BackgroundInterview Date:June 2017
Gender Identity: Male
Sexual Orientation: Heterosexual
Graduation Year: 2017
High School Experience: Private school in Baltimore, MD with a graduating class of about 100 students. There was a culture of going to college.
Major: Music and Physics
Extracurricular Activities: I was a student-athlete; I was in two acapella groups, but only participated in one at a time; and I was in Cool Science, which is a community outreach program.
Can you describe the weekly coursework for your majors?
Because of the Block Plan, it greatly depended on what class I was in. I was in class for three hours a day and then I’d work on homework for about 5-7 hours after that. The major assignments were mostly tests. The final exams were a huge part of my grade sometimes. I had a final exam that was worth 90% of my grade for a Physics class. Music classes also had listening exams and performances.
Did you especially like or dislike anything about your major’s department? Did they do anything especially well or poorly?
The Music department was very accessible for questions, but the Physics department was hardly there. They weren’t accessible. If you didn’t get something on the first try they’d move past it and it would be up to you to figure out. The pace of the class was so fast because of the block plan. You’d have to learn something in a day. It was really gratifying when you finish a class though because you know you don’t have to do that ever again. It was hard, but I’m convinced anyone can do anything for three and a half weeks if they have to.
How would you describe the learning environment?
It was really supportive and collaborative. It got competitive in some upper-level Math classes, but everything else was super supportive.
What were your favorite classes in your majors?
Music: Romantic Music and Literature
Physics: Cosmology and Extragalactic
What were your least favorite classes in your majors?
Physics: Number Theory, that was 100% my least favorite class in college
Music: Tonal Harmony
What was a fun class you took outside of your majors?
Art of the Dutch Republic. That was my favorite class of all time. It was an art history class and we got to work with Rembrandt sketches and it ended with us curating our own exhibit.
Why did you pick your majors?
I have no idea [laughs], I really like Physics. I wasn’t very good at it, but I liked it a lot. I was always good at music, but there were people in my classes that were much better technical musicians than me. I was a much better writer of music though, that’s what got me through.
How was managing your coursework and your sport?
Because of the Block Plan, it was very difficult. It felt impossible at times.
On and Around Campus
Where did you live on and around campus?
Freshman: Mathias with one roommate.
Sophomore: Slocum with one roommate.
Junior: Antero Apartments with three people.
Senior: Off-Campus house with five other people.
How safe do you feel on campus and in the surrounding area?
It gets a little sketchy sometimes at night. There have been shootings in the surrounding area, but you know it’s an urban area so that happens anywhere. The campus safety is really good.
What is your favorite off-campus restaurant?
What is your favorite place to get away from campus?
The mountains, they’re so close too.
Pros and cons of being in Colorado Springs, CO?
Pros: (1) It’s kind of big but still pretty small. It’s a nice sized city.
(2) It’s an hour drive from Denver.
(3) It’s equidistant from 3 big ski spots.
Cons: Colorado Springs is a very conservative area, and CC is a gigantic liberal bubble in the middle.
What kind of weekend activities or nightlife did you like to participate in?
I would go out Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday, or out whatever night we had off for my sport. It was mostly just house parties, except for on Tuesdays some upperclassmen went to a bar. The house parties are usually a dance party or a themed party. There’s also a big college band scene where a lot of student bands play at house parties. In general, nights are mostly spent jumping around from house to house.
What were your favorite days and nights at CC?
Blues and Shoes is the best day of the spring. They have bluegrass music and everybody day drinks on the quad. Then Winter Ball is the best day of the winter.
What is an alternative to going to a party or bar that you like for a night out?
There are campus performances and stuff like that, but the only way I knew about those was through the Music department.
How happy are you with the nightlife at Colorado College? Is there anything you would change if you could?
I’m pretty happy. I would want more going out and doing stuff other than house parties. The house parties are really fun and cheap. People spend all their money buying ski equipment and ski passes so that gets expensive and probably deters people from wanting to go out more.
How did you meet your closest friends?
From either tennis or acapella.
How would you describe the social scene?
It’s super open at the very beginning, you can be friends with anybody as a freshman. Then as you get older it’s very hard to branch away from your friend group, which is kind of weird. Hockey is our only division one sport which creates a dichotomy between them and others.
Do people of different races and sexual orientations mix socially?
Yeah, for sure. With that being said, it is a very white campus. People are a massive minority if they’re not white and not heterosexual, but everybody mixes really well. [About 24% of students are domestic students of color.]
Do people seem happy with Colorado College by senior year?
Yeah, I’d say if you made it to senior year everyone’s very happy. You knew very quickly if it wasn’t the place for you and you transferred out. [In 2017, the first to second-year retention rate was 94%.]
Advice for Prospective Freshmen
What is something you wish you knew about Colorado College before you entered as a freshman?
I took a semester off in the fall and I was worried that it would make me feel like a weirdo, but taking time off is so much better than going straight to school. I would have gotten burned out. I wish I was more confident in taking time off.
What is something a prospective student may miss on a visit that’s worth checking out?
If they’re an athlete go to the varsity weight room. You’ll spend more time there than at practice. Then also go check out the random off-campus houses. That’s where the parties are and where seniors live.
Reasons to attend Colorado College:
1) It’s super liberal, but if you come from a place similar to where I came from that is the norm.
2) There’s a good sense of community.
3) The block plan was the greatest for me. It’s tough, but if I had to juggle classes that would have been impossible because I’m really bad at that. If I can just focus on one thing until my fingers fall off I can do that. It was totally the way to do it for me.
Reasons to not attend Colorado College:
1) It’s super liberal. I know people that got really frustrated with it.
2) If you’re trying to get away from athletes running everything don’t go to CC.
3) It’s really expensive. If I were footing the bill I wouldn’t have gone there.