The Top Hidden Ivies in the United States

There are many hidden gems in the world of colleges and universities. For example, did you know that Yale, Harvard, and Princeton are all part of a group of schools known as the Hidden Ivies?

The term “Hidden Ivy” was first coined by education writer Loren Pope in his 1996 book Colleges That Change Lives. In it, Pope identified 30 small to mid-sized schools that he believed provided a quality of education on par with the Ivy League schools.

These Hidden Ivies are often overlooked by students and parents during the college search process because they don’t have the same name recognition as the Ivy League schools. However, these schools can offer a unique and rewarding educational experience.

One Hidden Ivy school is Howard University. Howard is a historically black university located in Washington, D.C. The university has a strong focus on research and offers an array of interesting majors, such as African Studies and Jazz Studies.

Matthew Greene is a student at Howard University who is double majoring in Political Science and African Studies. He says that attending a Hidden Ivy has been a great experience for him. “I’ve had opportunities here that I wouldn’t have had at a bigger school,” he says. “I’ve been able to really dive deep into my studies and explore subjects that I’m passionate about.”

If you’re looking for a quality education but want to avoid the big name schools, then consider one of the many Hidden Ivies around the country. You may be surprised by what these hidden gems have to offer!

Best Hidden Ivies

Harvard, Yale, and Princeton are often considered the top three Ivy League schools. But what about the other Ivies?

Howard Greene and Matthew Greene, authors of Hidden Ivies: Thirty Colleges of Excellence, identify 30 Hidden Ivies across the United States. These are small to mid-sized colleges that provide an Ivy League caliber education.

Here are just a few of the best Hidden Ivies, according to the Greenes:

Amherst College is a private liberal arts college in Massachusetts with about 1,800 students. It's consistently ranked as one of the top 10 liberal arts colleges in the country.

Williams College is another top-ranked liberal arts college, located in Williamstown, Massachusetts. It has a student body of around 2,000.

Swarthmore College is a highly selective private liberal arts college in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. Just over 1,500 students attend Swarthmore.

These are just a few of the great Hidden Ivies identified by the Greenes. If you're looking for an Ivy League education but don't want to attend one of the big three schools, consider one of these excellent hidden ivies!

Case Western Reserve University

Case Western Reserve University is a private research university in Cleveland, Ohio. Founded in 1826, the university has an enrollment of more 5,000 undergraduate students.

The university operates on a singe-door admissions policy and has significantly more graduates an professionalsStudies Students then Undergrad. This means that all students are admitted to the university as undergraduates and can then choose to study engineering, nursing or management at the Case School of Engineering, or arts and sciences at the College of Arts & Sciences.

Case Western Reserve University is a renowned research institution, attracting $334.2 million insponsored research funding annually. On average, the university launches five start-up companies each year and produces 40 U.S. patents annually.

In terms of rankings, Case Western Reserve University is currently 40th among national universities in the United States. Additionally, the university is considered one of the Hidden Ivies – a group of highly selective colleges that are regarded as providing an education comparable to that of the Ivy League schools.

Skidmore College

Skidmore College is a small liberal arts college located in Saratoga Springs, New York. The college has a strong focus on the arts and sciences, and offers students many opportunities to get involved in these fields.

The Zankel Music Center is one of the highlights of Skidmore's campus. The 54,000 square foot facility houses state-of-the-art music classrooms, practice rooms, and performance spaces. Students can take advantage of the center's resources to hone their musical skills or simply enjoy listening to concerts and performances.

The Tang Museum is another great resource for students interested in the arts. The museum offers internships and other opportunities for students to get involved in the curatorial process. Additionally, the museum hosts many events and exhibitions throughout the year that are open to the public.

The Center for Integrated Sciences is another major asset to Skidmore's campus. The 200,000 square foot facility houses research laboratories, classrooms, and offices for faculty and staff. The center is also home to the college's planetarium, which is open to students and the community.

Skidmore College is also one of eight colleges known as the Hidden Ivies. These are small schools that offer a quality education comparable to that of the Ivy League schools. If you're looking for a top-notch education at a smaller school, Skidmore College should definitely be on your list!

Oberlin College

Oberlin College is a hidden Ivy located in Oberlin, Ohio. This college has a long history of being at the forefront of social change. The admission of female students in 1835 made it thefirst co-educational institution of higher learning in the United States. Notably, it was one of the first institutions in the United States to admit African American students. Today, Oberlin College remains committed to social justice. Princeton Review's ranked it number one on their “Colleges with a Conscious” list for its friendly campus environment towards LGBT students. And flexibility in choosing courses allows students to tailor their education to their individual interests and goals. If you're looking for a college that will challenge you academically and help you make a difference in the world, Oberlin College is definitely worth considering!

The University of Richmond

If you're looking for a top-tier university that will prepare you for leadership in all aspects of society, look no further than the University of Richmond. Located in Virginia's capital city of Richmond, this suburban school is home to just over 3,000 undergraduate students.

Thanks to generous donors, the University of Richmond has been able to invest in attracting top talent both in terms of faculty and students. This has led to a transformation of the school over the past few years. The school's selectivity makes it a highly competitive liberal arts university that can compete with the best schools in the nation.

Student at Richmond have often been described as being similar to spiders in that they are curious, ambitious, and determined. The Jepson School of Leadership Studies is the pinnacle of the university's academic departments. This groundbreaking program helps students develop the skills they need to take on leadership roles in all aspects of society.

