Harvard vs Lehigh: A Comprehensive Overview

July 7, 2023
By AdmissionSight

Harvard vs Lehigh: A Comprehensive Overview

When choosing a university, it’s essential to research and make an informed decision. Harvard and Lehigh are two prestigious universities that often come up in conversations about higher education. In this article, we’ll compare Harvard vs Lehigh in key areas, including location, academics, student life, career opportunities, tuition fees, reputation, campus safety, and more.

Introduction: Understanding the Importance of Choosing the Right University

Choosing the right university can profoundly impact your academic and professional life. It’s not just about getting a degree but also about your experiences and opportunities while attending.

When comparing Harvard vs Lehigh, it’s important to remember your personal goals, interests, and priorities. What matters most to you? What type of environment do you thrive in? These are essential questions to consider when deciding between colleges.

Additionally, it’s essential to research each university’s specific programs and departments. For example, if you’re interested in pursuing a career in engineering, consider Lehigh’s highly-ranked engineering program.

On the other hand, if you’re interested in pursuing a career in law, Harvard’s prestigious law school may be the better choice. It’s important to consider not only the overall reputation of the university but also the reputation of the specific program you’re interested in.

Location and Campus Facilities

Both Harvard and Lehigh are located in the United States but in different regions. Harvard University is situated in Cambridge, Massachusetts, a bustling city just outside of Boston. On the other hand, Lehigh University is located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, a smaller city in the Northeast.

Harvard’s campus is known for its historic architecture and iconic landmarks, including the Harvard Yard, while Lehigh’s campus comprises more modern buildings. However, both universities have state-of-the-art facilities, including libraries, research centers, and athletic facilities.

Additionally, Harvard’s campus is spread over several blocks, with many of its buildings in the heart of Cambridge. Lehigh’s campus, on the other hand, is more compact, with most of its buildings within walking distance.

View of Lehigh University

Despite their differences in Harvard vs Lehigh’s size and layout, both universities offer a variety of resources and amenities to their students, including dining options, health services, and student organizations.

Admission Criteria and Application Process

Getting admitted to either Harvard or Lehigh is a highly competitive process, with both universities boasting highly selective admission rates.

At Harvard, the application process involves submitting standardized test scores, recommendation letters, essays, and an interview. Lehigh’s application process is similarly rigorous, requiring excellent grades, test scores, and essays.

Both universities also consider extracurricular activities, leadership experience, and community involvement.

However, we can point out some differences regarding Harvard vs Lehigh’s admission criteria for different programs.

Harvard’s medical school has a separate application process and admission criteria compared to its undergraduate program. Similarly, Lehigh’s engineering program has different admission requirements than its business program. Prospective students should carefully review the admission criteria for their desired program before applying.

Additionally, both universities offer various resources to help students navigate the application process.

Harvard has a dedicated admissions website with detailed information on each step of the process, virtual information sessions, and campus tours. Lehigh offers similar resources, including virtual information sessions and personalized guidance from admissions counselors.

Prospective students are encouraged to use these resources to ensure a successful application.

Academic Programs and Areas of Study

Both Harvard and Lehigh offer rigorous academic programs with a wide variety of majors and areas of study. Harvard has over 50 concentrations ranging from the arts to engineering, strongly emphasizing research and innovation. Lehigh offers over 50 majors as well, with a focus on engineering, business, and the sciences.

Both universities have distinguished faculty members and innovative teaching methodologies, including project-based learning and interactive classroom experiences. Honors programs, research opportunities, and study abroad programs are also available at both universities.

Harvard is known for its strong liberal arts program, with a wide range of humanities and social sciences courses. The university also offers a unique joint degree program with the New England Conservatory of Music, allowing students to pursue both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Music degree.

Lehigh, on the other hand, has a strong focus on entrepreneurship and innovation, with programs such as the Baker Institute for Entrepreneurship, Creativity, and Innovation.

Both universities also have a strong commitment to interdisciplinary studies. Harvard has several interdisciplinary programs, such as the Mind, Brain, and Behavior Initiative, which brings faculty and students from various fields to study the brain and behavior.

Lehigh has a similar program called the Integrated Degree in Engineering, Arts, and Sciences (IDEAS). It allows students to combine their engineering, science, and arts interests to create a unique academic experience.

Faculty and Teaching Methodologies

Both universities are renowned for their world-class faculty members, experts in their fields and strongly committed to teaching and mentorship. Harvard has many current and former Nobel laureates, Pulitzer Prize winners, and MacArthur Fellows among its faculty.

Similarly, Lehigh has a faculty of leading scholars and researchers dedicated to providing hands-on learning experiences for their students.

