A Day in the Life at the University of Oregon

Jesse earned his bachelor’s degree in human physiology and Spanish from the University of Oregon. He specializes in geometry tutoring, Spanish tutoring, and a number of other subjects. Below, he shares his experience at the University of Oregon.

Describe the campus setting and transportation options. 

Jesse: Eugene, OR is a very bike-friendly community, which makes biking to campus a viable option. While I hardly ever took the bus to campus since I lived within walking distance, I heard from multiple people that there were several easy-to-access bus routes to campus. Although Eugene is a city of over 100,000 people, the large amount of trees and greenery on campus gives it a more rustic feel than you would expect for a campus of its size. Campus is also very safe.

How available are the professors, academic advisers, and teaching assistants?

Jesse: Although I didn’t make as much use of office hours as I should have, the few times I did go, the professors were readily available. However, at least in my human physiology major, the TAs were more approachable than the professors. It seemed like the professors would rather be doing research than teaching.

How would you describe the dorm life – rooms, dining options, location, socialization opportunities with other students?

Jesse: When I was in the dorms, the dining choices were decent, but somewhat limited. However, after my sophomore year, they opened up a new dorm complex with much better dining options.

Most of the dorms are located close to campus, if not right on campus. I was fortunate enough to never be more than a 10 minute walk from my dorm to class.

I joined a fraternity and don’t remember much about other socialization options in the dorms. That being said, I do remember there being various clubs to join and other social activities that the housing staff would host.

Which majors/programs are best represented and supported? 

Jesse: Business and journalism are hands down the most popular and some of the best-supported majors on campus. I studied human physiology and Spanish. Unfortunately, when I was a student, the human physiology major was poorly supported. The human physiology program has undergone a major overhaul since I graduated, and there are many more classes to take that focus on specific aspects of human physiology that were not available when I was a student. The Spanish program seemed to have all the support it needed.

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?

Jesse: Although I met most of my friends through Greek life, it’s fairly easy to meet new people as a freshman between classes, clubs, and the proximity of the various dorms. My advice for someone who is not a part of Greek life is to join some sort of club or team, as it makes meeting people much easier.

How helpful is the Career Center and other student support services? 

Jesse: The course that I took through the career center provided tips on networking, job hunting skills, and resume polishing tips. Although I didn’t find my first post-college job through them, I was under the impression that many reputable companies recruit through U of O’s career center.

How are the various study areas such as libraries, the student union, and dorm lounges?

Jesse: I preferred to study off campus, but when I did study on campus, there were multiple libraries to study in, as well as the student union. However, like any university, these spots get crowded around midterms and finals, so plan your study times accordingly.

Describe the surrounding town.

Jesse: There is a lot to do in Eugene. There are plenty of restaurants, an amazing farmers market, and some nice hiking and biking trails. However, many of these fun activities are a long walk from campus, so if you don’t have a car, you’ll likely have to take the bus. As great as these amenities are, I didn’t visit downtown much until I was a fifth-year student. So, from my experience, it seemed like students remained close to the campus as opposed to going into town.

How big or small is the student body? Were you generally pleased or displeased with the typical class sizes?

Jesse: Although the student body has grown considerably since I was a student, it seemed like a reasonable size when I was there. Some of my prerequisite classes were fairly big, with over 400 students. I was happy with my human physiology major courses, where the number of students was around 100. Class sizes were sometimes less than 30 for my upper division Spanish classes.


Check out Jesse’s tutoring profile.

The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Varsity Tutors.