Louisiana State University

Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University is located in the state’s capitol, Baton Rouge. Even with an undergraduate enrollment of 30,000, it still reveals the qualities of Southern living. The large campus is filled with information, resources, beauty and Southern hospitality.

I started my visit with a student-guided tour of the campus, which was helpful since it is large and confusing. The students were very willing to offer directions and answer questions. Most of the buildings are divided by majors, with freshmen attending classes in the quadrangle (known as “The Quad”).

I had an appointment to tour the dormitories. There are many types to choose from, but they are almost all alike: old and creepy. The dorms do not have some of the luxuries of home, such as telephone caller identification, cable, Internet connections or kitchens.

The visit continued with a stop at the Student Union, the center of the school’s social life. It houses everything from restaurants to travel agents. I walked past flyers for bus trips to football games, an upcoming comedy show, and lectures by guest speakers. Many of my favorite restaurants and fast food places were available as well as some unfamiliar spots.

I then attended an informal information session where I was able to ask questions about admissions, scholarships, meal plans (required for first semester freshmen) and residential colleges, where classes and dorm rooms are located in the same building. There I learned that LSU could actually be affordable, with tuition and fees totalling just over $3,000 for Louisiana residents (it’s about $8,600 per year for non-residents).

Louisiana State University offers most majors, is affordable, and is located in the beautiful city of Baton Rouge. Although large, it has a homey atmosphere with large-school amenities including specialized libraries, a diverse student body and a steady stream of events. It is not so much a large university, but a small city of uniqueness.

Reviewed in 2003