Cranbrook Schools - Review #2

Read more details about Cranbrook Schools on their 2024 profile page.
Cranbrook Schools

About the Author:

Years Attended Boarding School:
Sports and Activities:
The extracurricular opportunities at Cranbrook Schools are outstanding. There are also many clubs and organizations that allowed me and other students to go out and make a difference. For example, a club at the school named, "Bridge The Divide" is a club that allows the students to travel to parts of Detroit and work with other schools to do activities that impact not only the city, but the lives of the individuals involved. There are also political clubs that allow students to discuss politics with others that are interested, and there are even clubs that are just disguised fun things that are a way to spend time with others. I think having these clubs help many students either get involved in things that they are interested in, or learn to come out of their shells and become more comfortable with their peers.
College Enrolled:
Yale University
Home Town, State:
Bismarck, ND

Reflections and Advice:

1.) What do you think makes your school unique relative to other boarding schools?
Definitely its renowned Harkness discussion. The principal is based off the idea that the students are of such a high intellect that they are able to teach each other, and thus the teacher of the class simply acts as a moderator for the brilliant discussion which occurs. I miss this teaching style a lot (we don't have this in big colleges like Yale, unfortunately.) What I like best about it is that when it comes to exams etc, you don't have to study much to do well because all the material is already embedded in your memory through your active participation in the discussion. (Discussion participations are graded for some classes.)
2.) What was the best thing that happened to you in boarding school?
My oh my. This school has it all. Only after leaving it can I articulate what I left behind... A beautiful school with commitment to its students. The community is the perfect size whereas one is able to know everyone, or at least know of them. The people here are extremely friendly and I would find it hard not to make friends here. There are people of every kind, thus not only does this open one's mind, it also means there will be someone with the same interests with you. Only months into college and I'm reminiscing of the past years here, the memories and friends I have made are simply the best. I wish only that this camaraderie was more existent at the college I am currently at, and hopefully, I will find that one group of people to share my memories with and create legends with at my current college.
3.) What might you have done differently during your boarding school experience?
It is not the easiest environment to assimilate to (unless joining as a freshman), but Cranbrook is an excellent academic challenge. I am thankful I have the opportunity to attend school here but am aware it is not perfect for everyone, especially those more comfortable in an easy-going environment.
4.) What did you like most about your school?
Attending Cranbrook was like living a fairy tale. Being able to roam the gardens during free time or utilize the resources of the art or science museums on campus during a class was reason enough to attend. The diversity that the boarding students brought to the school to widened my worldview, the teachers were passionate, engaged and creative, and I think that my AP classes prepared me well for the AP tests that I took, and I was able to score highly and earn college credit, even at an Ivy League School. I'm so grateful for my experience at Cranbrook, and return often to visit the Art Museum, see my old teachers, or go for a run through the forest or around Kingswood Lake. While attending school, and still today, my life is enriched by the quantity and quality of statues, hand-woven textiles, and architecture that composes the background of daily educational experience. I would not trade my education at Cranbrook for the world.
5.) Do you have any final words of wisdom for visiting or incoming students to your school?
Cranbrook is the best school in the world! After having a terrible time in elementary and middle school in the public school system, I switched to Cranbrook and it was the best thing that ever happened to me. Cranbrook helped me to become a strong and confident student.


1.) Describe the academics at your school - what did you like most about it?
I love it that you get to know the professors really well. This is perhaps due to the small size of the class (roughly 13 people). This is really great because when it comes to the College Application Process, you have absolutely NO trouble finding teachers' recommendation letters. Also, the College Counseling Program is great. I got into ALL of my college choices with their help.


1.) Describe the athletics at your school - what did you like most about it?
Cranbrook requires all students to fulfill a set number of sport credits that can be filled with any form of monitored physical activity such as a Varsity sport, or Club level intramural. Most students are highly committed to their team, promoting a positive atmosphere around participation in school-sponsored events. There are many popular sports teams on the Cranbrook Campus, including: Varisty Lacrosse, Varsity Soccer, Varsity Hockey, Varsity Rowing, and Varsity Cross Country.

Art, Music, and Theatre:

1.) Describe the arts program at your school - what did you like most about it?
The private teachers who teach private lessons are excellent professional players who teach on the side of their careers for the enjoyment of interacting with their students.

