12 - The Michigan Daily - Orientation Edition 2003
Survey rankings say 'U' is one
of top party schools in nation
Students who want to know how life
at the University stacks up against other
higher educational institutions can for-
get about U.S. News and World Report's
list of America's Best Colleges, which
offers information on universities' grad-
uation and acceptance rates and the
school's student-faculty ratio.
The Princeton Review released its
yearly rankings for 2003 last month,
comparing colleges in categories rang-
ing from how happy students are and
how engaging professors are to which
ones offer the most "bang for the buck"
and which have the most alcohol and
marijuana use on campus.
"Instead of just using one overall ulti-
mate list, we decided to create a whole
number of lists," Princeton Review Editor
Erica Magrey said. "We believe all the
schools included in the book are outstand-
ing institutions, but for their own reasons.
They have their ownpersonalities."
According to the rankings, the Uni-
versity may not be as academically-
focused as some would think.
Though it scored high in almost all
social categories, including Party
Schools (No. 13), Lots of Beer (No.
13), Reefer Madness (No. 15), Lots of
Hard Liquor (No. 10) and Major Frat
and Sorority Scene (No. 16), it did
not make the Top 20 cut for many
Those categories include Professors
Get High Marks, Professors Make
Themselves Accessible, Class Discus-
sions Encouraged, Best Overall Acade-
mic Experience for Undergraduates and
The Toughest to Get Into. The Universi-
ty ranked No. 15 when it came to aver-
age number of hours students spend
studying and No. 16 in the Great Col-
lege Libraries category.
Last year, the University was ranked
the No. 8 college in the category "Pro-
fessors Suck All Life out of Material"
To compile the rankings, The Prince-
ton Review collected surveys from
are the real college experts.
"We think that is most valuable per-
spective for students," she added.
University Provost Paul Courant said
while student opinion is very valuable, the
survey's results should not be taken too
seriously and were not a cause for alarm.
"It's a funny thing. When we look
at (other) surveys, we find that our
students find us to be very strong aca-
demically, they make wide use of the
academic breadth of our University
and find diversity to be a very impor-
tant quality that contributes to our
academic life," he said.
"It's interesting to me that this portrait
of us is quite different than the U.S.
News and World Report portrait.
"I would hate to be in a college where
the students study just as much as I
would hate to be in a college where the
students just party. Neither of those
would be a good thing for the Universi-
ty," Courant added.
"I don't believe that we are both. I
don't believe that we are either."
Several students agreed with
Courant's statements, saying they do not
believe the rankings accurately reflect
life at the social level of the University.
"Comparing it to other universities,
there is a bigger social life here. There
are a lot of people who do a lot of stuff
and there are a lot of parties, but I think
that is healthy," Engineering junior
Maria Pobre said.
She said she believes most stu-
dents give academics a higher pri-
ority than partying and that
professors here are widely-respect-
ed and available to students.
"I think this is a great school," Pobre
said. "But it just shows that a successful
student doesn't have to be cooped up in
a library all day. It shows you can be
Pregame festivities in the University 35-12 win over Western Michigan University on
September 7, 2002 at the Michigan Stadium, was filled with energy and excitement.
successful in both areas."
The University ranked high in other
areas, mostly dealing with the number
of activities available on campus,
including Most Politically Active (2),
Great/Most Read College Newspaper
(5), Everyone Plays Intramural Sports
(9) and Great College Town (20).
It won the Jock School and Students
Pack into Stadiums categories.
However, it did not make any of the
lists in the Demographics or Quality
of Life divisions, which include Stu-
dents From Different Backgrounds
Interact, Diverse Student Population,
Students Pray on a Regular Basis,
Gay Community Accepted, Happy
Students, Great Food, Dorms Like
Palaces, Beautiful Campus and The
Best Quality of Life.
And although many students believe
the University is a liberal campus, it did
not make the Top 20 in the Students
Most Nostalgic For Bill Clinton catego-
Courant said although the rankings
are fun, students and potential students
should not use it or other publications to
judge whether to enroll ina university.
