Dartmouth College is a popular choice for many of my students to apply to. It is a good school academically. However, Dartmouth has always had a reputation as a party school. The movie Animal House was based in part on stories of fraternity life at Dartmouth.
But, it appears that things have been getting out of hand at Dartmouth. The President of Dartmouth, who is also an alumnus of Dartmouth, has called for an end to the high-risk and harmful behavior that has been occurring on campus.
Specifically there are concerns being raised about sexual assaults on campus, high-risk drinking and the lack of inclusion of minorities into campus life. In fact, Dartmouth is under federal investigation for its handling of sexual misconduct claims.
InsideHigherEd has an article on this issue reflecting on the history of those who have tried to change the climate at Dartmouth in the past.
I hope that the new President is able to clean up these problems. But the story goes beyond Dartmouth. Things like this occur everyday on campuses around the country. Just because a college has a good academic reputation doesn’t mean that there are no problems on campus.
It is your duty, in investigating colleges to apply to and attend, to get to understand what daily life is like for students on a campus. Read the school newspaper if you are on campus. Many colleges will even put them online if you can’t get to campus. Look at the crime statistics being reported by a college. Colleges are required to report these under the Clery Act. Actually talk to current students and ask them what concerns there are on campus.
Going to college is about getting an education. But you want to be safe at the same time. Do your homework and keep yourself safe.