So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

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msbeautifulbasham
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So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby msbeautifulbasham » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:36 am

I don't mean to diss Champaign, honestly. However, I grew up on the West coast in a big city where it is always sunny and there is a ton to do. I also currently attend one of the largest universities in the country, which is also in a big city. In other words, I'm used to big cities.

A few weeks ago I visited the University of Illinois and visited central Illinois for the first time. I hated it. I knew Champaign was a small town, which is why I applied. I thought I would like the charm of a small, college town. But for some reason, I really didn't find it that charming. I want to be happy in the city I attend law school in, and Champaign was just too dull for me.

I have heard that Bloomington area is even smaller than Champaign. This worries me.

For those of you who have been to both, is one city "better"/"cuter"/ "more fun" than the other? Or are they about the same to a West Coast outsider?

It will be about a $450 flight for me to visit IU. I wonder if thats just money down the drain.

luckyjd
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby luckyjd » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:40 am

i dislike both campuses. benefit about uiuc is that it has huge school spirit and there's an escape to chicago. emphasis on the escape to chicago. (30 bucks roundtrip on amtrak)

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KMaine
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby KMaine » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:43 am

Certainly spend the money if you think you may be happier there. Personally, it seems like you may not be happy @ either place. Are there any other decent options?

pepsi
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby pepsi » Tue Mar 16, 2010 11:58 am

luckyjd wrote:i dislike both campuses. benefit about uiuc is that it has huge school spirit and there's an escape to chicago. emphasis on the escape to chicago. (30 bucks roundtrip on amtrak)

Are the two cities pretty comparable as far as "things to do?"

OP, at least the weather is more mild in Bloomington...

luckyjd
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby luckyjd » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:06 pm

pepsi wrote:
luckyjd wrote:i dislike both campuses. benefit about uiuc is that it has huge school spirit and there's an escape to chicago. emphasis on the escape to chicago. (30 bucks roundtrip on amtrak)

Are the two cities pretty comparable as far as "things to do?"

OP, at least the weather is more mild in Bloomington...


the "cities" proper are both pretty much in the middle of nowhere. it's really your typical college town. if you're used to being in a big city (e.g. ny, chicago, la, maybe even boston), these campuses will not really differ from one another and will feel small regardless. as far as "things to do"... it's your typical college bars, cow-tipping if you must, etc. if you go on the websites for champaign and bloomington, things that they will boast will probably be "culture connections" or "festivals" ... which can be quaint, but as mentioned, if you're a city person, these things can get old real quick. life truly revolves around the campus, but i think this is true for many places, not just these two schools.

bloomington is close to indianapolis, but unfortunately, indianapolis to me still feels like a small town. i didn't apply to iub, so take my opinion for what it's worth. but if i had to choose, i would choose uiuc over iub just because i absolutely love chicago (yes, even the cold winters). i also applied to uiuc :)

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barrel_bra
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby barrel_bra » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:23 pm

msbeautifulbasham wrote:I don't mean to diss Champaign, honestly. However, I grew up on the West coast in a big city where it is always sunny and there is a ton to do. I also currently attend one of the largest universities in the country, which is also in a big city. In other words, I'm used to big cities.

A few weeks ago I visited the University of Illinois and visited central Illinois for the first time. I hated it. I knew Champaign was a small town, which is why I applied. I thought I would like the charm of a small, college town. But for some reason, I really didn't find it that charming. I want to be happy in the city I attend law school in, and Champaign was just too dull for me.

I have heard that Bloomington area is even smaller than Champaign. This worries me.

For those of you who have been to both, is one city "better"/"cuter"/ "more fun" than the other? Or are they about the same to a West Coast outsider?

It will be about a $450 flight for me to visit IU. I wonder if thats just money down the drain.



I went to IU for undergrad and can answer any questions you have about the school/campus/social life whatever. IU Is an amazing campus. It is a college town thats built around the school, but with 45,000 students you won't have a hard time meeting friends and finding a niche. The 2 student rec centers are massive. Multiple floors of basketball courts (it is Indiana), racquetball courts, Olympic size indoor pools and diving areas, monster weight rooms, outdoor tennis courts, and tons of green open space. The campus itself sits in the woods and is beautiful all times of year, the buildings are impeccable, and the University alumni network is second to none. IU also boasts the largest student union in the country with a bowling alley, a full service hotel, a bar, an arcade, an apple store, a computer lab, and an IU bookstore. Also the IU library was just ranked the nations #1 library at a public university by USA Today.

IU has consistently been ranked as the nations #1 party school, and even though I believe it has dipped to #6 recently, there is no lack or party at this school. The nightlife is a hug house party bar type scene with unlimited drinking games, and cheap drinks ($0.05 beer nigh at Jakes, $6 AMFs [adios motherfucker] at Upstairs, and on and on). The campus is in fact a dry-campus, but trust me this means nothing. I visited friends at every school in the Big 10 and no one gets down like Hoosiers get down. The community is an awesome laid back, hippy vibed out location and the Bloomington locals love the college population and the business they get from the students. The restaurants are amazing, and you can walk everywhere on campus and downtown.

