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Lehigh and Boston University: A Comprehensive Analysis

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

guy in plaid shirt contemplating with pen and notebook

Lehigh and Boston University: A Comprehensive Analysis

If you’re a high school senior or a parent helping your child with the college search process, two universities worth considering are Lehigh and Boston University.

Both schools have their respective strengths and weaknesses, and it is important to take a comprehensive look at each one in order to determine which school is the best fit.

In this article, we will take a deep dive into both Lehigh and Boston University to provide you with a comprehensive analysis.

Introduction: Why Compare Lehigh and Boston University?

Lehigh and Boston University are both highly esteemed universities that attract students from all over the world. But how do they compare head-to-head? Why should one consider these two schools against each other? The answer is simple – both schools offer excellent academics, diversity, and a wide array of extracurricular activities, making them both highly appealing to prospective students. However, they also have unique differences that will undoubtedly influence the decision-making process. Let’s dive in and take a closer look at these differences.

One major difference between Lehigh and Boston University is their location. Lehigh is located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, a small town with a tight-knit community.

Group of students working together and talking.

On the other hand, Boston University is located in the heart of Boston, Massachusetts, a bustling city with endless opportunities for exploration and adventure. This difference in location can greatly impact a student’s college experience, as it can affect the types of activities and events available to them outside of the classroom.

Location and Campus Environment: Differences and Similarities

The location and campus environment of a school plays a significant role in determining the overall experience that students will have. Lehigh is located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania – a small suburban town that is home to around 75,000 people.

The campus is situated on a hill overlooking the town and the surrounding scenic views. On the other hand, Boston University is located in Boston, Massachusetts – a bustling city with a population of over 600,000. The campus is located in the heart of the city, surrounded by numerous restaurants, shops, and cultural attractions.

Despite the stark differences in location, both schools offer a vibrant campus life. Lehigh’s campus is known for its beautiful green spaces and historic buildings, while Boston University’s urban campus provides students with quick access to cultural events and city life.

Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference – those who prefer a quieter, more suburban environment might favor Lehigh, while those who thrive in the hustle and bustle of city life may prefer Boston University.

Tuition and Financial Aid: Which is More Affordable?

When it comes to finances, the cost of tuition and the availability of financial aid are important factors to consider. The tuition at Lehigh is $57,145 per year, while Boston University’s tuition comes in at $58,216 per year.

Group of students walking in the campus.

Both schools are considered to be on the more expensive side, but don’t let that deter you – they both offer substantial financial aid packages to those who qualify. Lehigh, for example, guarantees to meet 100% of demonstrated financial need, and Boston University offers need-based and merit-based aid.

It’s important to note that the total cost of attendance includes more than just tuition – it also includes room and board, textbooks, and other expenses. On average, the cost of attendance at Lehigh is around $73,370, while the cost of attendance at Boston University is around $77,308.

However, both schools also offer a variety of scholarship opportunities, work-study programs, and other forms of financial assistance that can help reduce the overall cost of attendance.

Academic Programs: Areas of Excellence and Weaknesses

When it comes to academics, both schools have a lot to offer. Lehigh is known for its engineering and business programs, while Boston University is known for its strong programs in the humanities, social sciences, and communications.

The two schools also offer different paths for study – Lehigh is a small, liberal arts-focused school with around 4,800 undergraduate students, while Boston University is a larger, more research-oriented university with around 18,000 undergraduate students.

Both schools offer a variety of majors and minors, and students can expect to receive a well-rounded education at either institution. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference and career goals when deciding which school will provide the best academic experience.

However, it is important to note that both schools have their areas of weakness as well. Lehigh, for example, may not have as strong of a program in the arts or humanities compared to Boston University.

On the other hand, Boston University may not have as strong of a program in engineering or business compared to Lehigh. It is important for students to research and consider their specific academic interests and goals when making a decision between these two schools.

Student Life: Social Scene, Clubs, and Extracurricular Activities

In addition to academics, student life is an important factor to consider. At Lehigh, students can expect a close-knit community with a strong Greek life presence, while Boston University offers a more diverse range of extracurricular activities and clubs.

Lehigh has over 150 student organizations, including club sports, performing arts groups, and community service organizations. Sports are also an important part of campus life at Lehigh – the school competes in NCAA Division I athletics and has a strong rivalry with nearby Lafayette College.

Boston University has even more student organizations, with over 450 clubs and organizations to choose from. Whether it’s political activism, community service, or intramural sports, there’s something for everyone.

Sports are also important at Boston University – the school competes in NCAA Division I athletics and has several notable teams, including men’s ice hockey and women’s rowing.

Both Lehigh and Boston University offer a vibrant social scene, with plenty of opportunities for students to connect with one another. Lehigh’s Greek life presence is particularly strong, with over 30 fraternities and sororities on campus.

Boston University, on the other hand, has a more diverse range of social activities, including cultural events, concerts, and festivals. No matter which school you choose, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to make new friends and explore your interests outside of the classroom.

Faculty and Teaching Quality: Reputation, Credentials, and Teaching Styles

The quality of the faculty and teaching standards are another important factor to consider. At Lehigh, faculty members are well-regarded and have a strong emphasis on undergraduate education. Boston University also has a strong faculty, many of whom are highly respected experts in their respective fields.

Female teacher talking to her students.

