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Why Carleton?

Andriana writes about her prospie experience with Carleton!

Andriana writes about her prospie experience with Carleton!

Hi everyone!

At the halfway point in my college career, I am reflecting on the decisions and experiences that led me to attend Carleton. I have had such positive experiences with the college–between working with wonderful professors and students, having amazing jobs, and making new friends, I feel so lucky to be here. But what made me want to be here in the first place?

Visiting Carleton

When I was in high school and starting to explore college options, my parents recommended that I look at Carleton. While visiting family in Minnesota before my junior year, I drove to the Carleton campus with my parents. We toured the campus and attended an information session, and I fell in love with the school, clichéd though it may sound.

I really liked Carleton because of its unique balance between academic rigor and playfulness. Unlike many of the schools I visited, Carleton didn’t take itself too seriously, and fostered an environment that was collaborative rather than cutthroat. I appreciated that the school highlighted the extracurricular achievements of the student body, both serious and fun, rather than focusing exclusively on academics. Essentially, Carleton clearly cared about its students and their personal interests.

So why was visiting important?

It was my first visit to Carleton that made me want to attend the school. Being on campus and interacting with community members really helped me imagine what my college experience could look like. Honestly, being at Carleton truly did feel right. Something about the campus seemed warm to me, and it had the welcoming environment that was absent from so many other schools that I visited.

Essentially, I recognize that in-person visits have not been possible this year due to the pandemic. I also understand that, for a number of reasons, visiting is often not feasible even without a pandemic. Luckily, there are many opportunities to interact with us virtually and experience our community, so that you can learn more about Carleton even if you can’t come to us.

Attending Classes

When I came to campus for Accepted Student Day, I had the chance to attend two classes. This was one of my favorite activities, as I could experience the college academic environment. I chose to attend a political science class and a psychology class, and even though I didn’t know the material, I really enjoyed the experience. I got to see how professors conducted classes (i.e. discussion vs. lecture), what the classroom environment was like, and even work with students a bit.

As I’m now actually a Carleton student and have had classes with prospies in attendance, I can confirm that what you see is what you get. In other words, professors do not change their teaching style when prospies are present. This means that your experience will accurately reflect what most Carleton classes are like.

Side note: You don’t have to wait until Accepted Student Day to attend a class! We have lots of opportunities for prospies to explore Carleton, so be sure to check out what we offer and register for an event.

Lots of Other Reasons

Of course, there were lots of reasons why I chose to attend Carleton. I have written about my decision in greater detail in earlier posts, but I needed to consider what I wanted for my college experience. Ultimately, when evaluating my options, I prioritized location, academics, and community.

The Brief Version

I wanted to go to school out of state, and because I have family in St. Paul, I was interested in Minnesota schools. Additionally, being in a small town with access to the Twin Cities was really appealing. As for academics, I wanted a small school and a liberal arts education, so Carleton was a perfect match for me. Finally, like I mentioned earlier, I loved the collaborative attitude within the Carleton community and appreciated the classic “Minnesota nice” atmosphere of the campus.

Contact Us

I hope that sharing my pre-Carleton experience will help any prospies who are currently thinking about college. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email me! Also, I encourage you to spend some time exploring the Admissions Office website. There are lots of great resources available, including opportunities to attend admissions events and interact with the Carleton community. And, of course, if you have any questions, reach out! We are always happy to work with prospective students.

We hope to see you soon!

Andriana is a sophomore at Carleton, where she is earning a major in English and a minor in Cross-Cultural Studies. Although she is spending the year at home in Richmond, VA, Andriana is already excited to return to Carleton in the fall. When she isn’t busy studying, Andriana can be found binge-reading, playing music, or watching a favorite movie or show for the umpteenth time. Meet the other bloggers!