Ursinus College
Collegeville, PA, USA

Reviews

Ursinus College
3.66 Average Rating

Stephanie

a current student here
11 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The professors are always there for students anytime the student needs help. It is important to the university that the students truly understand the material, instead of just squeezing by. All of the professors have a wide range of knowledge and allow that knowledge to rub off onto the students.
Am enjoying being here
There are so many different things to do at Ursinus that I am never bored. Students have have the opportunity to attend parties or throw parties, watch movies in the many lounges, or attend the many different forms of entertainment that the school has provided. Entertainment ranges from magicians, to comedians, to speakers. The school hopes to not only educate students, but allow them to grow socially as well.
Bang for the buck
Though the school's price may seem very overwhelming at first glance, the Financial Aid department works hard with the students to lessen the burden of paying for school. Jobs are also very available on and off campus. The education provided with the lively social environment is truly worth the cost.
Tips for prospective students
In coming students should be sure to attend all events during Freshmen orientation. Be friendly and open to all student. You never who could become a great friend. Don't get stuck in your books throughout the school year. Be sure to have fun and take advantage of everything the school has to offer. While you might be homesick within the first few weeks, try not to go home unless it is necessary. Everyone makes lots of friends the first few weeks of school and you don't want to miss the opportunity.
Great for these types of students
Students who benefit from small classes and wish to build strong bonds with not only their professors but their advisers as well would love to attend this college. While the work load is a bit strenuous at times, students are never alone. Advisers, professors, librarians, and programs such as the Writing Center are always available for students when they need it. Ursinus College is for students who are serious about there education but also wish to have the opportunity to have a terrific social experience. Ursinus never forgets that the students are still young and enjoy having fun. Programs are in place to ensure that parties are safe, and for those who are still underage, that there is an alternative to drinking. If you like to have fun, but are serious about learning, this college is right for you!
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Kyu Chul from Fort Lee, NJ

a current student here
9 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
The professors teach very well here. They have office hours where they will drop what they are doing immediately to help you and even if they're busy they'll generally be willing to give you a helping hand. Most classes are either Monday Wednesday Friday for 50 minutes or Tuesday Thursday for 1hour 15 minutes each. You'll cover a surprising amount of material in that time, believe me. Even if you don't know a professor, if you just introduce yourself to him or her they are more than willing to receive you with open arms.
Am enjoying being here
Ursinus is a friendly place. There's simply no other way to put it. People will hold doors for you and say hi to you even if you've never met them. As one student told me, Ursinus has a serious case of the friendlies. However, there are some things of the environment some students may not like. The cafeteria, for the most part, serves the same food everyday. The hot lunch seems to be the only exception. The campus is small so it's easy to get to know the place and expect to get to know your fellow students and professors. There aren't too many of us.
Bang for the buck
Look, I'm not going to lie. Ursinus is a very expensive school. If you can somehow get the cost down by getting an Ursinus Scholarship or Creative Writing Scholarship, the cost is worth it. However, even if you have to pay the full 50k+ amount to get here, I would still say the education you receive here is worth it.
Tips for prospective students
You need to like the small town feel. There are maybe 1600 students here; that's smaller than a lot of high schools out there. If you don't like seeing the same people day in and day out and get bored of a structured schedule, this isn't the school for you. It's a good idea to come in with AP/IB credits, as they count for the core requirements and even for the majors. (As of October 2010 anyway.) There are a good number of programs that are offered in many big time universities that aren't offered here and most of the upper level courses are offered on rotation. (As in the class might be offered once every two or three years.) So make sure you have a good idea of what you want to study.
Great for these types of students
This is a school for two types of students. If you are that kid who struggled in high school and received mostly low Bs and Cs, this school is going help you become the best you possibly can be. If you put the work in and make an honest effort at improving yourself intellectually, you will be a different person by the time you are a senior.
Ursinus is also for that A-/B+ student in high school who probably took a couple of APs and honors. You might have been in the top 10-15% but you felt like an idiot compared to the kids in the top 5%. This is a place where you can shine. You have all the resources available to you and professors who can help you improve to the same level as those top 5% kids in high school.
If you're a kid who likes taking advantage of great professors who care, then you will love it here. Promise.
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Katie from lanoka harbor, NJ

