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An Interview On
Brown University

Background

Interview Date:April 2018

Gender Identity: Female
Race/Ethnicity: Caucasian
Graduation Year: 2018, Transferred in to start sophomore year
High School Experience: Went to a small, liberal private school in Los Angeles, CA.
Concentration: Archaeology
Extracurricular Activities: I worked for Vagabond Travel Magazine and I was in a sorority for two years.

Academic Experience

Can you describe the weekly coursework for your concentration?
I have about fifteen hours of reading per week. There’s a lot of writing too.

Is there anything that you feel your concentration’s department does especially well or poorly?
The professors are all very, very good about being available. Because the concentration is so small, they are able to cater to each student. It’s a very individualistic concentration.

How would you describe the learning environment?
It’s very community oriented. Because it’s so small, everyone knows each other. Everybody’s passionate about this one subject so we all kind of come together.

What has been your favorite class you’ve taken for Archaeology?
Ancient Alcohol Use. We got to stomp grapes in class and look at different methods of how to make beer. The teacher was super passionate about it and he brought in different beer ingredients, it was super fun.

What has been your least favorite class you’ve taken for your concentration?
A lecture driven class in the Egyptology area. There was not a lot of discussion in that class.

What’s a fun class you’ve taken outside of your concentration?
Intro to Visual Art. It was really nice to get back into a creative environment that was still seen as an academic course.

Why did you choose Archaeology?
Initially, I was Pre-Med and taking a heavy course load, but I had to balance it out so I took a random Archaeology course I had always wanted to take and ended up loving it. The professor was incredible and I decided to switch over that semester. So, it definitely wasn’t a premeditated choice.

Are you happy with your concentration choice?
Yeah, I’m very happy. It’s definitely something that I’ve found myself really loving and the people are incredible.

On and Around Campus

Where have you lived on and around campus?
Sophomore – Olney House, which was part of the Sigma Chi frat. I was one of ten independents living in a frat house, it was very boy heavy. For the first half of the year, I had a dingle (a double room with nobody else living with you), and then a transfer moved in halfway through the year so I had to share the room.

Junior & Senior – Off-campus house on Power Street. I have my own room but I live with two other roommates.

What was your favorite living situation?
The off-campus house has been my favorite place to live just because you get to choose the friends you live with. And it has let me kind of construct my own perfect living situation because we got to find a house that we wanted that’ close enough to campus so that you still feel like you’re part of the Brown community. It’s like a little haven.

What is your favorite off-campus restaurant?
Tallulah’s Taqueria. I’m from California, so I really miss good Mexican food.

What is your favorite place to get away from campus?
The East Bay running trail. It starts at India Point Park and it’s just a beautiful long walk that’s closer to nature. It’s a really pretty walk if you’re feeling stressed.

Pros and cons of being in Providence, RI?
Pros:
1) It’s a foodie city. There are a lot of great restaurants.
2) It’s a really good college place because there’s also RISD. It’s really young and it feels like there’s always something going on.
3) It’s close to New York and Boston, so if you wanted to, you can get to a bigger city in a matter of hours.

Cons:
1) Weather. It rains a lot and it’s pretty random when it snows. It snowed [the first week of April] this year.

Social Opportunities

What kind of weekend activities or nightlife do you participate in at Brown?
There are a lot of house parties that I go to. The house I live in tends to throw a lot, so it’s okay to stay home because people always filter through my house. I also go downtown to bars and clubs. Most of the bars and clubs in Providence have an 18+ line and I’d usually go in through those lines.

What nights of the week do you regularly go out?
Regularly, Friday and Saturday. Because I have no classes on Fridays, Thursday nights are a possibility.

Are there regular places you go on certain nights?
No, I think each night depends on what we hear about and if there is an event going on.

What are your favorite days or nights at Brown?
Spring Weekend is always a blast. It’s when Brown feels like a party school. It’s a lot of fun.

