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Soka University of America Reviews

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I'm currently a 4th-year student at Soka University of America (SUA). Last semester, I studied abroad in Tokyo, Japan as part of SUA's language and culture program. I can say wholeheartedly that coming to SUA has been one of the best decisions of my life. After having studied, made friends, and grown as a person and member of the global community at SUA for over three years, I’m now prepared to take on challenges of the 21st century. Academically, I would say that SUA’s learning environment is not bound by classroom walls but encompasses the entire school. Classes are small, usually 12 students and rarely over 18, which means that students participate in meaningful discussion at every session. As for campus life, SUA makes sure that students are safe and healthy. Almost everyone lives in well-maintained on-campus residence halls. Laundry is free (!) and meals are included in room & board. Overall I’m very grateful to be studying SUA and developing myself alongside my classmates.
Soka allows me to learn about other cultures, naturally, because there are so many international students from all over the world. Studying here allowed me to learn about the differences in cultures and made me realize that people live so differently outside of what I am used to. People here are really amazing and the professors are really passionate about what they teach. They work to make you understand the material if you are lost, and will never leave you stranded.
From the small class sizes (Ratio 9:1, student to professor) to multiple opportunities abroad AND incredible financial aid options for both domestic and international students, Soka University of America, proves to be a wonderful education for anyone looking to expand their education far beyond a bachelor's degree. The education you obtain from attending Soka are real life skills, human skills, and global skills that will put any student on the map (literally) after graduating from this institution.
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I’m a sophomore at Soka University of America. It’s definitely a unique environment when it comes to small class sizes, having more contact with professors, and the generous amenities (aka spacious dorms and no communal bathrooms). Some aspects of Soka may not be your cup of tea; but like any college, you receive what you put into the experience. I was worried that I wouldn’t make deep connections when I first came to Soka, but people here are generally really nice and caring. Thanks to Soka, I have so many resources at my disposal to further my education/experience such as networking to alumni who are in my field of study and generous study abroad curriculum in my choice of country. This school isn’t perfect (small student body, only four concentrations of study, quiet surrounding area and student life) but it’s a great deal and I’ve grown so much here. Soka is definitely worth it.
I am a sophomore at Soka University, and I love this college! The class size is so small (12 students on average, I guess) and you can build a one-on-one relationship with your professor. In my first year, I worked as a research assistant for a professor and helped him publish his book. I think at other colleges, you can not gain experiences like this from the first year! Even the total number of students is around 400, and third-year students are required to study abroad in their fall or spring semester. So that around 50 students are always off-campus for their study abroad, which makes the number of students on campus around 350. It is a very small community, selected to be global citizens. Of course, there are cons about being in a small community, (like, you have to see your ex, or someone you don't like very often), but knowing everyone on campus gives you a sense of unity and belonging to the college.
Everyone who gives 5 star reviews is blatantly exaggerating about the merits of this school. Just like all the Sgi buddhists who are devoted to their leader Ikeda, they have blind devotion to a really underwhelming curriculum that wastes our money on "CORE" classes which won't do us any good in the real world. It's embarassing to think I've wasted my money on this. No one wants to admit it, but it's a costly mistake you should avoid if you can. Go to a school with a reputation that has actual majors. Don't go to a school a school based on the positive vibes you get from it, because that's probably the only thing drawing you here, and after 4 years you will realize it's all fake anyway. You think you want to be with "global-minded" students? Go to a good school where you can get a job doing global-minded things whatever that may be. Don't go to soka just because the people there claim to care about the world. That's not worth 30k a year!
The small class sizes (average of 12 students per class, but in some cases as few as 3 students per class) makes it really easy to communicate with and learn from professors. I have received a fantastic education at this university. Dorms are so comfortable- I am currently living in a large room which I have to myself. We have concerts for only 5$ by some world renowned artists and we get to enjoy a state of the art performing arts center. It does get pretty quiet- there isn't a big party scene here, no frats and sororities (thankfully), and no night clubs in the immediate vicinity, but for those with cars or those who learn how to use public transport, this isn't a big obstacle.
What I really like about Soka is the fact that it's very easy for students to approach professors. Because of the small class size, there's much room for interactions between students and professors through discussions. And professors give you through feedback on your papers, which is very helpful. They are also available outside the classroom. You can go to their offices or eat meals with them at the cafeteria. I've learned so much through close interactions with great professors, which Soka encourages and makes it easy to have.
I'm currently a first-year international student from Nepal enrolled at Soka University of America. Soka is a great liberal art college with students from over 40 nations of the world. It has a small student body, which facilitates interaction with professors within and outside the classroom. The interdisciplinary education and diverse community of Soka provide students with an ability to view things from a broader perspective.