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
At Ursinus, learning is infectious. Everyone is so knowledgeable, and so eager to teach and pass along information to others. Being a liberal arts school, you get to learn so many things that you might not be exposed to at traditional four year schools.
Am enjoying being here
Ursinus is not only a great environment for learning, it's also a great environment for living. Being such a small school, the campus feels more like a neighborhood than a network of buildings. There is always something going on on campus, whether it be a free concert or comic show, to a special exhibition in our art museum, entertainment is easy to find. Also, the campus is about 30 minutes outside of Philadelphia, with public transportation available via SEPTA busses and trains.
Bang for the buck
Ursinus is definitely expensive- which is something that shouldn't be overlooked when choosing a school. However, Ursinus was recently ranked in the top 10 schools for graduate salary vs. price of degree by SmartMoney Magazine. Also, being a private school, they have a large endowment fund, and aid very well.
Tips for prospective students
Apply! My SAT scores slightly lower than the range of their averages, but I took a chance and I got accepted. They really look at a student from all angles, not just your GPA and class rank.
Great for these types of students
I chose Ursinus because I didn't want to feel like a number. Students who enjoy being in smaller classes, and communicating directly with professors and other students will thrive at Ursinus. It is really a community of intellectuals, so students who enjoy learning and experiencing new things should definitely consider applying.
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a current student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Being such a small school, everyone knows and respects each other. There is a strong sense of community and common interests among many. Private undergraduate liberal arts school.
Tips for prospective students
Definitely visit the campus before you make any final decisions.
Academic Rigor
Moderate, enough to give you something to do, but you wont be up every night studying until 2 am.
Dorm Life
Everyone in my building seems to get along great with each other and there is a sense of community and hominess. Also, Ursinus has several houses on its campus including quiet houses, same-sex and coed houses and special interest houses.
Food and Dining
The only bad thing about Ursinus. The food is not quality and gets old extremely fast.
What to do for fun
Ursinus is close to Phoenixville, King of Prussia, and Philadelphia. Tons of things off campus to do and nightly events on campus to enjoy, such as magicians, artists, silly craft making for the dorms, and lots of others.
Bang for the buck
The average student aid received from Ursinus is about $23,000. 60% of graduates employed and 30% attending graduate or professional school full-time. Another 7% of the class are completing fellowships or engaged in a year of service. 75% of Ursinus graduates enter graduate or professional school within 5 years. An acceptance rate into medical, law, and business schools after graduating from Ursinus exceedes 90%.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Riemert. The frat/sorority building and the one place you can find everyone partying on a Saturday night. 3 floors of heaven.
Great for these types of students
Hard working, yet like to have fun. Those seeking a smaller school. Independent and can learn on there own, yet likes the intimacy of small class sizes. Liberal Arts seeking.
Clubs and Activities
Ursinus has nearly 100 clubs, ranging from the campus radio to Ninjutsu Club. Also, if there is activity you are interested in and there hasn't been a club created for it yet, you can personally create one.
Greek Life
20% of the Ursinus student body is Greek and there are 320 members of the Greek Community. Also, the Greek GPA has, on average, a higher GPA than the rest of the student body and spend a lot of there time doing community service.
Campus Safety
I have never felt UNsafe at Ursinus. Small school, lots of nice and friends campus safety officials, and Collegeville is far from a dangerous town.
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Jennifer

