Pepperdine University
Malibu, CA, USA

Reviews

Pepperdine University
3.97 Average Rating

Camila from Encino, CA

a current student here
13 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
The place where God wants me.
The place that makes that's helping me become a better person.
The place where I will make lasting friendships and life-changing, world-impacting decisions.
Tips for prospective students
Visit the place, talk to students and professors and get a feel for the community. It is unlike anything you'll ever experience. Don't listen to the rumors about it being a materialistic/fake bubble. Find out for yourself. Your college experience is what you make it.
Academic Rigor
I graduated in the top 10 of my high school and was used to being smarter than the average student but once I got to Pepp it all changed. I am constantly surrounded by brilliant people who encourage me to learn and grow. Even the dumb people here are pretty smart. Also, I am amazed at Pepperdine students' ability to keep good grades while having a very active social life. It's admirable.
Dorm Life
Lived with 7 AMAZING girls. They are all my best friends now. I will say that I got extremely lucky and this isn't the case for everyone but who knows...you could get lucky too. The dorms are much MUCH better than most universities (unless you're considering Stanford or something...) Rooms are perfect size, furniture provided is sufficient and the bathroom.....well, no one likes having to share a bathroom with 7 other people but there's 2 showers, 2 sinks and 2 toilets. Trust me, you'll live.
Food and Dining
The food at the Caf gets old...but it's pretty decent. Sushi bar on Fridays is the best and once again, Pepp has better food than all the state schools I visited. It's not 5 star dining but let's be real, the freshman 15 is part of the college experience.
What to do for fun
Beach & Partaaaayyy haha just kidding. Greek groups have fun philanthropies that anyone can attend and there's a ton of weekend activities offered by the Student Board such as paddle boarding, surfing, kayaking, acrobat classes, star watching, camping, etc. Malibu is AWESOME.
Bang for the buck
Expensive tuition but they're VERY generous with financial aid. Don't be afraid to apply; odds are you'll get some financial help. And it's the probably the cheapest ocean view in Malibu so......worth every penny. (Ask me this again when I have to pay back my loans and my answer might be a bit different...)
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Frosh follies: Prepare yourself for the best first week of school EVER.
Greek Life
23% affiliation. Feels like more but it's not shoved in your face. Not exclusive.
Campus Safety
The Department of Public Safety (DPS) has it ALL under control...haha No one likes campus police but they really do their best to try and keep the campus safe (and they succeed). Not sure if this is a safety issue but sometimes deer jump in front of your car with no warning and it's pretty scary. BEWARE
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Pepp Student

a current student here
12 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Pepperdine University is a place for students who really want to make the most out of their college experience. The campus is absolutely phenomenal, the people are incredibly nice and most of all, the academics are challenging. However, Pepperdine really does prepare for the real world whether it be the business world, medical world or any career path you really want to pursue.
Tips for prospective students
Come to Pepperdine!!!! The most important tip I'd say would be learning how to manage your time. I CANNOT stress that enough! There are so many activities that you'll want to pursue, but always remember that academics come first. However, make sure to be involved on campus too! There is always something to do whether it be free IN-N-Out at alumni park (NSO), a fun beach day or club activities, there's tons of fun things to do! That being said, Pepperdine is an amazing campus and I absolutely do not regret choosing this wonderful place for my college career.
Academic Rigor
The academics here are tough, but if you work hard and study hard enough, you will manage to do just fine. The professors are always willing to help you so go to Office Hours! They're there to help you and they want to see you succeed in their classes (: Also, don't skip class or be distracted during class such as texting on your phone. Some classes go by really quickly and lots of important information can be missed if you are being distracted or you skip class. Other than that, I really love the small class sizes, the amazing professors and how helpful everyone can be.
Dorm Life
I absolutely love dorming at Pepperdine (: Go and triple!!!!! You won't regret it!!!! You get a guaranteed ocean view that you literally CANNOT beat! I loved meeting my roommates and becoming a family with my suitemates. The RAs will literally become family to you as well and they're always there for you to ask them questions. Plus, there's the HAWC which is just a really cool hang out place where your suitemates can hang out since it's so close to the dorms.
Food and Dining
Personally, I really enjoy the food at Pepperdine. The cafe serves a variety of food from pizza to soups to frozen yogurt to pasta to anything really. However, the food can be a little bit expensive, but the view of the cafe overlooking the Pacific Ocean makes it well worth it.
What to do for fun
There's tons of things to do for fun!!!! The Board puts on lots of fun, free activities for the entire campus to enjoy so make the best of it! In fact, the other day they had free Malibu Frozen Yogurt and today they have a fun beach day with free burritos! So make sure to take advantage of all the fun activities!
Bang for the buck
This university is definitely pricey, but don't be afraid to apply!!! I know I didn't want to apply because of the cost, but financial aid is pretty generous. Plus, there's work study and many scholarships available at Pepperdine to apply to. There are several students I know who are paying less than a UC to attend Pepperdine. This university is definitely worth the price!
Great for these types of students
Great for students who love the beach, are hardworking and ambitious. The students here definitely work hard, but they also enjoy being involved on campus! The beach is always a good place to hang out and there's tons of fun activities to do!
Campus Safety
I definitely feel extremely safe on campus. There will be times I will be jogging on the track at midnight and DPS will be driving around just to make sure everyone is safe. Pepperdine has many apps where you can contact DPS if you are ever in trouble. Plus, there are blue emergency lights where you can press if you ever feel unsafe.
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Aaron from Los Angeles, CA