Oh yea and last but not least there is the greatest week of your life 2 weeks before finals...Little 500. All out university party for a week straight with live music by the likes of Dave Matthews Band, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Bone Thugs N Harmony, Fabolous, OAR, Jeezy, MGMT, Incubus, and on and on, all capped off with the Little 500 bike race at the end of the week. The race is insane, tons of crashes, and lots of celebs show up ~ Lance Armstrong started the race my junior year.

I know I'm biased but IU all the way, and the plane ticket will not be a waste of money, I'd bet you'll fall in love with the campus the minute you step foot on it.

Like I said IU is amazing, and feel free to hit me up with any questions, and I will give you the most honest answer possible.

Hoo-Hoo-Hoosiers!

sporkdevil
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby sporkdevil » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:34 pm

To me, there is zero comparison. I checked out Illy right before going to B-Town. Visiting Illinois made me think I may have made a terrible terrible decision in applying there. Bloomington made me realize I had made the correct decision. I came from a big city, and really hated Champaign. Bloomington's campus is beautiful and I was much more impressed with the city all around. There's a good bit of stuff to do around Bloomington, but obviously it's impossible to measure up to NY or something. I would highly recommend checking out Bloomington if you are wondering about it.

I have experienced, and heard from a number of people, the exact same thing you said about Urbana/Champaign. It was a pretty underwhelming place. Campus was a major factor in where I chose to go last year. All I really give Illinois is the proximity to Chicago.

charlesjd
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby charlesjd » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:38 pm

Visited both schools, during undergrad and now for law. Honestly, they are basically the same in my eyes, no negatives really. I always had a great time during undergrad at both and both UIUC and IU law programs impress me. Visit both, look at stats, placement etc. Talk to students and look at the boards.

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84Sunbird2000
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby 84Sunbird2000 » Tue Mar 16, 2010 12:57 pm

Well, there's not much comparison when it comes to the campus itself - Bloomington is vastly superior in architecture, layout, beauty, etc... Illinois has a nice campus, but Bloomington is among the best campuses in the entire country. However, without being an expert on the area, that Champaign-Urbana and Bloomington are similar. Bloomington and Champaign have populations of 70k, and both places have metros of about 200k. Bloomington is closer to Indianapolis than UIUC is to Chicago, but Chicago is a cooler city. That being said, Indianapolis is definitely not a town....I don't understand how that can even be asserted. Indy has just about everything you could want short of some of the monoliths and landmarks you'll find in Chicago.

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Vincent Vega
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby Vincent Vega » Tue Mar 16, 2010 1:36 pm

I like Bloomington better than Champaign, and that's one of the major reasons I chose Indiana to go to over Illinois for law school, despite what people on TLS told me I should do. IU has a great campus and a lot of things to do. I haven't spent a huge amount of time in Champaign, but I never had a great experience there. Overall, I think Bloomington is one of the best places you could spend three years.

Also, Chicago is only about an hour farther away from Bloomington than it is from Champaign by car. Indeed, there is no Amtrak service, though. You also have Indianapolis about an hour away from B-town. I know it doesn't hold a candle to Chicago, but it is a lot better than anything within an hour of Champaign.
Last edited by Vincent Vega on Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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danquayle
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby danquayle » Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:10 pm

I can't speak for Champaign, but I'm from a big city, and lived in Ann Arbor for 4 years during undergrad. Ann Arbor is usually considered one of the ideal college towns in the country. When I first came to Bloomington I was turned off by the size (I was never looking for a small town), but I ended up loving it there... probably more than I did Ann Arbor. What I really loved most about it was that it had a very active vibe to it, and, yes, the cultural offers were very far more than what you'd expect from such a small town. The restaurants were about as good as any place I'd ever been.

Perhaps most of all, I enjoyed how walkable the majority of the city was and exceedingly safe I felt at all times. Chicago or New York its not, , but I really enjoyed my time there and find myself missing it. It's kind of hard to express the feeling of energy you get unless you become absorbed by it. Its one the youngest cities in the country, and it shows. Its hard to get too sullen when you're in your law studies when you're surrounded by wide eyed college students at every corner. Its just a positive, positive place to be - you got the sense that most students wanted to be at Indiana. (I certainly didn't when I started) I liked that... some may not.

msbeautifulbasham
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby msbeautifulbasham » Tue Mar 16, 2010 4:17 pm

Thank you everyone for all of the feedback! After reading your responses, I have decided that Bloomington is worth a trip. I am going to book a flight to visit during my spring break. It sounds a lot like what I am looking for in a college town. Sounds like a great please to spend three years. I will have to see for myself when I visit the College of Law and explore Bloomington. Thank you so much, everyone! I honestly really appreciate it :)

pepsi
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Re: So, is Bloomington (IN) worse than Champaign (IL)?

Postby pepsi » Wed Mar 17, 2010 1:04 am

Seems no one really likes Champaign on this thread, lol. Couldn't agree more!




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