Georgetown vs Amherst: Which College Is Right for You?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Asian students working on a table with a laptop.

Georgetown vs Amherst: Which College Is Right for You?

Are you in the process of deciding which college to attend? Two popular choices often considered by students are Georgetown vs Amherst. Both colleges have their unique features, and choosing the right one for you requires considering several factors.

In this article, we’ll provide an overview of these two colleges and compare various aspects, including academics, location, campus life, admissions process, finance, athletics, student diversity and inclusivity, alumni networks and career opportunities, campus safety, extracurricular activities, housing options, student-faculty ratios, and tuition costs. By the end of the article, you will be better equipped to decide which college is the right fit for you.

Georgetown vs Amherst: An Overview of the Two Colleges

Georgetown University, located in Washington D.C., is a Jesuit university known for its top-ranked schools in international affairs, law, public policy, and business. The university has a total undergraduate enrollment of approximately 7,500 students, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 11:1. The campus boasts a mix of historic and modern buildings, with a beautiful view of the Potomac River.

Amherst College, located in Amherst, Massachusetts, is a private liberal arts college that ranks highly in national college rankings. Amherst has an undergraduate enrollment of approximately 1,800 students, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 7:1. The campus features a collection of neo-Georgian brick buildings situated in a picturesque New England town.

Despite their differences in size and location, both Georgetown and Amherst offer a strong sense of community and academic rigor. Georgetown’s location in the heart of Washington D.C. provides students with unique opportunities for internships and networking, while

Amherst’s small size allows for close relationships with professors and a tight-knit student body. Both colleges also have a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, with a variety of student organizations and resources available to support underrepresented groups.

Academics at Georgetown vs Amherst: Which is Stronger?

Both Georgetown and Amherst have strong academic programs, but they differ in their approach. Georgetown is known for its graduate programs, particularly those in foreign service and law. However, the undergraduate international relations program is equally strong and competitive.

A Georgetown education is grounded in a broader range of topics, including philosophy and theology. On the other hand, Amherst’s curriculum is more focused on the liberal arts, with a broader range of majors to choose from. Classes are usually small and encourage student participation, discussion, and debate. Both colleges provide ample opportunities for research, internships, and experiential learning.

group of students studying in a long table

Georgetown’s location in Washington D.C. provides students with unique opportunities to engage with government agencies, think tanks, and international organizations. Students can attend lectures and events featuring prominent speakers, and participate in internships that allow them to apply their classroom knowledge to real-world situations.

Amherst, on the other hand, is located in a small town in Massachusetts, which provides a more intimate and close-knit community. The college has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion and offers resources and support for students from underrepresented backgrounds.

Both Georgetown and Amherst have a strong emphasis on community service and civic engagement. Georgetown’s Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching, and Service provides students with opportunities to work with local and global communities on issues such as poverty, immigration, and human rights.

Amherst’s Community Engagement Office offers similar opportunities, including partnerships with local schools and non-profit organizations. Both colleges encourage students to become active and responsible citizens and to use their education to make a positive impact on the world.

Location: Comparing the Campuses of Georgetown vs Amherst

One of the essential factors to consider when choosing a college is its location. Georgetown’s location in Washington D.C. means students have access to internship opportunities, cultural events, and political life. The downtown location also means a busy city life, nightlife, and exposure to diversity.

In contrast, Amherst College’s location in a suburban town means a quieter, more relaxed lifestyle with opportunities for outdoor activities. The Berkshires are also nearby, providing students with access to skiing and summer music festivals.

Another advantage of Georgetown’s location is its proximity to other universities and institutions. Students can easily take classes at nearby universities, such as George Washington University or American University, and attend events at the Smithsonian Museums or the Kennedy Center. Additionally, Georgetown’s location in the heart of D.C. means that students have access to a wide range of internship opportunities in government, non-profit organizations, and international institutions.

