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Top Universities in America

Top 10 Universities in America
Princeton Universit
Overview
Princeton University is a private institution that was founded in 1746. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 5,394, its setting is suburban, and the campus size is 600 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Princeton University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 1. Its tuition and fees are $47,140 (2018-19).

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Princeton, among the oldest colleges in the U.S., is located in the quiet town of Princeton, New Jersey. Within the walls of its historic ivy-covered campus, Princeton offers a number of events, activities and organizations. The Princeton Tigers, members of the Ivy League, are well known for their consistently strong men's and women's lacrosse teams. Students live in one of six residential colleges that provide a residential community as well as dining services but have the option to join one of more than 10 eating clubs for their junior and senior years. The eating clubs serve as social and dining organizations for the students who join them. Princeton's unofficial motto, "Princeton in the Nation's Service and the Service of Humanity," speaks to the university's commitment to community service.


Princeton includes highly ranked graduate programs through the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and School of Engineering and Applied Science. One unique aspect of Princeton's academic program is that undergraduate students are required to write a senior thesis, or for students in some engineering departments, take on an independent project. Notable alumni include U.S. President Woodrow Wilson, model/actress Brooke Shields and former first lady Michelle Obama. According to Princeton legend, if a student exits campus through FitzRandolph Gate prior to graduation, he or she may be cursed never to graduate.


Harvard University
Overview
Harvard University is a private institution that was founded in 1636. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,766, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 5,076 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Harvard University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 2. Its tuition and fees are $50,420 (2018-19).


Located outside Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard is made up of 13 schools and institutes, including the top-ranked Business School and Medical School and the highly ranked Graduate Education School, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Law School and John F. Kennedy School of Government. Harvard's extensive library system houses the oldest collection in the U.S. and the largest private collection in the world. Beyond books, Harvard's athletic teams compete in the Ivy League, with an annual football matchup against rival Yale. On-campus residential housing is an integral part of student life, where freshmen live at the center of campus and upperclassmen live in 12 undergraduate houses. Eight U.S. presidents graduated from Harvard, including Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy. Other notable alumni include Henry David Thoreau and Helen Keller. Harvard also has the largest endowment of any school in the world.


Columbia University
Overview
Columbia University is a private institution that was founded in 1754. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,162, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 36 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Columbia University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 3. Its tuition and fees are $59,430 (2018-19).


Located in New York City, Columbia is comprised of three undergraduate schools – Columbia College, The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science and the School of General Studies – as well as a number of graduate and professional schools, including the highly ranked Business School, Teachers College, Law School and College of Physicians and Surgeons. The university also has a well-regarded College of Dental Medicine and graduate Journalism School. Columbia offers a wide range of student activities, including about 25 Greek chapters, and more than 90 percent of students live on campus. Columbia is affiliated with Barnard College for women, the Union Theological Seminary and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Distinguished alumni include John Jay, founding father and first Supreme Court chief justice, and former President Barack Obama. Columbia also administers the Pulitzer Prizes.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Overview
Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a private institution that was founded in 1861. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 4,547, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 166 acres. It utilizes a 4-1-4-based academic calendar. Massachusetts Institute of Technology's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 3. Its tuition and fees are $51,832 (2018-19).


Located outside Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts, MIT focuses on scientific and technological research and is divided into five schools. University research expenditures have exceeded $700 million a year, with funding from government agencies such as the Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Defense. MIT’s highly ranked graduate schools include the School of Engineering and Sloan School of Management, in addition to strong programs in economics, psychology, biology, chemistry, earth sciences, physics and mathematics. Freshmen are required to live on campus, and about 70 percent of all undergraduates live on campus. Architect Steven Holl designed one dorm, commonly called "The Sponge." The Independent Activities Program, a four-week term in January, offers special courses, lectures, competitions and projects. Distinguished alumni include Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan and former Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Ben Bernanke.


University of Chicago
Overview
University of Chicago is a private institution that was founded in 1890. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,264, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 217 acres. It utilizes a quarter-based academic calendar. University of Chicago's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 3. Its tuition and fees are $57,006 (2018-19).

