University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Champaign, IL, USA

Reviews

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
3.99 Average Rating

Krystal from Geneva, IL

a current student here
26 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
You know how teachers and parents say You'd better get used to studying! You spend nearly three hours doing homework for every hour of class once you're in college! ?

Guess what? They are completely right. What people don't tell you though, is the utter bliss that accompanies doing work in a major you love. That's the great thing about U of I. The teachers' love for their work is infectious. I remember doing philosophy essays, laughing to myself remembering how passionate my teacher was about monadology.

Yeah. I laughed at Monadology. But because I laughed at it, I enjoyed it. In this way, college is easier than high school; after all, work isn't really work if you love it! I took 30 credit hours this year, and ended up as a Dean's List student both semesters.

Am enjoying being here
Where do I begin? There is so much to do here at the U of I! Fine arts buff? Check out the art museum or a production at Krannert Center. Big into culture? For that, you have the Japan House, where you can learn to put on a Kimono or attend a tea ceremony. There is also a culture center for Latino and Hispanic culture, with beautiful paintings of La Catrina adorning its walls.
Perhaps you’re more active. For that, we have our recreation center, the ARC. They have a ton of classes there, from as cooking to even martial arts, and even a spa. I don’t know about you, but kicking butt, getting a facial, and eating lunch that I cooked myself screams “best day ever “to me!
There are also more clubs than you can dream of here, and you’ll see that on Quad Day, when all of the clubs present themselves in hopes of acquiring new members. There you’ll find student politics, sports club, and even squirrel watching represented. I myself am the President of the Japanese Anime Club, so be sure to stop by! Ah, yes. 40,000 students, and I am the biggest nerd there. Duh, winning.
Hungry? Look no further than Green Street. There you will find Mexican, Japanese, Italian, and good old fashioned fried foods, all lined up waiting to satisfy your latest craving. It also has the college essentials; Pizza shops, a Starbucks, and Walgreens.
I could go on forever, but seriously, just come here. You will NOT be disappointed; I guarantee it. If you are disappointed, you can come find me at Anime club and use some of that martial arts you learned at the ARC.
Bang for the buck
Not going to lie on this one; this place is a bit pricey for a public school. It's amenities, such as the ARC and UGL help make up for it, but I would definitely suggest looking for scholarships, because paying for school can be challenging.
Tips for prospective students
Get yourself out there, and you will LOVE this place. But that's just the thing; GET YOURSELF OUT THERE. Talk to professors. Use the 24/7 accesibility at the Undergraduate Library. Go to clubs. Your education and life are what you make of them. You don't fill a blender with just ice and expect a great smoothie, do you? Trust me; if you take advantages of the oppurtunities that present themselves at U of I , you will be amazed and elated by the benefits you reap in the future.

However, be aware; that also goes for doing dumb stuff. You may think it's cute to show to class hungover now, but would you like to retain this habit into your 40's when you're going to work? Remember that what you do here is shaping your future. Garbage in, garbage out.
Great for these types of students
-Human? Seriously, anyone can find happiness here. It's a big school, but with a small school feeling. Class sizes aren't outrageous at all, and some even had less students than some of my high school classes! Introverts and extroverts are welcome.

Also, it doesn't matter whether you're undecided, or if you've already picked out your business suit for when you're a lawyer. U of I nurtures the development of you. Not your career, but you. Once a person knows who they are, it is much easier to think of future plans. If you know what you want to do, great! If you don't, don't worry. U of I will help you come to the right decision.
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Amanda from Chicago, IL

