I'm a student at the College of Staten Island and I'm sick of hearing people say it's so sh*tty. I also work New Student Orientation, and I see your miserable face when you come to orientation and proclaim to me why you hate CSI. The students who are future CSI students should be happier, because quite honestly, they're getting something so few others can say they have.

1. It's a public college in one of the most expensive states in the US.

There's an awful lot of people out there who cannot afford college at all, and the College of Staten Island's tuition is only just over $3,500 a semester.

2. The professors genuinely care.

That a photo of the CSI Psychology department, courtesy of the CSI Psychology department website. I have had several of the professors pictured, and I can tell you they're amazing people you should get to know as well. Many of these professors also teach at other CUNY or other colleges in general, so if you think they suck, you might have met them.

3. Classes are actually taught by those people pictured above, and the classes are small.

CSI doesn't do Teaching Assistants. Those are the real people you will see in class. You will get to know them and make an impression on them. You will get to get to know one and he or she may become a mentor. You might even have three mentors by the time you're done. In bigger colleges, you can expect a teaching assistant and huge classes.

4. You can work here

These are some of my co-workers at CSI, as we are (apparently?) featured on our office's website. I have gotten to know many of these people in this photo who also all think CSI isn't as bad as people make it out to be. When you do work here, you get to know people. Many of them are completely and utterly awesome, and they're also all students. And I get paid to be their co-worker and have a cool boss.

5. It has a ton of clubs and a radio station, as well as relatively good food

I was never able to join clubs because I do not have time and I work from the minute I leave school until 5 PM, but it has a lot of them and you should join them if you can. I could not. I, however, constantly wish I had the time to. The food in 1C and 1L, the cafeteria and the library, are also relatively good and not usually stereotypical college food.

6. The campus itself is gorgeous.

There's trees literally everywhere. And then they turn colors and it's like you're going for a stroll in some faraway, upstate college.

7. You can live here or drive here.

Yes, I know the parking lots suck, but I have friends in other areas who wish they lived close enough to a college (or a college that had their majors) to drive. Or take a bus. Or a train. Or basically anything other than live there.

8. It's a small, community-type place.

As you can see the campus itself is large, but it's extremely close knit between staff and students and other staff. I know departments full of staff. I know professors who have wanted to keep in touch, and then other professors talked to THAT professor and then wanted to talk as well. You will know people, especially staff, if you're even a slightly pleasant human being.

9. You're intertwined with other CUNY colleges.

Want to go to a country for study abroad that CSI doesn't have? You can pick from any other CUNY and go through that college. Want to transfer? It's easier in the CUNY system. Want to take a class CSI doesn't have? It's fine if you go to Hunter if they permit you to.

10. It has honors programs and other programs to help people.

Go apply to Macaulay and get a free Macbook and a free ride in college. ASAP and Emergen help students reach their full potential as well.

11. It has laboratories.

It has psychology and biology labs. This pigeon in particular would be humanely used for psychology experiments. You can do research in these laboratories with professors and have a pretty awesome resume.

12. There's events at 1P.

No, it isn't classes. It's actual events. Like ones with food. With food from all over Staten Island. It isn't college specific and usually people from all over Staten Island attend them.

13. If you go here, you get resources.

Ferry shuttle service. Access to other CUNY libraries. Free counseling. Resume help. Help with scholarships. Free access to 1R, the gym.

14. It has a long list of majors and minors.

Whatever you're doing at a more expensive school, you can also likely do here, cheaper.

15. It's friendly toward people of all walks of life and you form long-lasting connections.

CSI is diverse and we like it that way. It even has a daycare for parents who go to school. And these people who are different from you will become your friends. Many people also keep in touch with their professors for years.

16. There's food and parks nearby.

Yes, there is "something to do" during your two hour break. There's Willowbrook Park, Tim Horton's, and Buffalo Wild Wings not far from the campus.

17. You go to school in New York City for less.

I know I already said you go to school in an expensive city to live in, but, that doesn't include the prestige that comes along with you for going to school in NYC. Other areas of the country are particularly blown away by NYC standards, especially with education. You're a free ferry shuttle bus ride away from a night out with friends after class.

18. For those who are dorming from other areas, you get to experience NYC and the "green borough" at the same time.



It's not like other CUNYs, because we have the most parks and the best pizza.

19. If you want to go to CUNY graduate school, you have an edge.

People from CSI, and CUNY in general, are more likely to be accepted to CUNY and CSI graduate programs than people from other colleges. There's certain programs only at CSI as well, like the Physical Therapy program, the only one on Staten Island.

20. You get all this, and you graduate, just like everybody else at other colleges, at the end.

And maybe, just maybe, you don't hate it anymore.

And you probably have less debt than them, too.