a current student here
10 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The education here at Pepperdine University is top of the line. All of our professors are very knowledgeable about their subject and are involved with their students. The smaller campus size makes classes much more personal. Professors provide plenty of opportunities for students to get to know them better which sets up future recommendation prospects. Within my first year of Pepperdine I had met with most of my professors for lunch and had even gone to some of their homes for tea. Pepperdine has so many majors to choose from. Throughout a typical student experience at Pepperdine so many different situations inspire students to change their major to things that mean something in their life. There are numerous scholarships, honor societies, and leadership opportunities available to those students who excel in academics. Pepperdine also has phenomenal graduate schools. A downside to Pepperdine academics is that, at times, it can get a little overwhelming depending on how many units a student takes, but that is to be expected at a school of its caliber. Pepperdine is highly selective of its students.
Am enjoying being here
I absolutely love this university. I would not change schools for the world. Pepperdine has so much to offer from the beautiful 180 degree view of the pacific ocean, to athletics, student activities, leadership roles, religion, international programs, and so much more. Some of the downsides to Pepperdine are that convocation and religion classes are required. It's not as bad as it may seem as religion is never forced on students. Another downside is many students at Pepperdine go Greek but it is not as big of a deal here. Greek life is responsible for most of the social events on and off campus and it's definitely here for anyone interested. Pepperdine administration doesn't particularly care for Greek life and there is no housing. Being a dry campus hinders Greek life from being like typical schools, and that may or may not be a bad thing depending on who you are, but definitely it's worth looking in to. Also, Pepperdine has a NO TOLERANCE dry campus policy. NO ALCOHOL. POINT BLANK. There are also some other rules that are pretty silly in most students eyes but the good outweigh the bad at Pepperdine. Pepperdine understands that we are adults and we understand that Pepperdine is a private institution. Just keep it (whatever it is) off the campus and detached from Pepperdine's name and you will be fine. Pepperdine is also not very handicap friendly as there are a lot of hills and stairs but they offer great programs to supplement that so a disability should not be a problem. Other than that Pepperdine is amazing. Being 5 minutes from the beach all the time is exactly as awesome as it sounds!
Bang for the buck
At Pepperdine you definitely get your money's worth. Everything at Pepperdine is pretty high quality. Even the name carries a sort of prestige that can be noticed in simple conversations. It is fairly expensive to go to Pepperdine and to live either on campus or off but it is worth it in the long run. The money you spend to attend Pepperdine will be returned to you in the form of a highly respectable degree and memories to last a lifetime. Pepperdine also does a really good job of finding financial aid for students who cannot afford to attend because it is such a pricey school. If you demonstrate a willingness to learn and excel while at Pepperdine, Pepperdine will accommodate you, however, I still wouldn't mind if Pepperdine were a little cheaper.
Tips for prospective students
Just keep an open mind going in to Pepperdine. Whatever predispositions you had towards Pepperdine before you crossed that gate and passed the theme tower should be dropped. I made assumptions about Pepperdine freshman year and had I not had an open mind I would have missed out on so much that Pepperdine had to offer. Aside from the simple classes, clubs, and organizations students sign up to be a part of, many students learn just from interacting with each other. That is where the true beauty lies at Pepperdine. Just do not be afraid to be yourself. You will be shocked at what you find. Try everything. Go everywhere. Talk to everyone.
Great for these types of students
Pepperdine is great for optimistic, enthusiastic, outgoing students that are serious about life but understand the importance of interpersonal communication. Pepperdine is big on vocation and calling in life no matter what your background is. Pepperdine is not just about making the best grade that you can, it's about learning the heart of issues and actually being involved mentally. If you believe that school is more than just a grade then Pepperdine is for you.
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Anna from Tualatin, OR

