By Porter Reyes ‘25
If you’re a student facing the college decision process right now, chances are you’re being inundated with information about various schools. Not only that, but each college is probably providing you with numerous reasons why their college is the best. Speaking from personal experience, this can be intimidating. You might be asking yourself: which college is the best, and how do I know if I’m making the right choice? But a different, more productive question to ask yourself is: based on what is most important to me, which choice of college is the best?
Once you change your thinking from contemplating which college is “best” to which college is the best choice for you, you will start thinking about which aspects of the college experience you value most. Ultimately, this kind of self-reflection will enable you to choose the college where you will be happiest. To help you get started thinking about whether Pomona might be the right school for you, I’m going to share my three favorite things about Pomona.
If you end up attending Pomona, you can expect sunshine like this on most days. To be precise, in Claremont, California, it is sunny 282 days out of the year on average. Coming from New York City, I can confidently say that the great weather here hugely benefits my wellbeing. On the other hand, if you are a person who absolutely needs seasons–or rain–Pomona and other colleges in California might not be right for you. But if you, like me, enjoy studying and socializing outdoors (or tanning), southern California’s nearly constantly sunny environment could be a great fit!
From your peers to your professors, there are unique and intelligent people at Pomona around every corner. Most everyone at Pomona is excited to learn from one another, and everyone has something interesting to contribute. What’s more, Pomona’s small size naturally creates closeness and friendliness between community members. The average class size is 15, but there is a good amount of variety depending on what you’re looking for. I have had discussion-based classes with 10 students, and I’m currently in a lecture-style course (Statistics for Politics and International Relations) with around 50 students.
When walking around campus, you’re bound to see several familiar faces. The bond between community members includes professors, who usually make themselves extremely accessible to students (this makes sense; they teach at a liberal arts college because they want to teach undergrads). For example, last semester, my Professor (Susan McWilliams) invited me to her porch, where we had a lovely conversation. If a sense of community is important to you, Pomona is a wonderful place to find it.
The Student Culture
My peers are awesome. You will be hard-pressed to find kinder, more interesting college students. When Pomona’s Office of Admissions says that the lines between living and learning are blurred, they aren’t bluffing. It’s common for my friends and I to have philosophical and political debates while hanging out—not because we’re prompted to, but because we like those types of discussions. Therefore, it’s important to consider that Pomona is a school where the students enjoy learning and often prioritize academics. So, don’t come to Pomona expecting a party school. Don’t get me wrong: Pomona students know how to have fun. I go out with friends almost every weekend. Most often, we go to parties on campus. Occasionally, we travel to Los Angeles or explore the Southern California area; recently, my friends and I visited Crystal Cove beach. Whatever we get up to, I always have a great time and am thankful to be friends with such unique, thoughtful individuals.
Thanks for reading!
I hope this gives you some insight into Pomona that helps make your college decision easier. Please take comfort in the fact that the college process works out well for most. And remember, if Pomona’s Office of Admissions accepts you, it’s not only because you’re qualified. It also means that they can imagine you thriving here, which is a strong indication in itself that Pomona could be the right college for you. Wherever you end up, I wish you the best of luck and hope that you’re as happy as I am at Pomona!