Virtual College Tours: Williams College
CollegeAdvisor.com presents its virtual college tour series on Williams College in a 60-minute webinar and Q&A with college students and alumni. Our CollegeAdvisor panelist will share their insider perspectives on what it is like to be a student at Williams. Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2021-05-11 Virtual College Tours Williams College
[00:00:00] Welcome to CollegeAdvisor’s webinar, Virtual College Tours Williams College. To orient everyone with the webinar timing, we’ll start off with a presentation. Then answer your questions in a live Q and a on the sidebar. You can download our slides and you can start submitting your questions in the Q and a tab.
So I’ll be graduating next fall. And I’m a theater and English major and potential France, French concentrator.
So just a quick summary of Williams. Hopefully, a little bit about the school if you’re here, but if you don’t, Williams is in Williamstown, Massachusetts. The founder wanted both the town and the college to be named after him. If he was to donate money. So that’s where we’re at. It’s a very small private school.
It’s about 2006. And we do have two [00:01:00] graduate programs, the graduate program in art history, which is one of the best in the country and also the developmental economics program. I’m not sure if the number of graduate students, but it’s definitely, I would assume less than 20 there. It’s very small.
It’s in a forest and the Berkshires I would say it’s about three it’s about 45 hours to Albany. Which is probably the largest town I’m in three hours from Boston and New York. So it’s very much in the middle of nowhere, but in a very beautiful middle of nowhere it’s four 50 acres, which is huge for a school of this size.
The campus feels very large comparatively to the student body. And of course, because there aren’t that many students, faculty to student ratio is incredible. It’s a four to one and I believe the average class size. Is 11 to one.
Yeah. So I’m going to talk a bit about my college application [00:02:00] process. I would say with all of the changes that have been made in college applications, all of these things should happen sooner for you. But I began writing my common app over junior year, summer and apply to 19 schools overall.
From like UCS D to Kenyon, I believe it was my smallest school. Because I wanted to give myself a huge range of programs because I couldn’t choose what I wanted when I was applying. So I just decided to give myself the option of all of them and see who took me as, as my strategy with most things.
And I did consider both BFA and B a program specifically for directing. I want to do theater I’ve been wanting to do theater for a very long time. By senior year of high by junior year of high school, I was pretty certain I wanted it to be directing, but because I was only like 96 per cent.
Sure. That was my end goal. I ended up going with Williams rather than a program like UCLA or U Michigan.[00:03:00] Because I wanted to give myself the flexibility of a liberal arts education and take classes in other subjects. I took the sat senior fall, which I would recommend that you do junior year.
And I pretty much just spent all of my free time working on applications from August to February 15th, which I think was the last school deadline. If you were looking into the performing arts or other specialized programs, Most of those deadlines are in December. If not earlier, like November, so most of my work was actually forwarded into the beginning of the semester.
So when I was creating a college. Clearly there was a variety of things I was interested in, but there were some commonalities across the board. I wanted the program to be small enough to know the professors even with applying to schools like UCLA or Berkeley, I made sure that the programs that I specifically was applying [00:04:00] for were very small or that I eventually would end up in a very like specific major or that there were opportunities for me to connect with professors.
Directing opportunities were a huge thing for me. If you are interested in directing and you’re here I see you and thanks for being here. But the thing with directing and also to keep in mind for other specific leadership professions is that often graduate students are given the opportunities as opposed to undergraduates.
If you’re going to a larger university that has a large graduate student population. For instance, at UCLA, if you were a directing student as an undergraduate, you will likely be assistant directing the graduate students on the major productions. And if you are directing anything, it’ll be a student production.
So I really wanted to get that work experience before getting out into the world to make sure that it was what I wanted to do. So being able to have those experiences and opportunities was very important. Community dynamics was a [00:05:00] huge thing. I am not a party or person. So I pretty much avoided most schools that had a reputation for Greek life or like having, or with Greek life taking up a large part of campus.
And that actually did end up being a deciding factor because I did end up applying to some schools with a large Greek life and leaning away from them in the end, when I was making my final decision because of that. There’s definitely, I didn’t visit any of the schools before applying, which I would record.
You do visit if you have the ability and resources to do because really stepping on campus gives you a really strong feeling of what the college is like. And so that kind of atmosphere was really important to me. Of course financial aid and scholarships are a huge deal for me. The school had to be affordable.
It was, it needed either to be in state, have merit scholarships or very good financial aid packages. And I mostly found out about financial aid package generosity through the grapevine. If you talk to students at current schools, [00:06:00] each school has a really strong reputation for that. Kind they are with their financial aid.
Some schools will offer you a package of the first year and then rescind it the following years because you have to reapply each year. So all of those schools were immediately off my list. So I would just talk to students from those schools, especially financial aid students, if that’s a big factor for you.
