Pomona College
Claremont, CA, USA

Reviews

Pomona College
4.47 Average Rating

Yasmin from Bellevue, WA

a current student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Positive, encouraging atmosphere from fellow students and teachers.
Sunshine and flip-flops in an LA suburb with a small downtown.
Rigorous, fast-paced, thought-provoking education.
Tips for prospective students
Visit. My decision was made for me on my visit, because of the impression the people made on me. More than any statistic or ranking, the people are what make the place. If you're looking for a school where the professors are all interested in the success of their students and the students are all looking to be the best they can and support their friends, you will find that atmosphere when you visit. If you can't afford it, apply to their MSAP (Minority Student Action Program) for a paid trip.
Academic Rigor
As you'll find at any high-ranking school, the pre-med students are extremely absorbed in their academics and have time for little else. The rest of the student body, however, does commit a large amount of time to their academics outside of class, because the classes are difficult enough to merit that.
Dorm Life
I've only experienced the freshman dorms so far, so I can't speak to what the other three years will be like, but the freshman dorms are reasonably nice. Some don't have air conditioning, which can be quite horrible in the first and last couple months. Blaisdell, where I lived, has smallish to cramped rooms for freshmen, but I've seen worse at other colleges, so I don't think it's anything to make a big decision on.
Food and Dining
As a vegan, my experience of the dining halls has been quite different from everyone else's. However, my non-vegan friends seem to have very good opinions of our dining halls, and the selection does look good.

However, if you are vegan or have other such limiting dietary restrictions (gluten-free, vegetarian), I would suggest that you get as small a meal plan as possible, or as I'm doing for next year, petition for no meal plan at all. The choices available are not healthy, varied, or available enough to sustain a reasonable diet, especially not given its price tag.
What to do for fun
Most of the available activities are on-campus, there's not a whole lot to do in the Claremont Village. However, there is never any lack of things to do on campus, perhaps for that very reason. There are parties, dances, sporting events, and random get-togethers planned by clubs and groups of friends that can use school funding and school spaces. There's also the city of LA about 45 minutes away in low traffic. Freshmen aren't allowed to have cars (unless you have a permit), so most freshman get a Zipcar account to use the cars on campus or take public transportation... or just don't go to LA.
Bang for the buck
Worth every penny (except the meal plan, as a vegan). The educational environment is everything I wanted and expected it to be.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Sponsor Groups: freshmen are put into sponsor groups, called spogros, of 10-20 freshmen with 2-3 sophomore sponsors. Spogros live together with their sponsors in a hall of the freshman dorms.

Fountaining: there's a tradition of people being thrown into one of Pomona's many fountains on their birthday by their friends

Orientation Adventure: after move-in day, freshmen are sent on OA trips to wilderness locations where they can make their first friends and have their first college bonding experiences in the great outdoors.

Walker Beach: there's a large lawn on campus with a sandpit which is called the Walker Beach. Students often hang out there to sunbathe, play beach sports, do some homework under palm trees, or just relax and have a picnic.
Great for these types of students
Students who want a rigorous education surrounded by laid-back LA culture.
Clubs and Activities
There are many clubs and organizations that bring students together to appreciate different cultures, activities, sports, etc. I haven't yet been able to think of a club I wished existed that doesn't, and if I did, it would not be difficult to create one and receive funding from the school to support it.
Greek Life
There is no real Greek life on campus. There is strictly no Greek living, and there is only one real Greek club, which doesn't have much of a presence on campus. If you're looking for Greek life, definitely do not come here. However, there is still a large amount of social life on campus available to all, through organizations that regularly put on parties and dances open to the 5Cs or just Pomona.
Campus Safety
I feel very safe on campus, and have not yet found reason to complain of a lack of campus safety.
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Black Male

