Franklin and Marshall College
Lancaster, PA, USA

Reviews

Franklin and Marshall College
4.05 Average Rating

Ashley from Burlington, VT

a past student here
9 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Franklin & Marshall is about the liberal arts experience. You are not there to become a doctor, or a lawyer or a business professional; you are there to learn, to create, and to explore. This school emphasizes that this is the ONE CHANCE in your life where you will have all of these opportunities available to you so easily, so take advantage of it!
Tips for prospective students
(1) Be prepared to READ
(2) Be realistic & Prioritize...sometimes, like it or not - there aren't enough hours in the day.
(3) Plan out your schedule: the parties are amazing from fraternities to sports to movie nights on the quad - whatever you'll be doing Thursday, Friday & Saturday nights....count on NOT having them available for work....find other times that do
(4) ALWAYS plan meals with friends - no matter how busy you are or how crazy your schedule; the work will be hard, but pandinis will always make an amazing chicken caesar salad and Iron Hill's seafood bisque is out of this world. But, in a time crunch - d-hall will suffice.
Academic Rigor
Go to office hours!!! Even if its just to say hello - teachers here THRIVE on interacting and talking with their students. The more you're around them, the more they know you care. Classes are usually fairly small, but regardless if your class is 5 people or 50 you NEVER want your professor to have to hesitate for a second when glancing at that gradebook - you want them to know your face, voice and handwriting instantly. They're great people and they're their to help.
Dorm Life
Be nice to your hall - no hallcest. As a past resident & RA I can tell you that you will be taking your freshmen seminar with these students AND living with them for at least your first two years. Its convenient freshman year to think its a good idea to fall for the cute guy or girl across the hall...but when things go bad on Friday and you have to sit next to them in class Monday...then pass them everyday on the way to class or the bathroom for the next two years? No one wants that drama. They're your friends, your FAMILY...keep away from the hallcest and everyone is happy.
Food and Dining
KIVO hummus & salads were great
Pandini's is always there for crap food
As soon as you're 21 - invent in refillable growlers at Iron Hill
Late Night Runs to SHEETZ during study sessions is totally trashy, but completely worth it
What to do for fun
Everything? Sure drink, party, have fun - thats what every campus has and trust me F&M is NO exception....we're hard workers but we can play harder. But if you're going to party - do it right. If there's a theme dress up, go all out - no one likes the guy who's too cool to care.

BUT some of the most memorable things for me were the other activities. Going to DC with Hillel even though you're not Jewish because they were seeing an awesome exhibit and joining them for Shabbat dinners to learn something new. Hopping on a bus to NYC to see Avenue Q and laughing so hard your stomach hurt for two days. Going to see Vagina Monologues each year on Valentines Day (and learning that whatever bottle you put champagne in, if you seal up the carbonation it will always open with a POP). Go to the Dances! They're hokey sure, but they're fun. The fairs and carnivals in the Quad are amazing - Ben's Birthday will always be a blast and Spring Arts is something Alumni STILL come back for.

Bang for the buck
I adored each minute - but its what you make of it. If you want to go see some woman lecturing on an obscure topic that sounds interesting to you - go! If you're friend forces you into taking salsa classes with her - why not? When she suggests trying the abs workout course next...Be prepared to hurt for a week, but go anyways! Never before or since have I had so many amazing things available to me at once. It'll be the best decision you've ever made - but you've got to be willing to make it that.
Clubs and Activities
Too many to list - and believe me the College Activities fair will be OVERWHELMING with enthusiastic students....but if you decide their isn't a club you're interested in - go to the dean, get the funding and make one! Make your tuition work for you.
Greek Life
LOVE!

If you're a guy - pledge freshman year or the party scene WILL BE ROUGH for awhile. Technically past first semester freshman year, guys are not allowed into parties unless they are a brother or on the brother's guest list.

As far as sororities go, I have my bias - and I always will; but joining this group of girls was the best decision I've ever made and they still hold an amazing place in my heart.
Campus Safety
Its well lit - there are blue lights everywhere and public safety patrolling constantly. I've never felt unsafe walking across campus or to my College Row Apt. Plus its so pretty at night. But as far as walking far distances to parties goes? Always walk with a group or take the bus when possible, and know where you're going.

