Macalester College, a small private liberal arts college in the Midwest, is ranked #54 among the Veritas Prep College Rankings. Located in an elegant old residential neighborhood, it is just minutes from the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul, Minnesota. The Twin Cities is a lively metropolitan area that boasts museums, eclectic restaurants, Fortune 500 hundred companies, a variety of shows, and much more.
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Barnard College, a private women’s liberal arts college in New York City, is #51 among schools in the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings and is one of the most selective women’s colleges in the United States. Founded in 1889, the four-acre urban campus is adjacent to Columbia University in New York City’s Manhattan neighborhood. Barnard has a complicated relationship with Columbia University, being both a wholly independent entity with its own governance, and also a college within Columbia. Barnard students graduate with Columbia University diplomas that are signed by the Presidents of both colleges.
Boston College is #53 among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. Located in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, its campus is often referred to as “the Heights” due to its hilltop location and Collegiate Gothic architecture that includes the iconic Gasson Tower. Founded by the Society of Jesus in 1863, Boston College is a private research university dedicated to the traditions of its Jesuit Catholic origins where research, academic exchange, faith, and culture intersect.
The college motto, Know Thyself, succinctly demonstrates the philosophy of education at Hamilton College. The core belief is that all students should explore their individuality and develop an academic path that leads to their greatest expression in the world. Ranked #41 among colleges on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings, Hamilton College was chartered in 1812 and named after statesman Alexander Hamilton, one of its first Board of Trustees members. The beautiful 1,350 acre campus sits high on a hill overlooking the quaint village of Clinton, New York.
Let’s get back to getting creative on your college essay. First take a look at Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of this blog series. Once you have brainstormed, refined your ideas, and finally gotten them down on the page, the most taxing part of the creative process is arguably behind you. No longer must you stare into the infinite void of a blank page. However, the fun doesn’t end with the first draft.
Colby College, a private liberal arts school, is set high atop Mayflower Hill overlooking picturesque Waterville, Maine. The 714-acre Georgian Revival-style campus is home to the nation’s first college-based anti-slavery society, first Greek society, and was the first to enroll women. Colby College is the 12th oldest liberal arts college in the United States, and today serves around 1,800 students. Campus highlights include a 128-acre arboretum and wildlife refuge, a student-run organic garden that produces two tons of vegetables annually, the largest American art museum in Maine, and a biomass-fueled heating facility that makes Colby one of four carbon-neutral colleges in the country. Colby College ranks #50 among schools in the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings.
When the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill opened the doors to its first students in 1795, it was the first public university in the United States. Over the years it has grown into a leading research university that embraces the role of change agent, and supports its diverse student body in their quest for success and prosperity. It is ranked #47 among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. The 729 acre urban campus is located in the downtown area Chapel Hill, NC, and is divided into three sections; north, middle, and south campus. Most student housing and classes are on north campus, most athletic facilities, the schools of government and law, and additional student housing are on middle campus, and the basketball facility, medical school, UNC hospital, and the newest student housing are on south campus.
Wesleyan University is liberal arts college that is ranked #40 in the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. Located in beautiful Middletown, Connecticut, this campus overlooks the gorgeous Connecticut River. Within Middletown, students have access to a variety of museums, restaurants, and shops, as well as outdoor activities like hiking trails and river cruises. Wesleyan offers small class sizes, elite professors, and rigorous academic programs. Faculty and staff are devoted to making each individual’s college experience one that is completely unique for them. This University is dedicated to shaping students into diverse, creative, driven, independent, and generous people of the world. Wesleyan is more than a University; it is a place for students to thrive both academically and personally.
In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, I have guided you on how to structure your creative college essay and where you could look for stylistic inspiration. However, by its very definition, the college essay is a personal response to the most common interview question, “Why don’t you tell me about yourself?”
Emory University is located in the beautiful suburb of Druid Hills, Georgia, and is ranked #46 among colleges in the Veritas Prep College Rankings. This is an exceptional and exquisite campus just 15 minutes outside of Atlanta, Georgia. Surrounded by gorgeous trees, flowers, and shrubbery, it has a small town feel within picturesque natural surroundings. This school is in a perfect location for those who like to experience all four seasons and want variety in their life and education. It’s only a half-day trip to many South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida beaches, or the Blue Ridge or Great Smoky Mountains are also just a few hours’ drive. Attending Emory University allows you the opportunity to explore all Georgia has to offer.