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Pomona is an institution that takes pride in a very personal environment for the students and faculty. The classes are engaging and challenge you to work above and beyond the norm. The Claremont Consortium is a great resource because students can take classes at any of the 4 other neighboring undergraduate schools.
Tips for prospective students
Pomona College looks for people they see to be leaders and openly active in their communities. Your grades and test scores do matter a great deal, but admissions really does try to get a holistic view of your person.
Academic Rigor
Pomona is tough, but there are resources available to help students succeed in their courses. The Writing Center is available to anyone, and they can help guide you when writing/revising papers. There is also a new Qualitative Skills Center that tutors in science and math related courses.
Dorm Life
The dorms are some of the best I have seen on a college campus. The new senior dorms are ranked one of the top residential halls in the country. As a freshman, the sponsor group program gives students a small-family feel to help them get situated at this new environment.
Food and Dining
The food at the Claremont College Consortium is amazing. There are 7 dining halls to choose from, and the eatery is quality. If you don't like the menu at your school on a particular day, just take a 5 minute walk to another campus's dining hall.
What to do for fun
The location allows you to experience the great city of Los Angeles and everything that comes with it. Students often go to the beach, concerts, plays, sports games, etc. The party scene is also interesting at the Claremont Colleges. Most parties are approved/funded by the schools and are even allowed to provide alcohol to those over 21.
Bang for the buck
Pomona has a large number of resources available to students. The large endowment of the school allows it to put a lot of money towards its students.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
People are thrown into fountains for their birthdays.
Skyspace is an amazing art exhibit that features a cool pool and open roof that changes colors on the hour, every hour.
Pomona College has its own art museum.
Great for these types of students
Free thinking, hard-working, liberal-minded
Clubs and Activities
I play varsity sports for Pomona-Pitzer.
I act in the theater department.
I volunteer at local high schools to serve as a mentor.
I am able to participate in many organizations as both a leader and group member.
Greek Life
There are 3 fraternities on campus. One is a frarority. They aren't nationally recognized organizations, but they are great groups for some.
Campus Safety
Campus safety is very important at Pomona. An officer is usually only a block away at all times since they patrol the campus often. They also will provide you with rides to your destination at night if you feel unsafe.
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cdorigo

