The New Ivies: A Complete List

13/02/202412 minute read
The New Ivies: A Complete List

You’ve heard of the Ivy League - the elite group of highly-competitive, well-renowned institutions. While the Ivy League schools remain among the top universities worldwide, there are other universities that offer similar levels of quality education: The New Ivies.

But what exactly are the New Ivies? In this blog, we’ll break it down, exploring what sets the New Ivies apart from other schools, as well as provide a complete list of the New Ivy schools.


The Ivy League: A Quick Recap

The Ivy League is a group of eight private institutions in the United States renowned for their academic excellence, elite faculty, and a legacy that spans centuries.

These institutions include:

The Ivy League isn't just about academics; it's a symbol of social prestige, producing influential leaders, thinkers, and trailblazers across various fields. Admission to these hallowed halls is fiercely competitive, with acceptance rates often hovering in the single digits.

What Are The New Ivies?

New Ivies share a common thread with the traditional Ivy League – a commitment to excellence, a rigorous academic environment, and a reputation that extends far beyond the campus gates. 

Similar to the Ivy Plus Schools and Little Ivies, these institutions are stepping into the spotlight as the educational landscape evolves, offering an alternative path to success.

The New Ivies might not boast the same age-old charm, but they're quickly making waves in the educational scene.

List of New Ivies

While there’s no official list, these universities below are commonly considered the New Ivies:

  • Colby College
  • Colgate University
  • Davidson College
  • Emory University
  • Kenyon College
  • Macalester College
  • University of Michigan
  • New York University
  • University of North Carolina
  • University of Notre Dame
  • Olin College of Engineering
  • Reed College
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Rice University
  • University of Rochester
  • Skidmore College
  • Tufts University
  • University of Southern California
  • Vanderbilt University
  • University of Virginia
  • Washington University in St. Louis

1. Colby College

Location: Waterville, Maine

Nestled in the scenic beauty of rural Maine, Colby College stands out as a small liberal arts college with a student body of less than 2,500 undergraduates. Affectionately referred to as a 'little Ivy,' Colby is known for its intimate learning environment and rigorous academic programs, making it a top choice for those seeking a close-knit community with big aspirations.

2. Colgate University

Location: Hamilton, New York

Set in the charming town of Hamilton, New York, Colgate University prides itself on a liberal arts education that fosters critical thinking. With a modest acceptance rate of 12.34%, Colgate boasts small class sizes and a highly educated faculty, creating an environment where personalized learning takes center stage.

3. Davidson College

Location: Davidson, North Carolina

Ranked as the 16th-best liberal arts college in the country, Davidson College in North Carolina offers an exceptional education with a small undergraduate body of around 2,000 students. Beyond academics, Davidson stands out for its diverse range of over 200 student organizations, ensuring there's something for everyone.

4. Emory University

Location: Atlanta, Georgia

In the heart of Atlanta, Emory University is a research powerhouse renowned for its School of Medicine, Law, and Business. What sets Emory apart is its unique requirement for students to take two physical education courses, showcasing a commitment to holistic education and well-rounded individuals.

5. Kenyon College

Location: Gambier, Ohio

Known for its excellence in English Language and Literature, Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio, is a liberal arts institution with a strong focus on the written word. Home to the prestigious Kenyon Review, this college attracts those with a passion for literature and a desire for a close community.

6. Macalester College

Location: St. Paul, Minnesota

Situated between the twin cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis, Macalester College offers an exclusively undergraduate liberal arts education. Boasting a diverse student body, Macalester stands out with its attractive quality – no application fee, making it an appealing option for prospective students.

7. University of Michigan

Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan

With approximately 50,000 students, the University of Michigan stands as one of the largest New Ivies. Renowned for its comprehensive programs and a vibrant campus atmosphere, UMichigan is consistently ranked as the third-best public university in the country.

8. New York University (NYU)

Location: New York, New York

In the heart of the bustling metropolis, NYU is a global hub for education. With a campus that mirrors the city's diversity, NYU attracts more international students than any other American university. If you're looking for a vibrant city experience and a diverse student body, NYU has you covered.

9. University of North Carolina

Location: Chapel Hill, North Carolina

As the first public university in the country, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill holds a special place in the academic landscape. Known for its research and entrepreneurship, UNC Chapel Hill offers a supportive community and is celebrated for its basketball team – the Tar Heels.

10. University of Notre Dame

Location: South Bend, Indiana

Rooted in its Catholic heritage, the University of Notre Dame is a research university with a commitment to character and values. Over half of its students embark on international studies, contributing to its ranking as the 25th best for study abroad programs by U.S. News.

11. Olin College of Engineering

Location: Needham, Massachusetts

Specializing in engineering education, Olin College of Engineering provides an intimate experience with an undergraduate body of fewer than 450 students. If you're passionate about engineering and desire a close-knit academic community, Olin could be the perfect fit.

12. Reed College

Location: Portland, Oregon

Affectionately known as 'reedies,' Reed College in Portland, Oregon, offers a liberal arts and sciences education. With a unique year-long humanities course and a senior thesis requirement, Reed encourages deep intellectual exploration and academic achievement.

13. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Location: Troy, New York

As the oldest technological research university in the U.S., Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has been a pioneer since its founding in 1824. Located in Troy, New York, the institute focuses on science and technology, preparing students for innovative contributions to their fields.

