Ivy Day 2024: All You Need To Know

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Two students looking excited while staring at their computer

Are you ready for Ivy Day 2024? As the day when all eight Ivy League universities release their undergraduate admissions decisions approaches, excitement and anticipation are in the air. Students across the globe have poured their hearts into their applications, showcasing their dedication, talents, and aspirations.

Ivy Day marks a significant milestone in the lives of countless hopefuls as they eagerly await the outcome of their efforts. In this article, we will discuss important information about Ivy Day, what to expect, and how to prepare for this momentous occasion. So, buckle up and join us as we explore the anticipation surrounding Ivy Day 2024.

When is Ivy Day 2024?

Ivy Day usually occurs in late March or early April. In 2024, Ivy Day was scheduled for March 30, while it took place on March 31 in the previous year, 2022. Both in 2024 and the preceding year, the Ivy League universities experienced a record-breaking number of applications, reflecting their continued popularity among aspiring students.

However, what’s noteworthy in 2024 are the subtle shifts in the admissions process, particularly influenced by the post-pandemic educational landscape.

In response to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, many Ivy League schools have temporarily adjusted their standardized testing requirements, adopting test-optional policies. As the world gradually recovers, these institutions are reassessing their admission policies. Some have extended their test-optional policies for the 2024 admissions cycle, while others are moving back towards requiring standardized test scores. This divergence creates a unique dynamic for applicants as they navigate varying requirements across different schools.

The Ivy League Explained

The Ivy League, a term synonymous with academic prestige and exclusivity, is more than just a group of universities; it’s a symbol of educational excellence and historical significance. This esteemed consortium consists of eight private colleges in the northeastern region of the United States: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Brown, Dartmouth, the University of Pennsylvania, and Cornell. Initially formed as a collegiate athletic conference in the mid-20th century, the Ivy League has grown to represent much more than its sports origins suggest.

A Brief History

The history of the Ivy League is deeply intertwined with the early history of the United States. Several of these institutions, such as Harvard (established in 1636) and Yale (1701), predate the country’s founding. They were created to educate clergy and civic leaders in the new colonies. Over time, these schools expanded their curricula and grew in prestige, becoming the cornerstones of higher education in America. The term “Ivy League” itself is believed to have originated in the 1930s, reflecting the ivy-covered buildings symbolic of these historic campuses.

The Ivy League consists of eight prestigious institutions in the United States:

Brown University

Brown University, located in Providence, Rhode Island, is a private Ivy League research university founded in 1764. It is the seventh-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and one of the nine Colonial Colleges established before the American Revolution. Brown is renowned for its rigorous academics, cutting-edge research, and commitment to social responsibility.

Brown is unique among Ivy League schools because of its distinctive approach to education. It follows an open curriculum, also known as the Brown Curriculum, which allows students to design their academic journey flexibly.

Undergraduate students can choose from a wide range of courses without being restricted by core requirements or general education courses.

Columbia University

Columbia University, officially known as Columbia University in the City of New York, is a private Ivy League research university founded in 1754. It is located in New York City and is the fifth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States.

Originally founded as King’s College by a royal charter from King George II of England, the university was renamed Columbia College after the American Revolution and eventually became Columbia University in 1896.

Columbia University is known for its distinguished faculty, rigorous academics, and groundbreaking research. It is organized into 20 schools, including three undergraduate schools: Columbia College, the Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, and the School of General Studies. Columbia offers a wide range of academic programs and has a strong commitment to fostering interdisciplinary learning.

Cornell University

Cornell University is a private Ivy League research university founded in 1865 by Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White. It is located in Ithaca, New York, and is the youngest member of the Ivy League. With a mission to “discover, preserve, and disseminate knowledge” and a commitment to “public engagement,” Cornell is known for its diverse academic programs, cutting-edge research, and outstanding faculty.

Cornell is unique among Ivy League institutions because it consists of privately endowed colleges and state-supported statutory colleges, reflecting its dual mission as a private and a land-grant institution.

The university is organized into seven undergraduate colleges and seven graduate divisions, offering over 4,000 courses across 100 academic departments.

Dartmouth College

Dartmouth College, founded in 1769, is a private Ivy League research university in Hanover, New Hampshire. It is the ninth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and was established by Eleazar Wheelock, a Puritan minister, to educate Native Americans as well as English youth.