a current student here
22 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
I transferred to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from a community college in Chicago. Let me tell you, it was definitely a tough transition academically because UIUC demands the best of it's students and does not accept anything less. I have learned that I can expand my knowledge, time, and research and that you are the only one that can limit yourself.
Tips for prospective students
I would recommend studying more, networking, getting a campus job, volunteering, and joining clubs. It sounds like a lot to do at once, but it is worth it! By participating in all of these opportunities, you will be able to create a stronger resume and have stronger letters of reference than your future competitors in the job market.
Academic Rigor
I am in the Animal Sciences program (Pre-Veterinary Medicine, and Medicine) and it is very demanding and rigorous. I believe that UIUC wants serious medical students that are willing to put in the time and effort to save lives. I recommend any of the science programs offered at UIUC for any person that is willing to work!
Dorm Life
I cannot say whether or not the dorm life is exceptional because I am a transfer student and I moved in to a house off campus to save money. There is construction going on in what's known as The Six-Pack which is a cluster of dormitories in a small area. It should be completed by Spring of 2013 and it looks fantastic so far!
Food and Dining
The food on campus and all around campus is very diverse and is available to a wide variety of taste buds! There are American, Indian, Pakistani, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Mexican, Italian, and many other types of restaurants here in the Urbana-Champaign area. There are always coupons that a student can obtain online or through mobile applications too so price is never an issue in most restaurants on campus.
What to do for fun
There is a place for everyone at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. The amount of clubs, activities (most are free), presentations, research and job opportunities, classes, and parties are endless! I am currently in 3 clubs (hold a position in 2 of the 3), volunteer, and hold a job here at UIUC and I love every single one of them!
Bang for the buck
UIUC is very expensive if you look at the tuition statement alone. HOWEVER, scholarships are always available for just about anything you can imagine! I received 3 scholarships so far (only 1 of which I had to write an essay, other 2 were given to me because of high GPA), multiple grants, and even more financial aid!
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
This year was my first semester here at UIUC and I was able to attend Quad Day at the beginning of the semester. Quad Day is a day in which hundreds of RSO's (Registered Student Organizations) set up tables to discuss what their club is about and you have the option to sign up if you would like to join. On the same day, the Taste of Nevada takes place in which you get to sample a bunch of free food!
Clubs and Activities
There are so many to join that it may be overwhelming at first. Do not be afraid to join as many as you can though because clubs are a great resume builder and networking opportunity! After a semester or two, you may realize that you like some more than others and from there, you may be able to narrow down your list of clubs.
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alicia from Naperville, IL

a current student here
13 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I am learning a lot not only academically but personally as well. The rigorous course load presents me with a new challenge every day and when I excel in one class, I feel accomplished as a student and an everyday individual. I have used the skills I acquire from these courses on a daily. I have also grown and learned personally. I knew that I had to balance school with extracurriculars and work, but this was nothing new to me as I done so in high school. However, what was different this time was that I had more studying to do and more freedom. I found it a lot harder to not fall victim of procrastination. For this first time, I had no one telling me what to do and when to do it and because of it, I acted as a student and a parent at the same time.
Am enjoying being here
I love the overall atmosphere of college. I live on a beautiful campus filled with very intelligent and unique individuals just like me. Being a few hours away from home gives me the chance to be independent like never before and make my own decisions. The night life is also amazing. I really like how if I just wake up one day and want to party, I can and vise versa.
Bang for the buck
U of I is a school that meets every prospective student's criteria for choosing a school. It is prestige, has a developed night life, has a diverse amount of extracurriculars, and is far away from home but not too far. It is perfect in my eyes.
Tips for prospective students
The most helpful piece of advice I can give prospective students is to remember that you are students first. While this may sound simple, it is so easy to forget this when there is no authority figure constantly reminding you. While partying is fun, it can not be more of a priority than studying. Take advantage of office hours and the free tutoring that is being offered. Also, one should sit in the front of the class and establish a strong relationship with professors. Most importantly, do not be afraid to ask for help and seek help when needed and in a timely fashion.
Great for these types of students
Independent
Strong-willed
Dedicated
Have an interest in learning
Can handle new challenges well
Open-minded
Focused
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Danielle from Chicago, IL

a current student here
12 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
It is amazing how much I have learned in just a year of being here. Classes never fail to be challenging, and you learn a lot about other cultures and different types of people just by hanging out on the quad for a few hours.
Am enjoying being here
Love it! There is so much to do, and you meet a lot of great people. There are so many more opportunities to get involved at a big school like this. I don't think I've ever met someone who really didn't like going to U of I!
Bang for the buck
A bit on the expensive side for those who are not in-state, but in-staters get a great education for a good price. And there are lots of scholarships you can apply for too.
Tips for prospective students
Some people might be worried that a big school like this is too impersonal and that it would be difficult to get to know anyone. But clubs and events are a great way to meet people, and once you become involved it starts to get that homey feeling that a smaller school would have.
Great for these types of students
Obviously for engineering it's one of the best, but students can get a great education here in almost any major. But don't worry, students who come here know how to have a good time. As they say, we work hard, but we play hard too.
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sophia from glenview, il

