Washington University in St. Louis

Washington University in St. Louis, or as it is better known, Wash. U., is a misleading name. Named after President Washington, it is not located in the state of Washington, but in Missouri. Its location was so often mistaken that the “in St. Louis” part of its name had to be added later.

I recently visited Wash. U., and immediately after visiting, it became my top choice. The location is near St. Louis, so that there is access to a large city’s many opportunities, yet it still has the suburban feel to the campus. This is due to the incredible Forest Park, one of the nation’s largest parks, which is located directly across from the main campus. The park features a zoo, a science museum, and an art museum, all of which are free! And after touring the campus, I loved it even more. Gorgeous Gothic architecture makes it look as though you are outside of an old castle, the magical fantasy of college.

And then there are the obvious exceptional academics that Wash. U. is typically known for. Ranked the 14th best college by U.S. News, it has an incredible academic program that immediately drew me to visit it in the first place. There is a school of arts and sciences, engineering, architecture, and art for undergraduates. Students are able to take classes from any college, and can even switch if they so wish without much of a hassle. But for me in particular, I was attracted to the widely renowned premedical program, which is almost indescribable. Research for undergraduates in the medical school is as easy as walking into an office and announcing that you will conduct research. In fact, that is the general way to begin research! In addition, premed students have the unique opportunity to shadow actual doctors for an entire semester in the “Med-Prep” program.

Washington University is basically a small liberal arts school that has all of the benefits that a large research institution has. The friendly Midwestern attitude of the staff and advisers is unbelievable. I was most surprised by the huge advisory system WU has in place. There are literally advisers for everything from financial to major, from pre-professional to athletic. Not to mention the food, which is admittedly some of the best college food I have ever tasted. Overall, it is just such a great place to spend four years, and I would find myself extremely lucky if I am able to attend.

More information, about the Med-Prep program as well as other academic, athletic, and general information can be found at wustl.edu