Attended Roanoke in the 2000's. Overall, the academic experience was a mixture of extremely challenging and sometimes easy. But what was taught - critical thinking, reason, open discussion - was something that has stood apart for me after leaving college and meeting colleagues and people who attended other small colleges and large universities.
For all the reviews mentioning the buildings, parties (which I attended every weekend), and other superficial aspects of their college experience, the academic experience has proven to be the one thing that stuck with me. It wasn't ideological (liberal or conservative), the education was a classic education in the sense that they teach their students to be individuals who can clearly express their thoughts, reason with other people, and work towards projects and other challenging tasks. After leaving Roanoke, I felt like I was at an advantage over all the other recent college graduates in my work.