a current student here
10 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
the people on campus - students, professors, counselors - are all extremely welcoming, friendly and helpful, so do not feel intimidated. despite being located in central illinois, there are plenty of things to keep you busy in campus-town and the surrounding areas - whether it be shopping at marketplace mall, getting food on green street, or exploring the nature of urbana. joining rsos and/or greek life helps make such a large campus feel much smaller, and definitely like a second home.
Tips for prospective students
#1 - don't be afraid to ask questions! whether it means contacting someone you know who is a current student at the university or reaching out to friends of friends for advice, do not hesitate to ask anyone any question no matter how ridiculous it may seem. everyone on campus was in high school at some point in time, and they will be completely understanding and very helpful. current students are your best way of knowing exactly what it's like to live on campus and attend classes. (you know you came to the right place because i just finished my freshman year!) #2 - stay on top of your game. even though senioritis is probably kicking in, keep trying your best in school. it will definitely pay off when you get to campus because you will already be in the right mindset to succeed on this campus. the courses may be challenging for you if you're not used to applying yourself academically. however, if you do apply yourself, you will find that there is much to learn at the university of illinois and that truly anyone can succeed. #3 - as cliche as it may sound, get involved! with over 1,400 registered student organizations (rsos) on campus, there is surely something that will spark your interest and help connect you with students of similar interests on campus. the rsos are one thing that helps make a campus of over 44,000 students feel so small. get excited for quad day - a day during welcome week when all rsos set up booths on the main quad to inform the student body of their mission and offer ways for more students to get involved.
Academic Rigor
like i said earlier, this is a school where you need to be able to apply yourself academically. courses can be challenging and the homework load may be heavier than it was in high school depending on where you went high school. there are some notably easier classes on campus - which is a majority of the classes most freshmen students take - to fulfill certain general education requirements. for students looking for an academic challenge, you will be pleasantly surprised. many classes are presented in a fashion where you must do a lot of self-teaching, which can put a lot of pressure on a student. despite this, it is still possible to succeed, as many class grades are based on a curve. a typical class grade will be composed of daily or weekly homework grades, class participation, 5-10 quizzes, 2-3 midterms, and a final exam. course syllabi are handed out at the beginning of the semester and should always be referenced for important dates and deadlines. some professors quite honestly seem to forget that students have more than one class each semester and all load up a lot of assignments right before midterms, school breaks, and finals week. it is very likely that you may have more than one midterm or final exam scheduled for the same day, in which case you may say that the university is very academically challenging. however, in the case where you have 3 exams scheduled within a 24-hour time period, the university will allow you to change the time of one of the three exams to help reduce stress.
Dorm Life
despite the setbacks, there are many perks to residence hall life. the people you meet on your floor will likely become some of your closest friends throughout your entire college career. programs put on by the residence hall staff are actually a lot of fun and an easy way to meet the people who are living around you - sometimes you even get free food! be sure that you actually read the informational flyers you may see posted in your hall's bathrooms, hallways, and lounges. similarly, joining hall council will help introduce you to some behind-the-scenes work that goes into programming if you're interested. whether you get lucky enough to snag a room in the coveted ikenberry commons area, or if you get stuck in far/par, know that living in the dorms is actually not terrible. decorating your room and having a space on campus to call your own can be very comforting. especially if you have a roommate, knowing that your room can be your own sanctuary is very important. if you encounter a roommate conflict at any point throughout the school year, know that your resident advisor (ra) and resident director (rd) are very useful resources who are specifically trained to help alleviate any problems and help ease your transition into college. developing a relationship with your ra can be crucial in your experience living in your residence hall. knock on their door, ask them a question, and get to know them - they're there to help you! (as a future ra, i can't wait to get to meet my residents and help make their transition into college as smooth as possible!)
Food and Dining
i am not going to lie, despite having one of the largest campus dining halls in the country, bigger does not always mean better. many of the meals are prepared by student staff workers under supervision. students are sometimes tired or lazy so the food is never perfect and you cannot count on the same dish being prepared exactly the same way every week. not all of the dining halls are of equal quality either. most students will agree that the ikenberry commons dining hall, far, and par dining halls are consistently better quality than the dining halls located in allen hall, isr, lincoln hall, and busey-evans. however, students are allowed to eat at any university housing dining hall using their university meal plan. despite these setbacks, i find that there are a lot of options for people with all types of dietary restrictions, from being vegetarian, to gluten free, to vegan, the school tries to take every dietary restriction into account. similarly, for people with allergies, the dining hall will make note of popular allergens contained in certain dishes. also, for people trying to count calories, those are also noted at each food station. something i did not know coming into college was that the dining hall works as an all-you-can-eat-per-meal system as are most university dining halls. something to mention are the specialty meals provided frequently throughout the year. for certain international special occasions, such as hanukkah, diwali, and chinese new year, the dining hall will announce that they are having themed a themed meal for the day. this is a simple way in which students are invited to explore new cultures, foods, and traditions through food and celebration.