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
The academics are certainly rigorous, but will make you grow in ways you won't realize until you step off campus and out of the Claremont bubble. You will meet the most brilliant, talented, ambitious, fun-loving, charismatic people of your life here. It is a great institution in most respects!
Tips for prospective students
1) Be prepared to work hard. 2) It's essential to communicate with your professors. 3) Resist the temptation to compare yourself to others. What you'll find here is that there is not a lot of inter-student competition, but that students tend to impose very high expectations on themselves. Learn to value what you have to contribute to the school and to society at large--that will keep you grounded and sane!
Academic Rigor
Of course, this varies with discipline, course, and professor, but in my experience, the academics are challenging overall.
Dorm Life
There is something for everyone here--whether you like to party, stay in and watch movies with your friends, play music with your fellow musicians, or anything else you can think of. Sponsor group (hall) culture is especially great, and will form basic social units for most freshmen.
Food and Dining
The dining halls do their best to offer a homey ambience and a fresh, healthy, varied selection. You can also dine at any of the other colleges in the consortium, which offers significant flexibility and the opportunity to develop new dining traditions with your friends.
What to do for fun
You will never be in want of things to do in the consortium. (Note: Most student groups and events are 5C [five-college].) A short list of options: off-campus trips, clubs, intramural sports teams, music lessons, parties, etc.
Greek Life
Greek life is not nearly as prevalent here as it is at many larger institutions. There are no sororities and only three fraternities (which host weekly or semesterly parties and other social events) at the Claremont Colleges.
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a current student here
28 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Pomona College provides for an excellent education. Each semester there are hundreds of classes that are offered in pretty much every subject matter imaginable. The fact that Pomona is part of the five college Claremont Consortium only means that there are hundreds of more options available. You can take classes at any of the other colleges! The professors at Pomona are another huge reason why the education at Pomona is superb. All of the professors I have had have been eager to help, very approachable outside of class, extremely knowledgeable of the material, and make going to that early morning class quite enjoyable. There are also numerous learning opportunities outside of class as well. For instance, this past semester I got a job as a lab assistant, where I have been able to learn many new things in a more hands-on way. Countless other students are also doing research (which is very easy to get started in) or doing an internship in the area. Education is the fundamental reason why students go to college, and Pomona has definitely made that its priority.
Am enjoying being here
To be completely honest, I am in love with Pomona. Everything about Pomona is amazing—the people (my classmates, professors), taking classes that I want to take, the constantly sunny weather (it rains about 3 times a semester and the smog that everyone is concerned about really isn’t noticed), the huge dorm rooms (freshmen are put in either singles or pretty gigantic doubles), the food (it never gets boring with seven dining halls to choose from), and “working hard and playing hard too.” There are always things to do on the campus, whether it is a performance (band, orchestra, sketch comedy, acapella concerts), guest speakers, movies that are played for free, dance parties, and general hanging out. The number of options increases when you consider the Claremont Consortium, because most events and parties at the other colleges are open to all 5 C’s. It’s also convenient that LA is so close (just a train ride away), so when you need to get out of Claremont to see a concert in Hollywood, it is completely possible to do so. While Pomona students are viewed as very studious (because it’s true!), sagehens know how to have fun. A major reason why I am enjoying being at Pomona so much is because of all the fun I am having every single day! (From sitting out in the hallways late at night discussing the most random topics to playing glow-in-the-dark capture the flag on the quad) I love Pomona so much that it has truly become a second home to me.
Bang for the buck
Pomona College has been given the title of #1 Best Value liberal arts college for the past two years in a row. I can personally attest to this as A) the education here is top rate and B) both myself and most of the other students I have spoken to have been incredibly pleased (and surprised) by Pomona’s generous financial aid packages. Compared to many other colleges of similar caliber, Pomona offers incredible financial aid, allowing students, like me, to attend such a prestigious college.
Tips for prospective students
As cliché as it may sound, my best advice for prospective students is to be yourself on your application. Don’t try to make yourself sound like someone who would fit in at Pomona—the college will accept those who genuinely are a good fit for the school. The admissions officers want to make the best class possible, and they don’t do that by just looking at the numbers. While the grades and scores do matter, showing who you really are is just as important.
For those who have already been accepted, my advice is to come and visit the school. Get a feel for the students, the professors, and the overall atmosphere. I firmly believe that every college campus has its own culture that can make someone feel very happy and comfortable and others not that enthusiastic for the next four years. And ultimately, don’t let anyone or anything else influence your final decision.
Great for these types of students
Pomona College is the perfect home for the hardworking, intellectual, easy-going, yet able to have a lot of fun type of student. Pomona is made up of an incredibly diverse group of people. You’ll find yourself friends with non-stereotypically jocky athletes, hipsters, acapella singers, improv actors, mathematics and philosophy double majors, slam poets, musicians, activists, and people from all over the country and world. The students here are ambitious and driven, but are extremely cooperative and thus, have created a very supportive environment where students are able to grow intellectually, emotionally, and socially.
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Daniel from Honolulu, HI

a current student here
15 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
pomona college stays true to its liberal arts mission statement of empowering me, the student, with my own education and how i want to design and experience it. the school employs professors who are passionate, above all else, about teaching and ensures that your quality of life, both scholastically and socially, will be smooth-sailing. it rates as a perfect 10 for those who enjoy living in a small, intellectually stimulating community that can handle having complete freedom over their educational experience.
Tips for prospective students
above all else, show yourself for who you really are, as a free-thinking individual who is passionate about something in the world. pomona college prides itself for having a student body that is brave at heart and independent at mind in regards to higher education. don't only show yourself as versatile, show how your versatility can benefit those around you.
Academic Rigor
southern california life is juxtaposed with hard work and a lot of over-achievers. be ready for a sunny ivy league experience.
Dorm Life
you live in a kingdom. if you're going to be working hard, you deserve the best accommodations. there's excess housing and housing is guaranteed all four years. the freshman and senior dorms are the nicest, so you begin and end your pomona experience with style.
Food and Dining
the food is amazing! transferring here allows me to compare dining halls, and i can tell you that you'll be getting fine dining here at pomona.
What to do for fun
you can drive into la, go to the museum of contemporary art, see a dance or opera performance in orange county, or drive up to mt. baldy to ski. you're only 35 miles east of la, so you're in just as much a cosmopolitan and beach-like environment as you are in a bourgeoisie, upper-middle class suburbia.
Bang for the buck
pomona college is the cheapest among the top liberal arts colleges, and is ranked #1 college in the u.s. regarding funding for each individual student. there are retreats happening almost every weekend for different majors, mentor groups, board of trustees, etc. in amazing parts of southern california. this school has money!
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
on your birthday, you will be dunked into one of the many fountains in the pomona college campus. this tradition is inevitable, and will happen to you, even if it has to be your half-birthday or quarter-birthday.
Great for these types of students
open-minded. confident. thinking about your education in relation to the greater community and world. ambitious. well-rounded. collaborative. fearless.
Clubs and Activities
there's something for anyone and everyone. every club and activity imaginable, including quidditich and a ginger appreciation club (you get the picture).
Greek Life
if you're looking for greek life, pomona college is not your school.
Campus Safety
claremont has been ranked as one of the safest cities in the u.s. so while there's no need for campus safety, they do a very good job, on-call 24/7.
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Liv from out of state