14. Rice University

Location: Houston, Texas

Situated in Houston's museum district, Rice University is a small research-focused institution. With a student body of around eight thousand, Rice combines academic excellence with a rich cultural atmosphere, offering a unique blend of research opportunities and vibrant city life.

15. University of Rochester

Location: Rochester, New York

Another gem in New York state, the University of Rochester sits on the shores of Lake Ontario. With a focus on research and a collegiate atmosphere, Rochester provides a balanced experience with both city and rural elements, appealing to a wide range of students.

16. Skidmore College

Location: Saratoga Springs, New York

Skidmore College, located in Saratoga Springs, New York, takes pride in its commitment to green living and sustainability. With a variety of initiatives, Skidmore encourages students to actively participate in environmental awareness and adopt green living habits.

17. Tufts University

Location: Medford, Massachusetts

Nestled in the Greater Boston Area, Tufts University is a research institution known for its innovative programs. Home to the country's oldest school of international relations, Tufts attracts students seeking cutting-edge research and a vibrant academic community.

18. University of Southern California (USC)

Location: Los Angeles, California

Boasting academic excellence against the backdrop of Los Angeles, the University of Southern California offers over 150 majors for exploration. With a well-known School of Cinematic Arts, USC attracts students seeking a dynamic city experience coupled with outstanding academic programs.

19. Vanderbilt University

Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Highly regarded for both its academics and financial aid program, Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, offers a world-class education through Vanderbilt Opportunities. This program is designed to make their education accessible to all students, meeting 100% of demonstrated financial need.

20. University of Virginia

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia

Founded by Thomas Jefferson, the University of Virginia is a public university in suburban Charlottesville. With a mid-sized student body, UVA offers a vibrant community and active Greek Life, making it an excellent choice for those looking to join a sorority or fraternity.

21. Washington University in St. Louis

Location: St. Louis, Missouri

Known for its excellence in computer science, engineering, and science programs, Washington University in St. Louis has earned its place among the New Ivies. Situated in the lively city of St. Louis, this university provides a wealth of opportunities for students to immerse themselves in both academic excellence and the vibrant cultural scene of the city.

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What Sets the New Ivies Apart?

1. Diversity, Vibrancy, and Urban Pulse

One standout feature of the New Ivies is their campuses' dynamic nature. Take, for instance, New York University (NYU) and the University of Southern California (USC).

Nestled in the heart of New York City and Los Angeles, respectively, these institutions offer an unparalleled urban experience. The vibrant city life becomes an extension of your campus, providing a rich cultural backdrop to your academic journey.

2. Innovation and Research Powerhouses

The New Ivies have carved a niche for themselves as hubs of innovation and research.

Institutions like Emory University and the University of Michigan are known for their groundbreaking research initiatives and cutting-edge advancements.

Being part of these intellectual powerhouses means you'll be at the forefront of discoveries, making an impact in your chosen field from day one.

3. Intimate Learning Environments

While the traditional Ivy League schools are often associated with a grand and historic ambiance, the New Ivies, like Colby College and Olin College of Engineering, offer a different kind of charm.

With smaller student bodies and intimate class sizes, these institutions foster close-knit communities. You won't be just a face in the crowd; instead, you'll have personalized interactions with professors, creating an environment that nurtures your academic growth.

4. Commitment to Sustainability and Green Living

Skidmore College is a shining example of the New Ivies' commitment to sustainability. With a strong emphasis on green living and environmental initiatives, Skidmore encourages students like you to actively participate in creating a more sustainable future.

If you're passionate about making a positive impact on the planet, these institutions provide a platform for your eco-friendly aspirations.

5. Holistic Education with Unique Requirements

Emory University stands out with its requirement for students to take two physical education courses, irrespective of their participation in athletics.

This commitment to holistic education ensures that you not only excel academically but also prioritize your physical well-being. The New Ivies understand that a well-rounded individual is best equipped to navigate the complexities of the modern world.

6. Cultural Heart and Tradition

Vanderbilt University, located in Nashville, Tennessee, is renowned not only for its academic excellence but also for its vibrant cultural scene. The university's commitment to providing financial aid through the Vanderbilt

Opportunities program ensures that students from all backgrounds can access a world-class education. This dedication to inclusivity and tradition sets the New Ivies apart in fostering diverse and thriving communities.

7. Global Perspectives and Study Abroad Opportunities

The University of Notre Dame, deeply rooted in its Catholic heritage, places a strong emphasis on global perspectives.

With over half of its students spending at least a semester studying abroad, Notre Dame ensures that you gain a comprehensive understanding of the world. This global outlook prepares you to navigate an interconnected and diverse global landscape.

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Which New Ivy is Right For You?

As you navigate through these New Ivies, each with its own distinct personality and strengths, remember that the journey to academic excellence is a personal one. Consider your interests, goals, and the kind of environment that fosters your best self.

If you need help finding the right university for you and crafting the perfect application, our expert strategists can help!

Students working with Crimson strategists are 7x more likely to gain admission to their dream university!

What Makes Crimson Different

Crimson students are 7x more likely to gain acceptance to their dream college!

Remember, you don't have to navigate this journey alone. Crimson provides a comprehensive suite of services, from academic mentoring and test prep to essay assistance, extracurricular guidance, and career mentoring, ensuring a holistic approach to your college preparation journey.