a current student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Since Ursinus is such a small school, you get to know your professors a lot better than you would at a larger school. This makes it a lot easier to contact them outside of class, and they just want to see you succeed. So, from my experiences with many of my professors, they'll help you out in ways professors at larger schools wouldn't. You're able to start laboratory research in your second semester of freshman year, and there are ample opportunities for independent study in any field! Professors will often go out of their way to help you find an internship or the contacts to conduct the research you're interested in. The tutoring program is also very good! Tutoring is free for students, and the tutors get paid by the college. I'm currently a tutor for the college, after receiving help from a tutor in a couple courses.
Also, Ursinus has recently started a program called Ursinus is talking about... which features a specific book, play, or other media each semester. Then, throughout that semester, there will be several programs regarding the issues presented in the topic, including lectures, concerts, discussions, presentations, and more. This is sort of continuation of the idea of the common intellectual experience (CIE), which is sort of a freshman forum in a small class setting, which address topics mostly in history, English literature, and philosophy.
Am enjoying being here
The college has several different programs to enhance student involvement on campus. One organization is the Campus Activities Board (CAB), and another is the Student Activities Office (SAO). CAB organizes mostly on-campus events for students, and the SAO organizes many off-campus trips. CAB has organized Casino nights (using play money to win some nice prizes), Bingo nights (again, to win some nice prizes, like a flat screen TV, microwave, etc.), movie nights (projecting a movie outside during good weather or in an auditorium). SAO mostly hosts trip off-campus, and they also reimburse up to $10 each semester per student for off-campus entertainment, like movie tickets. They have also hosted trips to a fall festival (for hay rides, corn maze, apple cider, and picking out pumpkins), annual Ball at the Bellevue (a formal dance that costs only $5 per student held at the Bellevue in Philly), and Dorney Park. Another campus organization is the Resident Hall Association (RHA), which hosts resident activities, like a coolest room competition, best Halloween decorated house, and best snow sculpture competition. Ursinus also has an organization called UCARE, which organizes community service on and off campus. There are many weekly and one-time service opportunities; some of the weekly service opportunities include volunteering at the organic garden, Wismer on Wheels (packaging food to go to homeless shelters), Head Start, and ESL tutoring of hispanic maintenance workers. Other organizations that increase student involvement are greek organizations and sports teams. Ursinus has 8 fraternities and 5 sororities on campus, and has Division 3 sports teams.
Bang for the buck
Ursinus offers many scholarships, merit and need-based. There's a scholarship weekend in the spring for high school seniors to interview for merit-based scholarships. Also, finding on-campus jobs is relatively easier at Ursinus than at many of the schools my friends attend. You can start an on-campus job as soon as you start your freshman year, and you can apply for a job by early August before freshman year. Also, a laptop is provided for all 4 years, including receiving a new one after sophomore year. Laptop insurance is one of the fees charged with tuition. And resident halls are nicer that at many other schools. The freshman dorms are closest to the various campus buildings, and each building has a kitchen, lounge (with big screen TV), and free laundry facilities. And unlike at many other colleges, you can select the specific room you want to live in each year, through a lottery process.
Tips for prospective students
If you want a campus job your freshman year, you should apply for one as soon as you have access to careernet, around early August.
The meal plan can be a bit confusing, but all freshmen have a 19 meals per week plan. After freshman year, you can choose 19, 14, or 10 meals per week. All of the options cost the same, but an additional amount will be charged if you select additional dining dollars. Dining dollars are like currency that can be used at Zack's, Jazzman's, and the Convenience store. Meal credits can only be used at upper Wismer and Zack's (at Zack's, they're currently valued at $5.25).
When choosing which freshman dorm to live in, BWC has more triples, which has less floor space per person, and BPS has doubles, a couple quads and suites, and a few singles. Suites have two separate doubles with their own bathroom, and quads are just a large room for 4 people. It seems that the quads are only ever assigned to girls because the college seems to think they need less privacy. I lived in a quad freshman year, and my roommates and I started getting on each others' nerves by the end of the year. I would suggest that if you live in a triple or quad, you should schedule privacy times each week when each person can have the room to him/herself.
Try to be open-minded because you have no idea how much you're going to change and grow over the next 4 years!
Great for these types of students
I think it's a great school for anyone who would prefer a smaller school. We don't have just one type of student, although we're not very racially diverse, although that's mostly due to the location of the school. I know that I chose Ursinus because it's known for having a great Biology and pre-Med program, and also because I noticed how well you get to know your professors at a small school.
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Tracy from Philadelphia, PA

