What are Ivy League schools?
You’d have probably come across the term ‘Ivy League School’ while perusing possible colleges that you want to send applications to pursue higher studies abroad. In all, there are eight colleges in Northeastern USA that are regarded as Ivy League.
The Ivy League Universities are:
- Brown University
- Harvard University
- Cornell University
- Princeton University
- Dartmouth University
- Yale University
- Columbia University
- University of Pennsylvania
The Ivy League Schools belong to the elite group of universities that are the most prestigious and perhaps the gold standard of colleges and universities not only in the US but also across the world.
Today Ivy League Universities are equated with being highly esteemed, severely selective, excellent faculty, and rooted deep in history.
How did these institutions become Ivy League Universities?
The inception of each of the Ivy League School varies - Harvard, for example, was instituted in 1636, but the term Ivy League was coined in 1954 when NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) Division I was formed as an elite group of colleges that excelled in sports.
So who would have thought that Ivy League Universities got their name for being excellent in sports?
The rivalry between the athletic teams in the Ivy League Schools ensured that any game played between them became a crowd-puller and so they began making money with ticket sales and more funding. This, in turn, resulted in higher benchmarks being set for student performance and admission.
However, the irony is that in the present day, Ivy League schools do not offer scholarships specifically to athletes. Athletes are eligible for financial aid, but the basis for consideration is only financial need.
You’d think that since these eight universities comprise the elite Ivy League there is bonhomie among them. Right? Far from it.
There has been intense sports rivalry as well as an academic rivalry. There are always squabbles about who has the maximum honor students, offers the most esteemed scholarships and famous graduate. In fact, Ivy students tend to be proud and loyal to their alma mater long after they graduate.
But each of the Ivy League Universities has its distinct achievement mainly in the medical and law fields to make it stand out. And each of them has reputed alumni that bear testimony to their reputation.
While the eight universities form the elite Ivy League, there are other universities who are either on par or maybe even better than them. Stanford University, MIT and Cal Tech University outrank many Ivy League Universities.
Why should you consider applying to an Ivy League University?
- They attract bright, hard-working minds
- Corporates prefer hiring graduates from any of these schools
- Even though it is expensive to study at an Ivy League school, all financial aid is need-based. Merit-based financial aid can be sought from external institutions and organizations
What you should know about admission to an Ivy League school
- It is extremely competitive
- Acceptance rates sometimes verge on single digits
- You must be a class topper with excellent test scores - SAT, GRE, TOEFL, LSAT, GPA
- Tuition fees average $55,000 to $60,000 per year
- Other reputed universities that may be less expensive