Oglethorpe University
Atlanta, GA, USA

Reviews

Oglethorpe University
3.70 Average Rating

Lindsey from Peachtree City, GA

accepted here and planning to attend soon
17 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Bang for the buck
Financial aid is wonderful at this school. It's a private school and is therefore expensive, but they will do their utmost to help you attend.
Tips for prospective students
Definitely visit the campus more than once if given the chance. The grounds are beautiful and the staff are friendly and accommodating. If you have questions, they will answer them!
Great for these types of students
Students who like small but very active communities with one on one interaction between students, professors, and the area around the college.
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Chelsea from Atlanta, GA

a current student here
10 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I have been at Oglethorpe for a semester, and it feels like my brain has already expanded so much! I am learning about things I'm truly interested in, an opportunity I didn't really have in high school. I have particularly learned more about the field of Communications, Art History, and Eastern Thought and its parallels to Western Science.
Am enjoying being here
I knew I was going to have a good time at Oglethorpe, but I didn't know that I was going to have such an amazing time that I'd be reluctant to leave for a month for Winter Break. I have made a life that I really enjoy here. I love my classes and have truly grown because of them, my professors are accessible and intriguing people, I have a great job on campus, I've gotten involved in extra curricular activities, and I've made connections and developed very close relationships with truly unique people who are intelligent, cultured, creative, and so much fun to be around. Also, Oglethorpe's campus is beautiful... the aesthetic quality of the stone architecture and many trees is visually breathtaking, especially in the autumn.
Bang for the buck
The education you receive from Oglethorpe is absolutely priceless due to the experience it provides and the opportunities it makes obtainable. The relationships you form with your peers, professors, and the faculty are invaluable, as are the opportunities for internships, studying abroad, and career networking. Oglethorpe is very well connected. As far as living on campus, it really is the most bang for your buck. It's located in the safe, residential area of Brookhaven, but is still just minutes from the bustling city. The upperclassmen dorms are really nice, and the freshman dorms are in my opinion much roomier than the dorms of friends I've visited at state schools. Living also includes an unlimited meal plan at a cafeteria that offers a variety of selections, isn't dreadful to eat at, and has a mission of being a sustainable food provider.
Tips for prospective students
The best advice I can give to a prospective student is to get involved! Oglethorpe has many different kinds of activities and people to invest in, and the more you put in, the more you will receive! Also, be as organized as possible with your time management and study skills. In college you have to learn to prioritize as well as balance school with your other activities... There is almost always something going on, but it is never more important than your studies.
Great for these types of students
Oglethorpe is a wonderful and nurturing environment for independent, evolving minds. I choose it because I wanted to be a big fish in a small pond who contributed to the livelihood of the school, and so far I have done just that. What's interesting about Oglethorpe is that we truly have diversity and people from every part of the spectrum. The typical Oglethorpe student is unique, interesting, and far from being a cookie cutter.
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Danielle from Warner Robins, GA

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Coming to a private University I was very nervous coming to a university with others who are intellectually gifted and hardworking as me or even more. I did struggle in a few things at the beginning but majority of the professors and staff there are very helpful and kind. If you can just work up the nerve to confront them and ask them your question or tell your issue, they'll be more than happy to help you out the best they can or refer you to someone who can assist you. Having such helpful people around the school definitely helped me learn a lot. The courses are challenging but they are passable and even if you move at a slower rate than others or having trouble in a certain topic there will always be someone around to help you or someone to ask.
Am enjoying being here
I definitely enjoy being at Oglethorpe. Freshman year is hands down one of the best years of my life. Even though I only live 2 1/2 hours away from my home, I had no family or friends nearby so I was very nervous about moving in.
You are in a great location of Atlanta, not in the busiest area so you don't have to suffer through traffic but conveniently located to whenever you want to go out to eat at a restaurant or go shopping. Or if you need to go somewhere farther out and you don't want to use up gas, or just don't want to drive, the university is conveniently located near a Marta station. You could just park your car there or walk there is about a mile away.
Bang for the buck
This is a very expensive school to go to and it is helpful if you already have your mind made up of what you want to pursue. Oglethorpe gives good contacts and networking especially for businesses, accounting, and psychology. So, if you're pursing any of these thing before the end of your 4 years there, you'll definitely be contact with many good businesses and employers and internships that you should be able to get started on your career as soon as you graduate.
Tips for prospective students
If you're a freshman and you get Traer Hall. Don't be bummed out! There are a lot of rumors that get put on incoming freshman and the look of it definitely makes others turn away and immediately want to go to Dempsey. Trust me I was there! When I first saw Traer and saw that that is where I would be living for the year I hated it. But within a few weeks of living there I loved it. It is comfortable, it has an open courtyard so it is easy to learn your fellow peers names and get to know them, the courtyard is fun to practice to your sport or teach/learn others sports, its a great place to chat or do homework/ study outside. It is also the best dorm, from what I learned and experiences, to make friends fast and easy.
They say it is the party dorm but it really isn't that bad as they make it sound. Yes there were parties. Some people have their own parties in their rooms but they really aren't that loud. If they are we have RA's, 2 on each floor, who will immediately tell them to turn it down or they will get in BIG trouble if they repeatedly disobey and cause noise distractions. You won't have to worry about being woken up at night due to loud music and such. I will admit you will hear occasionally yelling, loud music and screaming, but we had a lot of hyperactive people and people on the third floor yelling across the way or to those on the bottom floor instead of just going down to them.
Also if you get Traer and put on the third floor like I was. You may want to effectively and efficiently pack. It is VERY tiring carrying luggage and other things up and down those steps because unlike Dempsey there is no elevator.
However, I will say there will be a Moving-In crew, I was apart of it last year and most of the Summer/Fall athletes who get to move-in early will have the privilege of helping all freshman move in. So be a pal for your fellow peers and upperclassman and don't bring too many heavy things or objects that are hard to carry up those flights of stairs....
Great for these types of students
Oglethorpe is great for all students nerds, athletes, social-butterflies, shy and conservative students(I was pretty shy when I first moved in, and I opened up a lot during my freshman year). Also for those students who like a small student body and small classes(12-25 students)
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Kelly from Atlanta, GA

