The Ohio State University College Experience

Vignesh earned his bachelor’s degree in biological sciences/pre-medicine from Ohio State University. He specializes in algebra tutoring, SAT tutoring, and a number of other subjects. Below he shares his review of his experience at Ohio State University:

Describe the campus setting and transportation options. 

Vignesh: I went to Ohio State University for my undergraduate schooling. I also attended Wright State University for summer classes in order to transfer credit to Ohio State University. The campus setting was great, as Columbus is such an active and engaging city. The campus had a very urban feel to it, as the best transportation options other than walking were going to places via bus. There was a regular bus schedule with scheduled stops at 15-minute intervals. I felt safe on campus, as campus security is very strong and available in many different buildings. You don’t necessarily need a car or bike, but if you want to get to places quickly, having a car or bike will help. I walked to most places my first year, and had a car with me the rest of the years.

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

Vignesh: Since this was a very big school, professors, academic advisors, and teaching assistants usually taught different sections of a class. They were very available during their office hours. Emailing these faculty members was always helpful for me when needed, and most of them were very nice during their office hours. They were even willing to schedule separate meeting times if our schedules conflicted.

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

Vignesh: The dorm life was an experience of mixed emotions for me. I loved the new atmosphere, meeting new people, and the location of my dorm, as it was close to restaurants and many buildings as I lived on South Campus. I made lots of good friends in my dorm and studied, hung out, and played a lot of basketball with them since we were very close to a gym. The downside of living in a dorm is the loudness of the students there, including some crazy weekends with social activities and quiet hours. It was very tough to get adjusted to some aspects of dorm life, but it was a very interesting experience for me.

Which majors/programs are best represented and supported? 

Vignesh: The sciences and mathematics are strong at Ohio State University. I studied biological sciences/pre-medicine and minored in business management. The university did a good job of supporting my particular study, as there were clear course guidelines for what classes to take to stay on track for graduation. I met with my academic advisor about once a quarter/semester to help stay on track. Meeting with an academic advisor is a great thing to do and helped me a lot. I would suggest everyone do the same.

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?

Vignesh: It was a bit difficult to make consistent friends as a freshman. Lots of kids from my childhood and high school went to Ohio State University, but lots of these friendships broke apart due to different atmospheres, values, career ambitions, etc. I made plenty of new friends due to the large number of students at the university. Joining clubs, meeting people through dorms and classes, and at the gym were how I made most of my friends. I didn’t join any fraternities, but I know it is a good way to make friends.

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

Vignesh: The Career Center was very helpful from reviews I heard from others. There is a nice learning center called Younkin Success Center to help with students struggling with school or coursework or other aspects of life. There are career fairs held regularly on campus. I was a pre-medical major, so there was a pre-medical club, and physicians and medical professionals that would come to campus and give talks or answer questions on a regular basis.

How are the various study areas, such as libraries, the student union, and dorm lounges? Are they over-crowded, easily available, spacious?

Vignesh: There are a few libraries on campus. They are very available and have multiple floors, which are great due to the large number of students on campus. It does get hectic during midterm or final exam week. Those weeks I usually study in my dorm or apartment. The noise level is pretty well controlled in these areas due to good enforcement and following of rules.

Describe the surrounding town.

Vignesh: The city of Columbus is great. It is such a big city with so much to do with restaurants, venues, stores, gyms, football and basketball stadiums, and plenty to do on weekends or during free time. This made the environment very fun. It is important not to get too distracted from all there is to do there. The students go to the downtown area a decent amount during less stressful weekends. Going to football games at Ohio State University is the most popular thing to do on campus for social life. I got season tickets all four years at Ohio State University and loved going to the games. There is a lot to do in Columbus.

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

Vignesh: The student body is huge, as Ohio State University is ranked as the 2nd or 3rd biggest school in the country. Some of my classes had 200 to 300 students in the lecture hall, which had two floors to accommodate the number of students. The only disadvantage of this was that there wasn’t much of a community feel to classes and interaction with teachers during class. The advantage of this is that it really teaches you independence and how to survive in real world settings.

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

Vignesh: I have some memorable moments with professors and classes. I took plenty of difficult classes in the sciences, but one class I enjoyed most was one I took my senior year. I took a two-course sequence in physiology, and I really enjoyed learning about the body, functions, and so much more in depth. We covered cellular reactions, homeostasis, action potentials, organ systems (heart, lungs, kidneys, respiratory, etc.) in great detail and I really enjoyed the class. This was my favorite science/major class.

My favorite class in all of my undergraduate career was a sports and society class that I also took my senior year. This class required us to see how sports related to society, and the significance of sports in daily life and to cultures. We read a few books on how sports has impacted our world and had to do a final project picking a sports movie and writing about how it affected us, our view of society, and how it has shaped our understanding of sports in culture. I chose Coach Carter, an inspirational true story basketball movie talking about the importance of academics and balancing academics and basketball. I had a lot of experiences that I loved and some that I regretted, but these were the few that stick out to me the most.

Check out Vignesh’s tutoring profile.

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