And of course, professional connections were a big deal for me, looking at the professors in the department. Where they were working. What, who the guests, artists are that come through? What funding opportunities does each school have? Williams for instance, has really strong connections to the Williamstown theater festival, which is one of the best summers.
Festivals in the country. I ended up working there one summer and we had people like Matthew Broderick come through. So making sure that even if I went to a smaller school, that it had a really strong connection to professional theater, it’s a big deal for me. And that of course is applicable to any profession you’re thinking of going into.[00:07:00]
So why chose Williams? I was actually very torn in the end between choosing UCLA program and Williamses. I did not have going with Williams because of how small it was comparatively to UCLA. Also, when you go to a bigger school, you often have to apply to get into classes. And I am a stress person as it is.
And I didn’t want to introduce that extra competition to even get into classes. Into my life. So I ended up going here. It had Williams has a very generous financial aid package. I’m graduating in the end with less than $10,000 worth of debt, which is really good for me personally, that might not be affordable for you.
And of course it depends from person to person. But Williams does have a stringent policy. Students shouldn’t have to take out more than $4,000 worth of loans every year. So you will either have 4,000 or less depending of course, on your family situation. The size of classes were a huge draw.[00:08:00]
I’ve gone to professor’s houses for dinner, have various. Contexts that some of them have very close relationships with a few. So having that faculty interaction was very important to me. Professional opportunities, of course, as I mentioned before, Williamstown theater festival. I took a Russian senior seminar that had a fully funded trip to St.
Petersburg and Moscow as part of the course. So having opportunities like that were of course, a draw there’s a summer internship funding grant. So if you, for instance, are able to afford doing an unpaid internship, the school will actually pay you to do it. So that was so basically access to these kinds of professional opportunities.
The arts community. As I mentioned, community was a big thing for me. The Berkshires are teaming with various arts organizations for mass MOCA to the Clark to Barrington stage Wickman is the Williams college museum of art. There are more that I’m not naming but the arts community and also the campus [00:09:00] community itself.
With this note, all Greek life is banned. It’s this very kind of quirky, quite stressed, very fun. Atmosphere, at least I found for myself. So that ended up being a big drop. I wanted to go to a hard school. I wanted the school to be known for being difficult. That’s not for everyone, but that’s something I want.
And Williams is definitely not easy when it comes to academics. So that was very appealing to me when I was applying. And winter study is basically this very fun period of time. Between the fall and spring semester, where you take only one class, that’s some on some very esoteric subject from like last boat glassblowing to quilting to wine tasting.
And you basically hang out on campus for a month during this one class with friends. Again, going back to the community, feel of like having these kinds of like fun opportunities. And of [00:10:00] course the Berkshires are really beautiful, like naturally beautiful space. And there are tons of hiking trails that leave campus.
The 80 goes by. So having access to the outdoors was a really big deal for me as well.
Pull, are you planning to apply to Williams? There’s only one. Correct answer. That’s yes.
Okay. Currently everyone says, yes, that’s good, no deeply upsetting. Maybe also be [00:11:00] able to change some of your minds by the end of this presentation. Also feel free to ask questions in the Q and a tab, and I’ll be glad to answer and sweat your minds. Okay. 67% say yes, that’s not bad at all. More than 15.
Great. Okay. So now I will take you on our beautiful virtual tour. Sure. I’ll be basically toggling back between video and slides. And of course, if you have any questions about these spaces, please feel free to let me know. So we have two major libraries on campus, Sawyer and scout Soyers is the one featured on this photo.
It’s basically the humanities library with special collections. Like four floors of books from ranging from like the music scores to zenes. They now have a circulating Xen library. And scout is located in the news next to the new science center. So it mostly divides between like division three, which is the quote unquote hard [00:12:00] sciences.
And then division one was Sawyer Sawyer. So let me start the video. All right, so this is Sawyer. It’s very beautiful, very large, not very soundproof. It’s known it’s located basically in the center of campus. This is Sawyer lawn. Often the distance you can see per rescue, which is the main hub and the two buildings around the lawn are humanities classes are mainly taught there.
It’s Hollander in Shapiro. It’s apologies in advance if the video freezes a little bit. And if you were a division three person, so doing the physics, chemistry, anything else, a scout has opportunities like free student tutoring. You can be paid to be a student tutor. So it’s very much like the hub of a lot of that kind of work on campus.
So in terms of dining halls we have Prescott dress, school and mission, which are three very different places [00:13:00] that offer very different things. Hannah, how do I skip to thank you. I’m very technologically huh? Yes. So this is the inside of Breschi which as I mentioned before, sorry for the angle flip I’m a cinematographer is basically the center for student life on campus in a lot of ways, the food, in my opinion is the worst of the three.