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
First off, Oglethorpe is simply beautiful -- the whole campus, from Lupton Keyhole to Turner Lynch Campus Center, is one of my favorite places. The professors are very good, and you really have to work hard -- which is good! Finally, even though the school is small, you will always be able to find people and activities which fit your interests.
Tips for prospective students
Study hard and don't party too much! Go to study hours and SI sessions. Get to know your professors, but, that said, remember that they ARE your professors -- don't get too chummy. Be friendly, but respectful of their positions and their time constraints. Get to know the staff, Campus Life, Res Life, Campus Safety, etc. This will save you lots of time and trouble if you need their help -- which I assure you you will, more often than you think! All other benefit aside, you'll also be friends with some of the nicest people in Atlanta!
Some tips with regard to schoolwork, and Core classes in particular. Do the reading, even if you feel bored. I recommend buying the books ahead of time and reading them over vacation. Then, if you have other homework or a paper due, you can just skim what you have already read and you're good to go. Not doing the reading will put you in sticky situations, and often very embarrassing ones, in class. If the professor allows you to submit a draft of your paper before the final draft is due, submit and get his feedback, then follow it to finish the paper. This will sky-rocket your grade -- in my experience, making for a guaranteed A -- and it actually makes writing the paper much faster. Submit any homework on time and do not ask for extensions unless the syllabus encourages it (some professors do). Being know as an extension requester is seen as being manipulative. Do not be the person that always has an emergency before a test; that is also obvious. Once, it's probably genuine, but if it happens with every test, or even half of them, your professor is going to get suspicious. Don't ask for makeups if the syllabus says they are not offered. If you have a question about homework or about general class-related problems, look in the syllabus for the answer before you email the professor. It's usually there.
With regard to your fellow Petrels: be friendly to all the students -- smile at them and say Hey, even if they're not the people you...
Academic Rigor
It's hard here, but great. The professors are in general really good, though I only have first hand knowledge of the science and history departments. If they are a representative sample, though, and I think they are, Oglethorpe's professors are as good as those at any college in the nation. It is not easy to get A's in the classes I have taken. If you slack off, you will be penalized. You really have to keep up with your work, and you especially have to go to EVERY class period, unless you are literally too sick to stand. Skipping classes will be reflected in a lower grade. That said, it is quite possible to get a perfect 4.0 GPA if you are serious about your work. One thing a lot of students hate is the Core curriculum, but I really like being able to have a common class that all my friends, both from the sciences and the humanities, are taking with me. Don't grumble about it -- you will not regret taking these Core classes later in life, and will probably even be glad you did. Just be careful about who you choose for freshman level Core -- the few mediocre professors are adjuncts hired to take up the slack of the inrush of freshmen, and whose only job here is to teach Core 101 and 102. Make sure you take a professor who teaches a number of classes in his discipline also, be it English, philosophy or another topic. I recommend Bill Brightman and Devon Belcher for 100 level Cores.
Dorm Life
As a commuter student, I do not know first-hand about dorm life. But from what my friends say and from what I've seen, I'd say it is fine but not amazing. The dorms are pretty decent except for Traer, which really needs to go. It's a byword on campus. I've heard stories about strange happenings in the dorms (a war dance around a bonfire with an actual boar's head at midnight in Traer is one of them -- and no, that is NOT our famous boar's head ceremony). The other dorms are nice though not palatial, and the staff, including student RA's and PAL's, are especially nice. Many of the staff that work with the students also live on campus, so they are available after hours in an emergency.
Food and Dining
The food is quite good, and has a wide variety. It is institutional quality food -- if you want restaurant level, go down the street to Town Brookhaven -- but it is fresh and usually has a good selection. Their alfredo at the pasta bar is truly delicious, but the bar only serves it occasionally. I also love their tuna melts and grilled cheese sandwiches. Their cookies are also good, if they haven't been over baked, which they sometimes are. Once the cookies were missing, and I asked for them. The staff brought me a pile of hot, fresh-out-of-the-oven ones! However, be warned -- if you are a commuter and have a car, you can eat much more cheaply off campus. The normal rate for lunch at the caf is 8.25 a meal (all you can eat) and even with a commuter meal plan it only goes down to 5.50 or so a meal. It is officially illegal but not at all unheard-of for commuters to get their on-campus friends to sneak them pizza . . . but don't get caught! I have never heard of anyone getting food poisoning at Oglethorpe -- a common matter at some other college cafeterias I'm familiar with. The cafeteria eating area is very attractive and has a beautiful view, especially in fall.