In regard to our campus safety officers? They NEVER used to check the substance free dorm; its actually where some of the roudiest dorm parties went down. But in general, they're not too strict....just don't be stupid. Don't get caught peeing on Ben, if you're not walking in a straight line - have a friend help you, and try not to get sick until you're safely into the bathrooms at the dorms (preferably at all - but no one's perfect). They're not there to ruin your night, they're there to make sure you're safe.
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Kristina from Jessup, MD

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Although its just my first semester of college, you will learn so much in the first few weeks. You definitely will not waste you tuition money.
Am enjoying being here
The people who surround me are just as excited to be here as I am. They match you with an students with similar interest on the same hall. So it won't take long until you find someone you click with.
Bang for the buck
I wish tuition was cheaper. But hey, a lot of things are built in with the prices. Printing, Meals, Furniture, Bathroom with janitors to clean for you, Laundry... its worth the money.
Tips for prospective students
Come on tours, they tally tours into your admissions. It shows that you have a deep interest in attending.
Great for these types of students
Students interested in a broad amount of studies. Especially if you are not sure of a major. You won't declare until the end of your second year.
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Cherylen from Inglewood, CA

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I am learning a lot academically, culturally, and socially. Be selective when choosing courses and professors; there are some that are great and some that are not but it's like that with every college. The idea is to take matters into your own hands and do what's best for you.
Am enjoying being here
I enjoy being here. I enjoy the college life overall. It's an amazing experience. It's a diverse community and it's very easy to make friends especially after the first-year orientation.
Bang for the buck
Best Financial Aid Package Ever! I'm not even low-income but I am satisfied with my package. If they want you as a student, they will show you.
Tips for prospective students
Apply, it won't hurt to apply. F&M has a variety of students from all over the WORLD, literally. I think this school does a fantastic job of pulling in international students and still making them feel at home.
Great for these types of students
It's great for students who actually want to learn. The coursework can get a little rigorous so, if you're not the kind to put in effort or work hard, F&M may not be the best place. You must stay strong through the years at F&M because it's college and it gets tough.
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Georgianna from Frederick, MD

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
The campus is integrated into the local community without losing the collegiate feel, which opens up local employment and service opportunities. The classes are small and discussion-based and will not leave you wanting. Franklin and Marshall is small, liberal arts college that does not disappoint.
Tips for prospective students
If you are trying your best academically and want to continue doing that, F&M is the place for you. Franklin and Marshall really wants to know who you are - absolutely come in for an in-person interview. It's not scary! Everyone on the staff is very personable and will answer all your questions.
Academic Rigor
Franklin and Marshall will be as difficult as you want to be - and F&M will never run you ragged like other academically prestigious schools might do. The classes are rigorous, but not difficult if you are an active participant in them.
Dorm Life
The dorms at F&M were changed into a house system (like Harry Potter!) in the 2005/2006 academic year. There are currently five houses that provide guaranteed housing for freshmen and sophomore students. They're all located near each other and create a great community between the houses as well as within the houses, which each have their own government systems, which provides more places for politically-inclined students.
Food and Dining
The food at Franklin and Marshall is great. I transferred from a larger school where I was really disappointed in my bang for my buck when it came to food. F&M has a large kosher, international, vegetarian, and organic selection, especially since the fresh food available in Lancaster is great. Several different places on campus use your meal plan as well as the main dining hall.
What to do for fun
The list is endless! Lancaster is a great historical downtown with lots of interesting shopping, eating, and art galleries (that have fun open nights every first Friday of the month). On campus there's tons of sports, varsity and otherwise, as well as an active and friendly Greek life. Lancaster is a great town with lots of restaurants, malls, and movie theaters as well.
Bang for the buck
Franklin and Marshall is really doing everything for their students thats possible. Each house has a budget for bonding activities within the house, as well as all the clubs. The classes are small and discussion-based, so you'll never feel like you could learn just from reading the textbook.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Franklin & Marshall is located in Lancaster, which has First Friday at the beginning of every month, which is a great time to explore the downtown area. On top of that, each dorm house will have traditions and activities for the students - like a movie every Friday night, or Sunday Night Sundaes.
Great for these types of students
Any student looking for the perfect balance between work and play will enjoy the active nightlife on the weekends (and throughout the week, if you're so inclined) with the small classes where your professor will actually notice if you're not there!
Clubs and Activities
Franklin and Marshall may not boast as many clubs as larger schools, but there's still so many different options for everyone! There's specific clubs for international students, or students from specific backgrounds, as well as the Comic Book Club and Women's Rugby.
Greek Life
Greek Life is pretty small in size - about four sororities and seven fraternities - but for the small class size, it's perfect. If you're not involved in Greek Life, it's easy to avoid, but the students involved in Greek organizations only contribute to the campus.
Campus Safety
Lancaster city police work in conjunction with Franklin and Marshall's public safety officials, whose offices are located in one of the dorms.
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Crystal from Philadelphia, PA

