liberal arts college

Liberal Arts College Gothic
  • You need another English credit. You already have thousands of English credits. They fill up your room and chase you down the street. You are drowning. You need another English credit.
  • You have an essay due tomorrow. You always have an essay due tomorrow. Tomorrow never comes. You must keep working on the essay. It’s due tomorrow.
  • Everyone is getting undercuts. Under what? You are never sure what lies Beneath. But sometimes, you see the Void.
  • You need classes in different areas for a full education. You go to these areas. Your feet are blistered and bleeding. You must find all the areas. 
  • There is a Party In The Woods. It is exactly like the last one. You fear you are stuck in a time loop, but by then it is too late. Someone sells you a plastic cup of PBR for five dollars. 
  • You know everyone on campus. Their faces, their tattoos, and their souls. You start walking with your eyes closed: you do not want to see. 
  • There are sports teams. They whisper restlessly around the edges of campus. If you look directly at them, they disappear. But once in a while, you can hear them scream. You do not know if it is celebratory or scared. 
  • Straight boys feel alone. There are so few of them. There are straight boys everywhere you look. They feel so alone. 
  • “This way is more environmentally sound,” they say. You can hear the environmental sound. It sounds like Nicki Minaj. 
  • School is not The Real World. Objects crumble under your touch. Your professors are translucent. Your books are in an ancient tongue. This Is Not The Real World. 

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-b & s 

Three Reasons Why Liberal Arts Colleges are the Bomb 

We have all heard of Harvard, Yale, Stanford, and other big-­name school since before we entered middle school. Miley and Lily got into Stanford, as well as mean girls Amber and Ashley (how?!). Sam from A Cinderella Story dreamed of attending Princeton. Cody Martin and Teddy Duncan got into Yale on their respective Disney Channel shows. But why are liberal arts colleges basically taboo? We grow up never hearing of Amherst, Swarthmore, or Pomona College until our college application process. This is a big mistake in how we are exposed to colleges. Liberal arts colleges are not for everyone, but the environment they provide is surely a match for many. However, LACs do not receive the coverage they deserve with their perks. 

1. Smaller Population​: So I know most of us cannot wait to get out of our tiny high schools, but an LAC environment is completely different from high school! For one, most people actually enjoy coming to school, unlike in high school where everyone is forced to attend. Liberal arts colleges are full of people who are passionate and dedicated to their studies. Thus, instead of a handful of people actually caring to do well in school, you have two thousand or so peers who love what they do more than anything. Also, if you look with a strategic mindset, a smaller population means less competition. There are less peers competing for a professor’s law school recommendation, less people applying for the local hospital undergraduate internship, and less candidates gunning for student body president. 

2. Sports: ​If you’re like me, you may hate sports. I never watch football, support wrestlers starving themselves, or paint my face the school colors at a basketball game. It is just not my thing. And if it is not your thing, LACs may be for you. I visited Amherst in March 2015, and there was a huge Amherst vs. Williams hockey game going on at the same time. A large part of the student body was at the game, but there were plenty of people at the library, in the art studios, at drama rehearsal, sleeping in their dorms, or sledding. At a big college with large sports presence, not attending or caring for a big game may make you seem like an outsider. Missing the Harvard vs. Yale football game is absurd and students at the University of Connecticut were either in attendance or glued to their TVs during the 2014 NCAA basketball championship game. Ignoring sport culture at DI schools is much harder than ignoring that at a DIII college. Students are welcome and encouraged to attend games and go crazy, but they by no means would ever feel forced to go at an LAC. 

3. The Possibility of an Open Curriculum: Note: This does not apply to all LACs. Distributional requirements are a pain. An English major is required to take a math class and an engineering major has to read Shakespeare. Now, I am all for learning for the sake of learning. However, this is best done when students can truly take any courses they want. A math major can take the South American literature class if she wants, but her biology major friend does not have to because she is more interested in the Feminism in India course. Amherst, Sarah Lawrence, Vassar, Wesleyan, Hamilton, and Smith College are just a few LACs known for their flexible curricula. Of course, some may have a required writing seminar of some sort, but those are not too difficult to get done

Channel The Following Looks: Mischa Barton In A Psych Ward, Maybe I’m Gay, I Am Every Character From My So-Called Life, The Only Thing I’ve Eaten In Three Days Is My ADD Medication, Everyone Is Jealous Of Me And I Can Understand Why, My Parents Won’t Call Me Back, This Outfit Is A Genderfuck, I Love The Craft And If I Wear Black Lipstick I’ll Be A Witch, Don’t Panic My Dress Is Organic, Stop Looking At Me, Okay, You Can Look At Me and I’m Scared 2 Graduate.

Ryan O'Connell, Thought Catalog on how to dress at a liberal arts college.

This is a response to all the questions I get about how people dress at FIT.

A philosophy teacher was asked what is the value of taking a philosophy course, and the student was told he’ll know it later when he talks with someone who hadn’t taken it. This is true not only of the courses in art, music, theater, and dance. It holds true of the courses in literatures, history, religion, and even the sciences.
—  T. Kaori Kitao, William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Art History, Swarthmore College