On the other hand, Amherst College’s location in a small town also has its drawbacks. Students may feel isolated from the rest of the world and miss out on the cultural experiences that come with living in a big city. However, the college makes up for this by offering a robust program of guest speakers, concerts, and other events on campus. The college also has a strong focus on community engagement, with many opportunities for students to volunteer and work with local organizations.

Campus Life at Georgetown vs Amherst: A Comparison

Georgetown and Amherst have very different campus vibes. Georgetown’s campus culture is dynamic, socially active, and exciting. The school has a long tradition of community involvement with a range of clubs, organizations, and events to participate in. The campus has an active Greek life scene, both in fraternities and sororities, and club sports are also offered.

Alternatively, Amherst has a more intimate and tight-knit campus community, which emphasizes residential life. The college features over 100 student organizations, and the athletic program is strong. While both colleges have a lot to offer, it depends on what type of campus culture you prefer.

three female students in a staircase

One notable difference between Georgetown and Amherst is their location. Georgetown is located in the heart of Washington D.C., providing students with access to a wealth of cultural and political opportunities. The city is home to numerous museums, theaters, and historical landmarks, and students can take advantage of internships and networking opportunities with government agencies and non-profit organizations.

In contrast, Amherst is situated in a more rural area of Massachusetts, surrounded by scenic mountains and forests. While the town itself is small, it offers a charming New England atmosphere and a close-knit community. Students can enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking and skiing, and the college provides transportation to nearby cities for cultural events and shopping.

The Admissions Process at Georgetown vs Amherst: What You Need to Know

Admissions to Georgetown and Amherst are highly competitive, with acceptance rates of around 12% and 9%, respectively. Both colleges look for students with impressive academic records, strong extracurricular activities, and a unique perspective to offer. Georgetown emphasizes demonstrated leadership while Amherst evaluates the ability to participate in an intellectual community. It is essential to note that both schools are need-blind for admission and meet fully demonstrated financial needs.

Additionally, both Georgetown and Amherst offer a variety of resources to support their students academically and personally. Georgetown has a Writing Center, Math Center, and a Tutoring and Learning Center, while Amherst has a Writing Center, Quantitative Skills Center, and a Center for Teaching and Learning.

Both schools also have robust career centers that offer career counseling, job and internship search assistance, and networking opportunities. Prospective students need to consider not only the admissions process but also the resources and support available to them once they are enrolled.

Financial Aid and Scholarships: Which College Offers Better Options?

Georgetown and Amherst both offer financial aid and scholarships to their students. Georgetown uses a combination of grants, loans, work-study, and scholarships to help make college more affordable, while Amherst meets 100% of demonstrated financial need through grants instead of loans. Both colleges feature resources such as work-study programs and student employment opportunities as additional means of financial support.

a male student studying intently

However, there are some differences in the types of scholarships offered by each college. Georgetown offers merit-based scholarships, which are awarded based on academic achievement, leadership, and other factors. Amherst, on the other hand, offers need-based scholarships, which are awarded based on a student’s financial need. Additionally, Amherst offers scholarships specifically for students who are the first in their family to attend college.

It’s also important to note that the application process for financial aid and scholarships may differ between the two colleges. Georgetown requires the CSS Profile and FAFSA to be submitted for consideration of financial aid, while Amherst only requires the FAFSA. It’s important for students to carefully review the requirements and deadlines for each college’s financial aid and scholarship application process to ensure they don’t miss out on any funding opportunities.

Athletics at Georgetown vs Amherst: A Comparison of Sports Programs

Georgetown and Amherst have strong athletic programs, with a focus on a wide range of sports. Georgetown competes in the NCAA Division I and the Big East Conference and offers varsity sports such as basketball, volleyball, and soccer, as well as club sports such as rowing, cycling, and skiing. Amherst, on the other hand, is a Division III school and competes in the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC). Amherst has a robust athletic program with over 25 varsity teams and a competitive outdoor program.

Despite the differences in division and conference, both Georgetown and Amherst prioritize the academic success of their student-athletes. At Georgetown, the student-athlete graduation rate is consistently above the national average, and the athletic department offers academic support services such as tutoring and study halls.

