Merrimack College

North Andover, MA: One Saturday last October, I visited Merrimack College. The 220-acre campus is located about 25 miles north of Boston in the suburban town of North Andover. Merrimack is a Catholic college with, according to students, priests who are more than just mentors: they are friends too. Along with a student-teacher ratio of 17: 1, it is evident that personal attention and family atmosphere are emphasized.

Our tour guide was very informative and helpful. She talked about every aspect of the school from the variety of foods in the dining hall to the personal attention she receives in class. The classrooms I saw were small and our tour guide mentioned that the largest class she had attended consisted of 30 students.

The dorm rooms seemed small and cramped, especially in the freshman residence halls. There are three in one room, and it did not seem like students were provided with much space to work or study. As a junior, you live in a larger room with bath, but the number of roommates increases to three (instead of only two or one).

The library is associated with the library at UMass/Lowell, and is large and well-equipped. It also houses the computer center with computers available for student use at almost all hours of the day.

Despite the absence of a football team, the athletic program is extensive at Merrimack. Their intercollegiate teams are competitive and successful, boasting appearances in NCAA tournaments. They also offer many intramural sports for interested students.

Because of all the clubs, there is a lot to do on campus. For those who wish to go into the city, Boston is only a train ride away. Likewise, the mountains of New Hampshire are only a couple of hours drive for those who like to ski. For those of you looking into suburban, Catholic schools, I recommend looking at Merrimack College. n

Reviewed in 1991