BackgroundInterview Date:June 2018
Gender Identity: Male
Sexual Orientation: Straight
Graduation Year: 2019
High School Experience: Public school in a small town in Ohio with about 100 students in my graduating class. There was a culture of going to college.
First Generation College Student: No
Major: Computer Science
Extracurricular Activities: Fraternity
What is your weekly coursework for your major like?
There’s a fair amount of reading, a lot of those are optional. We have a lot of lab-based assignments that you work on in class or have to finish outside of class.
Is there anything that you feel your major’s department does especially well or especially poorly?
The professors are great. It’s a much smaller major than the other ones, so there’s a lot of individual attention, which I really enjoy. The teachers are really good at developing one on one relationships with students and it’s a very informal atmosphere, which I like a lot.
Can you describe the learning environment? Do you think it’s particularly competitive or collaborative?
I would say it’s a mix of both. There’s a lot of collaborative work that we do, but at the same time, there is somewhat of an atmosphere of competition.
What has been your favorite class in your major?
Mobile Computing, which was making iPhone apps and things like that.
What has been your least favorite class in your major?
Why did you choose your combination of majors? Are you happy with your choice?
I had always had computers as a hobby growing up, so I knew from a pretty young age that that was what I wanted to do. I haven’t had any regrets about having that major, I’ve enjoyed it a lot.
On and Around Campus
Where have you lived on campus?
Freshman: I lived in Barney Hall in HBB, which is a combination of three dorms: Hook, Brannock, and Barney. I had one roommate and a total of eight guys on the floor.
Sophomore: Apartment in the Danieley Center Neighborhood with four people total in two double rooms.
Junior: Oaks Neighborhood in an apartment with four single rooms.
Senior: Millpoint Neighborhood in an apartment with four single rooms and we all have our own bathroom.
What was your favorite living situation?
Oaks was definitely the best, but I’m sure I’ll like Millpoint a lot. I liked Oaks because I had a single and I liked all the guys I was living with.
Can you describe the level of safety you’ve experienced on and around campus?
I’ve never once felt like I was in any danger at all. It’s an incredibly safe area. They refer to it as a bubble, and it really is. I don’t feel uncomfortable walking around alone at night or anything like that. It’s totally safe.
How was transitioning from Ohio to Elon, NC?
I didn’t think it was that bad. I think the hardest part of me was I underestimated being familiar with an area. It’s kind of nice when I’m home and know exactly where everything is. But, in general, I didn’t think anything as too hard to adjust to.
What is your favorite off-campus restaurant?
What is your favorite place to get away from campus?
I’ve only been a couple of times, but Boone, NC isn’t too far away and there are a bunch of mountains and stuff to do up there.
Pros and cons of being in Elon, NC?
Pros: (1) It’s a smaller area. I like that because I came from a smaller area, so not being in the middle of a city or anything is nice.
(2) Being in central North Carolina is nice because you aren’t too far away from the beaches if you want to go and you’re not too far from the mountains. So, your options are pretty wide open.
Cons: You’re in a smaller area, if that’s not what you want.
What kind of weekend activities or nightlife do you participate in at Elon?
I like to go out to house parties and occasionally bars, although those aren’t too popular. I go out regularly Friday and Saturday and occasionally Thursday, but I usually don’t because of classes. Friday and Saturday are house parties generally. There’s trivia night on Tuesdays at Fat Frogg’s and I’ll go to that every once in a while.
What have been some of your favorite times at Elon?
Some of my favorite nights have been hanging out in my apartment with friends playing card games and hanging out. Other than that, we have a date party every year that’s one of my favorite nights.
Do freshman boys have trouble getting into parties?
It’s not easy at all. The first couple of weeks are really crucial for meeting people to get invited and get texts to be invited to parties [in the future]. That’s definitely a challenge to get on that early if you’re not sure that’s something that you want to do.
How happy are you with the nightlife? Is there anything you would change?
In general, I’m pretty happy with it. I would change how exclusive it is. That was a big struggle for me my freshman year. A lot of people have an elitist attitude about the social life, which I think is pretty stupid. The other thing that I would change is we go out way too late. Parties don’t start until like midnight, and there’s no reason for that. I’d rather parties start at like 10 and I can go to bed at a somewhat reasonable time.
How did you meet your closest friends?
Some of my closest friends I lucked into and we lived in the same place freshman year. The other ones I met through my fraternity.
How would you describe the social scene?
I would say it’s very active. It can be kind of exclusive and that can be annoying, but if you want to have fun you’re going to find it regardless of who you know or anything. I think there’s a good amount of options.
How would you describe the student body?
In general, pretty smart and hardworking. There can be some degree of [elitism] in general, but it’s not hard to find really good, genuine people.
To what extent do people of different races and sexual orientations mix socially?
I’m not friends with too many people in that demographic, but I think people are very accepting of those people. Although the numbers are low, I don’t think there is an issue with people fitting in that much.
Do you think people are happy with their choice of Elon by senior year? Do you think people leave loving Elon?
I think people are generally happy with their choice of Elon by their senior year. You come in with preconceived notions of what it is going to be like, so if you come into it with an open mind you’re going to like it a lot. I think a lot of people leave really loving Elon.
Has the alumni network helped you find internships or jobs?
I haven’t used it, and I know a lot of people who have and it’s been helpful for them.
Have you used the career office?
I’ve used them in general for advice on interviews and more steps I need to take and I’ve found that really helpful. They do a really good job of listening to each student’s needs and they can help with a really wide range of things you need, you just have to go and ask.
Other than the programs you learned in your Computer Science classes, have you learned any computer programs that will be helpful to you professionally through your coursework?
I’ve learned a fair bit about Excel and Office programs like that in science classes and I took a stats class freshman year. I’ve also gotten pretty familiar with Mathematica, which isn’t something I’ll necessarily need but something that I’ve found helpful and will use in the future.
Advice for Prospective Freshmen
What is something you wish you knew about Elon before entering as a freshman?
I wish I knew more about the social scene and what that would be like. I had no idea what it would be like, and I think having a general idea of that would have helped.
What is something a prospective student may miss on a visit that’s worth checking out?
Have a really good walk through the Daniely Center Neighborhood. They don’t really take you there on tours because it’s kind of out of the way, but it’s a pretty neat place. It’s a lot different than the rest of campus.
Reasons to attend Elon:
1) Education quality is really great.
2) I really like that it’s a liberal arts school. I think it’s nice to have to take classes outside of your focus and get more of a holistic education
3) The social life is really fun. It can be a little daunting and annoying at times, but it’s a really great atmosphere in general.
Reasons to not attend Elon:
1) It’s really small, so if that’s not what you’re into you’re not going to like it.
2) There’s not a whole lot to do in the immediate area. If you want to go off campus and do something fun it’s going to be a bit of a hike.
3) The social scene is not for everybody and I know some people have come and not fit in with it.