Every university has a specific culture that dominates their campus. At High Point University, I've found the one that most appeals to me.
Founded in 1924 as High Point College, much about this new university has changed from those past landmarks and student bodies. Today as it stands, with one of a kind facilities, beautiful landscape and even a multitude of lavish fountains, people are comparing the university to Disney World.
Although, the school is much more than just a pretty campus. The university's students are a vast and diverse group, with just only a quarter being from the state of North Carolina itself. Students come from all over the country, from towns like San Diego, CA, Boca Raton, FL, and even myself, from a tiny town in northern New Jersey.
Being from the northeast, I can definitely attest to the fast-paced atmosphere and culture of the university as being very much like that of my home state. Although one thing that is very different is the people. Not just the students, who yes, come from all different walks of life, but more importantly the staff and faculty here at High Point.
Without a doubt, the staff is the friendliest people I have ever met. This doesn’t just limit itself to one or two workers, but the entirety of the faculty here at HPU never makes you feel unwelcome.
You could attribute this to simply "southern charm," but I think it is more than that. As I have visited many schools in the south, I felt more welcomed and at home when I visited High Point than any other college. Being from the north, I am not really used to people going out of their way to be polite, and ask how your day was. Seeing High Point from a cross-culture perspective has lead me to truly appreciate the university and the people who work here.
You can't drive onto campus without being greeted by a smiling security guard. The first time I visited the college, I remember pulling up to the front gates and the security guard requested that I roll down my window so he could see my face and say "hello."
Along the tour and while meeting advisers, everybody was extremely kind and considerate, which is something I am honestly not used to receiving in New Jersey. Not that people from the North are all mean and cold-hearted people, but we tend to just keep to ourselves and basically try to have as little interaction with other people as possible.
Here at High Point, they make you feel like a part of the family from the first time you set foot on campus before even accepting your admission. It's clear that the faculty and staff value students first and always put your need above their own.
In comparing High Point University to the community college I transferred from, the values of each are drastically different. My old community worried about taking your money and not taking care of you. High Point absolutely values their students and cares for them as individuals, not just as their surviving income.
High Point is definitely not your typical college. When most see grades dropping, the start to label you as less, but High Point contacts you to get you back on track. They care about getting to the root of the problem and finding practical ways to solve it.They offer tutoring services and success coaches, even counseling services if there is a personal matter affecting your grades. They care about the individual, and genuinely so.
The first time I ever heard our president, Nido Qubein, give a speech, there was something that I took away from it and today, it is still with me. He told us, "When you walk around this campus, do not moan and whine with your head down feeling sorry for yourself. Walk with your head up, a big smile on your face, like you own the place. This is your campus."
He isn't just saying this to us as an empty statement, he genuinely means this. And by just being here for a day you can see it truly is the students' campus. From the campus concierge, extraordinary dining facilities, a plethora of options for study places, and everything else that caters specifically to the students' needs, anybody can see that High Point University truly cares about its students' futures and success.
Not only does the campus reflect its sole purpose is for the student body, but the staff also reflects it in their jobs. Every time I visit one of the many restaurants here on campus, I am instantly greeted with a big smile and wave. When riding the shuttle, you always say hello to the driver and thank them when you’ve reached your destination.
The friendliness and politeness on this campus cannot compare to the lack thereof where I am from. No one holds the door or cares to smile as you pass by. It's a very wholesome feeling to realize that the people who work for High Point University truly care about you and don't just toss you aside like you're just another student ID number.
Something is truly extraordinary here at High Point. Our culture is that of kindness, generosity, and genuine people who are dependable. This is learned by everyone who becomes a student here, and so they take these values they've adopted from here and bring it with them when they go home. High Point is not just a school, but also a family.