Carleton College Visit Report by stepherzzz
Admissions Interview: Yes - My interviewer was a Carleton alumnus. The interview is informational only, so no need to perfect any sort of speech before. He made me feel like Carleton would be a good fit and was very helpful.
Information Session: Yes - There was this awesome movie that was made by Carleton students. Gave me a good impression of the school and helped to give me a better feel of the campus life. People seemed goofy, in a good way :)
Campus Tour: Yes - The campus tour was standard but good. Went around most of the campus, but didn't go in the arboretum because it's too large.
Campus Visit Notes for Carleton College
Carleton was beautiful. I loved the buildings and got a very nice feel from the school. For a top LAC, there was very little feeling of tension, and that's saying something considering the day I toured was either during finals or the day before finals. The students seemed HAPPY, which was great because I have been to campuses where students seemed unhappy or depressed.
I was really impressed by the video during the info. session and the things that I learned. Carleton's radio station is supposed to be really impressive, despite the fact that it's completely run by students. I got a copy of the Carletonian and read a ton of comics that were done by a graduating senior over his time at Carleton. They were hilarious.
Northfield has a lot of historical significance as it's where Jesse James' gang was finally beaten. The bank where all of that took place is in town and I hear Carletonians do reenactments at the beginning of the school year. That's super cool.
There's a place on campus called the bald spot, which I liked. Carleton's campus is huge, especially because it has an arb, but the bald spot makes it feel less dense than many schools that are in urban locations. Carleton feels very open and natural, and its Minnesota location definitely helps. Everything seemed really clean. The Twin Cities are also one of the greenest urban areas in the U.S. Because of the arboretum, Carleton is also very strong in some sciences. You can use the arb for walking, jogging, as a classroom, or as a place to hang out. It's a really cool feature of Carleton that is unique.
I went to Carleton during late May. I have to admit I have no idea how cold it gets in the winter, and I'm sure it does, but I would be willing to grin and bear it considering how much I liked the school. I'm sure it's beautiful anyway :)
The proximity to the Twin Cities is nice but not a necessity. I stayed in the Mall of America Ramada and made it to Carleton in about 30 minutes. They charter buses to the Twin Cities at the beginning of holidays and on weekends, but I'm not sure about weekdays.
Carleton was great. Especially considering its prestige, I feel like the school is definitely not intimidating. The campus was beautiful and I loved Northfield. Carleton was a very well-rounded school, and I loved it.
Also, the staff was extremely accomodating when my mom expressed concerned about the expensive tuition. They immediately got her an appointment with a financial aid officer without any real notice. The officer, she says, was EXTREMELY helpful. If I could give the staff friendliness a 5++++, I would.
Hotel/Lodging Recommendations or Comments:
I stayed in the Mall of America Ramada hotel and would recommend it as long as you can handle a 70's throwback. It's kind of cool. I felt like I was born in the 50's.
Dining/Restaurant Recommendations or Comments:
The Mall of America has Panda Express, which is amazing. Great Chinese food. I don't know about the dining in Northfield, but if you need really fancy food, you can always go to the TC's.