U Maryland: thousands upon thousands of Terps

Fear the Terp…

Yes it sounds strange to me too but we will get to that later.

stadiumThe first thing you notice when visiting the College Park campus just outside D.C. is the students. a lot of students. Almost 40,000 students. Let me say that again FORTY THOUSAND!

library chillinThat is a lot of kids, which is not even counting the number of faculty and staff required to educate that many kids. This means that UMD is big enough to swallow most Midwestern cities. It is absolutely the definition of a state flagship university.

They offer 100 undergraduate majors. 100!

When the average American, or human for that matter, imagines American colleges, odds are they are picturing one of two types; the elitist ivy league, or the University of Maryland.

churchIt has a row of fraternity and sorority houses a mile long (figuratively), a football stadium bigger than the Colosseum, and a bazillion kids wandering around in tank tops and slippers.

crowdsThe school can boast that it employs multiple Nobel laureates as faculty and the average incoming freshman GPA is 4.1.

on the grassSuch statistics befuddle me just a little. 4.1 is better than a perfect 4.0, and there are 40,000 students at UMD. My high school self is feeling quite inadequate in comparison to the number of above perfect students in this equation.

bushyhairAnd then I see this.turtle

The terrapin mascot named Testudo sitting on a concrete perch in front of the library. My natural Philadelphia self assumed Testudo was surrounded by regular refuse but upon closer inspection I saw that these were offerings. Coffee, Red Bull, Coke, all offerings to the Gods of finals week. I assume they are left in hopes that a holy turtle will bless these above perfect students’ all night cram sessions.

bikePerhaps he will.