But most people go there just because it’s very accessible. Driscoll is a much smaller dining hall that has a lot of really great vegetarian options in a different part of campus next to Spencer art center, which is this beautiful art building for studio and our history in mission is on the opposite side of campus.
We’re freshmen housing is it has stuff like cookies on it Sunday. Great. Yes. Also Driscoll is the best. If you come to campus and people try to tell you otherwise they’re wrong. So I’m living in a co-op this year, which is basically there’s [00:14:00] nine senior houses that you have to get into through a lottery.
I was not lucky enough I’m off cycle to pick in to a co-op next fall. But I am in a really beautiful one this year named Susie Hopkins after one of the donor. Who basically donated her house. Let’s see if this loads, so this is Susie on the outside. I’m going to show it off because I think it’s a really beautiful house that spring street off in the distance and the rest of campus, we are a little bit far off.
But I think the rest of the house really makes up for that. Basically, most students will be living on campus. I believe 95% of students stay on campus for all four years. There are off-campus housing options. My solo ad in the mirror, a co-op is almost like off-campus living because it is a little bit more intimate.
There’s only nine rooms in our house. But there are a ton of really great dorm options anywhere else you go.[00:15:00] Let me skip a little bit ahead. Just because I’m very proud of how I decorated my room. So this is my lovely room. That is a little bit messy, but I love my natural light. And also the view out the window.
We have a ton of deer that pass through because again, the virtues are very beautiful spot. Great. Okay. So my favorite place off campus is death by far tunnel city which is our only coffee shop on our single street that runs through campus. You do not have a lot of options. You have basically three restaurants when you come here and that’s it.
And tunnel is like the community hub in a lot of ways. Where students will meet with faculty there you’ll hang out and do work. Community members will come through. You’ll often see alumni hanging out there. It has incredibly good coffee, which is surprising, was surprising to me when I got here.
But it’s definitely a really lovely place. [00:16:00] This is basically the outside again. One of our we only have one street that runs through campus called spring street. And that’s where it’s located. Yeah, if you stop by campus, really recommend trying out the child latte or the MOCA. They’re very good.
Great. So in terms of the most beautiful places on camp, I personally think all of campuses quite gorgeous. And I come from San Diego, which I think is one of the most beautiful places in the U S in my unbiased opinion, I will say one of the rooms that I spent a lot of time in freshman year was the 24 hour room.
And it’s one of the only old parts of Sawyer library left. And I personally think it’s quite gorgeous. You have. Williams really does try to have a lot of art, like integrated throughout its libraries. So this is where I would spend sleepless nights. And you often can. I’ve made friends in here. It’s a great time.
It’s the only room on campus, open 24 hours. So if [00:17:00] you were doing a late night cramming session, at least you’re doing a very beautiful great. Did you do. So in terms of iconic place I would say probably Paretsky lawn is one of the most, there are some other places, but Paretsky again, because it’s the most successful central dining hall.
Most students will hang out there. So on a really good day, you’ll see people playing Frisbee on the lawn, eating food, hanging out. It’s the place to be, and is the most place that feels like camp Williams as we call it. Right now we have this very large white tent on it, which we just had our first outdoor production for our student theater group under, which was very exciting.
But as you can see, it’s where everything is going on. Great.
My best memory. So in terms of. Where I spent the other most significant [00:18:00] portion of my time has definitely been the 62 center. And because I’m a theater major in part, and also just because I’ve been working on a lot of productions at the school but I directed one of my favorite shows noises off in the 62 center.
And it’s one of, I think the most beautiful buildings because the festival also uses it. And. It’s basically where I spend all of my time. So we had a really lovely day the other day. So I’m glad I can show you campus in early spring. But this is basically what the 62 center it looks like on the outside.
It has three, basically the three large performance spaces in it. The main stage, which seats about 300 to 400 people. I believe the AMT, which is a smaller theater. Not a little larger than a black box. And then the directing studio, which is an, all of the dance studios as well. Yeah,
yes or another whole. Where are you in [00:19:00] the college application? Yes.
Just give us a hot second for it to come up. I will talk about the picture behind the pool for the time being that is freshmen housing. One of the kind of big gates that don’t really need to be there. They’re really pretty, but I’m not actually sure why we have them, but they basically open up on frosh quad, which is where half of the freshmen student housing will be.
And feel free to answer the college application process pool really quickly.
A lot of people are just starting crafting a [00:20:00] school is nice. Hopefully Williams is on there and that’s why you’re here.
