Student Thoughts on Attending University of Wisconsin—Madison

Alexis earned her bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of Wisconsin—Madison. She specializes in Spanish tutoring, English tutoring, and a number of other subjects. Below, she shares her experience at the University of Wisconsin—Madison:

Describe the campus setting and transportation options. 

Alexis: I loved the University of Wisconsin—Madison’s campus when I was an undergrad student. I consider the campus to be urban, as it is located in the heart of downtown Madison, Wisconsin. However, it also offers a lot of scenic areas, such as Lakeshore residential area, Lake Mendota, etc. You do not need a car, but a bike is always nice if you need to get somewhere in less than 15 minutes.

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

Alexis: As long as the student is proactive and putting in the effort to communicate with their professors, academic advisers, and teaching assistants, their general availability is very flexible. Most of my professors had quick response times with emails and were willing to schedule meetings outside of office hours.

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

Alexis: I would definitely suggest living in the southeast residential area, that way you are closer to events that are taking place downtown. The dorms are where many students meet their best college friends! There are many options for dining; the dining halls have been recently remodeled and have tons of space. If you aren’t a fan of the dining hall, try using a Red Card (a meal plan that allows you to shop at the grocery store or dine out at local restaurants).

Which majors/programs are best represented and supported? 

Alexis: The university best represents the school of business or programs related to math and science. I studied Spanish, Chicano, and Latino studies, and gender and women’s studies because I am passionate about learning language and better understanding privilege in our society.

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?

Alexis: It’s easy to meet a lot of new people and make new friends if you are involved in organizations and events on campus. College is the time to push yourself to break out of your shell. Greek life exists on campus, but Greek Row is tucked away so it doesn’t dominate the feel of campus.

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

Alexis: The Career Center is extremely helpful. I made many trips to their offices to brainstorm future careers. They also hold many career-related events that you can attend. Reputable companies are always looking for UW-Madison students.

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

Alexis: There are so many libraries on campus, and they are all easily available and spacious.

Describe the surrounding town.

Alexis: When you aren’t in class or studying, lots of fun stuff happens on campus. For example, if you are a football fan, you can see Wisconsin Badger games at Camp Randall or enjoy a walk around the Capitol during the weekly farmer’s market.

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

Alexis: The student body is about 40,000 students. I did not have any issues with class sizes. Lectures had a lot of students, of course, but there were always discussion sessions that consisted of only 10-15 people.

Describe one memorable experience with a professor and/or class. Perhaps one you loved the most or one you regret the most.

Alexis: My most memorable experience was when one of my professors from freshman year reached out to me as a junior and asked if I would like to pursue a grant to do collaborative research with her. I took on the challenge, received the grant, and formed a great relationship with my professor, which made me feel like I truly belonged on campus and better prepared me for the possibility of grad school.

Check out Alexis’s tutoring profile.

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