Colleges in the Ivy League

October 8, 2022
By AdmissionSight

Colleges in the Ivy League

What does it mean to attend colleges in the Ivy League?

The eight highly selective private colleges and universities in the Northeastern United States that come together to form the Ivy League are known collectively as the Ivy League schools. The phrase “Ivy League” has come to be used interchangeably with “prestigious colleges” over the course of time.

Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, Princeton University, University of Pennsylvania, and Yale University are the eight original schools that make up the Ivy League. Even though there are many prestigious colleges across the United States that are mistaken for Ivy League schools, the Ivy League is comprised of these eight original schools.

A concise overview of the Ivy League’s history

The original members of the Ivy League were eight different private colleges that competed against one another in athletics. But in modern times, “Ivy League” can refer to a lot of other things besides just collegiate sports.

Colleges in the Ivy League are renowned for their illustrious pasts, enduring customs, and long-standing practices. The Ivy League universities are all found in the Northeast, and all but one of them was founded before the American Revolution. For instance, Harvard University was established in 1636, making it the nation’s oldest college or university still in operation today.

The phrase “Ivy League,” on the other hand, wasn’t coined until almost three centuries after the fact.

In 1933, a sports writer by the name of Stanley Woodward wrote about the upcoming football season at the “Ivy Schools,” and the term caught on very quickly. After another twenty years, in 1954, the athletic conference got its official start.

Students laughing while walking in the school campus.

The term “Ivy League” is now synonymous with highly selective, well-known educational institutions, and most people use it as a standard against which to judge the quality of an institution’s academic offerings.

What are the rankings and reputation of the colleges in the Ivy League?

The colleges in the Ivy League consistently rank among the top 20 national universities on lists by sites like Forbes and U.S. News & World Report. They are also highly regarded on a variety of lists of the best colleges.

Endowments at colleges in the Ivy League tend to be substantial as a result of the high regard in which the institutions’ academic programs are held. Colleges use these endowments to build facilities, hire prestigious faculty members, and support students through grants and scholarships.

Female student studying in a library.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) reported that at the end of the 2020 fiscal year, Harvard University held endowments totaling $42 billion, making it the institution with the largest endowment in the field of higher education in the United States.

In terms of endowment size, Yale, Princeton, Penn, and Columbia all rank highly; in the year 2020, each of these universities had endowments worth more than $10 billion.

The advantages of attending colleges in the Ivy League continue long after graduation because these schools have such strong networks of alumni.

The 8 Colleges in the Ivy League

1. Brown University

Brown University is a prestigious research institution that can be found in Providence, Rhode Island. Brown is well-known for its rigorous and open curriculum, which provides students with the opportunity to create their own individualized study plans.

The school has a very low acceptance rate of only 8%, and the typical student has an SAT score between 1440 and 1520 or an ACT score between 32 and 35.

2. Columbia University

New York City is home to the prestigious Columbia University. Columbia University ranked first among the best colleges in the United States for philosophy, second among the best colleges in the United States for English, and second among the best colleges in the United States for performing arts.

The educational establishment provides access to over two hundred different research centers and institutes, in addition to the institution’s hundreds of different areas of study.

Even more selective than Brown University, Columbia University only accepts 6% of applicants, and its typical student has an SAT score in the range of 1450–1560 or an ACT score in the range of 33–35.

3. Cornell University

Cornell University, which can be found in Ithaca, New York, is home to more than 15,000 undergraduate students and boasts a sizable enrollment overall.

The fields of biology, business, and computer science are among the most popular majors there. It was ranked number one in the category of Best Colleges for Agricultural Sciences in America and number three in the category of Best Colleges for Architecture.

The average student at Cornell University receives an SAT score in the range of 1390–1540 and an ACT score between 32 and 34. The university has an acceptance rate of 11%.

4. Dartmouth College

The most highly regarded educational institution in the state of New Hampshire is Dartmouth College, which can be found in the town of Hanover.

With just over 4,000 undergraduates, it is one of the more compact universities in the Ivy League when compared to some of the other schools in the league.

Dartmouth is a very selective college, with an acceptance rate of only 9%, and it looks for students with SAT scores in the range of 1420 to 1560 and ACT scores in the range of 31 to 35.

5. Harvard University

Perhaps the most recognizable name associated with the Ivy League is that of Harvard University. It is a school of moderate size, with approximately 7,000 undergraduate students enrolled, and it can be found in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The acceptance rate at Harvard is only 5%, making it another extremely competitive educational institution. The average score on the SAT for an accepted student is between 1460 and 1580, and the average score on the ACT for an accepted student is between 33 and 35.

Harvard University is ranked first in both the field of biology studies and the field of political science studies. Collaborating Colleges is a program that is run by Harvard Business School Online (HBS Online), and the University of the People (UoPeople) is a member of this program.

The Harvard Business School classroom is brought to you through an innovative online platform that is offered through the Harvard Business School Online program, which provides a one-of-a-kind and highly engaging way to learn fundamental business concepts.

This collaboration makes it possible for undergraduate students at UoPeople to enroll in HBS Online’s flagship program, the Credential of Readiness (CORe), which is a three-course introduction to the fundamentals of business. The students will also have access to need-based scholarships for this program.

6. Princeton University

The town of Princeton, New Jersey, is home to the prestigious Princeton University. Since it was established in 1746, this educational establishment is the fourth oldest university in all the United States.

It is a medium-sized institution with around 5,000 undergraduate enrollments, and like Harvard, has an extremely competitive acceptance rate of only 5%.

Computer engineering, public policy analysis, and economics are among the most sought-after degrees offered by this institution. It is ranked as the second-best college in the United States for students interested in studying political science and public policy analysis.