a current student here
9 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Pepperdine is a small, community based Christian school that truly cares about your experience. The academic rigor, opportunities and small class sizes make it a highly accredited university. The location in Malibu is secluded, but close enough to Santa Monica and LA for ample job and internship opportunities.
Tips for prospective students
Pepperdine loves to see a well-rounded student with good grades, as well as interest in sports, extracurriculars and volunteering. Leadership roles are especially helpful.
Academic Rigor
Students are held to a high academic standard at Pepperdine. Everyone got in because they are smart and get good grades, so it is a good community that is focused on academics.
Dorm Life
Dorms are nice and spacious. Suite-style dorms give you plenty of places to hang out, as well as opportunities to foster friendships. Our dorm was very close. The RAs are highly qualified and care about their jobs, as the jobs are very competitive.
Food and Dining
There are 10 different places to eat on campus. The Waves Cafe is the main one, offering lots of options, including vegan and gluten free. They like to switch things up often and it keeps you from getting too bored with the same old food.
What to do for fun
Malibu is close to several great beaches, as well as everything in Santa Monica, and endless things to do in LA. Concerts, trendy food places, and celebrity sightings are common. Disneyland and Six Flags are also close by, and many of my friends have season passes to either one.
Bang for the buck
Pepperdine is an expensive school, but one that also provides very generous financial aid to those who need it. And because of the high price, you are well taken care of. The campus is beautiful, everything is well maintained, taken care of and safe. Our abroad programs are ranked #1 in the country, mainly because of accessibility. You can go to one of our 7 abroad campuses for a semester or a year for no more than your normal tuition on campus. I am going to the Middle East this summer, and almost everything for me is paid for, including the flights.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
There is a hike above the Pepperdine campus that goes through the Santa Monica Mountains, that ends with a stunning 180 degree view of the ocean. I have never seen anything like it. If you come to visit Pepperdine, it is a must-do.
Great for these types of students
Academic, Christian, authentic, kind, creative, inspired, wanting to make a difference in the world.
Clubs and Activities
There are so many clubs and activities on campus, and you'll want to join them all. From Hammock club to worship opportunities to intramural sports and clubs for every minority and interest, the hard part is not saying yes to them all!

Annual events include the Reel Stories Film Festival, complete with a red carpet, which shows off student work, to concerts that overlook the ocean, from artists like Imagine Dragons, Lord Huron and Andy Grammer.
Greek Life
About 30% of students are in greek life, so it is as important as you make it. There are people whose whole life s devoted to a sorority, whereas other people are just fine avoiding it altogether. Either way, you will have friends in greek life and out, and everyone is super friendly to each other. If it's something you are interested in, there is a place for you in one of our greek groups. We also have a business frat on campus for business majors.
Campus Safety
Our campus is up on a hill in Malibu, and is very safe. Our DPS officers are always around to help if there is an incident, if you are hurt or if your car breaks down (this happened to me). They are very helpful.
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Sharon from Malibu, CA

a current student here
6 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Attend the classes, sit near the front, take legible notes, participate in class, and do the work. The amount you learn and the grade you receive depends on the effort you put in. General education classes tend to be easier so you may not need to try as hard. Speaking to the professors during office hours helps get you better grades and establish great relationships.
Am enjoying being here
Faculty and students are all incredibly friendly and helpful. It's a beautiful, safe campus and the beach is literally right across the street. The study abroad program (intended for sophomore year) is well-organized and a must-do for Pepperdine students.
Bang for the buck
It is a pricey school in an expensive location (Malibu, CA), but Pepperdine does offer good financial aid and may even come out to be cheaper than UC's. It's a small university without the cut-throat competition and allows you to establish close relationships with faculty (for future letters of recommendation). It also offers some great help with internships, jobs, and scholarships.
Tips for prospective students
Beware of the endless stairs and hills. I suggest preparing for Pepperdine with Stairmaster. Sunscreen is also recommended. Having a car is useful as it tends to be a little dead on weekends. If not, no problem. You will most likely be friends with someone who does. Participate in the study abroad program in Argentina (the best one), China, Germany, England, Italy or Switzerland. It will change your life and Pepperdine does a great job with providing you with the classes you need. It is a Christian school, so it is a dry campus sand dorms are not co-ed. Most students are pretty open-minded and easy to get along with.
Great for these types of students
Students who love the beach and can walk up stairs and hills with no problem. It's a school that stresses the importance of community service, so students who love to volunteer will find countless opportunities.
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Acamy from North Las Vegas, NV

