For some of us, the title of this post brings back memories of a standard essay question on college applications… we wrote 500 words worth of what we thought were the best assets of a given university, in an attempt to “woo” admissions, showing them that: “Oh, of course we know all there is to know about this school!”
For the others, however, who are still in that “woo-ing” phase: this is for you. Whether you’ve already sent in your application, or you’re still considering whether or not to apply to Rutgers University, I’m sure you’ve done your research and you are aware of some of the things that Rutgers has to offer. You already know about Rutgers’ completely stellar academic reputation. But, as an in-state student who has has three months of RU experience, I am here to give you MY current, honest answer to the question: Why Rutgers?
- SIZE / DIVERSITY After visiting some small schools, I knew the high-school-semblant university atmosphere just wasn’t for me. I wanted a big school, and no university does “big” as well as Rutgers. I am constantly seeing new faces, and being exposed to people of different cultures, who speak different languages, and have such different life experiences under their belt. Not all schools can say their students have the opportunity to go to an Indian Garba dance, return to their dorm and learn some Chinese phrases from their international roommate, and end the day with some Mexican food in the dining hall.
- DINING HALLS / FOOD In my eyes, Rutgers University has absolutely outstanding dining services. And this is coming from a vegetarian. First-years have to opt into a meal plan, which means you will inevitably be eating at the dining halls at some point or another. There is always such a wide range of foods offered, and the menus change both daily, and by meal (breakfast/lunch/dinner). Here are some of my favorite things I have eaten using a meal swipe at RU: make-your-own omelette; custom Asian noodle soup bowls with tofu; cook-to-order pasta with alfredo sauce and any vegetables you’d like; Chipotle-style burrito bowls; flavored hummus & pita; a huge array of quinoa salads with different dressings and other toppings; pierogies; sweet potato fries; and, yes… “Make Your Own Fat Sandwich Night” is a recurring thing.
- PARTIES There is always something going on during the weekends, here. The “party scene” at fraternity houses is omnipresent nearly every Thurs/Fri/Sat evenings on College Ave. As some in our generation may say:“It’s lit.” But, even if dancing to EDM in a sweaty, dark basement isn’t your thing (trust me, I get it), you’re likely to befriend some upperclassmen who have better-kept apartments for chill nights, or even some other freshmen who were blessed with a dorm that’s a “corner room” spacious enough for a few guests. I’m a nursing major and I spend a lot of time studying during the week, so I am glad to be at a school where, on the weekends, there are endless opportunities to have fun and many places to go with my friends as a little escape from all the school work.
- LOCATION As someone who was born and bred in New Jersey, I tried to convince myself, towards the beginning of my college app process, that I needed to Get. The hell. Out. However, when I realized that going to Rutgers meant that I could go home to do my laundry, be within 30 minutes of New York City, have my friends that were still in my hometown easily come for day trips/overnights, and that I would not have to give up good bagels or pizza… I was sold. For me, Rutgers was the perfect “close but not too close” school. And consider this: a lot of my friends who went out-of-state have said things to me along the lines of, “Damn, you don’t realize how great Jersey is until you’re not there…”
- CONVENIENCE / BUS SYSTEM Although New Brunswick is split up into 4 campuses — College Ave, Livingston, Busch, & Cook/Douglass — there is a comprehensive bus system which will take you to wherever you need to go. It doesn’t get more convenient than that. On the same street (George St, to be exact), one could walk from Starbucks, to Payless Shoesource, to Rite Aid, and to a bar! It’s pretty great. The city areas of the other colleges I visited when I was a senior in high school truly don’t even compare to what New Brunswick has to offer.
In the end, I would recommend Rutgers University New Brunswick to absolutely anyone; not just those who are looking for an extraordinarily elite, challenging, and highly esteemed undergraduate Nursing School (shameless self-promo??). When I went home for Thanksgiving break, it seemed the first thing out of everyone’s mouth was “How are you liking Rutgers!?” And each and every time I said, without fail, “I truly couldn’t be happier.”
That’s why Rutgers.