What I particularly like about Soka is its unique program called Learning Cluster that takes place during the month of January. A Learning Cluster is a research seminar where students work in teams with faculty facilitators to investigate a specific question. It helps in bridging theory and practice, and evoke an educated outcome. Apart from its great education, Soka is aesthetically gifted with a beautiful campus and natural beauty of the surrounding canyon. It's a great place to visit and take a walk!
I was really excited to go there, but I only lasted a semester. I went there for sports, but that sucked and there are not parties whatsoever. The financial aid is really good there though, but getting into the classes you want and need is terrible. It is super stressful and for the most part, you are scrambling to get them. If you really like small school environments, I totally recommend it; otherwise, you might have problems.
Soka is a great university with very good professors. The ideals and beliefs of this school are incredible and lead student to become global citizens. The students are somewhat treated like kids though without much freedom. The athletics is also very bad with terrible athletic staff.
Great university to come to with no need to worry about cost. Learn a lot with the diversity of the school. Student life needs to improve drastically.
I really appreciate the small class size here, which encourages student engagement in the classroom. We have discussions or small group activities in class. You can't just sit and listen, but you have to participate, which is sometimes challenging, but rewarding. If you carefully choose the professor, you can get a lot out of each course. I also appreciate Soka's diverse student body. I've been able to talk with people from different backgrounds and become friends, and I've learned so much from those interactions. There have been times when I struggled with cultural differences, but all struggles helped me grow as a person. The small campus can be a little bit suffocating sometimes, but it depends on the kind of relationships you have with people, and overall I like how we can cultivate deep and intimate relationships.
I am currently a first-year student. I plan on concentrating in either environmental studies or humanities, and I am taking Chinese as my foreign language. SUA is wonderful school and I'm honestly not sure where I would be without it. Our student body is small, just 450 students, which allows for a strong sense of community. The student body is really diverse, so as a third-culture kid, I feel at home here. Also, most students are dedicated and interested in many different things. Almost all of us are involved in many things outside of academics (for example, I am part of the school play and am in a social justice and a poetry club; I also work in the student garden). I can pursue my passions and be myself here. The academics are challenging and interesting, and I feel like they are actually meaningful to my life. Also, SUA has really great resources and facilities - for example, free printing, free laundry, and private bathrooms.
I am a senior at Soka University of America, and I truly love this university in all aspects. Professors at Soka are academically accomplished, friendly but demanding, and they also become your mentors and close friends. Classes are rigorous but rewarding, and the curriculum is highly customizable and individually tailored. The student body is very diverse, and the campus community is accommodative to students of all backgrounds. Soka has about 30-35 student clubs. Campus is beautiful and pristine. Dorms are spacious (103 ft. per person), modern and furnished; the rooms also have private bathrooms. Cafeteria food is catered by the Bon Appetit Company and is delicious. Campus and the local area are very safe, but there is a lack of entertainment opportunities in general.
I love this school! I just finished my second year at SUA, and it has been a great experience so far! I have grown a lot through the small class sizes and diverse population. Making friends for me became much easier since all students live on campus. One negative thing about living in Aliso Viejo is that there aren't many shops or restaurants outside campus because the city is so new, so sometimes it gets boring. However, I would recommend this school to anyone looking for a safe learning environment!
I love Soka University of America because of the helpful staff and teachers that they have there. I have never been to a school where the staff is totally connected to the student. I find it a great benefit that the classes usually have 9-12 students in them which is beneficial for me. I also like how the college is ascetically pleasing due to their fountain in the front. I feel safe when I am walking around the campus because the school is not located near any major city nor any place that would invite crime. I find it enjoyable that the school really puts into practice the mission of fostering global citizens due to the diverse student population here. I would not want to change this school in the least, I just hope it could become more recognized.
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Since I came here, I really love Soka!!! As an international student, I had many concerns regarding my communication skills in English, class styles, dorm lives, and so on, but thanks to the support from my friends, professors, RA, and faculties, I am enjoining my university life!! Soka offers liberal arts education and appreciates students' diversity, so here is definitely great place to expand your points of views and to figure out your identity!
Soka is a little multicultural gem palace in a sea of monotony and strip malls. It's curriculum and educational model is innovative, inspiring, and is positioned to be a forerunner for academic excellence in the 21st century. I simply cannot praise it enough.
Financial Aid is definitely one of the best selling points of Soka, but it's not because we are solely a rich school with a lot of money so spare; it's because Soka believes in equal opportunities for young people to pursue education without being hindered by their financial difficulty. To me, however, the mission statement and community of care stand out to me the most. This is a friendly campus whose students are overall studious, open-minded and very talented! Diversity is another great bonus (and important to me), although you do find many Japanese. However, this makes sense regarding the history of Soka so no big deal. It's not like you get discriminated for being non-Japanese. I have learned so much about human connection in Soka and made wonderful friends!