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I have learned more in one semester than in the last two years of high school!
Am enjoying being here
This college is truly the best college for me, and I'm sure for anyone else as well. The teachers here are from all around the world and have achieved such accomplishments that I feel privileged to be learning from them.
Tips for prospective students
If you are unsure if you want to make F&M you're home, then come and visit! Most definitely! After you visit you will see how beautiful the campus is and how welcoming all the students here are. With just 2000 students, the students are so close and everyone knows one another. Being a small school also makes classes so much more beneficial because you have between 15 and 20 people in your classes and the teacher gives attention to every student he or she has. And please, never be afraid to ask the professor for help because I was, and once I approached my professors I could never stop asking for help and they were never tired of me. There are plenty of places to get help or even just find a friend like the library, tutoring and your house deans. The food is not that good, but this college is right for anyone who wants to achieve greatness.
Great for these types of students
Work hard!!! The classes and work are most definitely hard and very intimidating, but if you stay on top of things and go ask for help, you will succeed and enjoy your work.
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Tram-Anh from New Holland, PA

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I am ABSOLUTELY amazed at how much I have learned at F&M!
Am enjoying being here
YES, very much so...everything....except the dinning hall.
Bang for the buck
DEFINITELY YES!
Tips for prospective students
F&M is a beautiful campus with friendly people and EXCEPTIONAL professor accessibility. It has a STELLAR reputation in preparing students for graduate schools, especially law and medical schools through EXTREMELY intense workload and difficult grading system. A tip for chemistry students: ALWAYS do ALL the non-required homework and DO read the book! You'll definitely be grateful later. Yes, you're reading this right. F&M is a place for diligent and enthusiastic students who truly care about their learning. But don't be scared! Professors here are amazingly helpful. They do care about their students. They make you learn from the heart. I honestly think that the most wonderful thing about F&M is its professors. You'll be amazed at how knowledgeable, understanding, friendly, and caring they are! Additionally, F&M has MANY clubs about academics, cultures, arts, etc, and A LOT OF volunteer opportunities. There are also plenty of on-campus jobs for students.

I LOVE F&M!
Great for these types of students
truly work-hard-play-hard
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Ellen from Earlysville, VA