"There is no right way to do this
because students have their own inter-
ests, their own skills, their own needs.
Those things vary widely,"he said.
"I think students should learn about
the colleges of their interest from many
sources. They should visit, they should
talk, they should read and they should
make their own decisions about what
university meets their ownneeds."
In a two-page profile, the Prince-
ton Review also highlights the Uni-
versity's academic strengths.
100,158 students from 345 colleges and
asked them 70 questions about the insti-
tution they attend.
The rankings are based from student
responses to questions like "How much
of your overall course time is devoted to
discussion (as opposed to lectures)?"
and "overall, how happy are you?"
Magrey said the publication chose to
survey students because "we feel they
Area museums offer more than average learning experience
By Karen Schwartz
Instead of sitting in a classroom, LSA junior Joe
Rothfarb's class took a trip to the museum.
The University of Michigan Museum of Art,
located across from the Michigan Union, and the
Exhibit Museum of Natural History, located on
Geddes Avenue, are two museums on campus open
daily and frequented by students for assignments,
class trips and fun.
Rothfarb said going to the museums is a good
alternative and a way to make the subject matter
more real, applicable and meaningful.
"A lot of the time, it's good for class. It goes
along with some subjects you take and you get to
talk to people and discuss topics while you're there.
I think it works very well," he said.
He added that trips to the museum are also great
places to approach the person "you've been looking
at across the room all semester" and impress them
with museum knowledge.
Ricky DeNardis, a Business junior, said he
thinks having museums nearby is a definite benefit
to students, and that he feels it is worthwhile to
"take advantage of all that the University has to
offer, including the local museums."
DeNardis said that his favorite museum on cam-
pus is the Museum of Art because of the variety of
continually changing exhibits it offers students. and-a-movie' date," DeNardis said.
"If you appreciate art, it's a must-see," he said. For LSA alum Nathalie Dube, the art and nat-
He added that he feels lucky to be attending a ural history museums were places she returned
school with an art to more than once
museum conveniently when she had some
loc ated on campus free time or to take a
because it provides break between classes.
him with opportunities She said she liked
he would not be able to the fact that the
take advantage of oth- museums are very
erwise, including a accessible to students
chance to enrich his and that she could go
college experience. back as many times as
"Your college expe- she wanted.
rience is what you :- "It's not like it's a
make of it. It can start whole day thing. You
and stop with classes[ -- can just pop in and
or it can be a continu- walk around when you
al four-year experi- have some extra time.
ence'. Taking in dome I could come back a
of the cultural aspects few times and still see
of the University can DANNY MOLOSHOK/Daily stuff I hadn't seen
really add to the expe- The University of Michigan Museum of Art is in the before," Dube said.
rience," he said. heart of campus and features a variety of exhibitions. Another advantage
The museums are to the museums, she
also ideal and original places to take a date, said, was that she did not have to go out of her
DeNardis said, for a chance "to stroll hand in way or get dressed up to go inside. Experiencing
hand through the galleries" and explore art and history without having to pay money was
exhibits. "It beats the usual 'go-to-dinner- another big bonus, she added.
"You don't have to pay. You don't run into that
a lot and it's definitely worth taking advantage
of," Dube said. "It's a good chance to see lots of
different stuff without having to go all the way
to Chicago or Detroit."
The museums give students a chance to see sci-
ence and art up close, opportunities Dube said
should not be missed because "once you're out of
school, it's just that much harder to have access to
thatkind of opportunity."
Dube said she remembers walking up to the
dinosaur exhibit at the Natural History museum and
being amazed at how close shewas to the artifacts.
"You can walk right up to them and really
look at them - I don't think I've ever been
that close to dinosaur bones before," she said.
"It's very interesting stuff and I think it's
worth it to go check it out."
Located off-campus on East Ann Street, The
Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum offers students
another local museum option. The museum
charges a five dollar admission fee to students
with valid student identification.
Law student Pierce Beckham, who went to the
Hands-On Museum for a day out with friends,
said he enjoys the many activities at the muse-
um, especially the "tornado machine" which
creates a miniature vortex visitors can watch and
run their hands through.