I always tell prospective students that it’s hard to go wrong with any small, private liberal arts college, whether it be Centre or another institution. More importantly, it’s not a line I throw out to sound impartial; I mean it. We all offer small class sizes, personal interaction with professors, and tightly knit communities with students from all walks of life. That in and of itself is a formula for an amazing college experience, but that formula does little to distinguish individual colleges from one another. So why should you choose Centre over your surfeit of other options? What makes Centre the stand out choice?
As a fairly recent graduate (2007 to be exact) I’m in a unique position to offer some insight. Granted, my interests are a little conflicted–after all, I’m getting paid to write this in hopes you’ll read it and ultimately enroll–but for the next three paragraphs, you’ll have to trust that I’m not wearing my admission counselor hat. It’s just me.
1.) The Norton Center for the Arts. For four years you’ll have free access to world class performers and performances that will simply take your breath away. There are very few colleges that offer the caliber of performing arts that Centre students regularly experience free of charge. It’s like walking into the St. James Theatre on Broadway and watching The Producers for free, or waltzing into Avery Fisher Hall for the New York Philharmonic without paying a dime.
2.) Study abroad. It may not be your top priority considering you’re just now laboring over which college to attend, but studying abroad was without a doubt the most extraordinary part of my four years at Centre. Ask any student who’s done it and they’ll probably tell you the same thing. (But don’t ask unless you have a few minutes to spare. They’re notorious for gushing.) The College makes it unfathomably easy to do as well, both financially and academically.
3.) The Centre Commitment. Guaranteed study abroad opportunities, guaranteed internship opportunities, guaranteed graduation in four years. All of this, or your fifth year of tuition is free. Centre’s been offering this guarantee for eight years and has not once had to follow through on the fifth year’s tuition for any student…and it’s not because our lawyers are the best in the business. It’s because the College genuinely believes that these three tenets of a world class education shouldn’t be luxury offerings, they should be the foundation.
But how do others feel? Well, a few days ago I placed a camera just outside the main entrance to the Campus Center and asked those passing by why they chose Centre. In the video below, you’ll hear only a few of the many responses I received…all different from mine.
In closing, good luck to you as you decide which college to attend in the fall. It’s my sincere hope that you will be as pleased with your choice as I was with Centre. Oh, and one other thing: breathe.
Adam Brown ’07