a past student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Ursinus is a small, suburban liberal arts college. Students are serious about their academics and extracurricular activities. The campus is very safe and students and everyone (students, faculty, adminstration) is friendly.
Tips for prospective students
This is a good school if you are looking for a college that is relatively small in student population and campus size and academically challenging. There is not much to do off-campus if you do not have a car.
A campus tour can get you more familiar with the atmosphere around Ursinus.
Academic Rigor
Most courses are very academically demanding. They require you to have good control over time management, since at times it may seem like there is not nearly enough time to get things done, or to balance schoolwork with sports or other activities. Classrooms and academic buildings are open all day and night (if not you can call campus safety to open it for you), so there are often empty classrooms you may use to study in.
Dorm Life
Dorm life is fairly decent. You are allowed to bring your own fridge, microwave and air conditioning unit if you live in a dorm without air conditioning. All dorms have heating systems. It is the standard dorm set up with a bed, closet or drawer, and desk. There are dorms that have certain interests, such as gaming, community service, and writing. There is also no fee for doing laundry.
Food and Dining
The food is sufficient enough to live another day. They provide the essential food groups. The dining hall (Wismer Hall) consists of a buffet style option (upper floor)or a made-to-order area (known as lower Wismer). It can get a bit old after awhile though.

There is a convenience store on campus open at night, as well as a Wawa nearby and shopping outlet with other stores.
What to do for fun
The gym is open to all students and includes a work out area and swimming pool. There is also an indoor track with a basketball court open in the same building.
You can also hang out with friends nearly anywhere, or use the projector in classrooms to watch movies.

King of Prussia mall is about thirty minutes away, as well as other shopping outlets and a movie theater.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
There are many art sculptures around campus, from donations and other sources, that liven up the campus.
Great for these types of students
Students who may be interested in a career in medicine or the sciences.
Campus Safety
The campus is very safe. Campus safety is very friendly and easy to contact if you are worried walking back to your dorm late at night, or if you have an injury or disability and need help getting around campus.
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Meghan from Levittown, PA

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Ursinus is a great school filled with some of the nicest people I've ever met. The fact that it is a small school makes it easier for it to feel like home. The campus is beautiful and the people are inspiring.
Tips for prospective students
Small class sizes give you better opportunities to connect with professors. Definitely get to know them! Also, get involved, you'll make some great friends!
Academic Rigor
Professors definitely push your limits a little bit but they're always there if you need help. Their expectations aren't completely ridiculous, especially not the first year.
Dorm Life
So much fun. Friends are always around.
Food and Dining
Average. I wish it was open later. Meal credits at Lower Wismer should be worth more.
What to do for fun
Hang out with friends, walk to Wawa right down the street, the notorious 'Wismer Hang' where we stay in the dining hall for as long as possible. Ursinus is what you make of it.
Bang for the buck
Ursinus seems expensive but they give out a lot of financial aid.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
There are so many unusual traditions and locations on campus. If you come for a tour I'm sure your tour guide will have a few stories. We have a fountain on campus that the seniors slide down naked the night before graduation.
Great for these types of students
Hard working, fun-loving, determined.
Clubs and Activities
Check the website! It's honestly ridiculous how many clubs and organizations there are on campus. Don't be afraid to get involved either. Everyone is very friendly. Fighting for Ophelia is the best ;)
Greek Life
Greek life is definitely known on campus. They do a lot of fundraisers and activities within the community, but you do not have to join greek life to have fun.
Campus Safety
I always feel safe on campus. Campus safety officers are always walking around. Pete is awesome.
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Douglas from South Waverly, PA

