Wittenberg – a liberal arts gem in the Midwest

Wittenberg offers a solid honors program, an active Greek scene, and competitive Division III athletics. Founded in 1845 by German Lutherans and set on a beautiful 100-acre campus in the Midwest, you will find a college that emphasizes strong student-faculty relationships, a dedication to community service (students give 30+ hours of their time each year) and an academic environment that is “challenging, but friendly.” Students will be awe-struck by a mixture of 1800s and Gothic-inspired buildings, as well by the brand-new Health, Wellness and Athletics complex with full-size indoor turf field surrounded by a running track. 

 

Here are a few quick facts about Wittenberg:

Acceptance: 97%

Freshman retention: 76%

Freshmen out of state: 21%

Most popular majors: education, biology, marketing, psychology

4-year Graduation rate: 58%; 6-year: 63%

Student Community Diversity: 10% Black, 3.7% Latino, 0.8% International

 

Housing: Freshmen and sophomores are required to live on campus, where 85% of all undergraduates live. Many upperclassmen choose to live in houses and apartments nearby. The dorms are described as spacious and air-conditioned. The dining halls offer a variety of options, including vegetarian selections; most students say that food isn’t the best, but it is acceptable. 

 

Academics: General education requirements at Wittenberg emphasize a liberal arts background with learning goals including writing and research, exercising social and moral responsibility and participating in physical education. First-year students participate in a leadership development program, a service-learning course and First-Year Seminar, which helps with the transition from high school to college. 

 

Wittenberg students can expect to find their professors to be accessible and also plenty of opportunities to participate in undergraduate research. In fact, 92% of students participate in said research and 20% of students take advantage of the opportunity to spend a semester or a year of study off campus. For those looking for smaller class sizes, 52% of Wittenberg’s undergraduate courses have fewer than 20 students. 

 

What else can Wittenberg students expect? The engineering department offers a 3-2 bachelor’s/master’s program in conjunction with Columbia and Case Western Reserve University. Also, for students who declare their major on time and complete all courses with a C or better, Wittenberg guarantees a degree in 4 years, and will pay for any additional necessary courses.

 

Similar colleges to consider: Denison, The College of Wooster, Miami University (OH), The Ohio State University

 

Social: Wittenberg students have more than 120 student organizations, performing arts groups and intramurals to choose from to get involved. Greek life has a larger presence than many other college campuses, with 29% of men and 32% of women choosing to “go Greek.” Weekend social life largely centers on parties held in houses, dorms, and apartments near campus. The various Greek groups, the Union Board and Residence Hall Association all work to bring events to campus including guest speakers, movies, comedians and concerts. Favorite annual events include Greek Week, W Day, Homecoming and Wittfest (a festival and concert with games, food and socializing held before finals).

 

The surrounding city of Springfield offers access to movie theaters, restaurants and a performing arts center. Nearby state parks offer swimming, camping, biking trails and spots for picnicking. Popular road trips include going to nearby Dayton, Columbus and Cincinnati. 

 

The Wittenberg Tigers are competitive in Division III sports, with their biggest rivalries being against Wabash, Allegheny and The College of Wooster. The most recent North Coast Athletic Conference championship titles have been in men’s basketball, football and golf, as well as women’s volleyball, softball and golf. Intramural sports are also very popular, especially crew, ice hockey and rugby. 

 

Financial: Wittenberg offers both need-based aid as well as non-need based merit aid. WU does not offer any athletic scholarships. The average percent of need met is 84%, with 29% being fully met. Although the tuition and fees are $55,600, the average financial aid package is $28,200. 98% of students some type of financial aid.

How to find the right summer programs for your college-bound teen in 4 easy steps

The summer is a special time to continue learning and growing and college-bound teens can take advantage of numerous summer programs. The activities resume for college-bound teens who get into their top choice colleges often include meaningful summer experiences. 

In addition to internships, creative projects, and reading in the summer, there are a number of summer programs for students whether they are in grade 9, 10 or 11. However, the right summer program can take time to research and apply.

Here are 4 easy steps to get started with finding the right summer program!

1. Set a Goal

A good way to start with thinking about how to find the best summer program for your college bound teen is starting with a goal. Your teen should set 1-2 goals for the summer, as it will help them to be intentional in considering the best use of their talents and time. Examples of summer goals may include:

  • Meet new friends from around the world
  • Read 5 new books on topics that interest me
  • Take a course not offered at school
  • Learn more about a career in ___?___
  • Get more community service hours
  • Experience living away from home (when and where residential programs are available)
  • . . . . (you name it)

2. Use this guide for summer program criteria

Each year, I encourage my students to apply to 1-2 summer programs. The past couple years, there have been many great virtual summer programs available. This is the guide that I use to recommend programs that can help teens consider the many options available to them once they have a goal in mind:

  • Rising 10th – Explore a new topic
  • Rising 11th – Discover more about a field of study or career interest
  • Rising 12th – Connect with colleges (perhaps consider a summer campus visit as well, where available)

3. Do a narrow Google search

There is no shortage of things to do and programs to pursue. Searching online for a summer program can feel overwhelming and tedious. I suggest that your teen’s internet search for summer programs is very specific. For example, if your teen is interested in pre-engineering and enjoys math, I would suggest using these terms and clicking the search button

“engineering math summer high school programs”

Within seconds, I got over 19,000 results using these search terms term and even better, at the bottom of the first page there are more related search terms to refine the list.

One thing I will add about the summer after 11th grade is that it is not necessary to attend a summer program at a college of interest. Some summer programs may be held on a college campus but are not affiliated with the university, especially not the admissions offices!

4. Determine if the program is worth applying

If the summer program does not require any documents from the student, then I would caution you against applying. The summer programs that I recommend for my students typically require transcript, teacher recommendations, test scores, and essays. The summer program application is, in effect, a mini-college application, which is good experience for your teen and their recommenders.

What is your teen doing this summer? Which summer programs did you find? Please post in comments below.