Similarly, Amherst has a strong commitment to academic excellence, with over 90% of student-athletes graduating within four years. The school also offers resources such as academic advising and study abroad programs to support the academic success of its athletes.

Student Diversity and Inclusivity: How Do Georgetown and Amherst Compare?

Both Georgetown and Amherst are committed to fostering an inclusive and diverse community. Georgetown’s student body is relatively diverse, with students from over 130 countries represented. The university also commits to creating a welcoming and supportive environment for students from all backgrounds.

Similarly, Amherst has a diverse student population, with the school continuing to make efforts to promote inclusivity. The college has a robust Office of Diversity and Inclusion and offers various programs and resources for students of underrepresented groups, such as Posse Foundation Scholarships and the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship Program.

Students in front of trees

Despite their similarities, there are some differences in how Georgetown and Amherst approach diversity and inclusivity. Georgetown has a strong focus on international diversity, with a significant portion of their student body coming from outside of the United States.

In contrast, Amherst places a greater emphasis on domestic diversity, with a focus on recruiting and supporting students from historically underrepresented groups within the United States. Both approaches are important in creating a truly diverse and inclusive community, and it is encouraging to see both institutions making efforts to prioritize these values.

Alumni Networks and Career Opportunities: Georgetown vs Amherst

Georgetown and Amherst both have active alumni networks and career services that offer resources for job searches, internships, and networking opportunities. Georgetown’s alumni network is impressive and comprises individuals in the fields of politics, law, and business. Numerous resources, including career fairs, recruiting events, and on-campus recruiting, are available to guide students toward successful careers in these fields.

Amherst’s alumni network is also strong, with graduates in various fields, including finance, academia, and technology. The college offers a Career Center that provides students with internship and job opportunities, resume writing, and career advice.

However, there are some differences between the two colleges when it comes to alumni networks and career opportunities. Georgetown’s location in Washington D.C. provides students with unique opportunities to network with alumni who work in government and politics.

The college also has a strong presence in the business world, with many alumni working in finance and consulting. On the other hand, Amherst’s location in western Massachusetts may limit some networking opportunities, but the college has a strong reputation in academia and research, with many alumni pursuing careers in these fields.

Another factor to consider is the size of the alumni networks. Georgetown has a larger student body and therefore a larger alumni network, which can provide more opportunities for networking and job connections. However, Amherst’s smaller student body may lead to a more tight-knit alumni community, with alumni more willing to help fellow graduates in their career pursuits.

Campus Safety at Georgetown vs Amherst: How Do They Measure Up?

Both Georgetown and Amherst have robust campus safety measures in place. Georgetown has its campus police department, providing around-the-clock safety patrols and emergency response services. The university also commits to ensuring a safe, secure, and inclusive campus environment.

Similarly, at Amherst, campus safety is a top priority, with the college offering a range of services, including a 24/7 emergency hotline, safety escorts, and campus safety workshops. Both colleges also have various programs in place, promoting awareness and prevention of sexual violence and harassment.

Despite the efforts of both Georgetown and Amherst to maintain a safe campus environment, there have been instances of crime on both campuses. In recent years, Georgetown has seen an increase in theft and burglary, while Amherst has had reports of sexual assault and harassment.

Both colleges have taken steps to address these issues, including increasing security measures and providing resources for victims. However, students need to remain vigilant and take precautions to ensure their safety while on campus.

Student Organizations and Extracurricular Activities: A Comparison of Opportunities

Both Georgetown and Amherst provide numerous extracurricular activities, ranging from Greek life to clubs, to student government. Georgetown’s student body participates in over 200 clubs and organizations, including academic associations, service groups, and performing arts groups.

a group of students reading a text from the book.

Amherst boasts over 100 student organizations, including cappella groups, LGBTQ+ organizations, and theater groups. Both colleges have a vigorous student life, providing ample opportunities for students to pursue their interests outside of classes.

However, there are some differences in the types of extracurricular activities offered at Georgetown and Amherst. Georgetown has a strong focus on political and international affairs, with many clubs and organizations dedicated to these areas of interest.