Nice. So about 64% are starting craft to craft their school list, which is a really great place to be. And other folks are just starting, which is as well, especially if you’re a junior going into the summer. It’s a perfect time to begin writing your common application. And for those writing, looking at their school, it’s already, it’s also a really great way of knowing in advance, how much work you’ll need to put in and come late later in the summer and also fall.
Awesome. So my favorite thing about Williams, I apologize for the sun having set. And now I look a little bit like a ghost from a horror film. But my favorite thing about Williams is by far the canvas. It’s 2000 people. It’s not necessarily for everyone. You might come here and [00:21:00] really not like the feeling or the people, but I do.
Everyone is very passionate about really easy Terek topics. I’m friends with a ton of physics majors, which I will never understand, but I can talk to people about stars for hours or talk to people about like their radio making class. And everyone is just really genuinely passionate about a variety of interests.
I’m in a improvisational group, we have a ton of econ majors in it. Art, history people. So every kind of activity on campus too, is very, has a variety of very interdisciplinary folks. And also that encouragement of having. Passions is I feel like something that’s often not encouraged. I felt in high school or generally society tries to tell you to choose one thing.
So being around people who do have a variety of interests and are also aren’t competitive about it is really lovely. Of course, the opportunities that I’ve already mentioned, resources and support offered by the [00:22:00] college people have had different experiences, but I found financial aid incredibly helpful.
They’ve accepted my paperwork three months late. They’ve been very kind to me and I feel like a lot of administration does care much more about their students than other programs I’ve seen. And and also just like the pure amount of funding the college is willing to give each student is really great.
And of course, you’ve seen my room waking up each morning and seeing deer outside my window, seeing birds and being able to get tunnel city with friends is always a really lovely part of my day in terms of Lisa, everything. I spend many hours a day complaining about the dining hall food. It’s not that bad.
It’s not great though. Also the Williams is very rigorous, so it does very much encourage students to overbook and overwork themselves. I don’t necessarily know if that’s phenomenon coming from college admin. It’s probably mostly coming from the students and the [00:23:00] kind of people who elect to go to Williams.
But it definitely is very anxiety inducing at times, although not from competition and also the isolated location while beautiful. Does feel a little claustrophobic at times for me. But that being said, you’re so busy with work that even if Williams was in a more like robust town, I probably wouldn’t have had that much time to experience it anyways.
So our last slide that I’m gonna keep talking about, and then you’ll finally be able to ask me questions as what I want people to know. So I, the school I’ve had my ups and downs with it. You will have your upside ups and downs with any school. I don’t really believe in a college being a perfect fit. I really do think it’s what you make of it.
But I’ve really loved my time at Williams and every time [00:24:00] I’ve been away abroad, Reminded of how grateful I am to go here. Just really, if you end up coming or any program, you do really get to know your professors, especially people who come to Williams. Faculty members really care about their students.
They wouldn’t come to the Berkshires three hours away from New York city for any other reason. So they genuinely are here. I’m working this summer with one of my professors on a children’s book. She is not doing that because she’s being paid to teach me because it’s not the semester during the summer, but just because she’s really passionate about me succeeding and about the project.
So people here are really here to help you and take advantage of that and also take advantage of the opportunities Williams. From winter study classes to travel courses to anything else. The school has a lot of money and they’re very willing to give it away. So find those opportunities great, and Q and a time as I understand.[00:25:00]
Cool. So that’s the end of the presentation part of the webinar. I hope you found this information helpful. Moving on to the live Q and a I’ll read through the questions you submitted in the Q and a. Paste them in the public chat. So you can see and then read them out loud before our panelists gives you an answer as a heads up.
If your Q and a tab, isn’t letting you submit questions, double check that you joined the webinar through the custom link in your email and not from the webinar landing page. Okay. Our first question is there a stem program, specifically computer science. And does the school do stem research? So there is a computer science major.
I know a few people who are majoring in it. Of course there’s a huge stem population on campus. They’ve just finished renovating what used to be Bronfman that is now the new science center and the w in William spends a lot of money with research. It’s the great thing about going to such a small school is yes.
While it’s. [00:26:00] Like specificity of classes is more limited than you would get at Berkeley. For instance, it’s very easy to get positions as research assistants for professors. I know tons of people who stay over the summer and get paid to help professors research. So there really are a ton of opportunities for that.
Yeah. Oh, I was just going to say really fast. I will say I went to Williams with Nadia and there is a computer science program. My roommate actually who’s sitting over there is did the computer science program at Williams and now works as a software developer at JP Morgan chase. I know a lot of the people from that program are very happy and successful coming up.
Yeah, I think the thing to keep in mind and again, I came in also hoping to take, for instance, like specific studio art classes, like digital art is Williams again because it’s a very small school. The number of course offerings are always a little bit more limited than a large research [00:27:00] university.