Lehigh offers small class sizes and encourages a close relationship between students and professors, while Boston University has a more traditional large university model. At both schools, students can expect to receive a high-quality education, but it ultimately comes down to personal preference when it comes to the teaching style and classroom environment.

Another important aspect to consider when evaluating faculty and teaching quality is the level of diversity among the faculty. Lehigh has made strides in recent years to increase diversity among its faculty, but there is still room for improvement. Boston University has a more diverse faculty, with a higher percentage of women and people of color in teaching positions.

In addition to diversity, it is also important to consider the level of support and resources available to faculty members. Lehigh has a strong emphasis on providing professional development opportunities for its faculty, while Boston University offers a wide range of research and funding opportunities. These resources can have a significant impact on the quality of teaching and research conducted by faculty members.

Research Opportunities: Funding, Grants, and Partnerships

Research opportunities are important for students who are interested in pursuing graduate studies or a career in academia. At Lehigh, the school offers generous funding for research projects, and students are encouraged to engage in research early in their academic careers.

Boston University is also highly research-oriented and has numerous partnerships with businesses and research institutions in the surrounding Boston area.

Both schools offer ample opportunities for undergraduate research, internships, and other experiential learning opportunities that can help students gain hands-on experience in their field of choice.

Additionally, Lehigh University has a dedicated Office of Research and Sponsored Programs that assists students and faculty in securing external funding for research projects. The office provides resources and guidance on grant applications, budgeting, and compliance with regulations. Boston University also has a similar office, the Office of Sponsored Programs, which offers support for grant applications and manages partnerships with external organizations.

Career Services: Internships, Job Placement, and Alumni Network

Career services are important for students who are looking to gain professional experience and secure job opportunities after graduation. Both Lehigh and Boston University have strong career services programs that offer assistance with job searches, resume writing, internships, and other career-related activities.

a young man shakes someone's hand after being interviewed

Lehigh has a strong alumni network that can provide valuable connections and job opportunities for graduates, while Boston University has a well-established reputation and strong industry connections in the Boston area.

Additionally, both universities offer internship programs that allow students to gain hands-on experience in their field of study. Lehigh’s internship program offers opportunities with local and national companies, while Boston University’s program has partnerships with top companies in the Boston area.

Diversity and Inclusion: Student Body Demographics and Policies

Diversity and inclusion are important factors to consider when choosing a school. Lehigh has a student body that is around 75% white, while Boston University has a more diverse student body with around 30% of students identifying as non-white.

Both schools have implemented policies and initiatives to promote diversity and inclusion on campus, such as cultural events, affinity groups, and training programs for faculty and staff.

It is important to note that diversity and inclusion go beyond just racial demographics. Both Lehigh and Boston University have also made efforts to support students from different socioeconomic backgrounds, LGBTQ+ students, and students with disabilities.

For example, Lehigh offers a program called the First Generation Initiative, which provides resources and support for students who are the first in their families to attend college. Boston University has a Center for Gender, Sexuality, and Activism, which hosts events and provides resources for LGBTQ+ students.

Athletics: Sports Teams, Facilities, and Fan Culture

If you’re a sports fan, the athletic programs and facilities may be an important factor to consider. Lehigh has a strong athletic program, with 23 varsity sports teams that compete in NCAA Division I. The football team is particularly notable – the annual game against Lafayette College is one of the longest-running and most significant rivalries in college football.

Boston University also has a strong athletic program, with 24 varsity sports teams that compete in NCAA Division I. The hockey team is particularly notable – the men’s team has won five national championships, while the women’s team has won four.

The facilities at both schools are state-of-the-art, with extensive resources for student-athletes. In terms of fan culture, both schools have passionate and dedicated fanbases that turn out for sporting events and student activities throughout the year.

Additionally, both Lehigh and Boston University offer opportunities for students to get involved in sports beyond varsity teams. Intramural sports are popular at both schools, with a variety of options available for students of all skill levels. Club sports are also available, providing a chance for students to compete against other colleges and universities in a more casual setting. These opportunities allow students to stay active and engaged in sports, even if they are not on a varsity team.

Admissions Process: Requirements, Deadlines, and Acceptance Rates

Finally, the admissions process is an important factor to consider. Both Lehigh and Boston University are selective schools, with an acceptance rate of around 25%. The admissions process includes a review of grades, test scores, extracurricular activities, and essays.

Close up of students smiling at the camera.

It’s important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to the admissions process – each school has its own requirements and deadlines. It’s important to do your research and understand the individual requirements for each school before applying.

Additionally, some schools may require interviews or letters of recommendation as part of their admissions process. It’s important to check with each school to see if these are required and to plan accordingly.

Another important aspect of the admissions process is understanding the timeline. Many schools have early decision or early action deadlines, which can impact your chances of acceptance. It’s important to plan ahead and make sure you are aware of all deadlines and requirements for each school you are applying to.

Conclusion: Which School is the Better Fit for You?

So, which school should you choose – Lehigh or Boston University? There is no definitive answer – each student will have their own individual needs and priorities when it comes to choosing a school. It’s important to consider all of the factors listed above, and then weigh them against your own priorities and goals.

Ultimately, both Lehigh and Boston University offer excellent academic programs, diverse communities, and a wide array of extracurricular activities. By taking the time to thoroughly research and compare these two schools, you can make an informed decision and choose the school that is the best fit for you.

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