's mind, so it isn't hard to find people, parties, or activities to enjoy. And if you're stressed and need to relax, there are places on campus to just sit and find peace. The main reason I'm enjoying being here, however, is the friends I have made. Students come here from all over the country and world and are open-minded, kind, spirited, and fun. I made close friends here in the first month faster than I have ever made best friends in my life. The sunny atmosphere seems to radiate from everyone sometimes, and that's the key: it's up to you to have a good attitude.
Bang for the buck
The only problem I have had with Eckerd is the price. It's a pretty expensive school--way above my reasonable budget--but most schools are expensive. It's a fact that student loan debt is one of the only 2 good debts, so don't worry if you have to take out a loan. Scholarships are also available, and there are always people willing you help you out. When you're spending so much money on anything, it's easy to point out the flaws. The school does sometimes seem to try to squeeze money out of you for the most random things, but then there are tons of activities and free stuff the school provides, too. The school places extra emphasis on study abroad and service-learning, so you can find plenty of opportunity to travel, learn, and grow outside the campus and country, and a lot of these programs are cheap compared to other schools'. The setting is amazing, the surrounding cities offer endless things to do, the food is really good compared to many other schools (although it's easy to get spoiled/bored with the cafeteria food), the classes are great, and the people are supportive. If you take advantage of all this and WORK HARD, it's worth it.
Tips for prospective students
Don't get distracted. Even within the first week you can find yourself getting swept up in all of the extracurricular pleasures of college life. Many students drink and smoke, but a lot of others don't. Therefore, don't feel pressured to abandon all work ethic. You should also never feel like you have to lock yourself in a study room in order to get schoolwork done. If you take a mature approach to your studies from the beginning and realize that the classes are good and the professors want you to learn and succeed, then it's not hard to wake up in the morning and go to class. Just remember to save the partying and playing until your work is done. Your friends will understand. College is a time to discover what it is that makes you You. Take the opportunity that comes with living, learning, and exploring in a safe, familiar environment like this campus to establish your interests and work towards your dreams.
Great for these types of students
When I was describing Eckerd to my friend she said, It's like the Island of Misfits! How awesome! And that description is perfect. If you love the water; sunny, humid and sometimes rainy weather (in the rainy season); and small class size, it's perfect. But I know content students here who actually hate swimming! Eckerd's great for the environmentally conscious (we put a lot of emphasis on sustainability), for vegans and vegetarians, for meditate-rs, yoga-doers and rights activists. But it's also home to politicians, scientists (our Marine Science program is one of the best in the nation), writers, musicians, I-don't-know-what-the-heck-I'm-doing-yet-ers, and every type of person in between, above and below. If you have an interest that isn't represented already (unlikely) then you can just form a club! If you've always been extremely focused on schoolwork, it might be hard for you to adjust to the fun-loving atmosphere, but everyone is here because they want to learn. My friends are as varied as their interests, yet we can all find endless things in common. If you're open-minded and don't mind the weather, you should get along just fine.
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Alexandra from Woodbine, GA

a current student here
10 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I am a marine biology major at Eckerd College. While this major is in no way easy, it is a very mind opening one. I have learned much in just one semester here in Eckerd. This major does require lots of studying and dedication, but the end result is well worth it.
Am enjoying being here
I have made many great friends, the food is great and there are always events to go to! Eckerd is full of things to do including the on campus beach and the fact that it is a pet-friendly campus!
Bang for the buck
While the tution is very high, it is worth it. Eckerd offers many things that other colleges can't. The college is built right on Tampa Bay, so Marine Biology majors have instant access to the water. It has small class sizes, dedicated professors and also great food!
Tips for prospective students
Be prepared to work hard, but also enjoy the many things that Eckerd has to offer.
Great for these types of students
Studious, athletic, outdoorsy and hard working.
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Mattie from St. Petersburg, FL