a current student here
6 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The professors here know what they're talking about! If you have question on anything, don't hesitate to raise your hand! Sometimes the classes move fast, but there is plenty of help wherever you need it. It's easy to get behind, though. It is also very easy to get to know your professors. They actually WANT to get to know you! They'd rather know you a little better than just your name and face in class.
Am enjoying being here
At first, I was extremely reluctant to come to Pepperdine because of how expensive it was. I have no regrets in coming here. Pepperdine has been the best experience of my life. The people you meet here are the kinds of people I want to keep in my life. The spiritual vibe is amazing. I came to Pepperdine without having a solid religion of my own. By the third month I was there, the church took me in like one of their own. It was a life-changing experience. I love it. The professors are extremely supportive. If you need help. want advice, or just want to talk, they'll be more than happy to converse with you!
Bang for the buck
Pepperdine is expensive, but don't fret! Pepperdine gives excellent financial aid packages! If the financial aid isn't enough, you can talk to the financial aid adviser and they may be able to work something out. They are extremely supportive! The education you get here is worth it!
Tips for prospective students
Do not be reluctant to come just because of finances! If there's a will there's a way! I honestly didn't even come visit the school and get a tour before I decided on attending. Don't feel bad if you can't either. It's a beautiful campus! The pictures don't even give it justice! Once you get to Pepperdine, get involved! You'll meet so many new people! If you're into sororities/fraternities, go for it! I've heard both good things and bad things, but each person is different! Talk to the workers! They'll love you! Whenever you get a chance to go to the beach, GO! Also, prepare yourself for walking up thousands of stairs. The hills aren't as bad as the stairs. People say you get used to them, but I still haven't! I'm an incoming sophomore now. Get to know all of your professors so that they can write you recommendation letters if you need them.
Great for these types of students
Pepperdine is a diverse school, believe it or not. I honestly think that it's great for any kind of student. They have a very good Pre-Med program here. That's what I'm doing. It's great for students who are thinking about going abroad. The abroad programs here are great! I went to Fiji, and it was the best experience of my life.
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Rachael from Spokane, WA

a current student here
51 people found this review useful
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Bang for the buck
definitely an expensive school! but they're pretty good about financial aid and it's well worth it.
Tips for prospective students
Be ready for the crazy pepperdine hills and steps! It's intense at first but it helps combat the freshman 15. Also be sure to get involved in something when you're there, there's lots of fun stuff that some people miss out on.
Great for these types of students
Any students that love the beach, like having a small high school-ish atmosphere, fashionable (no one wears just sweats and t's to class), students that want to study abroad, people who like hills and stairs (!), want to avoid a crazy party scene or just keep the parting on the down low, like going to a required number of Chapels and taking religion classes, and people who like the california life style.
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Brianna from CA

a current student here
29 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Pepperdine definitely has some amazing teachers who are willing to go the extra mile for their students. If you put forth the effort, they will certainly reciprocate and work just as hard to make your time in class well spent. My best professor so far was the one who intimidated me from the first day. But I quickly learned that once I proved I was willing to do whatever it takes to succeed and better myself, he guided me with some of the most valuable advice I have ever received.
Am enjoying being here
The people here are amazing! Everyone is incredibly gracious and open to forming meaningful and lasting relationships. Never did I imagine finding so many best friends who comfort, encourage, and accept me the way Pepperdine students have. The campus is the perfect environment to learn and experience the person you were meant to become while being surrounded by motivating people.
Tips for prospective students
I would encourage students to have an open mind when coming to Pepperdine and to be grateful! It is a beautiful school with incredible students and faculty. I have found that the more involved and open I have become to new experiences have made my time much more enjoyable. You will definitely meet students who insist on maintaining the too cool for school attitude. But I have found that there are way more students who appreciate everything Pepperdine has to offer, and seek out the good in their studies, lectures, and relationships. Truly take advantage of the wonderful professors and their willingness to help you. Pepperdine is an amazing environment that encourages its students to explore and learn about themselves while still challenging and motivating them to be the best possible version of themselves.
Great for these types of students
Students who aren't afraid to take on challenging experiences, willing to explore religion and their faith, comfortable at a smaller populated school, open to some of the conservative values taught.
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Jessica from California