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Ursinus College is a tight-knit close community of ambitious students who love to learn and professors who love to teach. The curriculum is like that of no other college because it focuses on shaping students to be honorable members of society and not just intelligent thinkers. There is something for everyone at Ursinus or a least a way to be able to reach it.
Tips for prospective students
Prospective students should definitely visit Ursinus to get a feel for it's culture. Students interested in Ursinus should come with questions to ask faculty and current students. If you're on the fence about attending come out for a visit (or a second one) to Ursinus; it can make all the difference in your college decision!
Academic Rigor
Ursinus is as intense as its heavily ambitious, achieving students and professors make it. It's academic rigor can easily compare to that of Ivy League schools. Be prepared to work your hardest, but also reap an uncountable amount benefits from your hard work.
Dorm Life
Underclassmen are all in the same two dormitories, which are well accommodated. Upperclassman can choose between residential houses turned dormitory style housing, two brand new clean and fresh dorms, or even Special Interest Housing (SPINT). All in all the community feel of Ursinus' campus DEFINITELY is a direct result of the camaraderie in all of UC's dormitories.
Food and Dining
Students have a choice between two dining halls, and a convenience store for meal options. The upper dining hall is an all you can eat buffet with a legendary salad bar, while the lower dining hall is a made-to-order style experience that range from subs, salads, flat bread pizzas, wraps, bowls, sandwiches, and even gourmet coffees and teas.
What to do for fun
Ursinus is only a short drive from historic Phoenixville, the brand-new Providence shopping center, The Philadelphia Premium Outlets, The legendary King of Prussia Mall, and of course Philadelphia. If that doesn't bring out the shopper in you, you can unwind with some free weekend food, video games, and more at Late Night Lower. If the social scene is your calling there are creatively themed house parties every weekend and of course the beats are also banging in the campus self-proclaimed party dorm, Riemert.
Bang for the buck
Ursinus is expensive, but the school makes up for it with EXTREMELY generous gifts of financial aid and merit scholarships. The level of education received here is worth almost twice what you pay for it. Most importantly the connections and people you meet here can pay you any dividends you may have lost by attending a state school at least tenfold!
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Celebration of Student Achievement day or (CoSA) is a once a year event where some students present their findings in what they've learned over the year, reveal findings or breakthroughs in research, or just sit back and enjoy the fun filled day of presentations and NO CLASSES! The Campus is also home to the seemingly never ending Perkiomen Valley Trail, the luscious and beautiful Hunsberger Woods, UC's very own Organic farm. It is also rumored that the graduating seniors sneak out the night before graduation to take the annual slide down the ramp-shaped fountains outside of the Pfahler Science Building.
Great for these types of students
Ursinus is great for the ambitious and conscientious, self-driven student. Since there are no cakewalk courses here, UC is for students who are ready to challenge themselves in EVERY area of academia. Also students who contemplate the meaning of life, what are place is in the universe, and what it means to be human will thrive here at Ursinus.
Clubs and Activities
There are way too many clubs and activities to get involved in at Ursinus, all of which are eligible to receive funding through the school as well as AFAC. Ursinus offers clubs, honor societies, student-faculty committees, students government, both local and National Fraternities and Sororities, varsity athletics, club athletics, and intramural athletics. If you cannot find a club, activity or organization here for you at Ursinus, then you can simply start your own!
Greek Life
Ursinus is by no means Greek or DIE, and you aren't even allowed to consider joining a Fraternity or Sorority (rush) until after the completion of your Freshman year. Ursinus offers both National and local Fraternity and Sorority options for interested students, which all are required to do additional community service hours for the college on top of their required hours. There are extremely strict anti-hazing laws at Ursinus that prevent any type of negative effects that come about as a result of Greek Life hazing procedures.
Campus Safety
Ursinus and the surrounding areas feel exceptionally safe, especially when you consider its proximity to Philadelphia and King of Prussia. The campus safety team on campus is exceptionally vigilant, caring, and hard working individuals who students can rely on for rides across campus, escorts at any time of day or night, or any other concern that they may have. Recently inaugurated President Bobby Fong, is working hard to add to the campus' feeling of safety by adding more pathways lights for nighttime, installing more help/emergency stations, upgrading and updating electronic and timed lock systems, as well as set up a committee for any type of disaster response from sudden injury to sexual misconduct.
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Kaitlyn

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
You will learn so much while at Ursinus. I've only been here for one semester so far and have grown mentally so much!
Am enjoying being here
It may take some time getting to small town life, but everyone is so friendly and outgoing that everyone seems to enjoy being at Ursinus!
Bang for the buck
Even though the college is expensive, the level of education you will receive and the memories you will make are totally worth it!
Great for these types of students
Students who are hard working during the week but still want an environment where they can relax on the weekends.
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Ryan - Philadelphia, PA

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
Academic Rigor
Ursinus pushed me to a whole new level. I learned how to balance my time between playing a varsity sport and taking rigorous classes. Ursinus made this a much smoother transition for me.
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