As of last week, I’ve officially completed my first year at Tufts! I’m feeling incredibly grateful that I chose to transfer here, and wanted to share ten things I learned this year at Tufts. Thank you to everyone who read my blogs this year. I will be sharing more about my experience as a transfer student next semester, too!
1. First thing I learned: everyone wants to make friends. I’ve been a new student at two separate universities, and I can confirm that anywhere you go to college, people will want to be your friend. I know that sounds obvious, but sometimes it can feel daunting to meet new people at school, but at Tufts, everyone I met was excited to talk to me. I would meet someone through a mutual friend and then quickly make plans with them — once you have a couple people at Tufts, you start to meet so many people.
2. It’s a beautiful campus. The pictures of Tufts truly don’t do it justice, but I’ve attached some at the bottom of this list anyway. This campus is truly stunning in every season. Coming from California, I find the snow super exciting and Tufts did not disappoint in the winter; the campus is covered in fluffy snow, with people sledding down the hills and building snowmen on every lawn. I’m staying on campus this summer, and the flowers are in full bloom, with warm temperatures and a peaceful breeze. Plus, there are views everywhere around Tufts. Tisch roof is my favorite view on campus!.
3. There are a wide variety of study places around campus — and you will find your favorite spots. I’ve tried out pretty much every possible study location on campus and have found my favorites for whatever mood I’m in. Feeling social and needing coffee? Head to The Sink. Need complete silence to knock out an essay? Take the first door on the right when you enter the Tisch Library. Want to study with a view in a comfy little booth? Sixth floor in the Joyce Cummings Center is the place for you! I also spend a lot of time in Davis Square coffee shops, which is conveniently so close.
4. Tufts is truly the perfect size for a university. I transferred from a college of over 30,000 students and at first, I was nervous about going to a school that was so much smaller in comparison. But I think Tufts is a “Goldilocks” size: not too large that you feel lost in a sea of people, but not so small that you know everything about everyone. With an undergraduate population of around 6,000, I found smaller communities on campus quite easily and frequently see people I know while walking around campus, but it doesn’t feel claustrophobic or too small, at all. I really love the smaller class sizes, especially for my major (English) and the smaller ratio of students to professors, but I also enjoy knowing there are hundreds of other students I’ve yet to meet.
5. The winter honestly isn’t that bad… and this is coming from a Bay Area girl! I’ve spent two winters in Michigan and one in New Hampshire before coming to Tufts, and honestly, I was expecting way more from the Boston area when it came to winter. Apart from the one random -30 degree day, the winter was totally okay, in my opinion! I loved bundling up and heading on a snowy walk with friends.
6. Professors love what they teach and want to talk to you. Every time I reached out to a professor, they were eager to help, to meet during office hours, or stay after class and talk with me. They were all interested in getting to know me and supporting me in their class. The TAs that I reached out to were also super helpful, and I felt really supported in my classes. All my professors were really passionate about what they teach and that made the classes super engaging.
7. The food is actually pretty good! I loved how many options there were on campus, with to-go options. Tufts also has a lot of options for every type of dietary restriction or need: gluten-free, dairy-free, kosher, vegan, and more.
8. The StAAR Center is super helpful. I reached out to the StAAR Center to seek accommodations at the beginning of the year, not knowing what to expect from them. I met with someone and we had a discussion about the best course of action for me. The experience felt very personalized and I felt like the StAAR Center genuinely cared about helping me succeed at Tufts. I highly recommend reaching out to the StAAR Center if you’re someone who may benefit from accommodations or even just to talk through any concerns you may have going into the school year.
9. There’s always something exciting happening in the Campus Center. The “CC,” as it’s lovingly called by students, is the hub of campus. It sits in the middle of campus and holds many places for food, studying, and hanging out. Throughout this past year, I’ve bought donuts from club fundraisers, browsed through a pop-up thrift and record store, and made a bouquet on Valentine’s day.
10. There are really cool, genuine people here. During the time between getting accepted at Tufts and deciding to attend, I talked to every Tufts connection I could. I wanted to hear from Tufts students, and one word kept coming up over and over: “quirky.” I thought it was a funny way to describe someone and didn’t quite know what they meant by that, but after my year here, I get it. People here have cool interests and there is such a wide range of personalities. There is not a typical mold of a Tufts student, because everyone is so unique here, and that’s something I really love about this school.