Same token you like are getting very intensive. Faculty mentorship. And so if there’s anything that you feel like the course catalog is missing more likely than not, you can talk to a faculty member and be mentored in an independent study class or anything else. But yes, there are definitely stem is a really, again, most of my friend group is all astrophysics and physics majors, which is concerning for me, but great for them.
Okay. Our next question is there a pre-law pro. So I’m assuming pre-law is a set course list raw, like the same way that pre-med is. So yes. In the sense of, if you take specific classes, I know of people applying to law school. There’s no specific, like pre-law track the same way there isn’t like a pre-med [00:28:00] track.
I think it’s just mostly do you have the coursework? For instance, I know a dance major who is now working in a neuro lab and will be applying to medical school because she’s taken the classes necessary for her application. So I want to say yes, one of my close friends is applying to environmental law school.
But I, I believe. You can get mentorship. You’re basically assigned an advisor when you get to Williams your freshman year, and then your reassignment advisor, once you declare your major. But they will help you select courses to be able to apply to law school and make sure that you’re successfully on that track.
That’s definitely true. I have several friends who are in or have applied to law school and they were English majors, history, majors, economics majors. It’s really just about having an advisor to be like, yeah, this is the case. Okay. So our next question is how many how many hours a night would you say you work on homework?
Oh, I’m the worst person to ask this? Okay. So [00:29:00] it really depends on the classes you take is my honest answer. There is a class that I spent zero hours of homework, zero homework hours on right now there’s a class I spend about five hours to five to nine hours a day on, of course, that class is studio art and studio art classes are notoriously difficult.
It depends on the major. It depends on the professors. There is like the kind of fast track, which is basically a rate my professors. So you’re able pretty easily to see. Like how difficult to professor is the general standard at Williams though, is that no class should take more hours a week outside of class time for homework, that it can go either way in terms of like way less or way more.
Some classes is really what you put into it. I would say for for instance, to give you a comparison for statistics. [00:30:00] I only had homework due once a week, so I could work on that as money. Like as much time as I wanted throughout the week. I usually just did it all on Sunday because it was one problem set for English.
I bet have about like 50 pages of reading per class period. So I would say that’s what three hours? Four hours, three to four hours a night probably. So it really depends on how you distribute and also what classes you take. I know Hannah, if you have a better estimate, but I think that’s very accurate.
I think that it really depends on the class. I would say on average, I probably spent five hours a day, six hours a day. No, probably more, but but I also like the further I got in through my time at Williams, the less time I was in class. So a lot more of my time was spent independently working on things.
You also [00:31:00] learn to study smarter, not harder as you. Like the freshmen. I tried to do all of the readings and then eventually I just gave up on that because it’s impossible. I’d be assigned like 200 pages of reading to do between classes and it was humanly impossible. So you do learn your strengths and weaknesses too, as a student and where to prioritize.
But that being said it is of course tough, but okay. Our next question is what are the core requirements like to graduate? And can you test out of classes? You can test out of certain classes. I tested out of psych 1 0 1 with my AP psych score. You can test, this is my recommendation for any schools you’re looking at.
Don’t take AP tests. Okay. Correction, take the AP tests that you can before junior, before senior spring, just because it looks good for colleges, but senior spring, be very specific about which ones you take because often AP tests don’t actually translate well to private institutions [00:32:00] because they want you to take beginning classes regardless.
With public schools, you’re much more likely to be able to test out, but yes, there are certain classes. Not very many, but there are and usually the divisional requirements. So you have to take three division, one classes, which is like humanities, like history, English, arts, et cetera. They can be anything.
You have to take three division twos, which is social sciences. So I believe language are languages. Like I took cognitive science. I’m taking a religion class right now. That’s the division to psych was actually psychology was transferred to div three this year, which is new I’m in division three is the hard sciences.
Now psychology, physics, mathematics, anything else? You have to take three of each of those classes to graduate because Williams wants you to be taking classes in a variety of things. [00:33:00] Apart from that, you have to take one writing intensive class and one diversity, power and equity class. And you can take classes that are cross-listed and all of those.
So it’s not like one independent class for each. And then of course your major requirements, but those are different depending on me.
Our next question is it says, does WM accept dual enrollment credits? I think that’s just, does Williams accept dual enrollment credits, which I guess is similar to the last question? Yeah, I would say generally my thing is the Williams. Is a four-year school. People don’t really graduate early. So like
you will probably be taking 100 level, two, 300 level courses regardless, and there’s a very limited amount of credit you can actually receive externally. So it’s a similar [00:34:00] answer to the previous thing. So in certain cases, but usually no. And then if this question was more related towards dual enrollments for like double majoring I would S usually you can’t count one class towards two majors.
