Friday, June 21, 2013

"Oasis" of New Hampshire

Possibly due to seeing and learning so many new things, I already feel like I've been in the East Coast for a very long time, but it's actually only our second day of activity. Today, we visited the smallest Ivy League school, Dartmouth, which is also located in a small, isolated town. It took over three hours to get there by car, and there was almost nothing but lush, green trees and rolling hills along the freeway. While being an idyllic and scenic trip, it was very repetitive, making the trip seem very long. Our first event at Dartmouth was a lunch with a few students and faculty of the school.

I happened to sit with a sophomore and an assistant dean of that student's class. We had a very lengthy and productive conversation that opened me to another new perspective on colleges. The sophomore, whose name is Rob, told us a lot about Dartmouth's focus on the undergraduates and the advantages of studying at a small school. It was great listening from the point of view of someone attending college in a small community. Both the assistant dean, June Chu, and Rob were very honest and down-to-earth and did not hesitate to discuss the cons of studying at their college; those at Harvard and MIT only concentrated on the best aspects of their school.

We attended a public information session and tour after lunch, and, I must admit, Dartmouth completely exceeded my expectations of a small town college. Not only was the campus beautiful inside and out, but also the students there all seemed very friendly, creating a very warm and friendly atmosphere. A few of the students who passed by us all shouted, "Come to Dartmouth!" Seeing the students of the school welcoming and enthusiastic makes the school look especially inviting. I'd seriously consider applying to Dartmouth, but I just wish it were less isolated. But I guess it's also something that makes Dartmouth Dartmouth. 

After our tour finished, we had gelato (ice cream) at supposedly at one of the best gelato place in the country, Morano Gelato. I'm not a connoisseur of gelato and I can't judge if it really is the best, but its texture and balance was pretty much perfect - smooth and light. We then headed back to Providence and had Korean food for dinner. Although I'm not Korean, just eating Asian-style food was very pleasing after not having it for a few days. That about concludes my third day on the East Coast. I hope tomorrow will be just as, if not more, enlightening and delicious.
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