Carnegie Mellon University is ranked #48 among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. This private research university is a blend of the former Carnegie Institute of Technology and the former Mellon Institute of Industrial Research. The University became an epicenter for education in robotics, artificial intelligence, business, and the arts. Their pioneering “Andrew” computing network that linked together every computer work station on campus became a model for technology in education.
Ranked #43 among colleges in the Veritas Prep College Rankings is The University of Southern California. Located in Los Angeles, USC is one of the largest research universities in the nation. Set in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, the campus boasts breathtaking renaissance-style architecture surrounded by beautiful sculptures, water fountains, and well-manicured seating areas. The campus is an oasis of tranquil beauty, but once you step outside its comfort, you’re in the hustle and bustle of all things LA. A wide array of delicious eateries, cute shops, excellent nightlife, and the chance to spot a celebrity or two when grabbing your favorite chai are just a few of the perks of going to school in the City of Angels. If you want a well-rounded education in a city that is famous for making dreams come true, then the University of Southern California is the college for you.
In Part 1 of this series we looked at what makes for a good structure for a college essay. More specifically, we discussed that it won’t look like your typical high school expository essay. Even the most well structured college essay is ineffective without an idea to work with when molding your statement.
Unlike the essay prompt that resides at the start of the SAT Reasoning Test, the “personal statement” essay you will write for college admissions require a considerable amount of creativity. The template-based, mechanically structured essay that impresses SAT graders won’t fare so well in the eyes of an admissions committee, particularly at more selective colleges.
Introduction, body paragraph, body paragraph, body paragraph, conclusion. Once you’ve mastered the basic five-paragraph format for short essays, it quickly begins to feel tiresome and overly basic. Fortunately, though the main themes of the five-paragraph essay are important to nearly all levels of academic or professional writing beyond high school. The five-paragraph essay itself becomes less and less relevant to school and work after graduation. However, there are plenty of things you can do to make simple five-paragraph essays (like the one assigned by the SAT) more impressive, interesting, and intricate. Here are a few.
Of all of the decisions facing hopeful college applicants, the choice between admissions tests can be one of the most confusing. Should you take the SAT or the ACT? Do you need to take the ACT Writing Test? Will colleges think less of you if you submit scores from one test or the other? This quick guide provides an overview to understand the ACT.
Perhaps the most unusual fun fact about the University of Michigan, ranked #45 among schools on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings, is that it was founded in 1817, twenty years before Michigan was even a state. The beautiful campus, located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is home to more than 42,000 students; over 27,000 of those are undergraduates who are enrolled in 13 schools that offer 250 degree programs.
Choosing which university to attend is one of the first big decisions you’ll make as you move into adulthood. Depending on the institution and location, substantial costs could be involved that impact you and your family’s future. Fortunately, you have literally thousands of options across the United States. One of the first choices to consider is whether an in-state or out-of-state university is for you. It’s not an easy decision, since there is so much more to it than simply cost and location… There are many factors to consider!
Wellesley College, an all-female liberal arts college and a member of the Seven Sisters consortium of women’s colleges, is ranked #37 among Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. It is located in the upscale suburban town of Wellesley outside Boston, Massachusetts.
Number 39 in the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings is the University of Notre Dame. This private research university is wholeheartedly dedicated to its Catholic roots; it embraces a philosophy that holds religion and science in equal regard, and stands for “values in a world of facts.” The college, founded in 1842, is located on a 1,250-acre beautiful park-like campus outside South Bend, Indiana.
The University of Virginia ranks #32 among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. Inspired by Thomas Jefferson, the University was founded in 1819 and opened in 1825, under Jefferson’s guiding principle to “shed light on the public mind.” It was the first university to separate church and state. Located in Charlottesville, one of the most livable cities in the US, the campus is set on property formerly owned by James Monroe. With its Jeffersonian architecture, expansive green space, lush gardens, famous Rotunda and Academical Village, it has been called one of the most beautiful campuses in the country, and is the only university to be designated a World Heritage Site.
The ACT is the most popular college admission test taken by students. Doing well on the ACT can get you into the college of your choice, expands your choice of colleges and may also land you more scholarships. Because your performance in the ACT is crucial to your future, you need to be fully prepared before taking the test.
