Even before I ever chose Mount Mary, it was never up for question whether I wanted large class sizes or small. Whatever school I went to, it had better have small class sizes. 

I never understood the appeal of large classes. Do you really want to be in a crowded room with a person reading from a PowerPoint that never bothers to know who you are the entire semester? I couldn’t live with the fact that the professor grading me wouldn’t know who I was. I want the person teaching me to build a relationship with me. I want them to know my name and know my strengths and weaknesses and to even know that I’m a crazy cat lady. I want them to care. I value professors who write my name on the board along with ‘happy birthday,’ just like my Spanish teacher did my freshman year. I would not replace that kind of caring for a different, bigger school. There’s simply no appeal to me.

I have come to feel at home at Mount Mary due to the community of small classes. We get to know each other and our professors. We learn from each other and from our discussions, discussions that would not take place in the same form in a bigger school. Many professors here know me by name, and I was pleased to find out that they still remember me semesters later. I would not trade that kind of community for anything.

Sometimes being a small university is a little overwhelming. Being a part of Mount Mary’s Arches Magazine means that students usually have several roles. It gets time consuming. However, it means that I learn how to do more things and that I have more practice than someone who only ever has one role. I would not trade that experience for anything.

Lastly, I have come to find that friends are made easier here. People talk to each other and help each other. I have made several friends by working with them in our small classes. I have more friends at Mount Mary than I’ve ever had in my life. I would not trade those friendships for anything.

I would not switch schools willingly. I would hate to go to a bigger university. Some of my friends told me that they would rather be a part of a big community, and that is why they chose their school. But I’m a part of something better. I am a part of a community that is large because people are connected, not simply because they exist. And I would not trade it away for anything.