Top 7 Most Famous Colleges

We’ve all heard them displayed all over TV and movies as “the best of the best” in terms of colleges.

Well I’m here to break these top dog schools into manageable and simple terms that really just make them seem like every other big college (besides maybe the number in the ten thousandth place.)

Here is some basic information I gathered on seven of the top and most famous colleges in America.

1. Harvard

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Total number of students: About 21,000

Tuition: $36, 305

Fun facts:

  • Harvard is the oldest higher learning institution in the United States.
  • When the clock strikes midnight on the first day of finals each semester, students strip down to nothing and run around Harvard Yard.
  • Actress Natalie Portman graduated from Harvard with a degree in psychology.

Harvard University is well known for its Law School (as you might have noticed from Legally Blonde). It also has one of the top medical schools in the country.

2. Yale

Location: New Haven, Connecticut

Total number of students: About 14,000

Tuition: $42,300

Fun facts:

  • Yale has a secret society called Skull & Bones which George W. Bush was a part of.
  • There is a tapeworm collection holding a couple thousand worms.
  • Politician Hillary Clinton graduated from the Law School.

Yale is known for its outstanding drama and music programs as well as political science.

3. Princeton

Location: Princeton, New Jersey

Total number of students: About 8,000

Tuition: $38,650

Fun facts:

  • It has free a capella concerts under one of the arches frequently.
  • Mt. Princeton is named after the university.
  • Writer F. Scott Fitzgerald attended Princeton but dropped out and joined the Army.

Princeton is well known for its economics and history programs.

4. Stanford

Location: Stanford, California

Total number of students: About 16,000

Tuition: $41,250

Fun facts:

  • The Graduate School of Business was ranked number one in the world for environmental and social impact.
  • There are roughly 13,000 bikes on campus daily.
  • Actress Sigourney Weaver graduated with a degree in English.

Stanford is well known for its biology and computer science programs.

5. Columbia

Location: New York City, New York

Total number of students: About 29,000

Tuition: $45,028

Fun facts:

  • It is the fifth most selective college in the nation.
  • Columbia has 20 living billionaires.
  • Actor Ben Stein graduated with a degree in Economics.

Columbia is well known for its Journalism and business school.

6. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Total number of students: About 11,000

Tuition: $42,050

Fun facts:

  • Everything is numbered from the buildings to the majors.
  • MIT offers a pirate certificate which includes pistol, archery, sailing, and fencing.
  • Buzz Aldrin graduated with a Doctor of Science degree.

MIT is known for its engineering and physical sciences.

7. Duke

Location: Durham, North Carolina

Total number of students: About 14,500

Tuition: $42,308

Fun facts:

  • The first working demonstration of an invisibility cloak was made by Duke researchers.
  • Duke requires students to live on campus for the first three years of undergraduate life.
  • President Richard Nixon graduated from Duke Law School.

Duke is known for the Pratt School of Engineering and Trinity College of Arts and Sciences.

So as you can see, yes, these famous colleges might have extremely high prices and extremely well known alumni, but they are pretty much just bigger versions of most universities around the country.

Depending on your budget and what you intend to study, it might be worth checking a couple of these famous colleges. The worst that can happen is they say no. And you know what that means? Just an opportunity to get your schooling at another awesome college (probably with a little more in your pocket afterwards.)

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Abby Thomas

Abby Thomas

Abby Thomas is a freshman at University of Iowa studying Journalism and Nonfiction Creative Writing. She plans to one day be able to get paid to travel around the world writing about her adventures. The day you can find her travel book on the shelves of bookstores will be the day she has finally reached her life goal. When she is not pursuing her dreams of travel writing, she is either at the University's radio station or on her computer wasting time on Tumblr and Netflix.