Valparaiso University
Valparaiso, IN, USA

Reviews

Valparaiso University
3.97 Average Rating

Carl from Plainfield, IL

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Valparaiso University is an excellent place for students to learn, grow, and find themselves. This university succeeds in shaping students into whole and well-rounded thinking individuals who are ready for the real world. Not only do students become well-rounded, but they are more than sufficiently qualified to walk into the work force of whatever field of study they chose while in school.
Tips for prospective students
Valparaiso University is a home away from home. It is a small school, both in numbers and in physical size, so one learns the in's and out's of the school and gets close to its students and faculty very quickly. This intimate understanding of the university really makes it feel like home. Because of its smaller size, the class sizes are smaller so that the professors (many of them being being some of the top experts in their fields) can provide more individualized learning and care for their students.
Academic Rigor
Valpo as a whole is very academically rigorous. The intention of this is not to screw over the students with copious amounts of unnecessary work, but this is done out of care to fully prepare them to make a difference in the workforce.
Dorm Life
Dorm life is quite wonderful. 95% of the RA's are very nice, and because each RA is in charge of only 20-30 people, one can really get to know and be on good terms with them. Since starting here two and a half years ago, most of my fellow residents are pretty nice, and my roommate is great. Obviously, there are those couple dorms that are not in the best shape and have the kind of people living in them that are the same way, but that will be found at any university. Overall, if you respect and be nice to your fellow residents and RA (which many of them have become my friends), then they will be respectful and nice to you.
Food and Dining
The food is pretty good at Valpo. There are two main areas to eat on campus that provide different varieties of food everyday. If one gets tired of that, there are a number of eateries right off campus that one can chose from.
What to do for fun
Throughout the school year there are a number of sports events that go on. The largest attraction is the basketball games. Though we are a small school, we take pride in our basketball team, which went to the NCAA tournament last year. There are many other activities as well. UPC, the main organization that provides these activities, routinely provides things such as movie viewings, rock concerts, and comedians. There are numerous other organizations that provide fun things to do, and one just has to look at the advertisements put up on campus.
Bang for the buck
At first glance, Valparaiso University looks ridiculously expensive. However, Valpo provides a boat-load of scholarships. I personally have about half of my tuition taken off due to the scholarships that Valpo has given me, and it was not too difficult to get these scholarships. With half the tuition gone, Valpo is much cheaper than other private schools, though it has such a high academic standing. So, when choosing Valpo for a school, one gets an academic backing that's worth so much more.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Valparaiso, Indiana (the location of Valparaiso University) is famous for its Popcorn Festival. The Festival is given once a year in late summer/early fall when school starts. This is a remembrance and celebration for for Orville Redenbacher, whose hometown is Valparaiso. Valparaiso is also famous for its very delicious and very smooth Valpo Velvet ice cream.
Great for these types of students
Valparaiso University is great for all kinds of students! I have seen so many people from diverse cultures and backgrounds and have seen so many degrees, organizations, and programs that appeal to every kind of person, that it seems like Valpo is home to every kind of person and student.
Clubs and Activities
There are so many clubs and organizations on campus that I could not count them. If you have an interest in something specific, there is probably an organization for it. There are fraternities and sororities that provide activities, and for a school this size, there is a decent size intramural sports programs. There are also a number of music ensembles as well that one can participate in whether he or she is a music major or not.
Greek Life
I am not associate with Greek life, but I can say that we do have a good number of both fraternities and sororities on campus that one can get involved in.
Campus Safety
Our university has its own police department besides the city's police department. There is an alert system that sends out emails and text messages to students in case there is a threat of any level to university life, whether that threat be weather or human. Placed conveniently along walkways and major public areas outside are blue Help poles. In case a person is in trouble, he or she can go up to one of those poles, hit the button, and the police department is automatically contacted. There are not very many threats to worry about, though this school does have a number of precautions in case there are, as mentioned above.
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Megan from Kouts, IN

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
A safe, welcoming environment that makes all students feel right at home. Excellent programs for everyone to get involved with, plus the professors are always willing to help the students succeed. As a music major, this is a place where I want to be.
Tips for prospective students
If you are looking for a smaller campus with tons of student involvement, Valparaiso University is the place for your face! I suggest going onto the school website to find out more! Plus, there are tons of college visit days you can schedule. The school really tries to make a plan that works for you.