Today, Dartmouth is renowned for its dedication to undergraduate education, world-class research, and a strong sense of community.

Although it is referred to as a “college,” Dartmouth offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs. A liberal arts curriculum, with a focus on small class sizes and personalized attention from faculty, characterizes the undergraduate program.

Dartmouth’s graduate programs include the highly regarded Tuck School of Business, Geisel School of Medicine, Thayer School of Engineering, and Guarini School of Graduate and Advanced Studies.

Harvard University

Harvard University, founded in 1636, is a private Ivy League research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It is the oldest institution of higher education in the United States and has grown to become one of the world’s most prestigious and influential universities.

Harvard is renowned for its rigorous academics, extensive research facilities, distinguished faculty, and strong commitment to producing leaders in various fields.

Harvard comprises several schools and institutes, including the College, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and numerous professional schools such as Harvard Business School, Harvard Law School, Harvard Medical School, and Harvard Kennedy School of Government. The university offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs, fostering a diverse and intellectually stimulating academic environment.

University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania (often referred to as Penn) is a private Ivy League research university founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. It is located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and is one of the nine colonial colleges founded before the American Revolution. Penn is known for its strong emphasis on interdisciplinary learning, cutting-edge research, and professional education.

The university is organized into 12 schools, four of which offer undergraduate programs, while the remaining eight focus on graduate and professional education. The undergraduate schools include the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the School of Nursing, and the Wharton School.

The Wharton School, founded in 1881, is renowned as one of the world’s top business schools. It was the first collegiate business school in the United States offering undergraduate, MBA, and executive education programs.

Wharton is well-regarded for its emphasis on innovation, entrepreneurship, and global business perspectives.

Penn offers a wide range of academic programs, and students are encouraged to take courses across different schools, fostering a collaborative and interdisciplinary learning environment.

Princeton University

Princeton University, founded in 1746, is a private Ivy League research university in Princeton, New Jersey. It is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and is known for its commitment to excellence in teaching, rigorous academics, and groundbreaking research.

The university offers undergraduate and graduate programs in various fields, including humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering. Princeton is renowned for its strong focus on undergraduate education, with a liberal arts curriculum that encourages students to explore a wide range of subjects.

The undergraduate experience is characterized by small class sizes, personalized attention from faculty, and a rich array of academic and extracurricular opportunities.

Yale University

Yale University, founded in 1701, is a private Ivy League research university in New Haven, Connecticut. It is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and has a reputation for academic excellence, world-class research, and a strong commitment to the arts and humanities.

Yale is organized into 14 schools, including Yale College (the undergraduate program), the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and several professional schools, such as the Yale School of Medicine, Yale Law School, Yale School of Management, and Yale School of Drama.

The university offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs, fostering a diverse and intellectually stimulating academic environment.

These universities are known for their high academic standards, extensive resources, and strong alumni networks. Students devote their utmost effort and dedication to secure admission to these esteemed institutions.

Unique Characteristics

Several key characteristics distinguish Ivy League schools. Academically, they are known for their rigorous curriculums, world-renowned faculty, and significant research output. The small class sizes and low student-to-faculty ratios ensure a personalized and in-depth educational experience. Beyond academics, these institutions offer rich traditions, diverse student bodies, and extensive alumni networks that span the globe.

Another defining feature is their significant endowments, which allow for extensive resources, state-of-the-art facilities, and generous financial aid programs. This financial strength ensures they can offer need-blind admissions, making education accessible to students regardless of their financial background.

The Draw of the Ivy League

The allure of the Ivy League lies in its blend of prestige, academic rigor, and the opportunities it affords. Graduates of these institutions often become leaders in their respective fields, benefiting from the strong brand recognition and the extensive, influential alumni network. Employers and graduate schools frequently regard an Ivy League education as a mark of distinction, valuing the intellectual rigor and holistic development these schools are known for.

The competitive nature of admissions into these schools adds to their desirability. For many high-achieving students, gaining admission to an Ivy League college is seen as a validation of their hard work and talents and a gateway to future success.

Ivy Day 2024 – What’s New?

For aspiring students, Ivy Day is more than just a date on the calendar; it represents the culmination of years of hard work, dedication, and dreams. The hours leading up to the release of decisions are often filled with excitement, anxiety, and hope. The outcomes can be life-changing, opening doors to unparalleled educational opportunities, influential networks, and a transformative college experience.

