Williams vs Scripps: Which College is Right for You?

By Eric Eng

By Eric Eng

Two students talking to each other.

Williams vs Scripps: Which College is Right for You?

Choosing a college can be an overwhelming decision. There are so many factors to consider such as academic programs, location, campus size, affordability, and extracurricular activities. In this article, we will compare two prestigious colleges, Williams vs Scripps, to help you determine which one is right for you.

Academic Programs: What Williams vs Scripps Offer

Williams College, located in Massachusetts, is known for its strong liberal arts program. It offers over 50 majors, including popular options such as economics, political science, and English. Williams also has a unique program called Experiential Education, which allows students to participate in internships and other hands-on experiences related to their major.

Scripps College, located in California, also has a strong liberal arts program but is known for its particularly strong programs in humanities and social sciences. Scripps is one of the few colleges that offers a major in feminist, gender, and sexuality studies. It also has a joint program with Claremont McKenna and Pitzer Colleges called the Claremont Colleges Consortium, which allows students to take classes at any of the three colleges.

Liberal arts carved into a stone window

Aside from its strong liberal arts program, Williams College also offers a variety of research opportunities for its students. The college has several research centers, including the Williams College Center for Development Economics and the Williams College Center for Environmental Studies. These centers provide students with the opportunity to conduct research alongside faculty members and gain valuable experience in their field of study.

At Scripps College, students have access to a variety of unique academic programs, including the Core Curriculum in Interdisciplinary Humanities. This program allows students to explore the humanities through a variety of lenses, including literature, philosophy, and art history. Scripps also offers a program called the Laspa Center for Leadership, which provides students with leadership training and opportunities to engage in community service and social justice initiatives.

Location Matters: Campus Environment and Surrounding Area

Williams College is located in a small, picturesque town in the Berkshire Mountains. The campus is surrounded by nature, with hiking trails and ski slopes nearby. The town offers a quaint New England feel, with quaint shops and restaurants. It is perfect for students who love the outdoors and a close-knit community.

Scripps College, on the other hand, is located in Claremont, California, which is about 30 minutes from Los Angeles. The campus is surrounded by palm trees and has a Mediterranean feel. Claremont is a charming town with a vibrant arts and culture scene and numerous restaurants and shops.

One unique aspect of Williams College’s location is its proximity to cultural institutions such as the Clark Art Institute and the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art. These museums offer students the opportunity to engage with art and culture beyond the campus community. Additionally, the town of Williamstown hosts the Williamstown Theatre Festival every summer, which brings in renowned actors and playwrights to perform and teach workshops.

Campus Size and Student Body: A Closer Look at Williams vs Scripps

Williams College has a small student body of approximately 2,000 students. The student-to-faculty ratio is 7:1, which means students receive individualized attention from professors. The campus is also relatively small, which provides a close-knit community feeling.

Scripps College has a slightly larger student body of approximately 1,000 students. The student-to-faculty ratio is 10:1, which is still a relatively small ratio. The campus is also small and has a tight-knit community feel.

Despite their small sizes, both Williams and Scripps offer a wide range of academic programs and extracurricular activities. Williams College has over 40 majors and offers study-abroad programs in over 60 countries. Scripps College has over 50 majors and minors and offers a unique Core Curriculum that emphasizes interdisciplinary learning.

Both colleges also have beautiful campuses with stunning architecture and natural surroundings. Williams College is located in the Berkshire Mountains of western Massachusetts, while Scripps College is located in the heart of Claremont, California, surrounded by the San Gabriel Mountains. Both campuses offer a variety of outdoor recreational activities, such as hiking, skiing, and biking.

Affordability: Tuition Costs, Financial Aid, Scholarships, and Work-Study Options at Williams vs Scripps

Williams College and Scripps College are both expensive private colleges with high tuition costs. However, they both offer generous financial aid packages to help offset the cost. Williams has a no-loan policy, which means students do not have to take out loans to pay for college. Scripps offers merit-based scholarships and need-based grants to students.

Both colleges also offer work-study programs to help students cover the cost of tuition. Williams offers a variety of on-campus jobs, while Scripps offers both on-campus and off-campus employment opportunities.

Scholarship document, admission paper or letter on table.

Additionally, Williams College and Scripps College have resources available to help students manage their finances. Williams offers financial literacy workshops and one-on-one financial counseling sessions to help students make informed decisions about their money. Scripps has a student-run Financial Literacy Club that provides resources and support to students.

Furthermore, both colleges have partnerships with outside organizations to provide additional financial support to students. Williams has partnerships with organizations such as QuestBridge and the Posse Foundation, while Scripps has partnerships with organizations such as the Gates Millennium Scholars Program and the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation.

Athletics and Sports: Opportunities for Student-Athletes at Williams vs Scripps

Williams College has a strong athletic program, with 32 varsity sports teams and several intramural sports teams. It is a member of the NCAA Division III and has won over 80 NCAA championships in various sports.

Scripps College has a smaller athletic program and offers 11 varsity sports teams and several intramural sports teams. It is also a member of the NCAA Division III.

Despite the difference in the size of their athletic programs, both Williams and Scripps offer excellent opportunities for student-athletes to excel in their chosen sports. Both colleges have state-of-the-art athletic facilities, including gyms, fields, and courts, that are available for use by all students.

Additionally, both colleges prioritize the academic success of their student-athletes. They provide academic support services, such as tutoring and study halls, to ensure that student-athletes are able to balance their athletic and academic commitments.

