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Agree to disagree: Unpopular opinions about Rutgers

While most of us can agree that Brower Dining Commons isn't the best that Rutgers has to offer, the debate on other major topics, such as the buses and best campuses, remain split amongst the populace. – Photo by The Daily Targum

It probably seems impossible to get all of Rutgers to agree on one thing — Rutgers is a diverse school full of people from all different walks of life. But some opinions seem to transcend major or class year, and even broader categories.

No matter someone's gender or sexuality, their race or country of origin, their age or where they come from, some things seem to be cemented into Rutgers canon. The Busch geese will attack, Brower food sucks, the buses will inevitably break down at least once when you're on one. But some popular opinions, I seek to dispel.

Cook and Douglass are great campuses

They might not have the shine of the College Avenue campus' multitude of restaurants and all night eateries, Livingston campus' swanky business school and movie theatre or … whatever makes people like Busch campus more, but the Cook and Douglass campuses are not the terrible places many Rutgers students make them out to be.

They are pretty beautiful campuses, with the most nature out of the other three campuses (Cook and Douglass campuses are interconnected, so they basically count as one), which makes them worth a walk around despite the fact that many believe they are too spread out.

Red Pine Pizza is a delicious and affordable option that trumps Sbarro in the "pizza for a meal swipe" options, and while it’s unfortunately closed this semester, Cook Cafe has the best sandwiches in an on-campus dining facility.

Livingston Dining Commons is overrated

Speaking of food, Livingston Dining Commons is not all it’s cracked up to be. While there are some pretty nice perks there, like the custom pasta bar and the burgers and fries to order, it’s still, well, a dining hall.

Sometimes the vegetables are soggy, sometimes the chicken is undercooked. I don’t think anyone is expecting a five star experience, and my hat is perpetually tipped to the workers in every dining hall for the tireless work they do — but Neilson Dining Hall on Cook campus is just as good sometimes, and even then … it’s still just a dining hall. 

At least it’s not Brower. 

The buses are pretty convenient

From group chats to dining hall or class conversations to the Rutgers subreddit, complaints about the Rutgers bus system are more frequent than the buses actually come to the stops. Except — the Rutgers bus system is actually really good. 

Perhaps I’m wearing the rose-colored glasses of the sweet relief of coming back to campus, and the days of an intensely crowded LX on a December night are too far in the recesses of my memory for me to truly bring forth any loathing of a Rutgers bus. But while the weather is nice, and the buses are plentiful, it seems pretty damn convenient to have our own bus system that often stops right at the doorstep of so many classes.

And for a popular opinion: Let people off the bus first, and always thank the driver!

Online classes have some benefits

While everyone including myself was certainly tired of Zoom University, online classes did have some benefits. Whether your classes were asynchronous like most of mine were, or recorded for later, the ability to go back and see what was stated earlier in a lecture or rewatch when a particularly difficult or complex subject was covered was beneficial.

For those of us with issues paying attention in long classes, 1.5x and 2x speed options and closed captions were practically miracles, and anyone with a busy schedule can attest to the fact that working on your own time also carried benefits. 

I vastly prefer in-person lectures, and am more than grateful to be on campus — but everything compiled on Canvas and at your disposal was a huge relief in one of the most stressful times in many people’s lives. 

The myriad of different opinions of Rutgers students oh so rarely comes to a real consensus, like frustration with LX’s dwindling on the highways or a distaste for any food that comes out of Brower (except for maybe the breakfast). But ask your friends, or the stranger next to you at The Yard @ College Avenue — there’s always at least one person unafraid of the Livingston coyote, who wants to gallop across Cook campus with you or who might hate King Neptune Night as much as you do.


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