Our next question is how many classes are you enrolled in personally? So this year, they cut it down to three because of COVID. But in a normal semester, you will be enrolled in four classes. I’m technically enrolled in five right now, which you can do. It’s not recommended, don’t do it, but if you need to do it, you can enroll in up to five.
Yeah, but most sane people will be taking.
Our next question is, what do you wish you had known about going into freshman year? Who say no to [00:35:00] things? I think Hannah knows me very well. I’m very bad at saying no to projects and. College, even though you have quite a bit of time comparatively to high school, you’re like life isn’t structured by the school in the same way.
The hours outside of class are precious. So I would have definitely said no to some of the projects that I did. I did end up doing, I think in the spring I was doing five shows at the same time and I just would not. Would not recommend that for long-term mental health sustainability, because then of course I stayed on campus for that summer.
Then I did sophomore fall and then in the sophomore spring had a breakdown. So I just do not say no to things early in your leader, self will. Thank you. So you should be getting sleep that’s and that’s honestly like my main. Advice to people coming in. Also, I think I would have told myself to not [00:36:00] be scared about making friends immediately.
Often. It is the people you live with, of course. But friend groups do shift around a lot. You do meet a lot of people. In the spring of freshman year, you meet people sophomore year. Not latching on to a certain group and trying to make it work early or being scared that something won’t work and that I will be friendless.
It was like definitely a huge stressor for me. And I think for a lot of people, and just also knowing that every single person coming to campus is in the same boat.
Okay. Our next question is what careers have re recent graduates gone on to? Oh, what time? Williams has of the careers. All three. Yeah. Williams says it’s very direct pipeline to consulting firms. So a lot of people investment bank. Yeah. So a lot of people I know are going to like McKinsey and Bain, which is always a [00:37:00] long-standing joke on campus.
Yeah. I know people who, a lot of people who are teaching. I know two English teachers now, actually I know people who’ve gone on to PhD programs in mathematics. Williams has a huge like art history career Blake thing. Pretty much. Most of the major museums had at least one Williams person on the board.
So a lot of people end up doing museum administration. A lot of people in nonprofit arts administration. Yeah, pretty much everything. I haven’t. While for instance school like programs like engineering are a little bit tougher, I think to do at Williams. I haven’t heard of like any career path being impossible for people with the classes that you can take here.
Okay. Our next question is what is the most popular major at Williams? Oh, actually, that’s a good question. I think English is up there. [00:38:00] Yeah. I feel like English, economics and computer science, according to my roommate. Yeah. I feel like there are a lot of economics people. A lot of political science majors.
Yeah. Theater. Nine people this year who are graduating as theater majors, and that’s a large class, usually it’s three. So I think, yeah, I would say probably English honestly. And I wonder if that’s true. I want to know now apparently. Yeah. I’m not sure there. I think there’s also like they’re also majors that are like small, but mighty.
So I think music and theater and physics. Are three that like have small class sizes, but like these ridiculously like the amount of opportunities and like the, how amazing the faculty are and the number of people who interact with those departments, but don’t necessarily major in it[00:39:00] are really big.
Art history is also a varied history. Yeah. I mentioned before, briefly, William says one of the best graduate programs in art in the country. And just like the sheer amount of museums we have nearby, like a lot of people end up majoring in art history. And then also the very cool thing that I found out recently is if you’re interested in art history, you can actually audit the graduate student courses as a major as well.
So that’s a huge one on campus. Okay, so we’re going to take a quick break and if you want to work one-on-one with an advisor from our team of over 155 advisors and admissions officers, I will tell you how to do it. Sign up for a free consultation with us by going to college advisor.com and clicking the green chat button in the bottom, right of the screen from there, just write in consultation and alive team member.
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All right. And we’re going back to the Q and a, our [00:40:00] next question. And yeah, these are great questions. So keep them coming in. Our next question is what is a typical day on campus? Depends again, per person. We have a very specific schedule of classes. I think the earliest, any class can be as eight 30. I have heard of people going to 8:00 AM classes, but why would you do that?
So usually you’re in classes from like nine to. I would say two, two to three, that’s like the class block day. After three, sometimes you’ll have evening classes, like seven to nine. Those are much rarer, I will say. But after three you’re basically doing, I usually go to rehearsal.
Most people go to extracurriculars. If you’re doing a sport, you’ll probably go to practice directly after that. And finish up the day by doing homework. Until 1:00 AM 2:00 AM, probably. [00:41:00] And then that night, the next day. So I will say there is something at Williams that I know is a huge deal for a lot of one of my best friends was both a student athlete and a musician and it’s called division of the day, which means that classes for the most part are only.