www.valpo.edu
Academic Rigor
The school is always making sure you are giving your top academic performance. As a student, you receive grades, class attendance, and class participation updates. The work load is manageable, and can be completed early with a determined attitude.
Dorm Life
I am a commuter, but as far as I know, the dorm life is the norm life. The dorms are quite small, and the beds are actually pull out couches (for freshmen at least). There is one sink, in each room for the roommates to share. There are bathrooms on each floor, and are quite big. If you are a freshman, I was told to try to NOT get put into Brant, which is the dirties and oldest freshman dorm. However, you make great friends, and learn the next step of life, living without parents.
Food and Dining
Food here at Valparaiso University is delicious! There are always new options everyday, and there is usually something new to discover! There is also a small cafe at the front of the Union (main building) that serves coffee and other various items. The only downfall to the food, is the cost. I do not have a meal plan, and I realized the food is a bit over priced.
What to do for fun
It all depends on what you personally find to be fun. I like to read, and play music in my free time. The library is overflowing with books, and if you can not find something on the four floors, there is another system where books are stored. There are practice rooms available in the Center for the Arts. If you like to play a sport, there are many teams to get involved with, and there are non-proffesional teams. Plus there are many teams here that have games to go watch. If you love the theatre, then I suggest auditioning for some of them. Many events are planned throughout the year, and there is always something to get involved in.
Bang for the buck
As a music major, there is a definite bang for my buck! Most music educators have a hard time finding jobs after college. I, as a freshman, have been offered to student teach at three different schools. Plus, there is a 95% placement rate for jobs after college in music education from Valparaiso University.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
An unusual tradition is humans vs. zombies. Every fall, some fraternities participate in a war, called humans vs. zombies. I do not know all of the specifics, but if you are a human, you have a bandana around your arm and must carry nerf guns for your own safety and protection. Zombies will attack you, with their bandanas around their heads.

Another traditions is whenever our sports team beat an important opponent, or if the football team beats any team for that matter, the team will rush up the hill toward the victory bell and ring it as a display of victory.
Great for these types of students
Students who prefer smaller class sizes, enjoy getting involved, want to make a difference, enjoy smaller communities, will work hard, and want to succeed.
Clubs and Activities
There are many different activities to get involved in. Every student at VU is involved in something.
Greek Life
As far as I know, there are many different fraternities and sororities on campus. However, most of them do not have a house. Only a couple currently have a house. Others still live in the dorms. It was recently approved, however, that when the fraternities and sororities have enough money, they are allowed to start constructing a house this week.
Campus Safety
There are the blue emergency poles located all over campus. It is safe at night around the main part of campus. The VU police department is open 24/7, and is ready for a call of emergency.
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Cammie from Saline, MI

accepted here and planning to attend soon
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Will learn a lot
The lecture I sat in on was informational, even though I had never taken any of the classes before. It was a small classroom. The professor was very friendly and easy going. The class was like sitting in a high school classroom: simple, slow, active, and informational.
Will enjoy being here
Everyone on the campus was welcoming and friendly. The campus has so much to offer to everyone, and even if you're in the dorm for the night, most people leave their doors open and come in to visit with you. It's hard to be bored on campus.
Bang for the buck
For as much as we're paying for the education, we're getting the attention and experience we need. As a Met major, I'm so excited to be in the weather lab, and gaining field experience. The professors want their students to succeed. It's really hard to find flaws at the university.
Tips for prospective students
Visit the university! You will decide after an overnight stay if Valpo is right for you. Also, work hard your senior year. If you struggled with your GPA like I did over the previous years, the positive grades will help with deciding if you can handle the work at the university.
Great for these types of students
Students who like to have one on one time with a teacher, small classes, and who like to have hands on experience with the subjects they're studying.
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Bethany from SCHERERVILLE, IN

