Image by Greenville Borough
By: Anna Boyd
Greenville is a small town tucked in at the top of Pennsylvania next to the Ohio border. The main attraction in this little town is Thiel College. There’s not much around the campus to do unless you are willing to drive to Hermitage or even to Ohio. This is a big change for many students coming from many different backgrounds.
If you are coming from a big city, travelling to Thiel is quite a shock. The surrounding neighborhood is basically just a main street with a few shops and a couple side streets. This is quite a shock for students coming from areas where there is some type of store on every corner.
Freshman Niamani Jackson said, “I’m from Minnesota, so it was huge not seeing so many people on the street and the lack of malls, as well as how everyone is super nice. The major difference between this and home is the community; I say community because everyone helps each other. Back in my hometown, if somebody is injured, it is recorded, and if someone needs aid, many people walk away or don’t bother. I selected Thiel because it was a small school with less distractions than what I was used to. The campus is small enough that I feel like I belong here at Thiel.”
Greenville is a very small area with a decreasing population of about 5,500 people. With this low population rate comes a very quiet and safe community. Greenville itself is a great area for families who want to settle down and know all their neighbors.
While the community is not large there are still plenty of things to do. Padrones is a great pizza place to stop by with friends and enjoy and quick bite. There are two nail salons that sit right on Main Street for a mani pedi. These places are very cute and never too crowded.
Due to this small population and Greenville being so tucked in this comes with a lack of diversity. According to Data USA Greenville is 95.4% white or non-Hispanic. This is very different for many students at Thiel College compared to where they came from.
Thiel College itself is not the most diverse campus in the world but it is not as one sided as Greenville itself is. Thiel is 70% Caucasian non-Hispanic. However, Thiel tries to offer outlets for minorities such as clubs and organizations to feel more welcome.
This is a big change for students coming from schools with much different statistics when it comes to diversity. While this is a big change many students still chose to come to Thiel for a reason, whether it be for sports, or a specific program they chose this college and the surrounding area for a reason.
While the lack of diversity in Greenville and on Thiel campus is an issue and may be a big change for many students there are many ways the students can and will be the positive change.
Coming to Thiel and Greenville from a large city while it is a culture shock can also be seen as something very positive. It is a way to learn more about different communities and get outside of your own personal bubble.