What to do for fun
have you ever heard of green street? if you have not, then you are missing out! green street is one of the most popular streets on campus. located just a five-minute walk from the quad, it is the ideal place to go between classes. filled with unique restaurants, boutiques, and bars, there is plenty to do at any hour of the day. some campus town staple restaurants on green street are mia za's (pizza and pasta), sakanaya (sushi), which wich? (sandwich shop). for shopping, green street has everything from urban outfitters to ragstock, you cannnot go wrong. in case you were not aware, a fun fact is that the legal age to enter bars in urbana-champaign is 19. however, the legal drinking age is still 21, so be responsible and make smart decisions. there are various types of bars on campus that many students explore. however, if the bar scene is not really your cup of tea, you can watch a movie on the quad, catch a performance at the krannert art center, watch a sporting event, attend a concert at the canopy club, or go ice-skating, the opportunities are endless! during the warmer months, the university screens free movies on the quad and students will gather to watch together under the stars. you can find everything from ted talks, to musicals, and ballet being performed at the krannert art center. while tickets are not free to students, the shows are definitely high quality and worth the money. students rave about the fun that they have at the football, basketball, and hockey games on campus. even though we are not always the team to beat, being around your peers makes it all worth it. from excision, to b.o.b., and the chainsmokers, the canopy club invites popular artists from all genres to entertain students. although these tickets are not free to students, it is always a fun night to be had regardless. there is also a decent size mall that can be reached by bus, along with various restaurants in the downtown champaign and urbana areas.
Bang for the buck
the biggest complaint you will hear from any college student on any college campus is about their student loans. though unavoidable, the university has many payment programs, scholarships, and grants that help make an education affordable for all students. for in-state students, tuition for the whole school year is approximately $15,000-$20,000. for out-of-state students, annual tuition is roughly $30,000-$37,000. for international students, tuition is about $32,000-$42,000. given these prices, as a current student, i would definitely say that i am getting my money's worth. the office of student financial aid also works with students in order to provide access to all possible scholarship opportunities in order to make education affordable. the university provides incomparable resources to aid in a student's education. with one of the largest university library systems in the country, the university of illinois has plenty of places for students to read and study. every time i enter a new building, i am reminded of why i pay so much per year to attend such an amazing university. the engineering quad is filled with some of the newest buildings on campus. this is including the electrical and chemical engineering (ece) building, which has received a green good design award from the european centre for architecture art design and urban studies and the chicago athenaeum for its sustainable design. another notable building is the newest wassaja hall, named after the first native american graduate of the university, which is expected to receive a minimum of leed gold certification. but overall, beyond the state-of-the-art buildings and resources, the friendships and networking connections that are built on this campus are priceless.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
there are some really unique traditions on campus, including quad day, dial-a-carol, unofficial, and spring jam concert. quad day is a part of welcome week when students advertise their clubs and activities, see clubs and activities section for more details. dial-a-carol is a unique tradition, which takes place in snyder residence hall. since 1960, students have gathered to answer phone calls from around the world and sing holiday tunes to spread cheer during the stress of finals week. unofficial is a hyped up day of drinking to celebrate st. patrick's day, which the university is attempting to combat. the spring jam concert takes place in late april, when a popular artist performs on the main quad free of charge to university students. there are also some unusual locations you may hear about, like the eternal flame, red lion, and the steam tunnels. the eternal flame is something that you would hear about on a campus tour. it is said that if you kiss your love under the light of the eternal flame, your love will last forever. red lion is a sight in itself, being one of the craziest bars on campus. brace yourself if you plan on facing this jungle. something the university does not want students to know about are the underground steam tunnels connecting several university buildings. plenty of information can be found on the reddit page, as i cannot speak from experience to their validity so i suggest you look there for more information. also, something very notable about campus is the amount of public art on display. the most memorable being abraham lincoln's bust, alma mater, night train, darwin's playground, the nathan austin weston memorial fountain, diana fountain, and centennial. there are plenty more to be discovered on campus, i would suggest reading up more about the specific pieces online if interested before coming to campus in order to have a greater appreciation for the art.
Great for these types of students