a current student here
2 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Valpo U not only offers a lot, the professors here make sure that you are reaping ALL the benefits that are offered. With small classes and dedicated educators, you can't go wrong here. The professors and the administration here are absolutely amazing. They do their best to see you through and are always willing to lend a helping hand or give you some extremely helpful advice. No student is ever left behind here. The curriculum at this institution is fantastic, and it prepares each student for what they will encounter in their chosen career paths. When I graduate from Valparaiso University, I know that I will be confident in my ability to not only succeed but to excel in my profession.
Am enjoying being here
There's a lot to do around campus at Valparaiso University. Not only do we have a phenomenal residential life staff, we also have a University President that is very engaged in the community. He wants to see us do well academically, but he also wants us to enjoy the time that we spend here. We have many campus events that range from concerts (with performances by Relient K, The Academy Is, Kris Allen, and many more!) to ice cream socials. The best part is that the people on campus are fun and exciting. Everyone is enthusiastic about the things they are involved in, and everyone likes to be involved. There's almost never a dull moment.
Bang for the buck
The expense of Valpo is by no means cheap, but it's not impossible. Valpo offers a fantastic financial aid department with advisors that are devoted to helping you find as much as you can to help pay for school and make things easier for you. They are clear and patient, and they are always willing to sit down and explain everything in detail to anyone that asks.
Tips for prospective students
Don't wait on applying! Prepare and prepare some more! Start saving and start thinking about what you want to do. Email any prospective professors and schedule a meeting with them to discuss your academic future. Come for a campus tour, eat in the dining hall, and meet students that are currently enrolled. Ask them their opinions, see what they think. Try to get a feel for the wonderful environment of this campus. Experience it first hand by sitting in on a class and observing the teacher/student interaction. ASK QUESTIONS!! Lastly, be excited! You're about to start a new and glorious chapter in your life, and Valparaiso University is a GREAT place to do that!
Great for these types of students
Every and any type of student can find a niche here at Valparaiso University. When you hear people say there's something for everyone, it doesn't always apply, but at Valpo, it DEFINITELY does! There are clubs, there are fantastic academic programs, there are activities, there are events! There are SO many opportunities for anyone to get involved here and find a home in Valparaiso University.
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Samuel from Rensselaer, IN

a current student here
1 person found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
A small private school in Northwest Indiana. It offers the academics of larger schools and is extremely reputable. Outside of class, everyone is obsessed with Valparaiso Basketball.
Tips for prospective students
Do not come here thinking you can blow off school and not go to class. Most everyone here cares extremely about their grades and were good and accelerated students in high school. You make your own fun and get what you put in.
Academic Rigor
This school is an academic school. Going to class and trying are a must.
Dorm Life
Average dorm life. Total rip off for what you get. Similar to other schools. Considering the amount of money to attend here, it should be nicer than it is.
Food and Dining
Some of the best college food you will ever have. My only complaint is that it is ala carte, so every item costs money. If you eat a lot of food like me, than this isn't ideal. The school spikes their prices very unethically.
What to do for fun
Go downtown, watch movies with friends, etc. This place truly is where you make your own fun. If you want to have fun, you will.
Bang for the buck
A very good value. Getting a reputable degree for a good price (at least for me). IF YOU DON'T RECEIVE A SCHOLARSHIP TO REDUCE THE PRICE, DO NOT GO HERE. I REPEAT DO NOT GO HERE. IT COSTS $51,000 STICKER PRICE.
Share any unusual traditions or locations on campus
Obsession with Valpo basketball. Professors really take attendance, and there are a lot of strange people walking around.
Great for these types of students
People who care about their grades and not willing to put in a little more effort to get a nice degree.
Clubs and Activities
Plenty of stuff for anyone. Literally, if you have the slightest interest, there is probably a club that will be similar or will accommodate your interests.
Greek Life
I am a fraternity member. This is not a state school, so don't expect state school Greek life. But, for the size of this school, it does go above and beyond as far as expectations.
Campus Safety
Valpo is a safe community statistically speaking. Valpo city police, Porter County, and VUPD are very present and make sure the environment is safe.
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Rachel from WI