a current student here
13 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Weather is great! Really enjoying Pomona so far but its definitely some hard work. Work hard play hard i guess.
Tips for prospective students
PLEASE do your research and make sure a small liberal arts school is for you because they're not for everyone! Do an overnight stay and make sure its the place for you, especially students of color like myself, seeing that most lib arts colleges are not very diverse off paper though Pomona is one of the more diverse out there. Pomona offers a fly in program that fly's minority and low income prospective high school seniors to visit the school for about 5 days all expense paid. Call admissions office for more information. That being said this is still a school where students of color can find friends and comfort in peers different and alike and still succeed and be happy. Just know that EVERY school, whether big or small, will have good and bad apples, even if the bad apples are not overtly 'bad apples'.
Everyone here is pretty freakin smart so dont expect to come here and feel like it'll be so easy. BEST THING ABOUT POMONA SO FAR: Even though it seems like everyone here was pretty much top of their freaking class in high school, Pomona is soooooo collaborative. Students help each other so much and its not competitive at all (at least thats what I've seen so far).
Academic Rigor
Pretty tough but very doable. MANAGE YOUR TIME!! GO TO OFFICE HOURS!! Professors so far are amazing
Dorm Life
Love my sponsor group, dorm room and roommate.
Food and Dining
Its not too bad but gets REALLY old quick... im only a first year and the pretty expensive food options in the village are not really an option for me.
What to do for fun
Regular parties every week (if your not into EDM music then most of the parties wont be that great). Theres some good parties around the other campus' though. If your not into partying there are A LOT of other pretty great options going on regularly.
Bang for the buck
pretty expensive but the school is usually pretty good with financial aid, in my case it was okay. worth the money but look for scholarships if you need them.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Fountained on your birthdays and freshman sponsor groups.
Great for these types of students
Students who do well academically and students who are open minded and well rounded. Pomona is defiantly not just looking for just smart kids. Its a pretty liberal place.
Clubs and Activities
A LOT!
Greek Life
none.
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Trix from WA

a current student here
7 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Pomona is an all around great college where you have exceptional academics, thriving social life and a great community. Everyone is really friendly and wants to help out. There is something for everyone and they try really hard to make you at home.
Tips for prospective students
Besides good grades and test scores and stuff, make sure you connect with the admissions office on another level. They want to know that you are passionate about something or have interests.
Academic Rigor
Classes aren't easy, but schedules can be modified to be easier or harder. You will definitely have time to hang out with friends, sleep, eat, exercise, etc.
Dorm Life
YAY! Sponsor groups, Orientation Adventures and any activities you are involved in will yield instant friends. There are parties every weekend and you don't need to drink to have fun. People respect you if you don't like drinking or just want to take a night off.
Food and Dining
Frank and Frary are good, but even if you get sick of them, you can go eat at any of the other schools or in the village. Lots of places take Claremont cash and all seven of the dining halls are linked so the meals transfer to the other schools.
What to do for fun
ANYTHING YOU CAN POSSIBLY IMAGINE. Like Dancing? Hiking? Playing Video Games? Playing Frisbee? Speaking in another language? Doing community service? Drinking? Partying? Talking about politics? Swimming? Playing the ukulele or guitar? Singing? Playing any other game? You can actually do whatever you want and if the group doesn't exist already, make it yourself and you will find people (if not at Pomona, at the 5Cs) who will do it with you!
Bang for the buck
Awesome financial aid, meets 100% of demonstrated financial need with grants instead of loans.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Fountaining= throw you in the fountain on your birthday
47= we love this number
Great for these types of students
Any type...especially kids who like to do stuff.
Clubs and Activities
SOO MANY OVER THE 5Cs
Greek Life
Not really any. We have 2 Frats (one of which is a sorority at other schools) that throw parties and one frarority (frat/sorority).
Campus Safety
Super safe campus. Campus safety is only a call away. RAs can let you into rooms as well. Sponsors are nice people too. Everyone is willing to help you out when in need.
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Anonymous