What is Ivy Day?

Ivy Day is when all eight Ivy League universities simultaneously release their undergraduate admissions decisions. These institutions include Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, and Yale University. Ivy Day typically falls in late March or early April each year.

On Ivy Day, applicants who have applied for regular decision admission to one or more Ivy League schools receive their acceptance, rejection, or waitlist notifications.

It’s important to note that while Ivy League schools are well known for their academic excellence and resources, there are many other exceptional colleges and universities in the United States and around the world. Success in life is not determined solely by attending an Ivy League institution; numerous pathways exist to achieve your goals.

The History of Ivy Day

As mentioned, “Ivy League” originally referred to the athletic conference these schools were part of, established in the mid-20th century. Over time, the term has come to represent these institutions’ academic excellence, selectivity, and prestige.

While the specific origins of Ivy Day as an annual event are not well-documented, it has likely evolved as a result of the growing significance of college admissions decisions and the increasing competition for spots at these elite schools. The simultaneous release of decisions on Ivy Day generates anticipation and excitement among applicants and extensive media coverage.

This practice has become a defining moment for thousands of high school students who apply to these universities, eagerly awaiting to learn if they have been accepted. The term “Ivy” in Ivy Day symbolizes the ivy-covered buildings of these historic campuses, reflecting a tradition of educational prestige and longstanding excellence.

A student looking happy while reading something in her laptop.

Impact of Educational Trends and Global Events

Ivy Day 2024 is also influenced by shifting trends in higher education and global events. The pandemic accelerated the adoption of online learning and digital platforms, which has, in turn, impacted how prospective students interact with universities. Virtual campus tours, online interviews, and digital information sessions have become commonplace, expanding access to these institutions.

Moreover, the admissions process has increased focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion. Ivy League schools are actively seeking to diversify their student bodies, not just in terms of racial and socioeconomic backgrounds but also by considering a wider range of talents and experiences. This holistic approach to admissions is expected to be a defining feature of Ivy Day 2024 as schools strive to build diverse and dynamic incoming classes.

What to Expect for the Class of 2027

Ivy Day 2024 is a big event for students who have applied to Ivy League colleges. On this day, schools like Harvard, Yale, and Princeton will let students know if they have been accepted, waitlisted, or not accepted.

What Time Do Ivy Decisions Come Out?

The exact time when Ivy League admissions decisions are released can vary each year and may differ slightly among the schools. However, decisions are generally released late afternoon or early evening, often around 5:00 PM or 7:00 PM Eastern Time.

It’s important to check Ivy League universities’ official websites or social media platforms for specific information regarding a given admissions cycle’s release date and time.

On Ivy Day, applicants can log in to the university’s online admissions portal to view their decisions. Students will be notified whether they have been accepted, rejected, or waitlisted. Keep in mind that the exact time may vary, so it’s essential to stay informed and be prepared for possible changes.

Ivy Day 2024 Acceptance Rate

Ivy Day 2024 has come and gone, leaving a trail of excitement and disappointment. As high school students across the world waited with bated breath, the prestigious Ivy League institutions unveiled their admissions decisions, closing the chapter on yet another highly competitive application season. The data from this year’s regular decision admissions illustrates the intense selectivity and fierce competition for a spot in these esteemed universities.

Ivy Day 2024 Admissions Data

School Name

Regular Decision Applicants Regular Decision Accepted

Regular Decision Acceptance Rate

Brown University 44,532 1,730 3.88%
Columbia University 51,391 1,600 3%
Cornell University NYP 3,324 NYP
Dartmouth College 25,832 1,173 4.54%
Harvard University 47,384 1,220 2.34%
Princeton University NYP NYP NYP
University of Pennsylvania NYP NYP NYP
Yale University 44,506 1,433 3.22%

Note: NYP= not yet published

The figures released show a remarkable trend of low acceptance rates across the board, a testament to the Ivy League’s reputation for exclusivity:

  • Brown University received an overwhelming 44,532 regular decision applications, with only 1,730 students gaining acceptance. This results in a 3.88% acceptance rate, highlighting the school’s highly selective nature.
  • Columbia University proved even more selective, with 51,391 applicants and only 1,600 acceptances, translating to an acceptance rate of 3%.
  • Cornell University, Princeton University, and the University of Pennsylvania have not yet published their data.
  • Dartmouth College saw 25,832 students vie for a place, with 1,173 successful candidates, resulting in a 4.54% acceptance rate. Dartmouth’s slightly higher rate may reflect program-specific demands or a variation in the applicant pool.
  • Harvard University maintained its position as one of the most difficult to enter, with a mere 2.34% of applicants — 1,220 out of 47,384 — receiving the coveted acceptance letter.
  • Yale University accepted 1,433 out of 44,506 regular decision applicants, culminating in a 3.22% acceptance rate.

These statistics reinforce the common understanding that admission to an Ivy League school is exceptionally challenging. The numbers reflect the caliber of students applying and the limited number of spots available. With such a small percentage of applicants accepted, the Ivy League continues to stand as a bastion of academic excellence and selectivity. It’s also a clear signal that these schools prioritize maintaining an intimate educational environment, despite growing applicant pools.

Why Do a Lot of Students Apply to Ivy League Schools?

A lot of students apply to Ivy League schools for various reasons, including their reputation for academic excellence, distinguished faculty, extensive resources, and prestigious alumni networks.

a group of college students walking forward

Here are some key factors that contribute to the appeal of Ivy League institutions:

  • Academic Excellence: Ivy League universities are renowned for their rigorous academic programs and commitment to scholarly achievement. They consistently rank among the top institutions in national and international rankings, further enhancing their reputation for academic excellence.
  • Prestigious Faculty: These universities attract world-class faculty members who are experts in their fields, often including Nobel laureates, Pulitzer Prize winners, and other distinguished scholars. Students have the opportunity to learn from and work with these accomplished academics, which can be an enriching and inspiring experience.
  • Research Opportunities: Ivy League institutions are known for their cutting-edge research across various disciplines. Students have access to state-of-the-art facilities, funding, and support to engage in research projects, which can enhance their academic experience and prepare them for future careers or graduate studies.
  • Selectivity: Ivy League schools admit only a small percentage of applicants each year due to their highly competitive admissions process. This selectivity is often seen as an indicator of the quality of education and the caliber of students attending these institutions.
  • Resources and Facilities: Ivy League universities typically have vast financial endowments, which allows them to provide extensive resources, facilities, and support services for their students. This includes state-of-the-art libraries, laboratories, classrooms, and recreational facilities.
  • Alumni Network: Graduates from Ivy League schools often become leaders in various fields, including politics, business, academia, and the arts. As a result, these institutions have strong and influential alumni networks that can provide valuable connections, mentorship, and career opportunities for current students and fellow alumni.
  • Prestige and Reputation: Attending an Ivy League school is often seen as a mark of distinction and can be a valuable asset when applying for jobs, internships, or graduate programs. Employers and graduate schools may view an Ivy League education as an indicator of strong academic and personal capabilities.

Ultimately, the best choice for a student will depend on their individual needs, goals, and preferences. Gaining admission to an Ivy League institution is a highly competitive process, and securing an acceptance letter on Ivy Day 2024 is a noteworthy accomplishment.

What to Do After the Ivy Day 2024?

Following the exhilaration of Ivy Day 2024, you might encounter various emotions depending on the results of your applications. Regardless of the results of Ivy Day 2024, there are several steps you should take to move forward:

Celebrate or commiserate: If you’ve been accepted to one or more Ivy League schools, celebrate your achievement with friends and family. If you didn’t receive the news you were hoping for, allow yourself to feel disappointed, but remember that there are many great colleges and universities where you can thrive and succeed.

Three students looking happy

Review your options: Carefully consider all the schools where you’ve been accepted, including non-Ivy League institutions. Evaluate each school based on academic programs, location, campus culture, financial aid packages, and career opportunities.

Visit campuses (if possible): If you haven’t already done so, consider visiting the campuses of the schools where you were accepted. This can help you better understand the atmosphere and determine if it fits you well. If in-person visits aren’t possible, explore virtual campus tours and attend online events to learn more about each institution.

Group Of Multicultural First-Year Students Walking Near University Building Outside.

Seek advice: Talk to trusted individuals like family members, teachers, college counselors, or friends who may have insight into the schools you’re considering. Their perspectives can help you make a more informed decision.