The range of possible SAT scores is from 1440 to 1570, and the ACT scoring range is from 32 to 35.

7. University of Pennsylvania

UPenn, which refers to the University of Pennsylvania, can be found in Pennsylvania’s capital city of Philadelphia. It is a highly selective institution with a low acceptance rate of 8%, which makes the school quite large with an average of 10,000 undergraduate enrollments.

Popular degrees at UPenn include nursing, economics, and finance, and it is rated the #1 college in America for business. The average SAT range is 1420-1550, and the ACT range is 32-35.

8. Yale University

The institution known as Yale University can be found in New Haven, Connecticut. It is a research and liberal arts college. It is ranked first among colleges in the United States that have the best professors and first among colleges that are the best places to study history.

Students must have an average SAT score in the range of 1460-1570 and an ACT score in the range of 33-35 to be accepted into this highly selective institution, which has an acceptance rate of only 6%.

Moreso, there are four additional universities that deserve your attention.

Many other prestigious and competitive educational institutions are frequently confused for Ivy League institutions. This is because of their excellent reputation, competitive admissions standards, and sometimes even their location in close proximity to the Ivy League schools in the Northeast.

Here are four additional prestigious universities that are frequently confused with Ivy League institutions:

1. Stanford University

It’s possible that people confuse Stanford with one of the other Ivy League schools more often than any other. It is possible that the extremely low acceptance rate of only 4% is what contributed to its widespread fame.

2. MIT

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (also known as MIT) is considered to be one of the most prestigious and competitive universities in the world.

3. Northwestern University

As a result of its high rankings and selective admission requirements, Northwestern is frequently confused with an Ivy League institution. It has an acceptance rate that is only 8%.

4. University of Chicago

Due to the extremely low acceptance rate of only 7%, it is on par with many other Ivy League schools in terms of competition.

Why should I care about the colleges in the Ivy League?

These colleges and universities are likely to be the first ones that catch your attention when you begin the process of looking for undergraduate and graduate degrees, and there are many different reasons for this.

To begin, they devote a significant amount of their resources to luring bright, hardworking, and career-oriented students from all over the world, such as yourself.

Group of students standing an smiling at the camera.

Second, it is common knowledge that attending one of these schools is of great assistance to students in the development of their future careers. If we take a look at a variety of disciplines, ranging from law and medicine to electrical engineering and business, we can see that the colleges in the Ivy League truly dominate these kinds of fields. A degree from one of these institutions will allow you to enter many previously closed doors in the future.

The tuition fees at these schools, on the other hand, tend to be among the highest of any school in the United States, with the annual average falling somewhere between 55,000 and 60,000 US dollars. Fortunately, they also provide excellent financial assistance in the form of scholarships for those students who excel in school. It’s possible that you are one of them!

How to choose the right college in the Ivy League for you?

If you do come to the conclusion that attending one of the colleges in the Ivy League is the right choice for you, the next step is to determine which school is the best fit for your requirements and objectives. Here ate the things you have to consider:

1. The geographical location of the school

When deciding between colleges in the Ivy League (or really any school), the location of each school should be the first factor you take into account. Think about whether you would be happier attending classes in an urban, rural, or suburban environment.

Dartmouth and Cornell could be good options for you if you want to go to college in a rural area, be surrounded by nature, and be a part of a small, close-knit community of students and faculty.

If, on the other hand, you thrive off the commotion of cities and the abundance of job opportunities they offer, then Columbia or UPenn might be a better fit for you.

Because Brown, Harvard, and Yale are all located in relatively small cities, attending one of these universities could be a good option for people who prefer to live in more sedate urban environments.

Last but not least, the only school that is located in a suburban area in Princeton. This makes it ideal for students who want a college experience that is more secluded and quiet but still has the option of traveling to New York City or Philadelphia within an hour’s drive.

2. Educational courses and specializations

Every school in the Ivy League has its own distinctive set of academic requirements, as well as degrees and programs that it offers.

For students interested in business management with a concentration in hospitality, for instance, Cornell University has a program designed specifically for students like you.

Be sure to check that the school you have your sights set on is a good fit for your academic or professional interests as well as the topics and majors that you intend to study because schools have varying degrees of expertise in a variety of fields and fields of study.

Students taking an exam on their desks in a classroom.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the general education prerequisites for some schools are stricter than those of other schools, so the core curriculum requirements at those schools can vary greatly. Even though this might not be a deciding factor for some people, it is still a good idea to research the prerequisites for each school so that you are aware of what you are getting yourself into.

3. The capacity of the institution

Along the same lines as location, the size of the school might also be an important consideration to make. If you are the type of person who is interested in attending a college that has a vibrant and busy atmosphere, it will make sense for you to look into the larger establishments.

On the other hand, if you would like to be part of a community that is more tightly knit and has fewer distractions, a smaller institution would be more suited to your needs.

4. Culture on campus

Last but not least, each school and campus has its own unique culture and draws a diverse range of students of varying backgrounds and interests. Visit the school, talk to students, and take a look around to get the best idea of how well you’ll fit in with the community there.

This is the most accurate way to predict how well you’ll fit in. You also have the option of checking out school forums and reviews to learn what former students have to say about the education they received and the campus they attended.

Students sitting in a couch in a room.

Now that you know this information about the colleges in the Ivy League, you will have a greater view of why it is popular and in demand among students especially those who want to pursue higher education.

At AdmissionSight, we have more than ten years of experience assisting students in navigating the difficult admissions process required to gain entry into the most prestigious educational institutions in the world. We have one of the highest track records in the industry, as 75% of our students are accepted to an Ivy League university, including Stanford, MIT, University of Chicago, and Caltech, on average. Please feel free to contact us today to schedule an appointment for your initial consultation.

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