even as a resident advisor, i can honestly say that i am not aware of all of the resources available on this campus. however, i am aware that this is an excellent school for any student with a physical or learning disability. the beckwith center, located in nugent hall, is a brand new, state-of-the-art facility modified to help students with disabilities. this is also a great place for international students. almost every day at the university of illinois, i have met someone from a different country. with a prominent population of international students, newly admitted international students will feel right at home on campus. from personal experience, everyone i have met on campus is extremely caring and outgoing, which helps make disabled, international, and all students on campus feel very welcomed from the start. additionally, this is a great place for students who are looking for a balance between academia and fun. that being said, it is necessary for students to have self-discipline in order to survive on this campus. unfortunately, it is all too common for students to get caught up in the party atmosphere and forget to go to classes, study, and take exams. students must remember the reason why we are all here is for one thing - an education. i would say that this school is ideal for students who are looking for a challenge because the more you are willing to challenge yourself, the more room you will have to grow. this is not a university where your professors will baby you, you must be willing to put in the work in order to be successful.
Clubs and Activities
quad day is a day during welcome week when students from all clubs, sports, and organizations on campus join forces on the main quad to put on a career fair type event except for clubs and campus resources. this allows for students to explore the possibility of joining clubs and organizations, of which they have never heard. it is also a crucial component to welcome week for incoming freshmen students because it truly begins to integrate them into the student body and allows them to meet students with similar interests and puts them in direct contact with various campus resources. with over 1,400 registered student organizations (rso) on campus, you will be sure to find many organizations which will spark your excitement, and match your interests or hobbies. with everything from a harry potter club, to a cappella groups, and a service fraternity, you never know what you will be able to find here until you begin to explore the endless possibilities yourself. the university of illinois also provides plenty of resources for rsos to thrive, including the student organization complex on the second floor of the illini union, which houses 46 cubicles reserved as a planning and relaxation space 46 of the most prominent rsos on campus. there has been debate recently concerning the survival of this space, but it really is a crucial regular meeting spot for many organizations. it should also be noted that the school provides financial support for certain qualifying rsos through funding provided by the student organization fee (sorf) and the student cultural programming fee (scpf), which are both relatively small charges included in your student fees. this is yet another reason why the university encourages all students to get involved with an rso. besides making connections, building friendships, and utilizing resources, all students are helping fund the rsos which make our campus so special and unique.
Greek Life
greek life is huge on campus. but, it is not unavoidable. if students are looking to get involved with greek life, they will be welcomed with open arms into one of our 60 fraternities or 37 sororities on campus. there are various types of fraternities and sororities for all types of students. the social fraternities and sororities provide the stereotypical "crazy" college experience. ranked as the #1 party school of 2015, we clearly do not mess around when we say crazy. for those involved in greek life, parties are frequent, during the week as well as over the weekends. 32% of the chapters on the university of illinois' campus are culturally based. these chapters allow students of similar cultural backgrounds, typically minority ethnicities, to connect with one another and grow a familial bond. there are also many religious based fraternities and sororities on campus - lutheran, catholic, christian, and jewish chapters. professional sororities and fraternities provide students with a resource to network and expand interest in their intended major. keep in mind that this is a university with a street commonly known to the student body as "frat row" and a recreational area commonly known as "frat park" for self-explanatory reasons. about 23% of the undergraduate population is involved in some way with greek life, but also remember that that means that 77% of the undergraduate population is not involved with greek life. if a student wants to get involved with greek life, there are plenty of opportunities here for them to do so. however, if a student chooses that they do not want to get involved, there is absolutely no pressure to do so and there are still plenty of other fun things to do on campus.
Campus Safety
the university of illinois puts a large emphasis on the importance of student safety on campus. if a student feels unsafe to walk home at any hour of the night, even when the bus services are no longer running, students are encouraged to use the safewalks and saferides services. included in student fees, these services seem fairly self-explanatory. when calling the number conveniently located on the back of your student id, two student-athletes will walk you or a saferides bus will drive you home from your current location. near the university residence halls, security guards ensure student safety by patrolling the area all night long. there are also various free safety classes offered through the university and the local police department in order to help keep citizens safe. illini-alert is a free service through the school which will text message anyone signed up for messages, students, their families, etc., in any emergency situation whether it be weather related, robbery, or an attack. it should also be noted that the university does not promote underage drinking, but recognizes that it does happen. in order to ensure student safety, the university has a contract worked out with the local police department that if a student is to receive medical treatment for an issue related alcohol consumption, such as alcohol poisoning, they would not need to worry about getting in trouble with the law. this contract is to make sure that students do not hesitate to get the necessary help for their peers should they end up in an emergency situation. with that said, there are also many emergency telephones located around campus, indicated by a bright blue light for anyone to access in an emergency situation.
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Carolyn from Wood Dale, IL

