I go to the School of Visual Arts here in NYC, and I’m majoring in photography. Now that it’s my final year in college (yikes!), I’m looking back and wishing there were certain things that my school had offered.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my college. The classes are great, I love my group of friends, and I’ve learned so much from living in NYC. It’s a private school, the classes are small, and the facilities offer everything an art kid needs. But now that I’ve experienced it, I wish I had thought about these things when looking for a college.
1. Extracurricular activities. Although I’m sure some of my fellow classmates may disagree, I really wish my school offered more extracurricular activities. We have zero sports teams, and barely any clubs. I’m interested in a lot of different things, and I really wish I had thought about that when I was looking at schools. It’s weird, because I never wanted to join anything in high school. The clubs are different in college, and better.
Some schools offer just about anything you would ever be interested in, like NYU. They have a dance team that performs at sports games and a ballroom dance team that travels and competes. I would have been all over that if my school offered it. It’s also fun to go to team games, and have the opportunity to meet different people.
2. Diversity. Speaking of meeting different people…hipsters rule my school. It’s also kind of difficult to meet people from any other major other than your own, because of the lack of social events. And even when you do, it’s still all art majors. I’ve been really lucky with my group of friends, because were all very different people and I think that makes for better conversation, and more fun. It would have been nice to have the jocks and the nerds along with the art majors. (You can imagine there is a significant lack of boys at my school.) Wah.
3. Health and Fitness/ Amenities. Because my school is filled with hipsters, we have no gym or school cafeteria. (Okay, that’s probably not the actual reason….) I’m really into working out and eating right, and my school makes me pay extra if I want to do that. There are a few places where you can spend your meal points, but they seriously suck and the meal plan is so not worth it. You can also join Synergy for a discounted price, but it’s still over $300 for the year. Not to keep comparing SVA to NYU, but they have, like, three gyms complete with pools, tennis courts, tracks, more equipment than you would ever need, AND fitness classes. Granted NYU pretty much owns New York, but I wish my school had something.
4. Location. This is where SVA both wins and loses. I LOVE the city, and would never want to go to college anywhere else. It’s an amazing experience and it makes me happy to wake up everyday. Except in the winter.
Winter in the city kills my soul. You can’t even dress cute because you have to walk 11 blocks in a foot of snow and ice down a wind tunnel. You don’t go out at night because it’s below freezing, and you basically never want to leave your dorm. When it’s not winter: A+, when it is: F. It would have been nice to be able to drive in the snow, instead of walk through it. I also tend to miss nature after months and months of nothing but concrete. I also advise you to go to college far enough away that your parents can’t visit you every week, but close enough that you can go home for all your breaks, and in case you get home-sick.
I hope this doesn’t sound like me complaining about my school. There are so many good things about SVA that I wouldn’t even be able to list them all in a post. I’m happy with the decision I made, and I just want you guys to have the best college experience possible. Trust your intuition and always go to visit your school. It makes a big impression on you when you actually get a tour and get to see how the people working at the school are. I knew SVA was the one immediately. You’ll know when you find it, too. Good Luck!
What schools are you applying to? Where these tips helpful?