a current student here
8 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Valparaiso offers a great honors program that usually has a group of 80-100 freshmen in it. They compose music, choreograph, write, and act in a drama production each fall, which definitely brings the whole class close together! In general, however, the classes are interesting and as long as you plan, you get to take all the classes you need in order to be prepared to graduate in your major while also having the chance to take some fun courses.
Am enjoying being here
There are lots of activities to get involved in on campus, and you will definitely get a lot of invites the first semester of college. The freshmen dorms are all close to each other and the Union as well, which is nice, and there's always something to do if you look hard enough, even if it means joining the group in the lounge that's playing a game or getting friends together to go on a late-night slurpie run.
Bang for the buck
Tuition is kind of pricey, but if you apply early in the year and make sure to fill out all your paperwork, Valpo tends to offer a lot of financial aid. I have a friend who actually chose another school based on cost, and when her admissions adviser found out, he talked to his boss and called her back with an even better offer than the other school!

Your adviser will also work really hard to make sure that you can graduate in four years - especially if you know from the outset what you want to major in. They don't want to make you pay tuition for any more years than you have to, so they guide you through each step of the scheduling process.
Tips for prospective students
If you get an invitation to join the honors program, apply! I know quite a few kids who turned them down and regret it now.

If you can, make direct contact with someone in your department or the person who will be your major adviser. They can definitely give you a feel for what classes you'll have to take and how flexible your schedule will be if you want to graduate in 4 years.

Be sure to visit the campus before deciding to attend. Be aware that the campus is not in the middle of an exotic locale - sometimes it may seem like there aren't a ton of things to do, but you'll be surprised how many things there are to do if you look.
Great for these types of students
Honor students, engineers, meteorology students, nursing majors, people who don't want to go to a big, impersonal college
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Nursing major from Chicago, IL

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
In three sentences
Valpo is a great school, however it is not for everyone, meaning that it is not your typical party school. People are really friendly and nice, and it is pretty diverse for a school in Indiana. The campus itself is beautiful and the financial aid office is quite generous.
Tips for prospective students
Apply as early as possible, most of the financial aid is awarded first come first served! Valpo is expensive, but most people I know are here on pretty hefty scholarships.
If you're unsure whether you like a school, come visit the campus for yourself! Then you'll truly know if a school is right for you. I recommend scheduling a Valpo Overnight Visit, where you'll stay with a current student (usually a freshman) for a night. I did that and it solidified by decision to come here. :)
Academic Rigor
The overall rigor of your schedule depends on your major, but Valpo definitely challenges you! I'm a Nursing major and I spend more time in the library studying than I do in my dorm room haha. My friends that are Engineering majors also study a lot. The academics are challenging and prepare you for your career (the goal of a college education) but they are not impossible. There is also tutoring available in many subjects.
Dorm Life
I believe most freshmen are required to live on campus, and I can see why. Living on campus definitely gives you the whole college experience and I love it and don't regret it. However, if you live nearby and finances are an issue, I suggest strongly considering that as well. Living on campus has a lot of perks, but of course it is more costly than commuting. (Hello loans...) There are 3 freshman residence halls: Alumni, Lank, and Brandt. I live in Alumni, which a lot of people agree is the nicest.
Food and Dining
The two main options for food are Founder's, which is the large cafeteria, and the Campus Cafe. Both are located in the Union, which is convenient. Freshman have a really large meal plan so it's not uncommon for some students' meal plan money to roll over to second semester. However, it doesn't roll over from second semester to next year so you have to make sure to use it up by May! The food itself isn't gourmet cooking, but it's honestly not bad! Founders has a variety of options that change every day, and has healthy options like a salad bar that's pretty yummy. The cafe has more grab and go type of items such as pizza, chicken nuggets, etc but there are healthy options there too. There is also seating at the cafe. As for hours, Founder's closes at 8pm most nights, while the cafe is open fairly late. (Midnight on weeknights and 1am on the weekend) so if you're hungry late at night, you can use your meal plan money and don't have to go off campus to eat.
What to do for fun
As I mentioned before, Valpo definitely isn't your typical party school, but it's not boring either! If you are into the party scene, I recommend getting to know people in Greek life because that's where most of the themed parties are held. If you're not into partying that's cool too, plenty of people aren't. The surrounding town is really cute and there's farmers markets, a movie theater, etc that people go to. Mainly you just hang out with your friends and something comes up haha. Also, Chicago is about an hour and a half away via train if you're looking for a night in the big city.
Clubs and Activities
There are lots of activities on campus for all types of people! Be sure to attend the activity fair at the beginning of fall semester.
Campus Safety
I never feel unsafe walking back from the library late at night. The surrounding town of Valparaiso is pretty quiet.
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Amanda from Valparaiso, IN