Teaching methods at both universities combine traditional lectures with interactive discussions, small-group seminars, and experiential learning opportunities. Both universities also have strong student support systems, including academic advising, tutoring services, and study groups.

multicultural students in class

Harvard and Lehigh universities have a diverse faculty that represents a wide range of backgrounds and experiences. This diversity enriches the learning experience for students, as they are exposed to different perspectives and ideas.

Additionally, both universities prioritize faculty-student relationships, with professors often serving as mentors and advisors to their students.

Both universities also offer opportunities for students to engage in research and other scholarly activities. Harvard has numerous research centers and institutes, while Lehigh strongly focuses on undergraduate research and provides funding for student research projects.

These opportunities allow students to apply what they have learned in the classroom to real-world problems and gain valuable experience in their fields.

Harvard vs Lehigh: Student Life and Extracurricular Activities

Student life at Harvard and Lehigh has opportunities for personal and professional growth, social engagement, and cultural enrichment.

Harvard has over 400 student organizations, ranging from political clubs to performing arts groups, while Lehigh has over 200 student clubs and organizations catering to various interests.

Both universities have active student-run governments and regular events, including concerts, guest speakers, and social events. Harvard has a robust residential college system, while Lehigh has a strong Greek life culture.

Additionally, both universities offer students a wide range of sports and fitness activities. Harvard has 42 varsity sports teams, while Lehigh has 25 varsity sports teams.

Both universities also have state-of-the-art fitness centers and recreational facilities, including swimming pools, basketball courts, and rock climbing walls. Students can participate in intramural sports leagues, fitness classes, and outdoor adventure programs.

Sports Programs and Athletic Facilities

Harvard and Lehigh both have strong sports programs and athletic facilities. Harvard is part of the Ivy League and has a strong tradition of excellence in sports ranging from football to basketball to rowing. Lehigh is part of the Patriot League and also has a strong sports culture, with top-ranked teams in wrestling, football, and other sports.

Both universities have state-of-the-art athletic facilities, including basketball arenas, football stadiums, and Olympic-sized swimming pools. Intramural sports and fitness programs are also available for students who are interested in staying active.

a female swimmer

Harvard’s sports programs are not only known for their excellence in performance but also for their commitment to sportsmanship and fair play. The university strongly emphasizes developing well-rounded student-athletes who excel both on and off the field.

Lehigh also strongly emphasizes character development and leadership, with many of its athletes going on to successful careers in business and other fields.

Both universities also offer unique opportunities for students interested in sports-related careers. Harvard has a Sports Management program and is consistently ranked as one of the best in the world.

Meanwhile, Lehigh offers a Sports Engineering program that combines engineering principles with sports science to develop innovative sports equipment and technology.

Career Opportunities and Alumni Network

Both universities have strong alumni networks and offer numerous career opportunities to their students. Harvard has a vast alumni network that spans the globe and includes current and former world leaders, business executives, and academics. Lehigh has a similarly strong network focusing on entrepreneurship, business, and engineering.

Harvard’s alumni network is not only vast but also highly influential. Many alumni hold positions of power and influence in various industries, making it easier for Harvard graduates to secure top jobs. The university also offers extensive career services, including job fairs, networking events, and career counseling.

Lehigh’s alumni network, on the other hand, is known for its focus on entrepreneurship. Many alumni have started their own successful businesses and are eager to mentor and support current students who are interested in entrepreneurship.

The university also has a strong reputation in business and engineering, with many graduates going on to work for top companies in these industries.

Tuition Fees, Financial Aid, and Scholarships

Harvard and Lehigh are private universities with a hefty tuition price tag. Harvard’s tuition for the 2021-2022 academic year is $59,950, while Lehigh’s tuition is $54,920. However, both universities offer eligible students generous financial aid packages and scholarships.

It’s important to note that attending either university also comes with other expenses, such as room and board, textbooks, and living expenses. Students should budget accordingly and explore all financial aid options before deciding.

Two students keeping their dorm room clean.

Harvard and Lehigh have different financial aid policies and requirements. Harvard’s financial aid program is need-based, meaning it considers a student’s family income, assets, and expenses to determine their eligibility for aid. On the other hand, Lehigh offers both need-based and merit-based aid, which is awarded based on a student’s academic achievements, talents, and other factors.

Additionally, both universities have scholarship programs that can help offset the cost of tuition. Harvard offers a range of scholarships, including the Harvard College Scholarship, which covers the full cost of tuition and fees for students from families with incomes below $65,000. Lehigh also has several scholarship programs, such as the Presidential Scholarship, which awards full tuition to high-achieving students.