At the University of Richmond, they also emphasize getting out of the classroom. The Richmond Guarantee promises every student a fellowship for summer research or internships. In addition, over 65% of students choose to study abroad. So if you're looking for an ivy-hidden gem that will challenge and inspire you, look no further than the University of Richmond!

Colgate University

Colgate University is a small, rural college located in Hamilton, New York. The school boasts a 9:1 student to faculty ratio with 96% of the teachers having either a Ph.D. or the highest possible degree in their chosen field. Colgate is one of the Hidden Ivies, a group of small colleges that are often overlooked but offer a quality education comparable to the Ivy League schools.

I visited Colgate last year and was impressed by the beautiful campus and friendly students. I also felt that the academics were very strong - the professors I talked to were all experts in their fields and clearly passionate about teaching. If you're looking for a small college experience with top-notch academics, Colgate is definitely worth considering!

Macalester College

Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota is a private liberal arts college that enrolls only undergraduate students. The college is not ranked by U.S. News & World Report, but it is considered one of the Hidden Ivies, a group of colleges that are often overshadowed by the more prestigious Ivy League schools but which offer an excellent education.

Macalester's student body consists of 33% people of color and 24% international students. The college has a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, and its faculty and staff are also diverse.

Macalester offers a high-quality education at a reasonable cost. Tuition and fees are not mentioned in the text, but room and board are estimated to be about $15,000 per year. Financial aid is available for those who need it.

If you're looking for a small college with a strong commitment to diversity and academic excellence, Macalester College is worth considering.

Colorado College

Colorado College is an undergraduate institution located in Colorado Springs, Colorado. With an Acceptance Rate for Class of 2013 set at 13.5 percent, this college runs on a Block Plan where each student takes just single class over 3 1-2 week blocks followed by 4 1-2 days off during Block Breaks. CC is considered a Hidden Ivy.

The college was founded in 1874 by Thomas Nelson Haskell with the intention of creating a unique educational experience. The early days of the school were spent constructing the first buildings on campus, including Palmer Hall which still stands today. In its first year, CC enrolled just over 100 students.

Now,CC enrolls approximately 2,000 undergraduate students from all 50 states and more than 60 countries. The student body is diverse and passionate, with interests ranging from environmental activism to competitive sports.

CC offers more than 80 majors and minors, and allows students to design their own courses of study through an Individualized Major Program. Students can also choose to participate in off-campus programs like Semester at Sea or the National Outdoor Leadership School.

The college's faculty are nationally and internationally recognized scholars who are passionate about teaching. They work closely with students both in and out of the classroom, providing mentorship and guidance throughout their academic careers.

Colorado College is renowned for its tight-knit community feel and beautiful campus setting. The school's location in the Rocky Mountains provides ample opportunity for outdoor recreation, and the city of Colorado Springs is home to numerous cultural attractions. If you're looking for an intimate liberal arts education surrounded by natural beauty, CC might be the place for you!

Lehigh University

Lehigh University is a private research university located in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The university was founded by businessman and industrialist Asa Packer in the 1860s. Lehigh's undergraduate enrollment is right around 5,000 students. The school has a great reputation for its excellent programs in sciences, mathematics, technological studies, engineering, as well as businesses.

The university is also home to a number of highly respected arts programs. Lehigh's location - close to New York, Philadelphia, and Washington DC - makes it a great place for students to study and learn. Lehigh students are highly involved on campus, with more than one third of students being part of Greek life and 200 student organizations.

Lehigh students are also very active in their community. Each year they collect 65,000 hours of community service. Some of the school's notable alumni include Pulitzer Prize winners, Fulbright Fellows, and Medal of Science winners. Lehigh is often considered one of the Hidden Ivies - a group of small schools that offer a quality education comparable to that of the Ivy League.

The University of the South

The University of the South is located in Sewanee, TN. The university has an undergraduate student body of 1,700 and is an Episcopal school. The All Saints Chapel, with its grandeur and old-world charm, is the focal point of the university campus. The university offers 36 majors.

Sewanee was founded in 1857 as a private liberal arts college affiliated with the Episcopal Church. The university's main campus consists of 13,000 acres on the Cumberland Plateau in Franklin County, Tennessee.

The university is known for its scenic beauty and unique architecture. The All Saints Chapel is the most recognizable building on campus and is the center of religious life at Sewanee.

In addition to its 36 majors, Sewanee offers a variety of minors, including business, education, and engineering. The university also offers a number of special programs, such as the Sewanee Summer Music Festival and the Seminar for Younger Poets.

Sewanee is considered one of the Hidden Ivies, a group of small to medium-sized colleges and universities that are often overlooked but offer a quality education comparable to that of the Ivy League schools.

Southern Methodist University

Southern Methodist University is located in Dallas, TX and is one of the leading universities not only in Texas but also in the nation. The university has over 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students, making it one of the largest universities in the country. U.S. The high quality of education at the second top-ranked school in Texas, as reported by News & World Report, is a testament to its excellence. Some notable alumni include Laura Bush, Brian Baumgartner, Blake Mycoskie, John Tyson, Whitney Wolfe Herd. The Princeton Review ranked SMU No. 6 for internship opportunities, with No. It is impressive that the alumni network ranks 13. Additionally, Southern Methodist University is considered a Hidden Ivy, meaning it's an Ivy League-caliber school that isn't as well known as the actual Ivy League schools. All of this makes Southern Methodist University a great choice for anyone looking for a top-notch education at a large and respected university.


There are many great hidden gems for top-notch educations if you don't want to go to a big name school. The education offered at these schools is often both unique and rewardiing. So don't be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to your college search!



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Got kids about to go to college, so making my own research and sharing here!
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