There is also Starbuck's, which is widely patronized. The staff will figure out what your go-to drink is in a short time, and will get to know your likes and dislikes, even to the extent of recommending things based on what they know you like! The recommendations are always good, too. If you do not like your drink, they will make you another. If they make your drink wrong, do not let them throw out the drink! You can get brownie points with your classmates by handing out free drinks -- either to a friend or a random person. Waiting for your drink is also a good time to make friends with other people, also waiting. These polite exchanges can turn into hour-long conversations -- always good after a hard day!
What to do for fun
The Boar's Head Celebration and Party, at the end of the Fall semester, is a must! It is the best party on campus, and everyone -- faculty, staff, and students -- goes to it! There are a wide variety of other activities available throughout the year, from Greek parties to lectures and Museum receptions. Go to the plays and concerts -- they're well worth it. If you are not from Atlanta, you have many places to explore in the city, some of which are offered as free trips through the Center for Civic Engagement. I especially recommend the Botanical Gardens, especially if you want a relaxing place to walk or read. The freshmen are given a huge party every fall at the World of Coke, which is quite popular. I personally remember the old World of Coke, and have never been very happy with the new one, but it is definitely an option. If you like history, you definitely need to go to the Atlanta History Center (their main exhibit, Turning Point, is excellent, as are most of their traveling exhibits) and you should try the Atlanta Cyclorama.
Bang for the buck
If you have a decent scholarship, Oglethorpe is well worth your money. I wouldn't go anywhere else! Very few people pay the designated price tag, what with one thing and another -- most pay around 20 thousand dollars a semester, excluding housing costs, and the better students pay much less than that. If you take a full course load (i.e. 15 hours or more) every semester, you will have nothing to complain about in terms of value for the money spent. Further, as the professors are glad to assure you, a degree from Oglethorpe is not worth less than one from a better known school -- in fact, science majors from Oglethorpe are often preferred, even over Georgia Tech graduates! You are not wasting your money if you do well in your classes and major in a field that will give you good opportunities.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
The elephant buried somewhere on campus is our favorite legend and the Petrels of Fire race on Oglethorpe day our favorite event. Here is a link to descriptions of these many others of OUr beloved traditions!

http://oglethorpe.edu/about_us/oglethorpe_glossary.asp

One of my favorite locations is the woody stretch between the soccer fields and the Goslin/Robinson parking lot -- there you will find Dr. Donnelly's bluebird watching station and Dr. Schadler's worm stumps, for Gen Bio 102 animal behavior lab. I also love to read on the bench outside Lupton Belltower when the weather is balmy -- the bell rings overhead, with quite a different tone than when heard elsewhere on campus.
Great for these types of students
Nerds! We are all nerds at OU -- embrace it!

