Anonymous asked: Oh, also, I feel like a ton of the students at UChi come from wealthy families...? I can't deal if no one around me understands the struggle of being quite poor.
I’m not going to say that classism isn’t a problem here, but I would say that you will definitely not be the only one who comes from a more modest background. Though UChicago is ranked among the nations’ most elite institutions, I don’t think many people would call it “elitist” the way you might call some of the Ivies.
In fact, I’d go so far to say that admitting and supporting underprivileged students is an institutional priority. The UChicago financial aid office and admissions office work in tandem to get people of all socioeconomic groups to campus (first generation college students, undocumented students, low-income students, etc. - see here for a few stories). Here are some good facts on that.
But it’s not just about numbers/proportions - it’s about the community’s perception and treatment of economic diversity and privilege. From my admittedly limited perspective, the community of students itself does work toward creating an environment of inclusion/welcomeness for everyone, no matter the financial resources they had growing up. Lots of students I know work part-time to support themselves, and there is absolutely no stigma around doing so. Moreover, there are plenty of ways to save money while studying here without feeling excluded from the fun: subsidized house trips that fit everyone’s budget, socializing in the dining hall rather than going out to eat, free entry at tons of city museums & attractions. There are also lots of support that covers all the little things that Financial Aid doesn’t: grant programs to provide low-income students the money they need for grad school test prep / study abroad and OMSA’s resource library of free textbooks (and even loaner laptops!), to name just a few.
If you have more questions, I’ll point you in the direction of a magnificent RSO called the SDA.