a current student here
6 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
While I knew that attending a large university would lead to a large selection for academics, I was not expecting the attentiveness and intelligence of the professors on top of the variety. All professors I have had, including those for Psychology classes, Community Health classes, and Sociology classes, were very passionate about the courses they were leading; therefore, it was very very easy for me to enjoy my time in the classes as well as feel much more motivated to challenge myself. I was very pleased to find that my professors were all willing to sit down individually and discuss materials that were not understood by any given student. Also, all classes followed a clear syllabus making organization within the classes very simple. I am very pleased with the knowledge that I have gained from just one semester at this university.
Am enjoying being here
Not only is this university great for expanding intellectual horizons, it comes with a host of other advantages as well. For one, the University of Illinois is a very large campus and also a very diverse campus. Not only does it open up the opportunity to meet dozens of fresh faces, it opens the opportunity to meet dozens of fresh faces from all different countries and backgrounds. I have found it very fascinating to meet with foreign students and discuss their impression of America! Besides meeting new people. there are also a ton of extracurricular activities for one to indulge in. From Colleges Against Cancer to Illini Pride to the Arnold Schwarzenegger Club, there is a substantially wide range of activities for students to become involved in. There is at least one activity for everyone! A third reason I love being a part of the University of Illinois is the ridiculous amount of Illini pride I see every single day. It is not uncommon to see masses of students in orange or blue (or orange and blue) shirts, professing their love for the school. Sports are even more exciting; just imagine a sea of orange consuming the football stadium! That's what you get when you come to this university. This is a great school for broadening interest, building pride, and meeting new people!
Bang for the buck
I do believe that the U of I gives students the BEST bang for their buck! With this university one can easily achieve an awesome education, meet many new and interesting people. build a great resume for life after college, create networks for their future, find ways to get involved around campus and indulge in something they are passionate about, and more. There are just so many things to be gained from attending this university that one can easily get their money's worth.
Tips for prospective students
Take your ACT seriously; that score can make or break you being accepted into this school! Make sure you check out the numerous student organizations; there are SO many opportunities to find a group you will love; so make sure you find it!
Great for these types of students
Student who are eager to meet new people, students who wish to live in a campus town, students who want to show a lot of pride and become very involved. This school is also very well known for the following programs: science, engineering, and agriculture, as well as in business and the liberal arts.
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Kristen from Chicago, IL