a current student here
9 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
eckerd college is like no other college you'll find, often times referred to as camp eckerd. located on the waterfront, this very small college focuses largely on protecting environmental and marine habitats. eckerd provides amazing people, programs, and opportunities you won't find at most other institutions.
Tips for prospective students
don't panic; eckerd is very small compared to other schools and very relaxing once you're there. eckerd will provide unique experiences that will last you a lifetime so just relax and enjoy yourself.
Academic Rigor
largely depends on which area you're majoring in. marine science and other science majors involve very intensive courses that you won't find elsewhere. these classes will however greatly prepare you for a career in these majors. one of the top majors, environmental studies, is similar to the science majors but considerably less rigorous, however still intensive and still very rewarding. other popular majors are psychology and creative writing.
Dorm Life
dorms are small and make it easy to get to know your neighbors. the ras are amazing in organizing dorm events and being there in times of need. eckerd dorms have various themes you can choose from such as all-girls, health and wellness, community service, and pet dorms. eckerd is one of the few schools in the country that allows pets such as cats, dogs, birds, and other small animals.
Food and Dining
the cafeteria is better here than at other school i toured. options include a fresh salad bar, pizza, vegetarian, and other hot food stations every day. nearly every meal there is the option to have the dish of the day made to your special liking by amazingly friendly staff members who love their job and the students they cook for. the other on campus option is the triton's pub which is open 12 hours a day on weekdays and open late on the weekends. the pub offers a consistent menu, a made to order wrap station, as well as various bottled drinks and snacks. the pub offers coffee, ice cream, and smoothies.
What to do for fun
go visit the waterfront and all activities are free to students if you complete a swim test at the beginning of your freshman year. such activities include paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing, fishing trips, wake-boarding trips, and sunset cruises, and also provides an area for swimming and laying out. there is also south beach to go lay out on as well as various hammocks hanging around campus. theres also kappa field for impromptu soccer games.
Bang for the buck
while tuition has risen, so have the scholarships and you won't find another education like this. teachers are very closely involved with their students and take pride in their work and are determined to give each and every student an education that will last them a lifetime.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
every spring kappa karnival occurs where the school sets up a small carnival free for staff and students. this usually includes a few rides, various games, free food, and live entertainment.
the school also recently built the go pavilion where they host events, live entertainers, and when not in use is an outdoor with a roof basketball court.
Great for these types of students
students here are often seen as hippies due to their involvement in helping the planet.
Clubs and Activities
clubs for anyone and everyone. the most unique of all the activities would be the search and rescue team. ecsar is only found here and they help local area boaters on a 24/7 basis. through ecsar you'll find great friends and memories and be active in serving your community.
Greek Life
there are no fraternities or sororities and it creates considerably less stress. you will be sure to find your niche without the help of these.
Campus Safety
very nice and friendly to the students while always looking out for your safety. there is a guard house at the one and only accessible entrance to the campus to monitor who comes on. ids are checked in the evenings and on the weekends to keep unwanted people from harassing students. they can be reached 24/7 for safety concerns or when locked out of your room. they are also very lenient and understanding when it comes to partying.
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Dakota from Hilton Head Island, SC

