Don't Take Anyone's Word For It This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Don't Take Anyone's Word for it

by C. K., Franklin, MA

My mom decided that vacations would be wonderful opportunities to visit colleges. (Oh, yeah.) So my friend and I and our mothers trekked down to Connecticut to check out some liberal arts colleges, specifically requesting to see the Studio Art and Theatre departments. At most of the places it wasn't a problem, professors or students in the field were eager to show us around and talk to us. However, I ran into a bit of confusion at one, and, as a consequence, ended up disliking the university simply because no one bothered to help me.

My friend wanted to see the Theatre department and luckily while we were walking around the Arts complex, she ran into a theatre major who was happy to chat with her and show her the wonderful facilities and tell of his experiences there. She immediately fell in love with the place. I, on the other hand, was not overly interested in theatre; I really wanted to see the Studio Art department.

The Arts complex seemed huge and magnificent. I wandered inside but was unable to find a single soul, and most of the rooms were locked. This was quite surprising since it was a regular class day for students. I went back up to the Admissions Office and asked them if they could locate someone - a professor or art student I could talk to or who could show me the facilities. The Admissions Office, composed of several staff members, seemed stumped. It was hard to believe that they did not know one single person in the Art department! This seemed a little strange, and I began to question whether or not the college really considered the Art department important. Finally they came up with a name and told me to go back to the building and ask for "Stacy." No last name just "Stacy." Great, I thought, this should be interesting.

I returned to the building and there happened to be a young fellow manning the reception desk. I asked him politely where I might find "Stacy." "Stacy who?" he responded. I told him that I really didn't know - Admissions had simply given me this name. He told me to try the second floor. On the second floor I found one office open. Inside, a woman was working at a computer. I explained that I was visiting and I needed someone to help me. She promptly replied, "Well, I can't help you, I'm working on the computer." (How rude!) So I explained the whole "Stacy" bit to her and she pointed to another office. I found the so-called "Stacy" and after all that, all she said was that I could go downstairs and look around if I wanted. I explained that I had already been downstairs twice and that no one was there and most of the studios were locked! She just shrugged and didn't know what to say. Well, all that was eventful. It's hard to believe that there wasn't a single person to help me in such a well-known university.

So, as you can see, if someone recommends a school to you and says what a wonderful tour s/he had and how helpful the staff was, you can't always take his/her word for it. My friend and I both visited this university on the same day and looked at the same complex yet we had two totally different experiences. No matter how beautiful the campus is and the buildings are, it's really the people who make a college or university. Also, it's important to check out the facilities you're interested in to see how supportive the school really is of that department.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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