The University of Chicago, situated in Hyde Park, offers a rich campus life in a big-city setting. In addition to the college, the university has postgraduate offerings that include the highly ranked Booth School of Business, Law School, Pritzker School of Medicine and Harris School of Public Policy Studies. The Chicago Maroons have more than 15 NCAA Division III teams, which compete in the University Athletic Association, and have strong basketball and wrestling programs. Freshmen are required to live on campus, and more than 50 percent of upperclassmen choose to remain on campus. On-campus students are placed in "houses" within their dorm, which serve as tight-knit communities and provide academic and social support. The university offers more than 400 student organizations.



Yale University
Overview
Yale University is a private institution that was founded in 1701. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 5,746, its setting is city, and the campus size is 345 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Yale University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 3. Its tuition and fees are $53,430 (2018-19).



Yale University, located in New Haven, Connecticut, is known for its excellent drama and music programs, which reach outside the classroom with student organizations such as the Yale Whiffenpoofs, a famous a cappella group, and the Yale Dramatic Association. The Yale Bulldogs compete in the Ivy League and are well known for their rivalry with Harvard. Students are assigned to live in one of 14 residential colleges during their time at Yale. Each college has a head and dean who live in the college and eat with students in the dining halls. Cultural centers provide a space for students to build a sense of cultural identity on campus.
Yale is made up of the College, the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and 12 professional schools. Included in the professional schools are the top-ranked Law School and highly ranked School of Management, School of Medicine , School of Art and School of Nursing. The School of Drama, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and Divinity School are also well-regarded graduate programs. The Yale Record is the oldest college humor magazine in the nation. Dwight Hall is an independent umbrella organization that fosters student service and activism in the New Haven community and beyond. Yale is well known for its secret societies, the most famous of which are the Skull and Bones Society, which boasts members such as George W. Bush and John Kerry, and the Scroll and Key Society. Distinguished Yale alumni include actress Meryl Streep, Washington Post reporter Bob Woodward and actor Edward Norton.
Stanford University
Overview
Stanford University is a private institution that was founded in 1885. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 7,062, its setting is suburban, and the campus size is 8,180 acres. It utilizes a quarter-based academic calendar. Stanford University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 7. Its tuition and fees are $51,354 (2018-19).
Stanford University’s pristine campus is located in California’s Bay Area, about 30 miles from San Francisco. Stanford offers a wide range of student organizations, including the Stanford Pre-Business Association and Stanford Solar Car Project, which designs, builds and races a solar car every two years. The Stanford Cardinal are well known for the traditional "Big Game" against Cal, an annual football competition that awards the Stanford Axe — a sought-after trophy — to the victor. Stanford also has successful programs in tennis and golf. Only freshmen are required to live on campus, but students are guaranteed housing for all four years, and most choose to remain on campus. Greek life at Stanford represents approximately 25 percent of the student body.
Four of Stanford University’s seven schools offer undergraduate and graduate coursework, and the remaining three serve as purely graduate schools. Graduate programs include the highly ranked School of Education, School of Engineering, School of Law, School of Medicine and Graduate School of Business. The Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment oversees collaboration between environmental research, teaching and outreach. Stanford has a number of well-known theatrical and musical groups, including the Ram’s Head Theatrical Society and the Mendicants, an all-male a cappella group. Notable Stanford alumni include former U.S. President Herbert Hoover, Hall of Fame NFL quarterback John Elway, actress Sigourney Weaver and golfer Tiger Woods, who played collegiately at Stanford.
Duke University
Overview
Duke University is a private institution that was founded in 1838. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,692, and the setting is Suburban. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Duke University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 8. Its tuition and fees are $55,960 (2018-19).
Durham, North Carolina, which surrounds Duke's campus, offers a variety of activities including shopping, dining and entertainment. Its "Bull City" nickname comes from the Blackwell Tobacco Company's Bull Durham Tobacco. Students at Duke are required to live on campus for their first three years, and freshmen live together on the East Campus. The Duke Blue Devils maintain a fierce rivalry with the University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill Tar Heels and are best known for their outstanding men's basketball program, which is one of the top five most wins all-time college basketball programs in the country. Approximately 30 percent of the student body is affiliated with Greek life, which encompasses almost 40 fraternities and sororities.