a past student here
7 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Eckerd will definitely be the best college experience you'll ever have. You'll learn a lot, both academically, and about yourself. There's a reason everyone calls it summer camp.
Tips for prospective students
I recommend attending the Prospective Student events; they let you spend a few days on campus so you can get to know what it's really like, including sitting in on a few classes and going to some events. Don't be intimidated by everyone--we've all been there and everyone is friendly and willing you help you if you need it!
Academic Rigor
The adjustment from high school to college is going to be a challenge at first, but the small class sizes make it a lot easier. The professor's actually know your name and are willing to help you with anything you need.
Dorm Life
The dorms aren't in the greatest condition, but they're honestly not that bad--it adds to the college experience. As far as everything else goes, everyone in the dorms form a huge bond with each other and always find something to do. That's not to say you can't go hang out with people in other dorms--everyone does, but it's nice to know you don't have to go too far to find some friends.
Food and Dining
I was glad that Eckerd didn't have the traditional fast food menus that most colleges and universities have. There was a pretty good selection, although the vegetarian options were pretty narrow. Overall the food was okay, and there were enough healthy options that no one gained the freshman 15.
What to do for fun
If you like the beach, this is the school for you. They have a private beach we call South Beach that overlooks the gulf, and it's absolutely beautiful. They also have what's called The Waterfront, where you can rent paddle boards, kayaks, windsurfers, canoes, and sailboats, as well as camping and fishing gear.
Bang for the buck
I think the Waterfront program definitely makes up for the tuition expenses, providing you take full advantage. The school also holds frequent events where they bring in comedians or bands such as Hello Goodbye.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Every year before finals week, the schools holds what is known as Kappa Karnival, where they fill a big empty field with all sorts of carnival rides and games, along with free food and drinks. Some people take the carnival part literally and dress up in all sorts of crazy outfits, others come in their usual attire. It's a great way to blow off steam right before finals!
Great for these types of students
Everyone at Eckerd is very laid back and relaxed. It's pretty easy to find your balance between social and academic life [most people actually do homework on the beach or the docks], but this isn't your typical brainiac school--we like to have fun!
Clubs and Activities
They have everything from the Scooba Diving club to Dumbledore's Army, Hillel club to the Improv. group [my personal favorite]. You name it, they have it. Aside from clubs, they have all sorts of activities such as Coastal Cleanups, the Splash Bash, triathlons, and lots of really fun classes at the gym!
Campus Safety
Campus Safety is very good at responding to calls. I would say the only downside is that the campus doesn't have the blue lights or other poles located throughout campus that you can call from, but Eckerd is very safe so there's really no need to worry.
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Jessica from Saint Petersburg, FL

a past student here
6 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
I graduated in 2012, and I can't tell you how much I miss this school. I learned so much about life, as well as academics that this school has truly changed my life. The Eckerd community is a tight-knit group of close friends, professors, mentors, and the community of St. Petersburg, and you'll remain connected to Camp Eckerd the rest of your life.
Tips for prospective students
Apply and take a tour. You'll enjoy the college campus as well as gain an opportunity to speak to current students. They have a full Prospective Student Weekend, and this was where I met some of my first friends and experienced how much fun college would be. They also have an Autumn Term where only freshmen get to attend school and experience campus life. Also, the college is right on the water and 5 minutes away from St Pete Beach and Pass-a-Grille beach. I recommend talking to a professor a student and trying to figure out which degree path is right for you, and I know they are always super helpful in anything you ask of them.
Academic Rigor
Classes are pretty tough. Be prepared to spend some days in the library when all you really want to do is go to the beach or Kappa field. However, if you succeed academically, you'll go pretty damn far.
Dorm Life
Dorm life is okay. I was torn between giving this a 3 or 4 star review. My reasoning is because I moved off campus my junior year, but only because I was able to purchase a condo on the beach as a short sale. Anyways, my first 2 years on campus was hysterically crazy fun, and super serious academically. I had to learn to balance the parties and the education, but I soon got the hand of things. My freshman (2008) year we had the Ying Yang Twins on campus and Bullshit Ballet. Bullshit Ballet was where the rugby team (which is awesome by the way), got together and put on a performance that joked about events that happened that year around the school. There's also Kappa Karnival and Kappa Kitchen...be careful what you eat at Kappa Kitchen, and never miss Kappa Karnival. The freshman and sophomore dorms are usually community bathrooms...it's not as bad as you think. I was surprised they were always kept clean because I went into EC having a fear of sharing my bathroom. I have a friend who is still attending EC and I was sent a picture message of the newest post in the bathroom that said something along the lines of Tours will be coming through today. Please make sure to wear clothes.

The dorms are pretty decent... recycling is pretty big, but the are mostly filled with beer cans to be honest. However, you can always find a place on campus to recycle whatever your heart desires. Iota was the newest dorm when I was there and Nu was always considered the party dorm (but you can't live there until junior year anyways). Kappa...well...when you tour Kappa....if there are tours even going through Kappa, you will understand the term barefoot hippie pretty well. When you tour you should ask about Zetaween, Kappa Ball, or the djs that randomly start playing.