Harvard vs Lehigh: Reputation, Rankings, and Accreditation

Harvard and Lehigh are both highly respected universities with a strong global reputation. Harvard consistently ranks among the top universities in the world, while Lehigh has a reputation for academic excellence in engineering, business, and the sciences.

Both universities are regionally accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Additionally, many of Harvard’s programs are accredited by specialized organizations in their respective fields.

Harvard has a long history of producing successful alumni, including eight U.S. presidents, over 150 Nobel laureates, and numerous CEOs of Fortune 500 companies. Lehigh also boasts a notable list of alumni, including Lee Iacocca, former CEO of Chrysler Corporation, and Eugene Grace, former CEO of Bethlehem Steel Corporation.

Both universities have a strong commitment to research and innovation. Harvard has a vast research enterprise, with over 20,000 faculty and staff members engaged in various fields. Lehigh is known for its cutting-edge research in nanotechnology, renewable energy, and sustainable materials.

Campus Safety and Security Measures

Both Harvard and Lehigh have comprehensive safety and security measures in place to protect students, faculty, and staff. Campus police departments are on duty 24/7 and have a strong presence on campus.

Additionally, both universities offer safety programs, emergency notification systems, and mental health resources.

At Harvard, the campus police department has implemented a community policing model emphasizing building relationships and partnerships with students, faculty, and staff. This approach has increased trust and communication between the police and the community, resulting in a safer campus environment.

Lehigh University has also implemented a similar model, with officers regularly engaging with students and hosting events to promote safety and security awareness.

Diversity, Inclusion, and Cultural Experiences

Both Harvard and Lehigh are committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive community. Harvard has numerous initiatives and programs to promote diversity, including the Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging and the Harvard College Women’s Center.

Lehigh has a similarly strong commitment to diversity, with initiatives such as the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council and cultural student organizations.

Both universities offer a variety of cultural experiences, including guest speakers, international events, and study abroad programs. Students from all backgrounds are welcomed and supported at both universities.

Harvard also offers a range of resources for students from underrepresented backgrounds, including the First Generation Program and the Harvard Foundation for Intercultural and Race Relations. These programs provide support and mentorship for students facing unique challenges navigating the college experience.

Lehigh is also strongly committed to promoting diversity in its faculty and staff. The university has implemented a Faculty Diversity Initiative, which aims to increase the representation of underrepresented groups among faculty members. This initiative includes targeted recruitment efforts and support for professional development.

Student Support Services, Health Care, and Counseling

Harvard and Lehigh have comprehensive student support services, including health care, counseling, and disability services. Harvard has a health center that offers primary care, mental health services, and wellness programs. Lehigh also has a health center that provides various healthcare services and counseling.

Both universities also have disability services offices that work with students with physical, learning, or mental health disabilities to provide accommodations and support.

In addition to the health care and counseling services, both Harvard and Lehigh offer a range of wellness programs to support students’ physical and mental health.

Harvard’s wellness programs include yoga and meditation classes, nutrition counseling, and stress management workshops. Lehigh’s wellness programs include fitness classes, outdoor adventure trips, and mindfulness sessions.

Friends Camping Eating Food

Furthermore, both universities have dedicated mental health resources for students. Harvard has a counseling and mental health services department offers individual and group therapy, crisis intervention, and psychiatric consultations. Lehigh has a counseling center that provides short-term counseling, crisis intervention, and referrals to off-campus mental health providers.

Harvard vs Lehigh: Making an Informed Decision About Your Higher Education

One crucial factor to consider when choosing between Harvard vs Lehigh is the size of the student body. Harvard has a much larger student population, with over 31,000 students enrolled, while Lehigh has a smaller student body of around 7,000. This can impact the overall campus culture and the level of individual attention and support you receive from faculty and staff.

Another factor to consider is the availability of research opportunities. Harvard is known for its extensive research programs and resources, with numerous research centers and institutes on campus.

Lehigh also offers research opportunities but on a smaller scale. If you are interested in pursuing research as part of your academic career, consider the resources available at each university.

When comparing Harvard and Lehigh, it’s clear that both universities offer exceptional academic programs, extracurricular opportunities, and support services.

Deciding which school you will attend between Harvard vs Lehigh ultimately depends on your personal goals, interests, and preferences. By understanding the key differences between these universities in terms of location, academics, student life, career opportunities, tuition fees, campus safety, and more, you can decide which university is the best fit for you.

AdmissionSight assists students in choosing between Harvard and Lehigh University by providing personalized guidance based on their academic goals and preferences. They offer comprehensive knowledge of both institutions, helping students evaluate the unique advantages of each university.

Furthermore, AdmissionSight’s expertise in college admissions equips students with the strategies and support needed to navigate the competitive application processes, increasing their chances of securing admission to either Harvard or Lehigh.


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