a current student here
52 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I've learned things so far in every course I've taken and have met really great professors and instructors. You learn a lot from the people as well. They're from all over the world.
Am enjoying being here
It's not really urban or rural. It's a campus town. You kind of just have to experience it for yourself to see whether or not you will like it.
Bang for the buck
The costs of tuition, room and board can be really expensive or inexpensive depending on how you go about financing them and finding the right deals.
Tips for prospective students
Do your research about the school and the community. Visit the campus and sit in on a class or check out Green Street and other attractions around town.
Great for these types of students
Great for students looking for the big campus experience and who are very sociable, motivated and intelligent.
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Brittany from Island Lake, IL

a current student here
37 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
If you are a student that goes to lecture and does your homework, you will learn an astounding amount in just your first year as a student at the University of Illinois. Intelligence from all over the globe comes to U of I to research and serve as quality professors to provide their knowledge to eager students. Many professors teach not only through lecture, but also through interactive activities, such as student-teacher discussions, student-to-student interaction or peer editing, participation in a class experiment, or a showing of an influential film, just to name a few. There are many ways to learn, and every professor that I have had at U of I has utilized these to help their students get the most out of their class.
Some object to large schools because they are concerned about being taught by TA's (teaching assistants are students that teach discussion sections of a class, usually meeting once a week). This was an initial concern for me when trying to decide what school to go to, but now having experienced many discussion sections led by TA's, I can assure you that every TA I have ever had has definitely done their homework and is very knowledgeable about the content in which they teach their students. If for some reason the TA is not able to answer a question that someone may have, every professor has office hours in which a student can go and ask questions. Most professors are very flexible and willing to help their students, even if the student is not able to attend their office hours due to another class or engagement.
Beyond classes and professors, the amount you learn at college about life, people, and yourself is invigorating, but can sometimes be overwhelming. At U of I, there are many different counselors that specialize in helping freshman through their transition. There is also a place that is centrally located on campus called The Oasis, which is a place to relax, rejuvenate, and refresh. Here, they have everything from ...
Am enjoying being here
U of I is a gorgeous campus. If you have spent some time looking at pictures online but have not visited, visit now! It is even more beautiful in person. The first time I stood on the Quad (big grassy central area of campus where students go to lay out, study, play Frisbee, or meet up with friends), I felt like I was standing on a brochure cover. The intense green of the leaves and grass complimented by the array of bright colored flowers are truly a sight. Even in the winter, the snow-tipped trees framing the Illini Union building are picture-perfect.
Beyond the stunning visuals of this campus, U of I has over 1,200 RSO's (Registered Student Organizations) to get involved with to meet a lot of people while doing whatever you are passionate about. From a cappella choirs to tightrope walking to book club to the October Lover's club (formed to do all the fun fall activities like pumpkin carving, apple picking, corn maze exploring, etc.), there is at least one RSO for everyone. If you cannot find one you would like to be a part of, you can create your own! Discovery of all these grand organizations happens on Quad day, a fun day in the very beginning of the year when all of the RSO's set up a table on the Quad (yes, the Quad is packed!) and have members and paper information and sometimes other goodies to help you learn about their organization. Can't choose just one? You can be involved with as many RSO's as you choose. Even if you are not sure you will have time to do something but you would like more information, sign up for that RSO's emailing list, which should be on their table. You can easily remove yourself at any time throughout the year. RSO's are an excellent way to make friends with similar interests!
Greek life is of course another way to meet people and get involved in the community. Just by rushing, you will meet a wide variety of people that you can socialize with and learn about. All houses will coordinate with each other and...
Bang for the buck
Yes, U of I is now the most expensive state school in Illinois. However, comparing this university to smaller private ones that cost almost double U of I's tuition, I would say you definitely get the bang for the buck. Smaller private schools often conger up rumors, drama, and unnecessary issues that are blown out of proportion because people cannot step in other directions and ignore it. This is largely because there are not enough activities and groups available for them to do so. Here at U of I, if there is something or someone you do not get along with, you can bet that removing it or them from your life will be easy. There are so many different things to do, and the campus is so large, that this should not be a concern (this message is especially for those who were scarred by any drama in high school).
If you have read all of the above information, you will see that there are thousands of services the campus is offering you. The ARC, the MTD bus service, the Illini Union, The Oasis, the Career Center, the Office of Minority Student Affairs, McKinley Health Services (this includes insurance and huge discounts on medicine from the pharmacy), and any advisers and councilors that are there to help you through your college experience are all included in your tuition. Considering that almost everything you need on campus is already paid for, I would say U of I definitely gives you the bang for the buck!
Tips for prospective students
There are so many different things that you will learn in your college experience. Here are some tips that will hopefully make your transition a bit smoother!
-When you move in, do not be afraid to go around your floor and introduce yourself to people! It is totally normal to knock on someone's door and say, Hey, I'm blahblahblah. I'm in room whatevernumber and just thought I should meet some people around here. Here is a little secret not many people think about: EVERYONE is in the same boat on your first day. Some may know a few people, but for the most part, virtually everyone wants to make new friends. The people you meet in the first six weeks will be the people you get closest with! It is a lot harder to form a plethora of new relationships after that point. So push those first six weeks!
-Be yourself. Seriously. In high school, people conform. In college, people don't care, and conformists are actually a bit annoying. So do not be afraid to put the real you out there. There are tons of people for every kind of personality.
-Smile. Countless studies show that if you have a smile on your face, people perceive you as a warm and approachable person, making it a lot easier to make friends!
-Manage your independence. Yes, this will probably be your first time living on your own with no parents to tell you what to do. This does not mean you can pile up your laundry until you have no more underwear or leave the dishes undone until you cannot walk into the room because of the smell. It will now be your job to keep yourself in check. Set a day of the week (Sunday was always good for me) as your sorting out my life day. Do your laundry, clean your dishes, do any remaining homework for the upcoming week, check your calendar so you know how busy your week will be, print any necessary lecture slides for classes...the list goes on and on. When this day rolls around, you should know what you need to get done to make your parents proud and your life a lot less stressf...
Great for these types of students
The only kind of student I would not recommend is someone that does not care about their grades. U of I definitely knows how to party, but the academics are very challenging, and I have seen everyone that I knew did not care drop out. Do not waste your money on this school if you are not going to fight until graduation. It is definitely hard work.
This school is PERFECT for students that are both hard working, social, and good time managers!
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Lola from Southfield, MI