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Franklin & Marshall is the quintessential small liberal arts college, nestled among the picturesque Amish country of Lancaster, PA while retaining close proximity to the city of Lancaster. Within brick buildings lie impressive archives of knowledge, motivated students, and professors who are genuinely passionate about teaching undergraduates. This school has something for anyone, be they students of the humanities, natural sciences, business/economics, or arts, and it especially has much to offer to students who have no clue what they want to do with their life other than receive a well-rounded liberal arts education.
Tips for prospective students
Itâ??s okay to not know what you want to do coming in to college, but keep an open mind! There are so many opportunities- both personal and academic- available on campus that it is a shame to not want to at least think about exploring them. Also, be prepared to balance work and play; this is your time to discover and hone your passions!
Academic Rigor
Professors expect a high level of attendance and dedication, and students here are very hardworking and motivated to learn and do well. The workload is very manageable with good time management, and professors are available throughout the week during their office hours or by appointment/email should you have any questions for them. Since F&M is a liberal arts college, there are general education requirements that require students to take at least one class in the humanities, arts, social sciences, natural sciences, foreign languages, non-western, and writing (which is typically fulfilled by the freshman seminar).
Dorm Life
There are five different â??housesâ?? into which freshmen can be sorted, a very Hogwartsian notion. â??Sortingâ?? is based on the mandatory freshmen seminar that is chosen by the incoming student before arriving at F&M, so that everyone in your seminar lives on your hall. Halls in all houses are coed, and there are about 4 bathrooms on each hall; in certain houses, there is a substance free floor on which students can request to be placed. On every floor, there are common rooms with couches and tables, and every house has a Great room and Fireplace room on the first floor. Houses also host events, speakers, and programs that are either available only to the residents or to anyone in the College.
Food and Dining
No matter the institution, college students like to complain about food options on campus. Regardless, F&M has great variety and options for everyone, such as kosher and gluten-free fare alongside the typical pasta, salad, grill, sandwich, and pizza stations. Areas where meal swipes are applicable are not just restricted to the dining hall; there is a café on campus, as well as a dining area in the Steinman College Center.
What to do for fun
Different people have different ideas of what is considered â??fun,â?? but there are many different options available on the weekends or even during the week. Clubs and groups on campus are constantly putting on different activities such as open-mic nights, improv shows, concerts, sports events, etc., but there is also a party scene. The city of Lancaster is also an easy walk or bus ride away, so there is the option to spend a night on the town at theaters, markets, shops, restaurants, etc.
Bang for the buck
This solely depends on how driven the individual student is. It is easy to become trapped in a bubble of ease and apathy, but the opportunities and resources on campus or through alumni are invaluable to those who work to find them. Professors and advisors are more than willing to help students get the most out of their time at F&M.
Clubs and Activities
There are tons of diverse clubs and activities to become involved with on campus. Even better, if there is a club or organization that is not already on campus, there is the option for individual students to create and start their own!
Greek Life
60% of F&M students are involved in Greek life. This being said, Greek life in no way is an exclusive activity. It is still possible to meet people and be involved on campus even without Greek affiliation. Recruitment also happens during/at the end of the fall semester, so all students experience F&M from a non-Greek perspective before choosing to recruit/rush.
Campus Safety
Public Safety (PSafe) is great. All the officers are friendly and diligent in their jobs. Other than the officers themselves, there are blue lights that allow students to contact authorities from anywhere on campus. Additionally, the school sends out mass texts and emails in the event of an attack, burglary, or break-in that happens either on or directly off-campus, even if the victims were not F&M students.
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Ailee from Westminster, CO

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
If you had to define the words Liberal Arts by showing a college, this would be it. There is the opportunity to do everything and anything here, and there is the opportunity to do it well. I would recommend it to people who are invested in their own education.
Tips for prospective students
Bring Rain Boots
If you're planning on being a science major, start with chemistry and biology right away.
Get in contact with professors if you're interested! They can give you a better idea of what their department has.
Academic Rigor
Almost everyone is a double major, joint major, earning a minor, doing pre-med and something else, studying abroad, or graduating early. Everyone takes a lot of classes, and learning and homework take up an almost ridiculous amount of time. However, I have learned so much by being forced to know the material before class, and then broadening my understanding through discussion. Its a lot of work, and it is totally worth it.
Dorm Life
We have a house system- Its kind of like Hogwarts. There are benefits to all the houses, and some unfortunate things as well. For example, Brooks house has very small dorm rooms. We also have the best events, and house community of the rest of the houses. New has a beautiful space, but they have to walk further to get to dining services. Its all give and take, but there really are no losers when it comes to housing.
Food and Dining
We have the dining hall, which has Kosher food, pasta, pizza, burgers, sandwiches, and a salad bar all the time. For breakfast, we have a grill which will make you any kind of pancake, french toast, or omelet you could think of. At night, in transitions to our mongolian barbecue. Theres also home style cooking and vegetarian and gluten free options. We also have a pizza place, 2 sandwich places, a mexican grill, and a cafe on campus.
What to do for fun
There is always something going on. If you are a partier, welcome to college. If not, F&M Options has activities about every other weekend. There are also a ton of concerts, performances, and club activities that everyone is invited to. We are also very close to downtown Lancaster, which provides an urban night life for those who desire it.
Clubs and Activities
Have you looked at the list of clubs? Do you not see something you want to see? Start it up! We're starting a tap club and a parody newspaper this semester. With so many organizations, it is super easy to get involved and make friends.
Campus Safety
Our public safety officers are fantastic. They really care about us. They are always around looking to help people. Not to say if you're making bad decisions they won't bust you, but that is not their main priority. They just want to make sure we're safe.
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Tomilya from Miami, FL

