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Villanova University

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When I was in grade school, I used to play this game with myself. I got hot lunches every day, and included in the hot lunch was a napkin and a spork. On the back of the spork was always a number. The game I'd play was simple: the number represented an age, and each age had a representative coolness factor to it.

To wit, numbers in the 20s or above were too old (40s or above? forget about it--those were ancient). By far my favorite number to get was the number 18. To me, 18 seemed impossibly sophisticated and mature, an age of possibility and wonder, representing adulthood. (I was seven, so I can be excused for getting any number of details wrong about being 18.) Maybe the biggest reason I so celebrated being 18 can be summed up in one word: college.

The College Years

For me, the idea of college held, a noble, romantic ideal (even this young, as you can probably tell, I was a pretty nerdy kid). However, this notion of college is pretty spot-on in a lot of ways. After all, college is a buttress between adolescence and adulthood. You go in one person, you come out another. You get to reinvent yourself as someone new, the person you'd like to be. College represents, in a lot of ways, unfettered possibility, tethered only by the restraints we ourselves place on who or what we can become.

So it naturally follows that choosing a school is of paramount importance. Some people choose a school in the university system of their home state. Others go for prestige (Ivy League, Stanford or Berkeley, schools like this). Still others choose smaller, liberal arts schools, and others still choose a two-year school or a technical or trade school. (And, naturally, there are others who choose not to go to college at all). Any of these choices are valid.

As anyone who has been through college can attest, the choice of school shapes and affects a person in ways that cannot be guessed before entering. A class you take on a whim can be taught by a professor who changes your life. The subject you thought you loved can, similarly, be soured by a bad experience.

College is obviously about learning, but there's much more to the college experience. A college should stimulate its students many different ways: intellectually, emotionally, culturally, socially, and spiritually. Every college, more or less, strives to balance these disparate aims, although for some schools are more pointed in their pursuit of these aims than others.

The Villanova Experience

Villanova University, located in Villanova, PA, just outside of Philadelphia, was founded with just these goals in mind, under the auspices of the teaching and values of St. Augustine. Villanova strives to teach students to use not only their minds but at the same time to be better citizens, with mutual love, respect, and compassion being the watchwords. Villanova looks at the whole person that comprises the student and endeavors to grow each part of that student equally.

Villanova boasts not only undergraduate studies, but several graduate degrees as well. Among Villanova's graduate programs are its law school, its business school, its liberal arts school, and its engineering school. Villanova also boasts a robust athletics program, with an especially storied basketball program that includes an NCAA National Championship in 1985. As you can see, there are many compelling reasons to attend Villanova University.

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