Since I have transplanted myself from dog-land (JMU) to cat-land (PSU) I have been comparing the two. Honestly in most ways they come out even. Same kind of school spirit. Same kind of students (nice, smart, friendly, hold doors for others, hard partiers, etc). Same small town feel.
But I have found two big differences so far. Let me elaborate:
No one complains about parking at PSU. There are not legions of parking police crawling every inch of every parking lot writing tickets. Students do not wait in line for 30 minutes in parking lots waiting for a space to open up. There is not an us versus them mentality. In fact, parking at Penn State seems to be very functional and well thought out. Amazing for a school twice the size. After observing this seemingly miraculous condition for a semester I think it is because (1) a large percentage of the students/faculty/staff walk, ride bikes, or take the bus to campus. A large percentage. And (2) The bus system, both on and off campus, works well is dependable and reliable. It's not free into the city ($1.25 per ride) but a lot of people do it every day without complaint.
Score one for the cats.
2) Inclement Weather.
Well, JMU wins this one hands down. Take today, for example. We are in an ice storm. Full blown ice storm. Not snow. Ice. Covering everything. Thick. And is Penn State closed? Nope. Was it delayed? Nope. Will it close early? Nope. Crazy. JMU would have closed last night at the announcement of an ice storm. Ha ha. The best Penn State can cough up is an announcement to keep your cars out of the parking lot after midnight so the physical plant folks can clear them without obstacles every few feet. Umm hmmm… Yep. They're hard core up here. JMU wins. No contest, really. I will miss the 5-10 snow days each year.
Score one for the dogs.
Contest so far: All tied up with an edge towards the dogs. Snow days are awesome.