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
I have enjoyed my first year at F&M tremendously. From the small close-knit campus to the highly accessible and extremely helpful professors, F&M has it all. There's a great sense of community on campus and thousands of opportunities waiting to be taken.
Tips for prospective students
If you ever find yourself in academic trouble, never hesitate to get in contact with your professor because they are beyond willing to work through it with you. The bonds you create with your professor goes beyond just the classroom because they are truly here to make sure you succeed. Also, during your first year, don't be afraid to branch out and get involved on campus because that is where you meet the most amazing people.
Academic Rigor
F&M was ranked at the 4th most rigorous college in the nation by Newsweek's Dailybeast and my experience thus far has affirmed this. I am currently on the pre-med track and the sciences here are no joke. But don't worry because if you manage your time correctly and get help when needed there's no reason not for you to succeed.
Dorm Life
That great sense of community F&M is known for is especially evident in each house. The deans and the student government of each house goes out of their way to create events and promote a close-knit environment. The rooms are cozy and your floor mates may even become the people you are closest to. And you should expect to have movie nights, Tuesday morning bagels, or a campus wide game of Zombies vs Humans.
Food and Dining
The school offers several different meal plans which are all very accommodating to a person's individual needs. The dining hall serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner at certain times and sometimes have themed nights which turns to be the best nights in terms of the variety of food. For those who eat only eat Kosher food or need a gluten-free diet, d-hall has also got your back there. You will eventually get tired of the food at d-hall and will find yourself wandering off in the middle of the night to the on-campus bistro that serves lattes, flatbread and deli sandwiches. There's also a mexican grill and a panini junction whose food I never get tired of. Off-campus there are some really great restaurants that serves different ethnic style foods and some decently priced restaurants that serves great food and caters to F&M students.
What to do for fun
People think of Lancaster and automatically think of Amish country but it's so much more than the occasional buggy rides I personally enjoy and surrounding farmland. Downtown is a thriving city and there are a bunch of shops, galleries, theaters, museums, and even a farmer's market. There are also festivals, a skating rink, laser tag and free events for the community. Hershey park isn't a far drive either and you can always expect to have loads of fun there. But becoming involved on campus with sports, clubs, or greek life will make your experience on campus all the more fun.
Bang for the buck
You can have fun all day with just $20 in your wallet. With a $3 all day bus pass or the school's free van service, the city of Lancaster is yours. Places like the skating rink or laser tag are all under $10 or you can enjoy watching our football or basketball team compete against other schools for free.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Zombies vs Humans started off with only 128 students but turned into a campus wide event of students dodging and chasing each other on the lawn. Every year we turn this game into a charitable event and have tons of fun doing it.
Great for these types of students
F&M is great for those who are willing to work had academically and desires a small, close knit atmosphere on campus. F&M is for students who want to build lasting relationships with the faculty and staff, and succeed after college. It's also for students who are able to put the books aside for a second and have fun with friends.
Clubs and Activities
There are tons of things to do on campus from athletics to volunteer activities. F&M offers intramural sports in case you just want to play for fun with you friends on campus. We also offer division III level sports for those who like competing against other schools. There are community service clubs, social clubs, academic clubs, and if there isn't a club you like you can always create your own club with the help of the college. The people you work with or play with basically turns into your extended family.
Greek Life
F&M offers several sororities and fraternities you can get involved in.
Campus Safety
I feel absolutely safe on campus. Public safety works alongside the city police and you can always see security walking around through the day and through the night. I remember when I was stranded at the mall at night and needed a ride, I called public safety and within 10 minutes I was picked up by one of F&M's drivers. F&M is highly committed to our safety and the officers are there to help 24/7.
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