a current student here
24 people found this review useful
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Am learning a lot
My high school teachers told me college would be more difficult than high school. The same amount of effort you put into getting an A in high school equals a B in college. The academics at Pepperdine are rigorous, but it is important to be challenged. The teachers are distinguished and always willing to help you out if you're having trouble. It's not hard to develop a relationship with the teachers because of the usually small class sizes. I enjoy the learning atmosphere at Pepperdine.
Am enjoying being here
I can say without a doubt that I love being at Pepperdine! The people I have encountered are genuine and friendly. Of course, no campus is without it's snobs and major partiers, but there are not a problem at Pepperdine. Pepperdine is a dry campus and the RAs (Residential Advisors) do a good job at keeping it that way. My RAs are wonderful and I feel just as comfortable with them as I do with everyone else. The ocean view from most of campus is definitely a plus!
Bang for the buck
It is expensive. However, the education you will receive at Pepperdine is worth it. Pepperdine also does a good job with awarding scholarships and grants. If that is not enough for you, there is an ocean view from most of campus. (I have a view from my bedroom window). People pay millions for the views that you will have at Pepperdine. The suite-style dorms are also nice because you have less people to a bathroom than other colleges, if that's important to you. Everything on campus in within walking distance too.
Tips for prospective students
Come to Pepperdine!!! Pepperdine has it all: an excellent academic program, national recognition, great scholarships and grants, distinguished teachers, amazing peers, a comfortable campus, and ocean and mountain views. P.S. Girls, the guys are far from eye sores. Guys, come on, these are girls at a school by the beach! Need I say more?
Great for these types of students
Bookworms, Surfers, Those Looking to Study Abroad, Those Who Want to Keep Off the Freshmen Fifteen, Just About Everyone
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Ryan from Malibu, CA

a current student here
20 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Going to a liberal arts school means you will take a number of diverse classes that not only tailor to your major but will make you a more rounded student. I am an International Business major but aside from the business courses I take speech class, humanities, biology and religion to name a few. As for my business courses I learn a lot. Only professors will be teaching you, you will never have a teachers aid or some random person without a degree teaching you. The classes can be very vigorous but I can assure you that they are all relevant classes that will definitely help you in your career. Being so close to Los Angeles Pepperdine often plays hosts to a number of important figures in each persons major so that students can learn first hand about their area of study. I have learned a lot from Pepperdine and I am very pleased with the level of education I have received.
Am enjoying being here
Honestly I am in love with Pepperdine. Yes, the campus is amazing and you cannot beat living on PCH but there are many other qualities that are worthy of mention. The staff at Pepperdine is extremely helpful and they truly care about you. Going to a small school allows you to feel at home and part of a family that wants to see you succeed. It is not your typical college experience, it is much better than the typical experience. We have fraternities and sororities, have awesome sport teams, school spirit and a student body that works hard and plays hard.
Bang for the buck
Pepperdine gives about 80% of the student body financial aid which means that 80% of Pepperdine students are really receiving a bang for their buck. Although 50,000 a year is expensive, in the long run I truly do believe it is worth it. Going to a smaller school opens up a number of doors for you since you are seen as a person and not as an ID number. I can say that I have defiantly received my moneys worth at Pepperdine but I have heard some complaints about it. Some of my friends that pay full tuition do complain that they are not receiving enough for the amount they pay.
Tips for prospective students
Put that you are church of christ on your application, get involved at Pepperdine it will make your experience 100% better and live campus its a lot more fun.
Great for these types of students
Pepperdine is perfect for these types of students who are:
-Leaders
-Hard working
-religious/like to party (there are two types of crowds at Pepperdine so pick which one you want to be in, you can be in both as well)
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