Q:What's the protocol for the alumni interview? And if you know someone who is an interviewer, is there a way to get/not get them?
What do you mean by protocol?
After you submit your application, an alumni will contact you personally to arrange a time to meet. That person doesn’t see your application, but only gets your contact info. The alumni relations office sets the whole thing up and I’m sure (though not certain) that they probably don’t let alumni you know interview you. After the interview, the alumni writes something up about you and sends it over to admissions.
Also, not everyone gets an alumni interview. It depends where you live/if it can be arranged. Alumni interviews are pretty casual—usually they just want to get a feel for who you are and what you would bring to the school. I wouldn’t stress out about it too much!
Q:As a prospective student, would it be possible to attend Brown and maintain abstinence? A quick reading of The Blog Daily Herald's sextion leads me to believe otherwise.
Sextion is just for fun—don’t be scared off by it! There are plenty of people on campus who practice abstinence. As with most things at Brown, you can do (or not do) whatever you want and no one will really pressure you either way. Most people tend to mind their business about that kind of stuff.
If you do find yourself around people who make a big deal about your abstinence, I would probably recommend finding new people to hang around. (You’d be surprised how easy that is to do!)
Bruno response after the jump, because it’s long
Q:How do people usually keep their clothes? Hangers in a closet or folded? Also, can you talk a little bit about wardrobe? I'm coming from crazy weather desert Texas so I have no clue what to expect!
Honestly, this totally depends on the person. All rooms are provided with dressers and a closet/wardrobe.
Providence weather really varies throughout the year, as with most northeastern locations. The first few weeks is really hot and humid, so you are going to want to wear really light material.
After that, for the next few months, the weather alternates between comfortably hot, windy, dreary, and (mainly) rainy. For this period, its really hard to say what you should be wearing. I would recommend preparing to wear lots of layers i.e. sweaters, cardigans, light jackets, scarves, etc. Brings lots of rain gear because it really does rain a lot.
From about late November through March/April (it can be pretty unpredictable), its gonna get cold, especially to your standards. Again, layer, layer, layer. These layers should be a little heavier—add hats and gloves. It will snow a few times, so look into snow boots of some sort. It can also get really dark, especially in February, which has nothing to do with clothes but I feel like non-northeasterners didn’t expect that. Sprinkled in there towards March it can be randomly hot, or at least that’s how it was this past year. Don’t be fooled into thinking winter is over, it’s probably not.
From mid or late April through those last weeks of school in May, Providence weather can be pretty damn spectacular. Clear skies, lots of pretty nature, great temp, and so on. Expect to wear summer-ish clothes while lounging on the Main Green. Spring in Providence is honestly the absolute best; it makes those dark days of Winter worth it. Luckily, it’s just in time for Spring Weekend and Senior Week! Look forward to those days.
Q:Hi! Do you know when incoming freshman find out about their living situation/roommates?
It varies year to year, but in my year we found out the beginning of August. You’ll know by August 15th at the latest - because that’s when RPLs (RAs) get their resident rosters!
Q:When is the best time to start ordering textbooks, considering shopping period and everything else? Any tips on how to cut costs? Thanks!
Unfortunately, by the end of every semester you will almost certainly feel like you spent too much money on books. That said, here are some tip$$$
- Rent, never buy textbooks. You will never, ever read them again nor will you make your money back by selling them.
- Get used textbooks because, as I said above, it’s not like you’re keeping them or anything.
- The libraries do have a copy of all textbooks that you can rent for a day. This does not guarantee that a copy will be available when you need it, though.
- DO NOT order textbooks until you are sure you are taking a class aka during shopping period. It may cause a hassle and long lines, but it’s better than having to deal with making a return.
- Look online to see if you can get something cheaper online than from the Brown Bookstore (you probably can). Keep in mind, though, that the mail line during shopping period is actually ridiculous.
- Also, see if you can torrent your textbooks before you get to Brown - torrenting on campus will get you kicked off the university internet, but using torrented files is…only illegal if you get caught. Honestly, the entire educational system is designed to create a second class of citizens who are unable to access their right to education as a result of a lack of capital, so like, is it really morally wrong? Assuming the class is larger than 30 people, the professor probably won’t care and even if it’s a small class, most profs will allow you to use online editions if you ask. The only time they won’t is if they actually wrote the textbooks - since that means they’re profiting off sales. Here’s a Tumblr post by Obsessionfull about getting textbooks online: CLICK HERE.
- Choose carefully which non-textbooks you choose to buy because if you later decide that you want to sell them the Brown Bookstore will give you basically quarters for them.
- A recently graduated senior has told me that she never bought textbooks because they were a waste of time and money. She graduated just fine. Take that at your own discretion.