a current student here
5 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
Valpo isn't just the place where you learn how to write better, read better, or body systems. You learn about who you are at Valpo. In the short time I've been here, I already feel like this is my home! This is the most amazing place I've ever been and each day I learn something new!
Am enjoying being here
Valpo is such an open environment! I meet new people all the time, and everyone is so friendly! I walk by people around campus that I don't even know, and they say hi to me and smile! I've had complete strangers ask me how I'm doing on that day. You have your normal debbie downers, but the amount of positive energy around her is amazing.
Bang for the buck
Valpo is expensive. I'm not going to lie to you about that. However, most kids get a LOT of financial aid, and the financial aid office is always here to help you. Plus, it's worth every penny for the things you experience!
Tips for prospective students
Don't decide on a college [either for or against it] without visiting it first. When I first heard about Valpo, I didn't want to come here. I was dead set against it, but then on a visit [that I had to go on against my will] I feel in love with this place! The campus just has this feel of great energy.
Great for these types of students
Anyone could find there place at Valpo. Whether you're into music or business or different cultures, it's all available here! As long as you have a good attitude, you could belong at Valpo!
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LaTanya from Hammond, IN

a current student here
4 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I am a current student at Valpo, we having amazing oppurtunities here. You always have a chance to speak to your teachers one on one. I am in one of the few classes with 150 students and the teache still knows us by name. Everyone is here to help you even your peers are very helpful. The classes are hard its a step up from high school but it is not too bad.
Am enjoying being here
I like Valpo, for most people here they are 2 hours or ess from home. Everyone here i always very nice and helpful. You can always find something to do, school related or not.
Bang for the buck
I think our education is pretty good for the money, and Valpo gives out gift aid, and they have a lot of grants to offer.
Tips for prospective students
I think when you get here it is easy to get off on a bad foot because for the first time you don't have your parents telling you what to do. If you stay focused it is not that much harder than high school. It is just going to be a little bit more reading, and you have to get used to shorter school days, and you might have classes at night. If you fall behing go for help as soon as you get confused.
Great for these types of students
Great for any type of student.
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Allison

a current student here
3 people found this review useful
Categories Comments
Am learning a lot
I love the learning environment here at Valpo! The professors are so nice and very approachable. They set their own office hours for students to come talk with them and most have an open door policy. Several help sessions are available if needed and there is a great tutoring program through the library also. The classes here are truly interesting and very engaging, which makes you actually want to go to class! I can honestly say that Valparaiso University provides a student with a fantastic education, and more importantly, with a desire to learn!
Am enjoying being here
I just started here at Valpo only a few months ago and I already feel at home. The people here are friendly and always inviting. Everyone seems to be very involved in the numerous activities, organizations, and service projects offered here and I love the sense of community all the students and faculty have for one another.
Bang for the buck
Going to college anywhere is extremely expensive, especially to a private university. However, it is the private schools who tend to give out more scholarships, making them more reasonable compared to public institutions. Valpo offers many scholarships, especially to those early applicants. So don't be intimidated by the sticker price because that is not at all what you will actually be paying. I feel that by going to a private college you get more one-on-one attention and are not just seen as a number. Therefore, I feel the payoff is well worth the few extra dollars in the end.
Tips for prospective students
The advice I would give any prospective student is to look around at several colleges (both big and small, public and private, instate and out). This comparison can really help, so go and visit the schools as well. Making the actual decision can be very stressful, but just weight all of your options and pick the college which fits you best and where you truly feel like yourself at!
Great for these types of students
Valpo is made up of a diverse group of students. For this reason, almost anyone could fit in here. However, if you like to be involved, serve your community, travel the world, meet some amazing people, and want to simply make a difference, then Valpo is definitely for you!!
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