From eight 30 to three, I think. And then there’s a chunk for sports teams from three to six, I think. And then after six, after seven is when a lot of rehearsals are happening. And that was, she was she was at like at one point a pre Olympic swimmer and an incredibly serious musician.
And the reason that she chose to come to Williams is because she was allowed and encouraged to do both of those things. Which is not the case everywhere often it’ll be like you’re a swimmer. So why are you worried about rehearsal or you’re a [00:42:00] musician. So why are you worried about practice? And I think that’s something that in general Williams is great about that, that you’re encouraged to have many things going on.
Okay. Our next question is, would you recommend Williams college for people interested in engineering? So we do have pre-engineering so basically you, it depends on what you want. If you want to go to Williams to have a liberal arts education, try out classes and other things, and then go to grad school for engineering.
Yes. If you want to graduate undergraduate and immediately go into career, you probably won’t be able to do that. Depends. I’m sure there’s some people do that. And especially if you get internships during the summer and things like that. But Williams doesn’t offer an engineering major. So you would be taking courses to then go to grad school.
So if you’re someone, for instance, you wants to [00:43:00] hit the ground running right after your four years immediately get employed. You it’s probably better to look into an actual engineering major. But if you want to go to four years to an undergraduate liberal arts college, not confine yourself to a very specific engineering track yet, but do pre-engineering have your advisor help you with that, but also take classes in like history and other things.
Then I would definitely say Williams, but again depends on what you want. Absolutely not impossible. Also the great thing about Williams is wild. Name recognition is definitely much lower than I don’t know the IVs. It’s a, you are very likely to get hired after graduation, even just with the alumni network.
And also get accepted to graduate schools. I have a friend going into a PhD in mathematics at BU he was also self select Chicago. So it is. Very well-respected so you won’t have a, you might have some trouble, but [00:44:00] you won’t have a lot of trouble also. If you do going to graduate school after I will also say I one of my best friends went into material science, engineering, and got a job.
She decided not to go to grad school right away, but yeah. Several great jobs right out of college. And, but she majored in physics. So she went the engineering material, science route in the physics major, but she didn’t graduate with an engineering degree. So I think it’s that kind of track where you’re like, okay, I’m going to focus on something within a major because the professors ha want to help.
As opposed to, I’m just going to do engineering major, that, where they just lay out the track for you. Okay. Our next question is how can I write a great essay, I assume?[00:45:00]
Do you, if you have a college advisor already, you will get tired of them saying. But the biggest thing is show don’t. Tell, just show, don’t tell that’s honestly, the key to most good essays. There is a structure that a lot of college essays will follow a lot of successful common apps and also supplements it’s usually of course, depending on the school, depending on the question, but it usually goes hook, which is often an anecdote where some interesting phrase.
Kind of thesis, expansion of anecdotes, connection to your larger life as a whole, and then synthesis at the end, which is like the conclusion that either connects to the future back to the beginning sentence. And that’s usually the structure that most common apps will follow. There are some exceptions, for instance, I’ve had a student who wrote.
Basically a bunch of snapshots from various places. She lived growing up and it was a very [00:46:00] successful essay. She’s now going to Cornell next year. But when you break the mold, you have to know how to do it well, but of course the main thing is storytelling. When you apply to college, you have your resume, you have your grades, you have your transcript, you have your activities list, the essays.
Aren’t usually a space for you to just recount all of your achievements. It’s really a place for you to tell a story. So telling that story is the most important thing which again, basically show don’t tell is rather than telling us about your achievements. We’re telling you. I grew a lot during high school, you actually show us that process and you take us on a journey throughout the essay that some people hate doing that.
Some others don’t, but finding that narrative arc is really what’s going to help you craft a strong essay.
Our next question is, do you have the ability to buy groceries near campus? [00:47:00] I love this question. Yes. So we have stop and shop nearby. You do have to drive to get there. But you can bike, you can walk there’s even a shuttle, a free shuttle that goes there. I don’t think this year because of COVID, but it is.
I mean a five minute drive a little bit longer than that. You honestly, probably won’t need groceries when you’re on campus. Just because the dining you’ll be on the meal plan. But if you do need to go. Yeah, there’s also this great little like organic store named wild oats near us. That’s even closer.
I think there are definitely other options. North Adams is close by. So if you want us to drive to like Walmart, that’s also an option. We finally have a apothecary is what it’s called, but it’s basically just. A convenient store on our one street. So you don’t have to drive off campus to get toothpaste, which is [00:48:00] a very exciting turn of events for us.
