To be brutally honest, I wasn’t sure if I was going to like West Chester.. It was between here and Penn State, and I was really torn. It was the first school I had gotten into, and I had visited a few times. The school will still going under construction, so it seemed a little off.
But I can tell you now that I am very, very glad that my mom had pushed me to go here. There are a thousands of reasons why you should be proud that not only you got into this school, but that you’re choosing to come here. However, since our newspaper only has so many pages, I will provide you with just a few:
1.) West Chester University is a tough school to get into. So congrats! There are many students who wish to be in your shoes right now. I didn’t realize just how difficult it was to get in until orientation week, when we heard some crazy stats. Around 14,000 students applied and only about 2,000 got in. Not only that, but statistically speaking WCU is harder to get into than Penn State Main Campus. We have a lower acceptance rate – true, we accept fewer students than Penn State—but that means you’re surrounded by great, great students. You should be proud.
2.) You don’t know what a school is really like until you go to it. I had all sorts of expectations for college that I really shouldn’t have put on myself. But it takes time. There will be a transition period, even if you don’t live far away it sure does feel like it. Here’s a secret—the first semester is rough. But that’s true anywhere you go. Be assured that by the second semester you’ll have made lots of friends, figured out your way around campus, and discovered the beautiful parts of town.
3.) West Chester, unlike a huge giant college campus, has tons of little hidden gems rather than big, loud landmarks or events. Every time I go into town I find something new, something more beautiful or interesting. The people around here are absolutely wonderful (another reason why I chose to come here). You’re in a safe place with room to explore and have fun. I always thought West Chester was a small school but the gap between say, Kutztown and West Chester is a much larger gap than West Chester and Delaware or Penn State. At Penn State, a tour guide told us you can make a big school feel small, but you couldn’t make a small campus feel big. West Chester absolutely disproves this. It feels like a small school because you’re on a small, cute, adorable campus with everything you need within walking distance. At the same time, you are constantly seeing new people everywhere. I do run into familiar faces from time to time, but more often than not I’m surrounded by people I don’t know, which is really exciting but not in an overwhelming way.
There’s no reason why you should be comparing yourself to others or your school to others. For a while I was upset because I thought not many people knew about West Chester (which is absolutely not true), or thought that it was an “easy” school (also not true). I went to a rigorous high school that produced students who went to Brown, UPenn, etc. But to be completely honest, it doesn’t matter where you go for your undergrad. All that matters is that you’re happy with where you are.
What’s nice about West Chester is that you get an amazing education that is right up there with say, Penn State, but you get all the wonderful qualities of a less overwhelmingly-sized school. You don’t feel as pressured, and you’re in a relaxed environment with students who love West Chester but don’t try to prove it to others.[pullquote]It’s an artsy, chill, relaxed, intelligent school. I wouldn’t have known just how amazing it was until I actually went.[/pullquote]
It’s an artsy, chill, relaxed, intelligent school. I wouldn’t have known just how amazing it was until I actually went. Yes, it took a while before I could really feel settled. I was worried I went to the wrong school for a while. But that’s a very normal experience, and you’re going to have that anywhere you go.
I am so happy that my mom had pushed me to go here. I know that picking colleges is difficult and stressful. I was going through a very rough time of my life when I picked West Chester, so I knew that if I felt comfortable here when I was at my lowest state, I would most definitely be happy in my best.
It was the first place I got into, and the place I ended up going to, and I am so, so glad that I did.
Good luck at West Chester! You’re going to have a blast here. GO RAMS!
Samantha Mineroff is a second-year student majoring in English writing with a minor in creative writing. She can be reached at SM825021@wcupa.edu.