Duke University is divided into 10 schools and colleges, many of which serve both undergraduate and graduate students. Its graduate programs include the highly ranked Fuqua School of Business, Pratt School of Engineering, School of Law, School of Medicine, Sanford School of Public Policy and School of Nursing. Duke also offers graduate programs through its well-respected Divinity School and Nicholas School of the Environment. Duke's most esteemed undergraduate scholarship, the Robertson Scholars Leadership Program, is offered to students at both Duke University and the University of North Carolina—Chapel Hill. It provides about 18 students from each class with a four-year scholarship and the opportunity for unique academic and extracurricular opportunities at both universities. Notable alumni include Melinda Gates, co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; NBA player Carlos Boozer; and former U.S. Congressman and three-time presidential candidate Ron Paul.
University of Pennsylvania
Overview
University of Pennsylvania is a private institution that was founded in 1740. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 10,033, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 299 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. University of Pennsylvania's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 8. Its tuition and fees are $55,584 (2018-19).
The University of Pennsylvania, located in Philadelphia, was founded by Benjamin Franklin. The Penn Quakers have more than 25 NCAA Division I sports that compete in the Ivy League, and are noted for successful basketball and lacrosse teams. Penn offers housing in more than 10 College Houses, but many students live in the numerous off-campus apartments and houses available. More than 25 percent of the student body is involved in Greek life, which encompasses nearly 50 fraternities and sororities. The school also offers a number of clubs and organizations, ranging from performance groups like the Latin & Ballroom Dance club to student publications such as the Penn Political Review. Penn works closely with the West Philadelphia area through community service and advocacy groups.
Penn has 12 schools: Five offer undergraduate and graduate studies, and seven offer only graduate studies. Penn's highly ranked graduate programs include its Wharton School, School of Education, School of Engineering and Applied Science, Law School and School of Medicine. Penn's other notable graduate programs include its School of Design and School of Dental Medicine. Penn, though secular, has a strong religious life with its Hillel for Jewish students, Penn Newman Catholic Center and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. More than 2,500 students each year participate in international study programs offered in more than 50 countries around the world. Notable Penn alumni include singer John Legend, poet William Carlos Williams and President Donald Trump.
Johns Hopkins University
Overview
Johns Hopkins University is a private institution that was founded in 1876. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 6,109, its setting is urban, and the campus size is 140 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Johns Hopkins University's ranking in the 2019 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 10. Its tuition and fees are $53,740 (2018-19).
Johns Hopkins University is divided into nine schools, five of which serve undergraduate and graduate students. Hopkins’ graduate programs include the top-ranked Bloomberg School of Public Health and the highly ranked School of Education, Whiting School of Engineering, School of Medicine and the well-regarded Peabody Institute for music and dance. The Homewood Campus, one of the university’s four campuses in and around Baltimore, is the primary campus for undergraduates. Freshmen and sophomores are required to live on campus. More than 1,400 students participate in the Greek community. Hopkins also has additional campuses for its School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, D.C.; Bologna, Italy; and Nanjing, China. Johns Hopkins Hospital is a top-ranked hospital with highly ranked specialties. 
Questions & Answers
Is Johns Hopkins University expensive?
Johns Hopkins University is more expensive than many private universities, with tuition and fees for the 2017-2018 school year at $52,170, according to U.S. News data. Room and board was $15,410. However, the university met 100 percent of financial need for those who applied.
How difficult is it to get accepted into Johns Hopkins University?
It can be quite difficult to get accepted into Johns Hopkins, since the school has a very competitive admissions process. The school accepted just 12 percent of 27,094 applicants for fall 2016, according to U.S. News data. Applicants are evaluated on such factors as their SAT or ACT scores, transcripts and supplemental essay.
Does Johns Hopkins University offer financial aid?
Johns Hopkins offers need-based scholarships and grants, as well as non-need-based financial aid. The average financial aid package for freshmen in the 2016 academic year was $40,617, according to U.S. News data. Some of the scholarships available at Johns Hopkins include the Hodson Trust Scholarship, which goes to freshmen who have excelled academically and personally; the Charles R. Westgate Scholarship in Engineering; and the Baltimore Scholars Program for students from Baltimore City public high schools.
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