School Spotlight: Ohio Wesleyan University
I have been very busy visiting college campuses over the past 7 weeks or so, which has been an absolute pleasure! Truly nothing can match the feeling you get from stepping foot on a college campus, talking to students and staff, seeing the dining halls and dorms, picturing yourself in a classroom, or grabbing coffee from a local cafe. That wasn't possible for so many students who applied to college during the height of COVID-19 and I know how incredibly stressful it was to have to make significant choices without having visited a college in person. My most recent visit was to a nearby school, one that consistently makes the list of Colleges that Change Lives, Ohio Wesleyan University. Here is what you should know:
1) Students are given a lot of personalized attention and encouraged to explore a variety of majors. My tour guide came in thinking she wanted to pursue political science and is now a neuroscience major, in part because a psychology professor noted some of her interests in class and encouraged her to take a neuroscience course, which she ultimately loved. This is the beauty of a liberal arts approach. Class sizes average 14 students and no one class is typically larger than 30-40 students. Every student participates in the OWU Connection, with the motto to: Think Big, Go Global, Get Real.
2) OWU has been recognized nationally for its entrepreneurship programming. Students from all different majors can apply to become Latham Entrepreneurial Scholars as sophomores, juniors and seniors to gain exposure to entrepreneurship and receive guidance in designing a new product or idea or creating a startup. Students who are selected as Corns Scholars will have access to specific internships, business plan competitions, and scholarship money designed to aid strong students who have ambitions of becoming entrepreneurs. OWU also has a unique collaboration with the City of Delaware in the Delaware Entrepreneurial Center at The Ohio Wesleyan University.
3) OWU Theory-to-Practice Grants (TPGs) allow students to apply for funding to engage in research, facilitate travel abroad, or compensate for an unpaid internship by offsetting gas costs or other expenses. Experiential learning is certainly emphasized here. As part of the OWU Connection -Go Global, students can participate in Travel Learning Courses. Students spend time studying a topic like the History of European Rivers or Society and Cultures of the Middle East, which then culminates in a faculty-led trip to the destination that has been the focus of the study all semester.
4) Students with learning differences will be supported. The student tour guide who led me around disclosed that she has "every learning disability in the book" and she taps into the resources of the Sagan Academic Resource Center to help her succeed in college. Counseling Services also seems prepared to meet the mental health challenges of students on campus and will refer out if additional help is needed.
5) There is a lot of new construction happening on campus! Smith Hall, the dorm for first-year students, has been undergoing a $31 million renovation. It is bright and airy with a beautiful common kitchen, an amazing laundry room that doesn't require quarters (your tuition covers your laundry bill), new comfy chairs in the common lounge area, and a gaming area, to name some of the amenities. There is also a new apartment village being constructed for OWU seniors that will have 4, 6, and 8 person apartments with a full kitchen, two bathrooms and a large living area. Not interested in these? They also have adorable housing called SLUs, Small Living Units, which are organized by a theme, or shared interest, and come with shared responsibility for maintenance and engagement in the housing community.
The OWU campus is beautiful, and home to 105 species of trees as part of the Jane Decker Arboretum. They even have a Tree Trek Tour for Adults and for Children!
Check out OWU yourself by signing up fo a visit here!
Application deadlines: November 15, Early Decision; December 1, Early Action; March 1, Regular Decision