Accepted Students: Don’t Judge St. John’s Yet

Erin Sakalis, Staff Writer

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I was not excited to start college. I was unsure of the career path I wanted to pursue, I was pessimistic about commuting, and I was unsure what to expect. I am proud to report that in my first two years, I have had an exceptionally positive experience at St. John’s University for a plethora of (often overlooked) reasons.

When I was selecting a college, I was initially unaware of the sheer number and quality of programs that St. John’s offers. Our pharmacy and law programs have received considerable recognition, along with our sports teams; however the rest of St. John’s is severely under-hyped on a national scale. For example, the College of Professional Studies boasts an array of modern and specialized programs for students of various disciplines and goals, which is what attracted me to SJU personally.

I am an Advertising Communication major, which is a relatively new major that is offered infrequently. Within my major, there are also different tracks, such as Creative, Account Management, and Media Planning. As an Advertising Communications Major on the Account Management track, I have the unique advantage of learning with a more refined focus. My program, among numerous others, is specially tailored to advance the pursuits of the students within them. Each student can essentially customize his or her degree using the broad variety of specific major and minor choices that St. John’s offers at each of its colleges.

One of the most advantageous aspects of St. John’s University is the average class size. While I can’t speak for the recitations, I’ve found that most class sizes range from 20 to 40 students. Because of the smaller class sizes, we can engage in class discussions, which is important especially in the humanities. We don’t have to hunt down our professors during office hours to ask simple questions, nor do we need to purchase buzzers in order to answer questions in class.

Furthermore, I didn’t realize how unusual it was for all of my professors to know my name until friends at other universities expressed that in their classes of 200 students, it was difficult for anybody to make a lasting impression. At St. John’s, we have the opportunity to participate in class and to get to know our professors personally. This is incredibly valuable because the vast majority of the professors I’ve met are veterans of their industries and have a wealth of experience and knowledge to impart. I also genuinely appreciate how approachable and supportive they have been.

Outside of the classroom, SJU places great emphasis on helping students find internships and eventual employment. The school isn’t selling degrees, but instead, teaching students how to apply their skills and allowing them to explore their options. Through our excellent Career Services, we host numerous professional events, career fairs, and alumni panels to help students build industry connections and hone universal networking skills.

Aside from the educational and career benefits, St. John’s campus also has its conveniences. First of all, St. John’s has an actual campus. It is commuter-friendly, due to its proximity to several bus lines and its abundant parking lots. It is also easy enough for students to travel to and from Manhattan for internships or leisure. This allows St. John’s students the opportunity to intern and cultivate work experience year-round, whereas students in more remote locations may only get the chance to intern during the summer.

Regarding tuition, St. John’s is not the most expensive, nor is it the most affordable, but Financial Services are considerate and generous when determining need and academic or athletic merit. This allows many deserving students to receive an education at a private university without experiencing financial distress or excessive debt.

Above all, St. John’s is what you make it. There is no definitive “St. John’s experience,” which is what makes it special. There are so many options available that students can customize optimal college experiences and educations to suit their goals. St. John’s is the place where you can truly be the best you.

 

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