Diversity and Inclusion: How Both Colleges Embrace Different Perspectives

Both Williams and Scripps are committed to diversity and inclusion. Williams has several programs that promote diversity, such as the Minority Coalition, which is an umbrella organization for affinity groups and multicultural organizations. It also has a program called Davis Center, which offers programming and resources for students of color and provides a safe space for all students to engage in conversations about diversity.

Scripps also has several programs that promote diversity, such as the Motley Coffeehouse, which is a student-run space that promotes dialogue around social justice issues. It also has a program called the Office of Black Student Affairs, which provides programming and support for Black students and promotes Black culture on campus.

Additionally, both colleges have taken steps to ensure that their faculty and staff reflect the diversity of their student body. Williams has a Faculty-Staff Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, which works to recruit and retain diverse faculty and staff members. Scripps has a similar committee called the Diversity and Inclusivity Committee, which focuses on creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all members of the community.

Admission Requirements: How to Apply to Williams or Scripps

Williams College and Scripps College have similar admission requirements. Both colleges require the Common Application, high school transcripts, essays, and letters of recommendation. Williams also requires standardized test scores, while Scripps has an optional test-optional policy.

Additionally, both Williams and Scripps value extracurricular activities and community involvement in their admissions process. They encourage applicants to showcase their passions and interests outside of academics. Williams also offers an Early Decision option for students who are certain that Williams is their top choice, while Scripps offers an Early Action option for students who want to receive an admissions decision earlier in the process.

Research Opportunities at Both Colleges

Both Williams and Scripps offer research opportunities to students. Williams has a program called Summer Science Research, which allows students to conduct research with faculty mentors. Scripps has a program called SURF, which stands for Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, which allows students to work on independent research projects.

In addition to these summer research programs, both colleges also offer research opportunities during the academic year. Williams has a program called Winter Study, which is a month-long period in January where students can take intensive courses or participate in research projects. Scripps has a program called Keck Science Department, which allows students to conduct research in collaboration with faculty members from the Claremont Colleges Consortium.

Furthermore, both colleges have research centers and institutes that provide resources and support for students interested in research. Williams has the Williams College Center for Development Economics, which conducts research on economic development in low-income countries. Scripps has the W.M. Keck Science Institute, which is a collaborative research center between Scripps, Claremont McKenna, and Pitzer Colleges, and focuses on interdisciplinary research in the natural sciences.

Faculty Profiles & Student-Teacher Ratio Analysis of both colleges

Both colleges have a relatively small student-teacher ratio, which means students receive personalized attention from faculty members. Williams has a student-teacher ratio of 7:1, while Scripps has a student-teacher ratio of 10:1. Both colleges have renowned faculty members who are experts in their fields.

A student paying attention to lecture in classroom.

Additionally, Williams College has a faculty of 340 members, with 98% of them holding a Ph.D. or equivalent degree. The faculty members at Williams are not only experts in their field but they are also dedicated to teaching and mentoring students. Scripps College, on the other hand, has a faculty of 110 members, with a student-faculty ratio of 10:1. The faculty members at Scripps are known for their commitment to interdisciplinary teaching and research, which allows students to explore various fields of study.

Campus Culture & Student Organizations

Both Williams and Scripps have a vibrant campus culture filled with student organizations. Williams has over 150 student clubs and organizations, including a dance club, a debate team, and an environmental club. Scripps has over 50 student clubs and organizations, including an a cappella choir, a sustainability club, and a feminist organization.

Additionally, both colleges have a strong emphasis on community service and social justice. Williams has a Center for Learning in Action, which connects students with local organizations for volunteer work and community engagement. Scripps has a Community Engagement Office, which offers opportunities for students to get involved in social justice initiatives and community service projects.

Furthermore, both colleges have a rich tradition of student-led activism and advocacy. Williams has a long history of student activism, including protests against apartheid and divestment from fossil fuels. Scripps has a strong feminist tradition, with a Women’s Union that has been active since the 1970s and a Women’s Resource Center that provides support and resources for students.

Extracurricular Activities Unique to Each College

Williams College has several extracurricular activities that are unique to the college, such as the Williams Outing Club, which organizes outdoor activities such as hiking and skiing. It also has a student-run farm that promotes sustainable agriculture practices.

Scripps College has several extracurricular activities that are unique to the college, such as the Scripps College Press, which is a student-run letterpress studio that produces limited-edition books.

a director coaching actors for their performance

Another unique extracurricular activity at Williams College is the Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives, which promotes sustainability and environmental awareness on campus through various programs and events. The college also has a student-run radio station, called WCFM, which broadcasts music, news, and talk shows.

At Scripps College, students can participate in the Scripps College Academy, which is a college access program that provides academic and personal support to high-achieving high school students from low-income backgrounds. The college also has a student-run art gallery, called the Ruth Chandler Williamson Gallery, which showcases exhibitions of contemporary and historical art.


Choosing between Williams vs Scripps ultimately comes down to personal preference and priorities. Both colleges offer a rigorous liberal arts education, a strong focus on individualized attention, and numerous extracurricular opportunities. Whether you prefer a small-town feel or a sunny California campus, both colleges have something unique to offer.

Want to learn more about comparing Williams with other top and well-known Universities and Colleges in the country? You’ve come to the right place. At AdmissionSight, we have over 10 years of experience guiding students through the competitive admissions process.

AdmissionSight can help you put your best foot forward when applying to college this fall. Contact us today for more information on our services.


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