On the other hand, Amherst has a strong emphasis on the arts, with a variety of music, theater, and dance groups available for students to join. Additionally, Amherst offers unique opportunities such as the chance to participate in the annual literary magazine and the student-run radio station. Overall, both colleges offer a diverse range of extracurricular activities, but with slightly different areas of focus.

Housing Options at Georgetown vs Amherst: Which is Better for You?

Georgetown and Amherst offer a range of on-campus and off-campus housing options. Georgetown provides a range of residence halls, apartments, and townhouses, serving students in various cohorts, including first-year, sophomore, junior, and senior students.

Amherst is known for its residential life program, which emphasizes building community and engagement on campus. The college features nine residence halls, ranging from traditional dormitory-style living to apartment-style living. Each residence hall has its personality, and students can choose a house based on their interests or academic pursuits.

It is important to note that the cost of housing at Georgetown and Amherst can vary significantly. While both schools offer financial aid and scholarships to help offset the cost of housing, students should carefully consider their budget when choosing a housing option.

Additionally, students should consider the location of their housing their classes, and campus resources. Some students may prefer to live closer to academic buildings, while others may prioritize proximity to dining halls or recreational facilities.

Student-Faculty Ratio and Class Sizes: How Do They Compare Between These Two Colleges?

Georgetown and Amherst provide students with small class sizes and opportunities for individualized attention and engagement with professors. Georgetown has a student-faculty ratio of 11:1, and Amherst has a student-faculty ratio of 7:1.

Both colleges pride themselves on their faculty, which includes distinguished scholars, cutting-edge researchers, and experienced professionals. Students will have access to active learning environments and dedicated mentors to guide them through their academic journey.

Additionally, both colleges offer a wide range of academic programs and majors to choose from. Georgetown has a strong focus on international relations, law, and business, while Amherst is known for its liberal arts curriculum and emphasis on critical thinking and writing skills. Students at both colleges will have the opportunity to explore their interests and passions through a variety of courses and extracurricular activities.

Furthermore, both colleges have a vibrant campus life with numerous clubs, organizations, and events. Georgetown is located in the heart of Washington D.C., providing students with access to internships, cultural events, and political activities.

Amherst is situated in a picturesque New England town, offering students a close-knit community and opportunities for outdoor recreation. Both colleges have a strong sense of community and pride themselves on creating a supportive and inclusive environment for all students.

Tuition Costs Compared: Georgetown vs Amherst

Georgetown and Amherst both provide financial aid to help make college more accessible for their students. Georgetown’s total cost of attendance for the 2021-2022 school year is approximately $80,000, while Amherst’s total cost of attendance is approximately $78,000.

Both colleges offer financial aid packages based on demonstrated need rather than merit-based scholarships. Keep in mind that the actual cost of attendance will vary depending on your family’s ability to pay and the financial aid package provided.

A person writing with a pile of books beside them

It’s important to note that while the total cost of attendance may be similar between Georgetown and Amherst, the breakdown of costs may differ. For example, Georgetown may have higher tuition costs but lower room and board fees, while Amherst may have lower tuition costs but higher fees for housing and meals. It’s important to carefully review the cost breakdown for each college to determine which one may be more affordable for you.


In conclusion, Georgetown and Amherst are both prestigious colleges with their unique features and strengths. Deciding which college is the right fit for you depends on various factors, including academics, location, campus culture, affordability, and student life.

By considering each of the aspects covered in this article in depth, you will be better equipped to make a more informed decision about the college that is your best fit. Ultimately, both Georgetown and Amherst are excellent institutions, and it’s up to you to decide which college will provide you with the best platform to pursue your passions and achieve your career aspirations.

If you’re set on getting into a world-class college but aren’t sure how to make it happen, we can help! AdmissionSight is a leading college entrance expert with over a decade of experience helping students just like you get into the schools of their dreams.

At AdmissionSight, we focus on offering a wide range of services, all aimed at helping students perfect their applications to catch the attention of admissions officers. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about what we offer.


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