The insider's guide to the Jerome Fisher Program at the University of Pennsylvania

Why Ware is the Best Place to Live Freshman Year

by Ethan A., M&T Class of 2013

by Ethan A., M&T Class of 2013

When coming to Penn, it’s important to realize that the college house you live in freshman year will determine: how much fun you’ll have over the next four years, how good your grades will be, what clubs you’ll join, what your job will be after college, and who you’ll marry.  This decision is, in essence, more important than any decision you have ever made before.  Fortunately, by living in Ware College House, you’ll have lots of fun, get great grades, join the best clubs, find a nice job out of college, and marry your soul mate.

To be honest, wherever you decide to live freshman year will have its pros and cons, its ups and downs, and its own valuable experiences for you.  Looking back at my three and a half years at Penn, I have had ups, downs, good experiences, and bad experiences.  What I have come to realize is that the most valuable part of a college education is simply having those experiences, regardless of whether they are good or bad.

So why do I think Ware is great?

Because it is full of people – residents, Resident Advisors (RA’s), house council members, faculty fellows, and an awesome house dean and house coordinator – that are always trying to find new opportunities to make the most of their experiences at Penn.

Supposedly, Ware is known as the most “social” of the college houses.  For many people this can have negative connotations.  When I think of Ware College House (my home at Penn for the last two years), I agree that it is a very “social” place.  But I don’t mean “social” in the sense that there are more parties, Greek life, and outspoken individuals than anywhere else on campus.  I simply mean that there are a ton of opportunities to be “social”.  This could mean learning about Greek life (if you’re interested), playing pool, attending house dinners, learning HTML, hearing from interesting people such as CEOs of companies or Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter, programming websites and apps, visiting museums, having dinner with an Amish family in Lancaster, or just hanging out with friends.  Intramural sports are a personal favorite of mine.

You can find similar experiences all around Penn, and you can (and will) have a great time wherever you decide to live.  For me, I have never been let down by the culture that Ware College House embodies – a culture of seeking and taking advantage of opportunities and experiences.  This is a culture that forced me to learn new things, to get involved on campus, and to have an awesome time at Penn.  But that’s just me…

Ethan is a current M&T senior in the Class of 2013. He studies Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics within Penn Engineering and Management in the Wharton School.

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