Brown University

Providence, RI: This past summer I visited Brown with a friend, and discovered a general sense of my feelings for the University. I stayed only a day, yet I sat in on an information session, had an interview at the admissions office, and took a tour of the campus. Brown is only an hour from my home, so the drive there was painless and even enjoyable.

First of all, Providence is a wonderful city that seems to enjoy all the opportunities of a large metropolitan community without overwhelming a reasonably calm, quiet-loving student like myself. Brown is situated at the top of a large hill in the city, and extends up and down the slopes of the street. The campus is clearly removed from the heart of the city, yet I was slightly troubled by the fact that the streets of Providence sliced through the campus throughout the boundaries of the school. On the tour, my concerns were realized when the tour-guide was inaudible due to the loud construction in the city. The campus nevertheless appealed to me with its stately, grand architecture, and the coziness of the interiors.

The dorm facilities seemed average, certainly nothing too special, and the eating areas and other features were similarly harmless and adequate. The University is divided up into three colleges, so if there ever was a danger of losing a sense of closeness with the number of students, the three colleges carefully provide that intimacy.

Brown seems to stand out from the crowd of colleges for other reasons. There is a great deal of freedom with the curriculum, schedule, grading system and just about everything else in its day-to-day life. Experimentation is permitted and often encouraged with course and activity selection, so the student who is undecided as to what he wants to major in would find Brown a very appealing place to search for that specialty.

The student-teacher ratio at Brown is about 9: 1, so there is almost a guarantee of close attention to the undergraduate. The student body is said to be extremely diverse and liberal, and Brown students are a model for balance in a university: easy-going, yet hard-working, friendly yet independent, open for experimentation yet anxious to direct their studies. Brown seems to be an excellent choice for the ambitious, creative, energetic student, and I would advise anyone interested in applying to visit now, while school is in session, as I plan to do. n

Reviewed in 1990