Sorry, I know this sounds like it sucks mainly because it does. Welcome to the college struggle bus!
Q:Did you ever feel like Brown was too small?
Personally, I have never really found that Brown was too small.
I have always felt Brown was the perfect size; big enough that I am always meeting new people and small enough that I know people everywhere I go. Admittedly, it can be kind of easy to fall into a “crowd” which may feel small at times, but I’d say every semester I meet a bunch of new people.
Q:How is the theater department at Brown? Is it easy to become involved?
Theatre at Brown is a really great and strong community on campus.
As far as the actual department goes, people definitely enjoy it. The professors are very fun and talented, and students benefit from their experience. The department welcomes actors, techies, directors, and writers alike. Sock & Buskin puts on the official theatre department shows, which include plays, musicals, devised pieces, and a student-directed show.
Apart from the actual department, there are many others ways to get involved in the community. The PW, or Production Workshop, is a student run theatre which features shows produced, directed, acted, and sometimes written all by students. There are also a number of other theatre companies on campus in which people can get involved.
It is fairly easy to get involved. Acting, of course, requires auditions while other positions usually require an email. Since there are so many theatre happenings always going on simultaneously, it allows a lot more people to get involved.
Hope this helps, theatre is awesome!
Q:Does Brown give it's undergrads individualized attention? I recently got accepted to the class of 2018 (yaaayyy!), and Brown's been my first choice for as long as I knew about it, but I'm worried about losing the community and focused attention of a LAC, such as Wellesley or Haverford. Any insight? Thank you :)
A focus on undergraduate education is one of the many things Brown boasts. Undergraduates compose over 6,000 while graduates are under 2,000, making its undergrad student body proportionally the largest as compared with other ivies. To that point, all professors are required to teach at least one undergrad class while at other universities you may find that some of the best professors are more interested in graduate teaching and research.
On a smaller level, there are tons of ways in which undergrads get individual attention, including its advisor program. Each professor, and even deans!, are required to hold office hours/open hours, where students can come in and discuss issues/comments/concerns/questions with them. Additionally, most research positions are given to undergraduates (although grad students are typically present to assist) to make sure they receive necessary experience.
Q:All this talk about people getting into Brown during this admissions cycle is really freaking me out 0_0 I'm probably applying ED for the class of 2019 and my stress levels are so far off the charts I think I broke every chart available. Any tips for staying sane during the admissions process (even when that admissions process hasn't actually started yet)?
Honestly, I would say focusing on the present. During senior year, it’s very easy to get obsessed with the future and what’s to come because it’s so close and is going to be amazing! But, honestly, senior year can be one of the best years of your life. Looking back, it seems so short and I wish I’d focused more on all the great memories I was building with my friends and family.
I would also recommend getting everything done as early as possible so you’re not freaking out about last minute deadlines.
Lastly, just have confidence in your abilities and know that everything will work out in the end.
Q:How is brown alerting students on the waiting list of their acceptance or rejection. Is it by email?
Uh it’s a little late by now, kid. Try calling them.
If you’ve been taken off the waitlist, they usually will send a giant package in the mail that has all the necessary info you need to know. I don’t know what they do for rejections though.
Q:Would you consider a blog an extracurricular activity? Like one that I put all my efforts in and consumes most of my time? I have a blog very similar to the Humans of New York but it's based in Arizona and deals with race and immigration issues.
If you do it outside of school and your set educational curriculum - it’s extra”curricular”. If you’re proud of it, talk about it.
Q:do you know anything about the party scene for summer@brown? like do kids drink or smoke or go to parties at all?
Well, sure! That’s definitely an option if you want to be kicked out of the program and be required to write on your Common App that you were kicked out of an ivy league institution summer program for drinking/smoking/going to a party. (And yes, that is strictly enforced.)
If you’re looking for fun things to do, trips to attend, etc. during your time here, please check out the Guidebook program, which can be found here: https://guidebook.com/guide/20559/
Basically, don’t do that stuff while you’re here.
<3 a Summer@Brown RA
Q:bucket list to do things at brown before you graduate
Here’s a pretty sweet bucket list from our friends over at Blog.
Q:do houses ever throw theme parties (i.e. 90s night, alter ego)? just curious!
Themed parties I remember from this year:
- Game of Thrones
- Bear-ly dressed
- The Great Fratsby
- Too Soon party
- Top Gun
- Fire and Ice
- Toga party
- Harry Potter
And a long list of others I’m forgetting. Many of these parties are thrown every year, like the Harry Potter party that is thrown every year during Halloweekend - not to mention Body Chem, the chemistry themed party with test tubes of hard liquor (this is the party where the majority of bad freshman decisions are made).
Happy partying, my friends.