Oglethorpe is a great place for premeds (our biology department is tops) and liberal arts students. The history department is quite strong, languages not quite so much. It is good for a language minor, though. The music department is really good. I hear that the English department is good too; at least there are lots of English majors and they seem happy! The chemistry and physics departments are not so large, but the professors are excellent. Do not shy away from these majors on the basis of the small department sizes.
Clubs and Activities
There are a wide variety of clubs for such a small school, and many are top notch. From the Thalian Society, founded for philosophical discussion, to the new student chemistry society, there are clubs for all interests, social, political and academic. If there isn't a club that you want to join, you can make your own! There is no good listing of clubs -- you really have to play it by ear, which means if you want to find out about the lesser-known clubs, you have to make friends with some of the active upperclassmen, or ask faculty. The Activities fair in fall and spring is a start, but the best clubs are too small to table there.
Greek Life
Not being into Greek life, I can't judge it, but the Director of Greek Affairs is really nice. Many students belong to a fraternity, many to two -- one academic and one social. There are occasionally ruckuses over fraternities -- one got shut down this semester, but I was too busy to find out why -- but there is rarely anything serious. There are a large number of fraternities and sororities available, and every student, even those who don't belong to one, has a decided opinion as to which are cool and which are not. Usually it has to do with which ones your friends (and occasionally foes!) belong to.
Campus Safety
Oglethorpe is an extremely safe campus. I have no qualms, as a woman, about walking around campus late at night. We have almost no violence -- for instance, I have never heard of an assault by a student -- and since everyone knows everyone else, there is almost always someone you know around if you feel uncomfortable. The Campus is so small that running for thirty seconds will bring you to some inhabited area -- from the quad, the library is easily reached, at least the twenty-four hour room, and from anywhere else, you will be within a short distance of a dorm, the gym, or the student center. These places have people in them in all but the dead of night -- long past midnight. (If you are out that late, whatever you are doing is risky enough that you should know better anyway!)

The Campus Safety staff is awesome! From escorts to cleaning up lab spills and opening car doors, they're always on hand. They will keep tabs on you if you go out (by your request) and will call you if you have not returned by the time you said you would. They will take you to the train station, though there are some limits on how extensively they will ferry you around (no pick-up at Hartsfield-Jackson, people). They are very quick to come and open your door if you lock your keys in your car, though less prompt in lighting bonfires outside the Campus Center (yes, fun fact -- we have a fire pit shaped like a globe). All in all, Oglethorpe is not a place you need to worry about violence. It feels very safe, and has multiple levels of protection, from peers to actual security officers.
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Joshua from Murrayville, GA

accepted here and planning to attend soon
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Most enthusiastic, motivating personnel with all faculty masters' degrees and above. Provides state of the art communication and visits to classrooms, athletic events, scholarship weekends with parents included. Individual attention evident in small population university environment.
Civic engagement programs stressed with internships available as well as foreign reciprocal studies.
Tips for prospective students
Keep you GPA and SAT scores as high as you can to qualify for their generous scholarship program. Take tour. Sit in on a class. Campus is Gothic theme (like Hogwarts) with green spaces.
Academic Rigor
Small classes, 14-16 students, all taught by masters' level and above. 1000to 1200 students enrolled. Core curriculum spaced throughout 4 years to allow students to focus on areas of interest earlier in the college experience. Free tutoring. Mandatory study halls for athletic participants. Focus on academics first, athletics next. Mentors for new students. Have the ability to take courses at other local university settings such as Emory if the desired program is not available at OU, at no extra charge.
Excellent library and study areas. Travel abroad studies in abundance with professors in attendance. Internships with major companies in and around Atlanta GA. Graduates from OU are more readily accepted at other major adacemic settings such as Harvard, law and medical schools.
Dorm Life
Some new dorms, some older dorms. Freshman are housed with roommates; can move up to single rooms when student is upperclassman. Residence Assistants readily available on each floor of dorm. Freshman, Sophomores, and Juniors must live on campus unless they live close enough to campus to commute. Oder students are very helpful to newer students.
Food and Dining
Building a new student life center which will house multiple speciality eateries. Food program is all you can eat included as room and board.
What to do for fun
Golf champions; nearby Atlanta attractions; sporting events; civic engagement opportunities; Greek life; Shakespeare Theater on campus.
Bang for the buck
Having compared larger settings, this is the most welcoming, academically challenging opportunity I have found.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Gothic environment built as Oxford in England replica. Mascot is Stormy Petrel with unique story.
Great for these types of students
Serious students willing to study and work hard for unique rewards. Students who like smaller academic populations.
Clubs and Activities
Sports: gold champions; building men and womens' lacrosse programs; houses Shakespeare Theater.
Greek Life
Several available on campus.
Campus Safety
Gated, fenced campus; gate attendant; located in upscale area near Atlanta. Walkable campus.
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Kiara from Cumming, GA

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
Bang for the buck
The food isn't the bang for the buck but the faculty and EVERYTHING else is awesome!
Tips for prospective students
Go there and sincerely put your all into your work, and you will become something big. I promise.
Great for these types of students
- reserved
- wiling to learn
- dedicated
- writing intensive
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