There’s no doubt that there are those days when you absolutely love Simpson and those days where you dream of its destruction. This is primarily because Simpson is a small, private school; and while sometimes, big isn’t always better, there are those days where no school is big enough.
For example, the rate in which gossip spreads in a school of this size is ridiculous. If you just so happen to get a little frisky on Saturday night and make out with some random guy, everyone on campus will know by 5:00 Sunday evening. (They may know sooner, but a majority of the people at the bar will probably not be out of bed, spreading the news, until after 3:00 p.m.). Furthermore, because of our small population, chances are your make-out partner was not a random guy but someone’s boyfriend. Oh, the drama we call Simpson College.
In addition, come Monday morning there’s no possible way you’ll be able to blend in. One of the characteristics that Simpson prides itself on is having a small professor to student ratio. This is an excellent quality and something many of us enjoy, but not today. The only hope you have is that your professor has all ready heard the news about your girlfriend dumping you for cheating on her, and he lets you off easy with no class interaction.
Another advantage/disadvantage aspect of a small school is that you know everyone, and everyone knows you to some extent. This is nice when your Great Aunt Bethel has hip replacement surgery, and you receive several “thinking of you” cards. In this situation, not only does everyone know you have a Great Aunt Bethel, her birthday and favorite color, but also that she is in fact having hip replacement surgery.
However, this “knows you to some extent” becomes a problem almost daily with the awkward meet-and-greet. The awkward meet-and-greet occurs when you’re walking to class, to workout or maybe even to Pfeiffer to stuff your face. You happen to notice about half a block away a familiar face. I say familiar because the individual you see isn’t necessarily a friend, maybe not even an acquaintance. This person is usually someone you know by association: Lydia Frank’s boyfriend, someone you worked with on a group project or to simply be the person you meet everyday at 9:26 a.m. on your way to Western Civ. Regardless of the association, the point is the same: you recognize the person, but you don’t truly know the person.
Of course, you want to be friendly and acknowledge the person, but timing is everything. If you say “hi” too soon, you’re stuck with three or four sidewalk blocks where you either have to force a short-lived conversation or display a cheesy smile until you pass. If you decide to wait to initiate the greeting, you have to attempt to avoid eye contact and look distracted until you’re ready to greet. Either way, the whole ordeal is very stressful.
In a nutshell, these are the crucial pros and cons of attending a small school. I think I’ve made it quite clear, that, contrary to popular belief, size really does matter.