Call me old-fashioned, but I have a very traditional view of college. I think of a massive campus with large, sprawling complexes that cater to thousands of students who live on or around the grounds. You attend this institution for four years, receive a diploma, and then cry yourself to sleep at night because of your crippling student debt. That basically sums up the experience for much of the college demographic. For the rest of you hippies and non-conformists, I have an article that’s right up your alley. Here are five odd, alternative colleges that actually exist.
For those who aspire to take their burger-flipping abilities to new heights, how about pursuing a Bachelor of Hamburgerology at Hamburger University? It’s the official school for McDonald’s employees around the world. Fun fact: With an acceptance rate of under 1%, Shanghai’s HU branch is much harder to get into than any Ivy League college. Wild.
Gupton-Jones College of Funeral Service
If learning about death is more your speed, then Gupton-Jones is perfect for you. You can turn your love for The Addams Family into a career in the funeral industry. Hang out with cadavers all day while taking courses in human embalming and funeral services. The campus is located in Atlanta, so you don’t have to worry about commuting to an old Victorian house in the middle of nowhere. After receiving an Associate of Science degree, you can start getting those dead presidents for dealing with dead people.
Deep Springs College
As a kid, I always thought it would be badass to be a cowboy. Little did I know, I could’ve actually gone to college to learn about life out on the prairie. Located in a valley in the California desert, Deep Springs College offers students an opportunity to earn a Liberal Arts degree that’s like no other. Aside from the typical courses in math and literature, students are required to work on an actual ranch. I’m not sure how skills like milking cows and hogtying pigs translates to the corporate world, but it sounds like a dope experience.
The Clown Conservatory
I hate clowns with a passion. They creep me the fuck out, and I don’t know why someone would want to become one. Yet if you want to give kids nightmares for a living, then there’s the Clown Conservatory in San Francisco. This school runs a full-time, 24-week program that covers stage work and various clown disciplines. It’s ideal for anyone who wants to learn the fine art of becoming Pennywise. Just know that if you ever come up to me with a bicycle horn and a full face of makeup, you’re getting dropped on sight.
Find your inner peace at the Buddhist-founded Naropa College in Boulder, Colorado. It’s a four-year university that offers majors such as Traditional Eastern Arts and Contemplative Psychology. Students are expected to practice meditation as well as complete a mandatory curriculum composed of Tai Chi or African tribal dancing. If you want to get involved in clubs, you can always join the Mindful Improvisation Alliance or the Sacred Sex Salon. This sounds like a cult to me, so just a word of advice: Don’t drink the water..