The tutors behind Varsity Tutors are not just here to teach – they’re sharing their college experiences as well. Rebekah is a Washington D.C. tutor specializing in ISEE prep tutoring, Essay Editing tutoring, Pre-Algebra tutoring, and more. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Brigham Young University. 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?
Rebekah: I attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. It is located in the heart of Provo which is a bigger town, but the university is what drives its economy. Getting around Provo is extremely easy for students. Students have to live within a mile radius of campus, so walking to school is always an option; however, the bus system is reliable and free for students. Many students survive without a bike or car at the school.
VT: How available are the professors, academic advisers, and teaching assistants?
Rebekah: One thing I loved about attending BYU was the availability of the professors. They all have office hours and love meeting with students to help them with any questions or concerns. There are extremely large general classes with upwards of 1,000 students in them, so those professors might be more difficult to get in touch with; however, those classes have several teaching assistants who are available to help as well.
VT: How would you describe the dorm life – rooms, dining options, location, socialization opportunities with other students?
Rebekah: There are two different options for on-campus housing: housing with kitchens and housing without. The school is in the middle of rebuilding the kitchen dorms (Heritage Halls), so they are brand new buildings with more room and upgraded features. The other dorms were recently rebuilt or remodeled as well. Dorm life is awesome if you are a freshman. The majority of students living in the dorms are freshman who love life, stay up late, and enjoy their new college adventure.
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?
Rebekah: BYU’s Business School is highly ranked, especially its Accounting program. It also has a well-known and respected Engineering program. Although, you really can’t go wrong with the major you choose. All of the majors are well-respected, and the school as a whole is well-known and highly favored in every field. I studied Communications with an emphasis in Public Relations. It was a great experience with hands-on, real-life application as well as fantastic support from all professors involved. As a general rule, each major has some sort of internship and/or capstone project which gives students a flavor of what life will be like after school.
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?
Rebekah: Meeting people at BYU is extremely easy. As I mentioned previously, nearly all freshmen live in the dorms and dorms basically force you to meet people since you share common areas. Also, BYU is predominately attended by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which means most of the students attend church with each other. Through church and church activities, it makes meeting others even easier. Business Insider recently ranked BYU #1 for a university “where students are both hot and smart,” and as part of the description of the university, it stated “everyone is very friendly, and it's not uncommon to strike up a conversation with a perfect stranger.” BYU has a strict honor code which deters Greek life, so it definitely does not play a significant role in the social life there.
VT: How helpful is the Career Center and other student support services? Do many reputable companies recruit on campus?
Rebekah: Students can set up an appointment with the Career Center at any time. It is well staffed and helpful for all students, even those who need guidance as to which career would best suit them. Every year, they have several career fairs bringing in companies from all over the country, including General Mills, various school districts, top accounting and consulting firms, as well as others. Basically, each college at the university has its own career fair at some point throughout the year.
VT: How are the various study areas such as libraries, the student union, and dorm lounges? Are they over-crowded, easily available, spacious?
Rebekah: BYU has one of the best libraries in the country. While I was at BYU, it was consistently ranked #1 in the nation. It has everything a student needs, including ample study areas, rooms, and computers. All dorms have lounges, but I imagine they can be noisy, so most students prefer to study at the library or in their bedrooms. There are also plenty of study areas in every building on campus. Students tend to find their study space they like to frequent.
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?
Rebekah: Provo basically caters to BYU since it is the economic center of Provo. Provo is located at the base of the Wasatch mountains, so there is plenty of outdoor fun to be had: hiking, biking, camping, fishing, boating, etc. Students also often take advantage of the great variety of restaurants and shopping in the area. There is always something to do in Provo whether it’s attending an event on campus, a local party, or going out on the town.
VT: How big or small is the student body? Were you generally pleased or displeased with the typical class sizes?
Rebekah: There are close to 29,000 undergrad students who attend BYU. General classes tend to be huge, but some sections offered are on the smaller side. Regardless of the class size, the university staffs the class with adequate TA numbers and extra support so students can always reach some type of expert to help them with the subject matter. As students get into their major specific courses, class sizes greatly shrink.
VT: Describe one memorable experience with a professor and/or class. Perhaps one you loved the most or one you regret the most.
Rebekah: I absolutely loved my experience at BYU and hope to send my own children there. I can’t pinpoint one memorable experience because I had so many. Honestly, the majority of the professors I had were fantastic, well-spoken, and passionate about the subject matter. Professors literally moved me to tears because of their passion, and I loved that. It is a fantastic school in every aspect.
Check out Rebekah’s tutoring profile.
The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Varsity Tutors.