Extracurricular Opportunities:

1.) Describe the extracurriculars offered at your school - what did you like most about it?
Cranbrook offers a broad assortment of clubs that vary dramatically in time commitment. From discussion clubs that meet over dinner, to debate and other competitive clubs that compete and win at the national level, Cranbrook offers a club for all interests, and if you think it should have something else, it's easy to start something new.

Dorm Life:

1.) Describe the dorm life in your school - what did you like most about it?
Dorm life was my absolute favorite aspect of Cranbrook. I made amazing friends, many of whom had widely different interests and backgrounds than me. My dorm head and the older students made me feel very much at home, and they were a great support system. I rarely felt homesick, mostly because I also felt at home while I was at Cranbrook.


1.) Describe the dining arrangements at your school.
The Dining Halls at Cranbrook were very comfortable and cozy. The dining hall staff were really nice and friendly - if there was anything I needed, I only had to ask one of them. The food was usually good quality, although there were some days where I preferred to go out for the dinner because the only type of food on offer was something I didn't like. There are also made to order omelettes available for brunch on Sundays, which is a popular treat.

Social and Town Life:

1.) Describe the school's town and surrounding area.
Located in the middle of nowhere, but the rest of the world is accessible. There is a Walmart and a big grocery store that the school buses the students to once a week. I loved the two bookstores. The used bookstore was so weird, like it occasionally had a table deal - 6 for 5 dollars but every other book in the store was basically a priceless antique. The water street bookstore was much more like your typical indie bookstore, great selection and sometimes hosted readings with authors. There are like 4 different cafes and coffee shops. But still, so so small.
2.) Describe the social life at your school - what did you like most about it?
The school does a very good job of organizing activities for the students such as concerts and other performances. There was a joke, also commonly found at college. Your life is sleep, social life and studies - pick two. I would say that is the case a little bit, I mostly sacrificed sleep. Your social life revolves around your dorm, your clubs, your organizations and your study groups.

Daily Schedule:

9:00 AM
A Format Class
10:00 AM
B Format Class
11:00 AM
12:00 AM
1:00 PM
2:00 PM
D Format Class
3:00 PM
After School Activity
4:00 PM
After School Activity
5:00 PM
F Format Class
6:00 PM
12:00 PM
1:00 PM
Playing Frisbee
2:00 PM
3:00 PM
4:00 PM
Go around downtown
5:00 PM
6:00 PM
Dorms visits
9:00 PM
Check in
10:00 PM
11:00 PM
Read more details about Cranbrook Schools on their 2024 profile page.

Alumni Reviews Review School

Cranbrook Schools Alumni #1
Class of 2017
5.00 5/27/2020
Concordia University
Extremely diverse educational community that encourages students to get involved. The school has a very well-rounded educational team that makes you feel home whilst providing with an excellent academic schedule. All the teachers and staff. . .
Cranbrook Schools Alumni #2
Class of 2016
5.00 2/24/2018
Yale University
Definitely its renowned Harkness discussion. The principal is based off the idea that the students are of such a high intellect that they are able to teach each other, and thus the teacher of the. . .
Cranbrook Schools Alumni #3
Class of 2014
5.00 2/1/2018
For me, living and working on a boarding school campus that was surrounded in nature made Cranbrook a very special place. Everyday was like finding a new adventure to embark on - from the small. . .
Show more reviews (7 reviews)

Recent Articles

Considering a U.S. Arts Program?
Considering a U.S. Arts Program?
If the arts are part of your interests and your passion, you should research each school’s available offerings. Spend time reading the school’s literature and visiting its website.
Types of Boarding School
Types of Boarding School
Embark on a journey through the diverse world of boarding schools with our comprehensive guide. From traditional institutions to specialized programs, we explore the various types of boarding schools available to students and parents.
International Students: Visas and More
International Students: Visas and More
In addition to the usual admissions requirements, international students must also obtain a student visa. Here are five tips to help you navigate the admissions process as an international student.

Quick Stats (2024)

  • Enrollment: 795 students
  • Yearly Tuition (Boarding Students): $52,350
  • Yearly Tuition (Day Students): $38,600
  • Acceptance rate: 38%
  • Average class size: 14 students
  • Application Deadline: Jan. 31 / Apr. 15 / rolling
  • Source: Verified school update