Okay. Our next question is how is Williams different from other great schools and who is the ideal Williams? I’ll start with you because I think it’s easier to answer someone who is just very deeply passionate about studying a variety of things and you, it’s not a good fit for you if you’re very one track and have a set career in mind, and that’s the only thing you want to do, it’s not a good fit.
If you’re not willing to do take weird classes and step out of your comfort zone they really want to see individuals who are passionate about learning for learning’s sake. So if that sounds like you and you’re willing, and also they’re looking for people who are really willing to contribute to the community, because it’s so small.
You have to be willing to invest your time to the 2000 person body. So someone who’s really [00:49:00] passionate about learning who exhibits leadership skills and who is very passionate about being in a smaller environment is a great person to attend. And also has a good sense of humor. Honestly, it’s a weird place in a very good way, but it’s a weird place.
And in terms of different from other schools, I honestly think that a lot of programs are very similar, like Amherst sucks, but also Amherst is very similar to Williams. Although Williams is never one Amherst. Just number two, the level of that down there are a rival school for context. I don’t have a personal grudge against Dammers.
I th I personally find what Willie sets to Williams. Is that because the name recognition is relatively low compared to some schools, except that the quality of education is like incredible. The people who come here are really committed again to learning, to [00:50:00] exploring things. And so that kind of environment that’s generated is incredibly like I’ve had some of the best conversations in my life here from 3:00 AM talk.
In the common room to just like the, there’s always like these art shows and you’re always going to like your friend’s performances and various things. So while that’s true for other schools, I think Williams has a very specific like a lot of Williams alumns are obsessed with Williams and will want to give you jobs because of that.
And I don’t know of any other school that has as intense, just like love. And appreciation for a place I don’t, I’ve been asked what it is. I it’s, I think it’s in part the isolation and part the smallness. Maybe it’s something else too, but people who leave here, not everyone, of course, but a lot of the people who leave, come back year after year that are very supportive of people [00:51:00] who ended up graduating.
Quick plug. Our alumni network is the oldest alumni network in the country. So it’s like the F was the first founded alumni network in the U S and I think that’s really every, everyone feels that like alumni love to help out students. And yeah, go ahead. No, I forgot the statistic.
I feel like it’s really high, like the percentage of people who get their first job through Williams alum. Yeah. I think it’s something crazy, like 20%. Yeah. Yeah. I remember it being very high, but people who come here, the self-selecting group who comes here loves it. Yeah. Okay. I think this’ll probably be our last question.
Nadia what happens during the weekend on campus? Oh, wow. Again, asking the wrong person, because for me the answer is usually reversals [00:52:00] or more work. It is work for a lot of people. I will say, I think the campus parties schedule is basically Friday and Saturday night. Because everyone else then Sunday’s usually spent cramming for class on Monday.
There have been weekends that I’ve gone off campus to last mocha, which is a really cool museum in north Adams. Oftentimes that’s the time that I’ve gone to dinner on spring street. There’s a lot of really neat act scheduled for the weekend. A lot of performances a lot of social events hosted by various departments and things like that, or sometimes during the weekend.
A lot of it is still spent in the library. I don’t know if that’s just me or if that’s most of campus on rare occasions, sometimes people will go out to like New York or Boston, but because the drive is three hours, you have to commit to either making six hour drive in one day or staying overnight [00:53:00] there.
But yeah, it’s a lot of like excursions, often hiking. I’m sure Hoxie, which is our main, there’s a lot of athlete rented houses there. So it’s known as the party street, which is, closest to frat. Housing we get, but it’s still not that a lot of people will spend Friday and Saturday night there.
And also a plug for SNAR. So basically we’ll has this really awesome thing where they serve really unhealthy food from the hours of nine to two at 2:00 AM. Especially on weekends, it’s like from everything from like pizza to mozzarella sticks to nachos. And so often weekend evenings are just spent hanging out with people at 1:00 AM eating nachos in Paretsky and it is some of my favorite memories were there.
So yeah, many, a Friday and Saturday night at 2:00 AM getting kicked out from eating your pizza. No, they don’t actually kick you out. They [00:54:00] just stopped serving it. Yeah, I think that’ll be our last question. So thank you everyone so much for coming out tonight. If you have another question, I think we’ll stay on for one more minute.
Put it in, but if not, and thank you so much to our panelists, Nadia. Thank you. You can ask anything. If you have burning last questions, thoughts.
But yeah, Williams is great. You should, yeah. Williams is awesome. Highly recommend. Okay. Yeah, I think we are going to have that as the end of the webinar. So we had a great time telling you about Williams college and here is the rest of our may series. Tomorrow is Ilan university and we have Stanford on Thursday.
Oh, we do have another question out. They just said that. Thank you for coming. Yeah. Please feel free to come up and thank you for coming. Have a great night.[00:55:00]