Certain dorms also allow pets...for instance I had my dog on campus while I was there and absolutely loved her. Others had snakes, cats, reptiles of some sort, and other random animals, including a ferret that was wa...
Food and Dining
Decent food and dining. You'll get sick of it, but on holidays and when there are events at the school, the school's food is pretty damn good. There's always the pub with Big Dawg who makes the best sandwiches you'll ever have. Ms. Rosemary is in the caf., be sure to befriend her quickly because if you forget a meal swipe or your card, she might be nice that day and let you go on in for free. PS. the cookies by the pizza are amazing.
What to do for fun
Here's a list: kappa field, south beach, water activities at the waterfront (paddle board, wake board, swimming, etc.), pool on campus, down town St. Pete, the Undertow, Tampa is close by, Tampa music fest (Sunset Music Festival), and then you can always find a local with a boat.
Bang for the buck
It's expensive, but it's sooo worth every penny.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Kappa Karnival - a carnival on kappa field that's a giant party with neon lights
Bullshit Ballet - a theatrical production by the rugby team (if they are still doing it). If you messed up during the school year, you're part of the skit.
Spring Fling - spring ball
Kappa Ball - the Kappa party after Spring Ball where the girls take their dresses off and give it to the guys. So guys wear the dresses and girls wear their pjs.
Autumn Term - only freshman are allowed on campus during this time to get oriented with EC
Pitchers with Professors - if you're 21+ years you can go to the pub and talk about life and your studies over a pitcher of beer (or more) with your professor
Pet Life - they allow pets on campus
Yellow Bikes - free yellow bikes for transportation across campus
The Gauntlet - running on top of the roofs from 1 end to the other without getting caught. This is a right of passage for EC kids, just run fast. I think they might have put up sensors on top of the roofs by now though.
Great for these types of students
Anyone laid back and okay with random events and people. Those that can manage their time wisely between free life and academic life. Those who are ready for hard work that will kick your butt some days, but that will be especially rewarding later.
Greek Life
non existent, but for the better. I'd say that because there's no greek life the students are close and more accepting of one another.
Campus Safety
Like any campus, there's always some issues, but for the most part this is a very safe campus.
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Michelle from Crystal Lake, IL

a current student here
6 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Eckerd is home. Unlike any other school I feel comfortable as myself. No other school would help create me the way Eckerd College has.
Tips for prospective students
College visits are frequent here, and if you plan on visiting take the time to talk to current students! I wasn't able to visit Eckerd College before attending, but it was the best shot in the dark I have ever taken. The small class size is beneficial for the academic and social life.
Academic Rigor
The endless amount of options at this school make it hard to decide on one major, but Eckerd is generally a science based school. Instead of taking general education credits at this liberal arts school you have to take seven different perspectives before graduating.
Dorm Life
Eckerd is known for it's sense of community. There is no greek life, however a family is created at the different complexes on campus. Since the campus is in Florida there are always dorm activities outside.
Food and Dining
There are two different dining facilities on campus, and both of them have a diverse set of choices. On special occasions there are planned dinners that everyone gets excited about. At the cafe there are different sections of food for vegetarians or just healthy eaters.
What to do for fun
I love to spend my time outside! At the waterfront you can rent kayaks, paddle boards, or sailboats! Since the campus is right on the beach I love to lay out and enjoy the sun. There is also a lot wildlife that I enjoy to watch!
Bang for the buck
Eckerd College is definitely worth the price. I have had financial issue with getting here, but they made sure to help as much as possible. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else because I know I am truly getting the best education and experiences for the cost.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Eckerd College has a student group called Palmetto productions, and they setting up constant activities to enjoy the college life. Every weekend something seems to be happening on the unique environment Eckerd offers. There are endless traditions created every year such as Kappa Karnival. This is a carnival that is set up for students on campus as everyone enjoys the private location Eckerd is at.
Great for these types of students
Students that are looking for a strongly connected community with constant activities on campus would love to enjoy the Florida environment! Professors are very hands on at this college, which makes it easy to be a name and not a number. Those students who are looking for a really friendly setting where everyone is smiling will never want to leave Eckerd College.
Clubs and Activities
There are endless clubs and activities! Some original ones are surf club, garden club, and outdoor adventure club! Surf club and outdoor adventure club often take trips off campus!
Greek Life
Nonexistent, however this brings everyone together.
Campus Safety
Campus safety is very reliable and close to the student on campus. Those with campus safety drive around campus all hours of the day to monitor the safety of the students.
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Michelle from Saint Petersburg, FL