a current student here
31 people found this review useful
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Am learning a lot
Despite the fact that UIUC is a public university smack dab in the middle of corn fields, it has so much to offer in regards to academics. The classes are structured very well. For example, many classes are very large but they are broken down into different sections where you are able to built more of a instructor:student relationship. So, don't fear getting lost in very large classes just make sure you attend all of the classes for your section! There are amazing tutoring opportunities and more office hours than you could probably attend. Also, UIUC has one of the largest university library systems so its impossible to not find new information from the libraries.
Am enjoying being here
One of the things that stand out to me in regards to being on-campus are the different campus sponsored events. My favorites are those that are food-orientated. University Housing offers, specialty restaurants that carry food that is not offered in regular meals for the dining halls. Some of them include the Cracked-Egg Cafe, Fat Don's, Soul Ingredient, Field of Greens, and Cocina Mexicana. The Cracked-Egg Cafe specializes in breakfast foods, Fat Don's serves grilled steak and chicken, Soul Ingredient carries soul food dishes and Cocina Mexicana has hispanic dishes. These restaurants provides an outlet for different students to meet and break bread together.
Bang for the buck
Being an out-of-state student I pay a great deal for tuition but I honestly think it is well spent. The transportation system is nearly flawless, the fitness centers on campus are amazing, and the academics are uniquely excellent. I don't have fear that I am wasting money with UIUC.
Tips for prospective students
*Visit the Campus - Once you see it you'll love it.
*Talk to current students
*Find out which classes are best to take for freshman year
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Alyssa from Dixon, IL

accepted here and planning to attend soon
29 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Will learn a lot
I'm pretty sure that no matter which area a student would like to go, U of I has something to help him or her pursue it. There are at least 17 individual colleges on campus in specified areas.
Will enjoy being here
Fun fact: this campus has over 1200 student clubs and organizations! How crazy! Just to name a few of the more... memorable ones: I Love Squirrels Club, People Against Pants who wear shorts year round, and The Rodeo Club.
Bang for the buck
Tuition prices varied based on which college a student goes into, based on a major. The more math and science classes, the more expensive it becomes. Also, like most colleges, out-of-state students have a higher tuition rate.
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