Every time I try to have a conversation with a friend about UNH, talk with classmates in the hallways, scan fellow UNH students on Twitter, pick up a copy of local newspapers or even this very newspaper or my past posts, I cannot help but notice the pessimism cast towards UNH.
Our tuition is too high. Our hockey team never wins the big game. The state is cutting our funding and our budget is plummeting. My favorite bar unexpectedly closed. My professor has an accent. I got another parking ticket. No one talks about me on Like a Little. My advisor is useless. Our dining halls have some weird grudge against salt. I live in Stoke. (Okay, so that last complaint is acceptable.)
I will openly admit I am usually the first one to make complaints, or critique UNH for its shortcomings. I am jerk number one – the instigator of criticisms for UNH – but I usually try to make a point with my opinions. Or, at least I think I do. What I am trying to say is that UNH is not all bad, and when it comes down to it, I'm definitely happy I chose to come here.
I do not want to come off as "holier than thou" or some self-righteous preacher, but look around. Are you receiving a strong education? Have you made great friends who will stand by your side for years to come? And, most importantly, have you had fun along the way? If the answer to any of those questions is "no," then I feel sorry for you, because you are not taking advantage of everything UNH has to offer. The opportunities are there, but it takes an effort from the individual to take the next step.
If you are sitting reading this thinking that I am being way too contradictive of my past writings, I understand. But with those pieces, and I'm sure there will be many more to come, I am simply trying to point out problems that arise and how they affect the student body, but not necessarily make UNH a bad school by any means.
Most of the time I am just trying to reverse the damage done by the Union Leader (and, as of lately, Foster's Daily Democrat) whose sole mission seems to be to destroy UNH in any way, shape or form possible. If one were to read the dozens of front-page editorials and articles in the Union Leader about UNH, one would assume that UNH is a money-wasting, liberal propaganda machine whose only goal is to brainwash students and destroy the world. Because that, my friends, is what public education is all about!
And with that paragraph I can now cross off two more places I'll never work. I'm not saying that one opinion or side of the issue is better than the other, I'm just trying to be fair about it. If they get to print biased pieces towards the school, it's only fair that someone responds.
UNH is a strong, public school with a lot to offer. It has some of the most well-published professors in the country, with a wide variety of majors and fields of study, although with the looming budget cuts some of these may be eliminated. There are dozens of great student activity groups and the campus is one of a kind.
UNH provides great opportunities for students to perform original research, which makes our undergraduate programs that much better. For all the negative attention UNH receives from the local media, this school sure does a great job with the limited resources our state provides. So before you are quick to judge UNH as just an average state school, known for its party atmosphere, take a look around.
I'd like to see our state representatives and Union Leader editors tour UNH before they vote on or write on another issue that could determine the fate of UNH. Who knows, maybe they'll even learn a thing or two.
I'll be the first to admit that UNH is not perfect. It could be a lot worse. Just be thankful you don't wake up every morning and realize that you go to school in Orono, Maine. Like I said, it could be a lot worse.
Stay classy, not UMassy