Madison, NJ: Seventeen years of big city life in Boston can be very interesting, to say the least. That is why when I had the opportunity to visit Drew University in Madison, New Jersey, I jumped at the chance. At first, I had my doubts. After all, there are total of 2,200 students at the college, and it is literally set in a forest.

Drew is a hidden secret. It has all the things that the big universities in the city have, but more. Drew is very technologically advanced. In fact, all students are given a laptop computer for use throughout their four year career at Drew. In addition, upon graduation, you keep the laptop!

My host for the night was a first-year student (which is what they are called at Drew, not a freshman). He was outgoing and intelligent with a keen sense of humor. He also had a cool roommate and awesome friends. I felt right at home. In fact, I kept on pushing the time I planned to leave in order to stay.

The students at Drew are there because they want to be, and they can handle the work. I saw many people on a 70 degree day, inside working on their papers, theses, projects, etc. Don’t jump to conclusions, Drew is not the typical “nerd-breeding school” you might think. There are many things to do. One can go to the clubs in the nearby city or the student-run cafes. I saw a comic and an international talent show. They also have parties, but this is not a “party school!”

The campus itself is spectacular. Like I said, the campus is in a forest. The facilities are all state of the art. Drew is one of the few colleges that makes continual improvements to the campus buildings every year. As for the food, it is among the best of “college sludge.” Maybe it’s because the headquarters for all college food services around the country is in their cafeteria. I gave the food a rating of 8.5, my highest yet (college food is still college food; no one gets a ten).

Maybe the only thing that hurts the school is that it is not near many other schools, but I am prejudiced. After all, coming from Boston, I am within commuting distance of five colleges. But the overall greatness of the school makes up for this minor “inconvenience.” There are still bustling cities around Madison, and one can always go to New York City if not satisfied with the various assortment of activities in Madison. In closing I have three words: Go to Drew! f

Reviewed in 1994