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The University of Maryland - College Park

How this student rated the school
Educational QualityA+ Faculty AccessibilityA
Useful SchoolworkA+ Excess CompetitionA
Academic SuccessB Creativity/ InnovationB
Individual ValueB University Resource UseB
Campus Aesthetics/ BeautyB+ FriendlinessA
Campus MaintenanceB Social LifeA
Surrounding CityA Extra CurricularsA
Describes the student body as:
Friendly, Arrogant, Approachable, Snooty

Describes the faculty as:
Friendly, Helpful, Self Absorbed

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Quite Bright
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Educational Quality
She rated most things higher than other students did.
Date: Dec 23 2009
Major: Civil Engineering (This Major's Salary over time)
UMD is what you make of it. I'm an in-state student and to be honest, Maryland was my LAST choice. I got into ivies but was faced with either $200k of debt for the top-notch schools or just paying for room and board here at Maryland (I received a merit scholarship to cover tuition).

I chose the latter to avoid being in a mountain of debt and am so glad that I did. The engineering program is top-notch. Many group projects and applicable work throughout your academic career. My friend who just transferred to MIT (also in civil engineering) said that it's all theory based over there and very minimally application-based. And to be honest, we're going to need the application-based knowledge when we get into the real world.

The engineering school is also helpful in matching students up with career and additional scholarship opportunities but ultimately it's UP TO THE STUDENT to pursue and follow through to land the opportunities. Thanks to the engineering career services and the great location of UMD, I have been able to do undergraduate research, work at the Dept. of Energy, and will soon be working at a national engineering firm, during my summers and during the school year. So by the time I graduate (which I completed in 4 years with no problem), I will have over a year of work experience in addition to my degree. I have made great connections with faculty during my research and my classes. I have also applied for and won over 10 additional scholarships, some exclusive to UMD students and some not, effectively paying for my tuition, room and board, and then some.

Okay it may seem like I'm an overachiever and maybe I am. However, I am by no means the most brilliant person you've ever met. I'm not a genius. I don't get straight A's. I didn't score over 700 on any of my SAT sections. But I have used UMD to my advantage by connecting with faculty and taking the initiative to apply for all that I can.

I've also made a lot of great friends here, most of them that I met during freshmen year. I've met a lot of genuine people here but don't get me wrong, there are a lot of snobby and arrogant people too.

Sports here are strong. Students really get into it. Tons of extracurricular activities where you can meet even more people. The Alternative Breaks program here is great.

UMD has helped to shape me into the person that I am. Sure the campus isn't in the best location, safety-wise. But it's a 20 minute ride into DC and that can't be beat (hello, internships). The staff and faculty won't hold your hand when you're here, but they will offer assistance and guidance if you need it. You've just gotta ask.

So my bottom line is: It's the real world here and it is what you make of it. If you take the initiative and have the right attitude, then Maryland won't disappoint.

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