a current student here
7 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
There are a wide variety of classes here which are intense but you don't have to do a lot of busy work. Since Pomona is part of a consortium with 4 other schools, you never run out of options for classes. The professors are absolutely amazing - engaging, quirky, brilliant, and dedicated, and interact a lot with the students. I am learning so much about topics that I am actually interested in!
Am enjoying being here
I love it here. The weather is beautiful, the classes are interesting, the dorms are pretty nice, the food is good, and most importantly, the people are some of the nicest, smartest, most passionate and hard-working people you will ever meet.
Bang for the buck
Well, I already said above what makes Pomona so amazing. To me, that is worth almost any amount of money. I am paying full price so I cannot speak for the financial aid opportunities but I believe that Pomona is very good about accomodating everyone's financial situation.
Tips for prospective students
If possible, visit. If not, do your research. Show why Pomona specifically appeals to you. Also, show your passions! Pomona students are unique and driven, so tell Admissions what makes you tick.
Great for these types of students
Pomona is great for students who are quirky, motivated to succeed, and like the sun :) Note: this is a liberal arts college - if you want to major in Engineering, Business or a technical vocation, this is not the best school for you.
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Anonymous from CA

researching this school
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
This is a wonderful campus! It's beautiful, calm, and feels so open to everyone. They have great academic resources being part of the Claremont Colleges, allowing students to take classes with students from other colleges. Pomona really has everything you could want in a school.
Academic Rigor
It's a pretty selective school, so top students with good work habits are abundant. Be prepared for a lot of work.
Dorm Life
The dorms are beautiful! They are definitely the best/nicest dorms I've seen at any college. I like the small community that forms from the people on a floor, and it's great to have a small group of friends even though the school is small itself.
Food and Dining
I love that you can go to any of the halls in the area. Pomona's are good, but there's always other options if you need the flexibility.
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Happy Freshman

a current student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Pomona College is a great school, and I feel extremely fortunate to attend this college; I have already met so many interesting and engaged people. The professors and administration are thoughtful and truly seem to care about their students. The campus is beautiful, the weather is great, the food is awesome, there is always so much to do, and the financial aid was outstanding as well.
Tips for prospective students
Further investigate or visit this school if it is on your list! You will be surprised by the amazing resources this school offers its students. The Claremont Consortium makes this small liberal arts school feel bigger.
Academic Rigor
Great selection of classes, which are challenging, but professors are very fair and very available. Students are not overly competitive with each other, but rather tend to work together, very collaborative. Students here are extremely self-motivated. You can also take classes at any of the other schools pretty easily.
Dorm Life
Pomona has something called sponsor groups, which do a great job of helping you get to know those on your floor. Mine has been great! Orientation Adventure happens even before school starts, and you really get to know those in your group (on a fun adventure that you get to choose). Some freshmen dorms are not air-conditioned - got lucky, mine has A/C.
Food and Dining
Really good food, with great selection. You can eat at any of the Claremont Colleges, which is awesome!
What to do for fun
My dorm floor tends to do a lot together, lucky that we all get along so well! I have already done many things that I really didn't do before I came to Pomona. You can easily go to Los Angeles on the weekend, Art After Hours has been really cool, interesting lectures, musical presentations, and fun parties too.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
You get thrown in a fountain on your birthday - a fun tradition!
Great for these types of students
Academics come first at Pomona College. Intellectually engaged students seem to be the norm. I have met some really smart people, not just good students, but very passionate people. A lot of athletes attend Pomona, I believe nearly 20% of the students play on a sports team.
Clubs and Activities
There are so many clubs and activities at Pomona. If they don't have a club you are interested in, you will be given funds and support to start it up!
Greek Life
Almost nonexistent.
Campus Safety
I feel Pomona is very safe overall. I am always still careful with valuables, can never be too cautious.
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