Do freshmen boys have trouble getting into parties?
No, I don’t think so. People here are really inclusive, so, unless you are a freshman boy going to a small senior party where you don’t know anybody, you’ll be fine.

Can you describe a typical night going out?
I’d finish work around 8:00 PM or something, then have some friends over to my house. Then we’d go to a few different house parties, meet up with some friends, and then I guess go out to eat around 1:00 or 2:00 AM and then go to bed.

What have been your favorite days and nights at Brown?
I would say Spring Weekend is really fun just because you get to see the entire campus come together. It feels like you’re a part of a community more than just like doing your own thing. Or like, Campus Dance, or other times when the whole school gets together.

How happy are you with Brown’s nightlife? Is there anything you would change?
I’m pretty happy with it. There are a lot of scheduled events, like bands that are coming during the night that you get to hear about and go see, and a lot of sports parties and Greek parties that open up towards the end of the night. I don’t think I would change anything.

Campus Culture

How was it mixing in socially as a transfer?
It was relatively easy because I did decide to join my sorority, so I had that structure of people that I could be friends with when I came in. There were also a lot of transfer activities and parties which were good. I think it really depends on how much you put yourself out there. It’s very easy to fade into the background if you don’t make the extra effort. For me, it just worked out really well, I found a lot of friends very fast.

How did you meet your closest friends?
I met my closest friends through another transfer. The transfer that I knew came in knowing a lot of other people, and because I was friends with him he introduced me to his friends and then those friends ended up being the people I’m living with right now. I found my closest friend through him.

How would you describe the overall social scene?
It’s not Greek-oriented, but definitely most of the parties come from sports teams or Greek organizations throwing them. I would say it’s pretty vibrant. There’s always a chance to go off campus if there’s nothing going on on-campus, which I’ve found to be pretty rare.

Do you think people of different races and sexual orientations mix socially?
Yeah, I do. There’s a tendency to stick with people that you feel comfortable around, so I definitely think that there is always room for improvement. I know a lot of little social groups that are very mixed and I have a lot of friends who are not White. There’s no clique mentality with anyone.

Do people seem happy with their choice of Brown?
I haven’t spoken to a lot of people that are unhappy at this point. It seems that the class size is perfect because it’s big enough where there’s always new people and new activities going on. So, I think most people are happy.

Advice for Prospective Freshmen

What is something you wish you knew about Brown before entering as a transfer?
I guess I wish I knew how accommodating the professors and concentration advisers are if you want to change your concentration. Everyone really wants you to do well, so there’s a lot of room for flexibility in shifting interests. The professors are very willing to sit down and talk with you because if they’re passionate about the subject, they obviously want you to be. So, if you’re not doing well or if you are unhappy with the way your semester is going, there are a lot of people to help you.

What is something a prospective student may miss on a visit that’s worth checking out?
The List Art Center Stairwell. It paints Brown in a very artistic way. It’s cool to see all of the artwork and you feel like you’re walking years of experience having filtered through this space.

Reasons to attend Brown:
1) It’s extremely easy to forge your own path and follow any kind of passion. Nothing you do will seem weird because everyone’s got their own little weird thing going on. There’s definitely a community idea of just being yourself.
2) The city is incredible. The bars are fun, the food is awesome, there are always music shows going on. It’s very easy to escape off campus and spend time in an actual city.
3) The diversity of classes you can take. You can take anything.

Reasons to not attend Brown:
1) There is a stuck-up attitude of “Oh, this is an Ivy League school.” There are people that may make other people feel bad if they don’t feel like they deserve to be here.
2) The size can be a bad thing. I mentioned it can be good because the classes can be small, but you don’t necessarily know everyone so you can feel lost in the bigger crowd sometimes even though it is a mid-sized school.
3) The weather. It is cold and not sunny most of the time, which can be hard for some people.

Notice: Brown University is a trademark. Induck uses it for descriptive purposes, not to imply affiliation with, endorsement from, or sponsorship by Brown University.

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