On the Road to College with Betsy Woolf – Clark University

Applications are increasing at Clark University, whose admission rate has gone from 77% not too long ago to 52% overall last year. Popular majors on campus include psychology (Freud lectured on campus and his statue figures prominently near the main gate), political science (American politics and policy, comparative politics, international relations), cultural studies and communication, economics, and the biological sciences.

Around 15% of students are international, hailing from such areas as China, Latin America and Ethiopia, and the Jewish student population is approaching 20%. Students here are unpretentious, friendly and inclusive, the kind of students who invite others to share their dining tables, I was told repeatedly, and many are involved in community service. Clark sponsors 40 of its own study abroad programs, a large number for a small liberal arts college. Students also take advantage of Clark’s 5th year tuition-free option in 14 disciplines, including business (MBA) and finance (MSF), as well as the sciences, community development & planning, public administration (MPA) and Teaching (MAT).

Since my last visit, the school has renovated its dining hall, and menu options include foods for students who are vegetarian, diary free, vegan, gluten free and kosher. Dorms have been renovated as well. In the spring, the school plans to break ground on a new building that will house the offices of the LEEP program, Clark’s Liberal Education and Effective Practice program that personalizes each student’s journey through the university through academics and extracurricular experiences. One of the hallmarks of the program is that each student is assigned a LEEP advisor the entire time he or she is at Clark, in addition to an academic advisor.

Copyright 2014. Betsy F. Woolf. All rights reserved.