a past student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Eckerd College is a tight-knit community of students and faculty, who are dedicated to intellectual advancement, civil engagement, environmental matters, and more. The students are very active in the community surrounding the campus, but also their global community since they come from every state and county. While Eckerd may be a small college, there is a huge focus on bettering the experiences and overall well-being of others and always shifting the conversation on others.
Tips for prospective students
Study hard, get involved, and have fun. Enjoy and take advantage of each and every opportunity you come across.
What to do for fun
Go to South beach or check out Kappa Field. There are always events during the week and plenty of people to meet.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Kappa Karnival
Great for these types of students
Adventurous, open-minded, independent, and willing to work.
Campus Safety
It's a small school so everyone knows every else and there are always people around looking out for each other.
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a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Eckerd College is a great school that I would recommend mostly to people who would love challenges in majors such as Marine Science and Environmental Sciences. It is also situated in West Florida where the weather is always sunny and you do not get snow. Eckerd College gives many opportunities and helps you to succeed in life.
Tips for prospective students
Be ready to have competitive professors and able to study different types of perspectives from opinions. Always read the EC-Book with all the Do's and Don'ts and NEVER skip class, even if the professor does not take attendance. It is always helpful to learn the names of the building, the dinning hours and quiet hours, which are very important.
Academic Rigor
Eckerd College is a very abroad and competitive school.
Dorm Life
I love dorm life! There is no Sorority or Fraternity house but every Dorm is named by a Greek letter and has four complexes. Everyone is very respectful in the dorms and there is always activities where you can meet your neighbors and RAs.
Food and Dining
I am a very picky person and I would say that food is not very good but it depends on the person. There are three places for dining and we have a pizza truck for late night food. Also during finals or breaks they bring ice cream trucks for free.
What to do for fun
There are so many things to do for Fun. Eckerd College has a Waterfront where you can rent (student do not pay) paddle boards and kayaks, you can go to camping trips or just go for a swim. We have our own private beach where you can relax by reading a book or tan. There are more than 100 clubs that you can be part of and different school organizations will have activities ready for the week and weekends. We have our own concert where last year they brought T-Pain!
Clubs and Activities
There are more than 100 club you can join or you can create your own club!
Campus Safety
There is only one entrance to campus and for me personally I think it is great! Campus Safety is always there for you and they keep you aware of everything!
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Christian from East Point, GA

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
If you are looking for a great liberal arts college, Eckerd is the place to be. Along with being on the ocean the school also offers classrooms the face outside instead of compact hallways, which decreases foot traffic.
Tips for prospective students
Do not get distracted by the beaches and parties, you're there for school!
Academic Rigor
As a marine science student the classes are very challenging the whole four years, but its less strenuous for other majors.
Dorm Life
Dorm life is great! Eckerd offers pet dorms, all girls dorms as well as co ed. Residential Life is very strict and often cant be trusted when a student faces a problem.
Food and Dining
There is only three places to eat on campus with poor hours, but they all offer healthy and delicious choices. Sometimes the food is not up to standards mostly in the main cafeteria there are rotten fruit or cold food being served so you have to look out!
What to do for fun
Since Eckerd is in Florida there are many fun and exciting things to do. I personally go to state parks, the beach, and downtown. Also there is a waterfront program on campus that offers everything for water sports!
Bang for the buck
This is a well worth it investment, Eckerd offers so much for its students and its only getting better in the near future.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
There are palm hammocks on campus that haven't been touched by construction and it is still in tact from urbanization making it very peaceful and serene.
Great for these types of students
Willing to be outdoors and love nature! A huge number of students often go to classes barefoot and its normal.
Clubs and Activities
There are many clubs on campus from fishing club to mid evil club. If there isn't a club of your choice on campus you can just make one!
Greek Life
No Greek life at all on campus.
Campus Safety
Our school prides itself on safety and I always feel safe on campus rather its at night or day.
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