The tutors behind Varsity Tutors are not just here to teach – they’re sharing their college experiences as well. Sandy is a New York City tutor who specializes in Arithmetic tutoring, SAT prep tutoring, Writing tutoring, and much more. She graduated from Georgetown University in 2012 with a Bachelor’s degree in History. Check out her review of her alma mater:
VT: Describe the campus setting and transportation options. How urban or safe is the campus? Are there buses or do you need a car/bike?
Sandy: Georgetown University is located in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C., which is an urban environment. The campus was safe most of the time, but like any place, it's important to be careful and wise when walking around at night. I always thought it was best to walk with other people or to use the late-night shuttle service that the school provides, which is called “Safe Rides”. There are no metro (train) stops near Georgetown, but there are several buses that can take you to metro stops. Some students used bikes but I never needed a car, since I just used the buses.
VT: How available are the professors, academic advisers, and teaching assistants?
Sandy: The professors were very available, both by email and via office hours. I never felt uncomfortable or intimidated about approaching a professor for help/questions. They really care about students. The teaching assistants are also great and I had some fun ones who were pretty funny and relaxed. I never really consulted my academic advisers – except once or twice – but they were approachable as well.
VT: How would you describe the dorm life – rooms, dining options, location, socialization opportunities with other students?
Sandy: The rooms are okay and the dining hall is also not bad. Of course, as with any dining hall, students may soon feel like they need to eat something outside of the dining hall options. But chicken finger Thursdays are the best! They also had great vegetarian chicken nuggets. The location of the school is not always convenient, since it's necessary to take buses to really go into the heart of D.C., but there were plenty of opportunities to explore, nonetheless. Also, there are many clubs and student organizations on campus, and it was also possible to successfully start organizations.
VT: Which majors/programs are best represented and supported? What did you study and why? Did the university do a good job supporting your particular area of study?
Sandy: Georgetown is very oriented towards Social Sciences and Languages. The Language departments are amazing. I was able to learn Italian and French because of my dedicated professors and the amazing departments. I also took Arabic, which is excellent at Georgetown. Economics, History, International Relations, etc. are all incredibly well represented at Georgetown and have amazing professors. I learned a lot as a History major because I feel the school provided a wide array of History courses. I really enjoyed my major and believe it was only made better by the dedicated professors.
VT: How easy or difficult was it for you to meet people and make friends as a freshman? Does Greek life play a significant role in the campus social life?
Sandy: It was somewhat difficult for me in my freshman year, and I made more friends in the subsequent years. I believe many people started out with friends in freshman year that they then replaced with other friends later on. But this was a normal experience for many Georgetown students. Greek life does not play a significant role on campus, as we only have a handful of fraternities. I was in Alpha Phi Omega, which is a service fraternity. In fact, I ended up making many friends because of this fraternity.
VT: How helpful is the Career Center and other student support services? Do many reputable companies recruit on campus?
Sandy: The Career Center is great for help with resumes and cover letters. I learned everything I know about formatting from the Career Center. They also allow students to sign up for newsletters for various industries, like Education and Government. Every year there are job fairs where many reputable companies (especially in the field of business) come to recruit students.
VT: How are the various study areas such as libraries, student union, and dorm lounges? Are they over-crowded, easily available, spacious?
Sandy: The main campus library was a bit tricky to use during finals because so many people would pack into it and stay for extended periods of time. So, many people actually went to the Medical School library and studied there. There are also buildings where classes are normally held but where people can study instead. I used to go to the ICC galleria often. I knew people who went to the Business School or to Sellinger Lounge (in the Leavey Center) to study. Dorm lounges are okay but may be difficult sometimes because of people coming and going.
VT: Describe the surrounding town. What kinds of outside establishments / things to do are there that make it fun, boring, or somewhere in between? To what extent do students go to the downtown area of the city versus staying near campus?
Sandy: There is great shopping at Georgetown, as M Street NW is very close. There are great restaurants and some bars. Many people also liked to go to U Street, just to get off campus and go to other great restaurants. There is a movie theater near campus. It's not easy to be bored at Georgetown because of M Street and because of the possibilities D.C. provides.
VT: How big or small is the student body? Were you generally pleased or displeased with the typical class sizes?
Sandy: I liked the class sizes. My Languages classes were always small, which was great. As my History courses became more and more focused, those classes were also smaller. A small class for me was 15 – 20 students. I had large classes when the course was basic, like “Intro to Ethics” or “Macroeconomics.” Even then, there were always recitations with smaller groups and teaching assistants, where students could pose questions about anything they didn't understand during the larger lectures.
VT: Describe one memorable experience with a professor and/or class. Perhaps one you loved the most or one you regret the most.
Sandy: I was an Italian minor at Georgetown and was extremely interested in becoming fluent. So, I would always go to one professor with articles in Italian that I wanted to discuss. She would always welcome me and did not mind my (possibly annoying) determination. Instead, she was happy I was so interested and gladly spoke to me whenever I found her in her office. I always appreciated her sincerity and help. I will never forget how welcoming and helpful she was.
Check out Sandy’s tutoring profile.
The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Varsity Tutors.