Compare financial aid packages: Review the financial aid offers from each school and compare them to determine which one best suits your financial needs. Contact the financial aid office to negotiate or ask for additional assistance.

Female student explaining something to her classmate.

Make a decision: After evaluating all your options, make a decision about which school to attend. Keep in mind the deadlines for accepting admission offers and submitting enrollment deposits, which may vary by school.

Notify schools: Inform the schools you’ve chosen not to attend that you’re declining their offers. This helps them manage their enrollment and may open spots for other students on their waitlists.

Prepare for your future: Once you’ve decided on a college or university, start preparing for the transition. This may involve finding housing, registering for classes, and connecting with future classmates through social media or online forums.

Decoding Admission Decisions

Ivy Day unveils three possible outcomes for applicants: acceptance, waitlist, and rejection. Each carries different implications and necessitates distinct next steps.

What to Do If You’re Accepted, Waitlisted, or Rejected?

In the aftermath of Ivy Day 2024, should you receive an acceptance, waitlist, or rejection decision from a college or university, it’s crucial to understand the significance of each outcome and respond accordingly.


The golden ticket. If you’re accepted, congratulations—you’ve surmounted a significant hurdle. What this means is that the institution believes you are a perfect fit for their community and academic programs.

  1. Celebrate your accomplishment.
  2. Review the school’s academic programs, location, campus culture, financial aid packages, and career opportunities.
  3. Consider visiting the campus or attending virtual events to better understand the school.
  4. Compare the school with other institutions where you’ve been accepted.
  5. Make a decision and notify the school by the deadline, usually by submitting an enrollment deposit.


Being waitlisted is a complex outcome—it’s not a yes, but it’s also not a no. It means the school sees potential in you but doesn’t have an immediate spot available. If you’re waitlisted and still keen on attending the school, take action.

  1. Understand that being waitlisted means the school is still considering your application, and you may be offered admission if spots become available.
  2. Decide whether you want to remain on the waitlist. If so, follow the school’s instructions to confirm your spot.
  3. Send any updates or additional information that could strengthen your application, such as new test scores, extracurricular achievements, or a letter of continued interest.
  4. Continue evaluating and committing to one of the schools where you’ve been accepted, as there’s no guarantee of admission from the waitlist.
  5. If you’re eventually accepted off the waitlist, reevaluate your options and make a decision.


A closed door, but not the end of the road. If you’re rejected, it’s natural to feel disappointed. However, it’s crucial to recognize that this doesn’t reflect your personal or academic worth; it’s simply an outcome of a highly competitive process with limited space.

  1. Allow yourself to feel disappointed but remember that a college’s decision does not define your worth.
  2. Focus on the schools where you’ve been accepted and evaluate them based on various factors, such as academic programs, location, campus culture, financial aid packages, and career opportunities.
  3. If you believe there was a significant error in your application or a misunderstanding, consider contacting the admissions office to inquire about the decision; however, most decisions are final, and appeals are rarely successful.
  4. If you’re not satisfied with any of your acceptances, you may explore other options, such as taking a gap year, attending a community college, or reapplying to schools in the next admissions cycle.

No matter the decision, applicants should approach the outcome with a forward-thinking mindset. Each decision opens different paths, and it’s up to the student to take the next steps with confidence and optimism.

Final Thoughts

Ivy Day is a defining moment for many high school seniors—a culmination of years of effort and aspirations. The key takeaways from this momentous occasion are preparation, both emotional and practical, and understanding the outcomes. Whether accepted, waitlisted, or faced with rejection, remember that this is just one step in a larger journey. Success comes in many forms and often from the most unexpected places.

To all prospective students, know that the decisions on Ivy Day do not limit your potential. Your ambition, dedication, and resilience are the true indicators of your future success.

AdmissionSight is Here for You

Now that Ivy Day 2024 is over, students have their answers. Whether you got in or not, be proud of yourself for all your hard work. Remember, you don’t have to go to an Ivy League school to do great things. As you start this next part of your school life, keep going after what you want with all the energy you’ve shown.

At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process to get accepted to the top universities in the world. On average, 75% of our students are admitted to an Ivy League university, Stanford, MIT, UChicago, and Caltech, one of the highest track records in the industry. Feel free to set up an appointment today to book your initial consultation.



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