Davidson College, a private liberal arts college, is located in Davidson, North Carolina about 20 miles north of Charlotte. Ranked #36 among Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings, Davidson is part of the 24-school Charlotte Area Education Consortium. The college was founded in 1837 by the Presbyterian Church on the property of Revolutionary War General William Lee Davidson, after whom it was named. The 665-acre campus sits in the center of Davidson and is home to under 2,000 undergraduate students.
Vassar College is ranked #35 among the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. This liberal arts college is located in Poughkeepsie, New York in the picturesque Hudson Valley north of New York City. The Vassar campus has residential and academic buildings in a range of architecture, two of which are National Historic Landmarks. Nestled on roughly one thousand acres of land, you will find everything from formal gardens to woodlands and meadows on this designated arboretum. The college boasts impressive academic offerings and excellent athletic facilities on a tranquil campus with breathtaking views. It supports an organic farm, cross country trails, and community gardens on the former all girls’ campus.
The University of California – Los Angeles is ranked #34 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. UCLA is located in the upscale Westwood neighborhood, surrounded by Beverly Hills, Century City, Bel Air, and Brentwood. You would be hard-pressed to find a more unique urban setting for a university than this.
Washington and Lee University is located in beautiful Lexington, Virginia and is ranked #31 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. With a mix of historical significance and the charm of a college town, Lexington is revered as one of the most gorgeous towns in the nation. Alive with energy, it offers amazing galleries, fine dining, country inns, and quaint little shops among other perks.
The United States Military Academy at West Point, New York is not your ordinary liberal arts college. Ranked #33 among colleges in the Veritas Elite College Rankings, the US Military Academy is a prestigious liberal arts college, and one of the oldest military academies in the world, that enrolls over 4,600 students (military cadets) who upon graduation enter the military as officers to serve five year tours of duty. There is no tuition, and student housing and meal plans are free. There is even a small monthly stipend while attending school. Summer sessions are spent in military training.
Cornell University is located in beautiful Ithaca, New York. Ranked #29 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings, it is among the top universities in the nation, boasting excellent facilities, faculty, and resources among other things. This is the perfect place to find a home away from home while working on your higher education and career goals. Amazing amenities, programs, and activities are among its many enduring qualities.
Rice University is ranked #30 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. This is a small research university located right in the heart of Houston, Texas, the fourth largest city in the United States. Student will find themselves immersed in a campus devoted to diversity and elite educational opportunities. Rice University is passionate about teaching and developing leadership ideals in each of their students.
Carleton College is ranked #28 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings; it’s a smaller liberal arts college located in Northfield, Minnesota. Founded in 1866, this is a private college on 880 acres of land with three ecosystems – prairies, a forest, and wetlands. A tranquil campus that is only thirty minutes from the bustling twin cities. Carleton offers 37 majors with 15 different concentrations in humanities, the arts, natural sciences, and social sciences. This is an ideal college for students who are looking for a close-knit campus community with a focus on excellence. From sustainability to community service projects, Carleton is the perfect place for those who want to have an expanded college experience. As the third oldest college in the state of Minnesota they believe that “human knowledge is the real frontier.”
Benefactor Johns Hopkins willed $7 million to start up the University that now bears his name. It was founded in 1876 on the premise that research and discovery were of equal importance to teaching and learning. Johns Hopkins University’s other ideal is not to limit education to its students, but rather to lift the collective education of society at the same time. With these principles in mind, Johns Hopkins has become a preeminent model for other research universities across the globe, and is #26 on the Veritas Prep Elite Colleges Rankings.
Harvey Mudd College, located in Claremont, California, is one of the top science and engineering liberal arts colleges in the country and comes in at #25 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. It is one of the five colleges of the Claremont College Consortium, known as the 5Cs, along with Claremont McKenna, Scripps College, Pomona College, and Pitzer College.
The United States Naval Academy is ranked #24 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. Located in beautiful Annapolis, Maryland, this is an extraordinarily structured college that expects excellence from all their students, who are referred to as midshipmen. The United States Naval Academy offers full scholarships to all their midshipmen including room and board and all other necessities. After attending this world renowned academy each midshipman will serve five years either as an Ensign in the Navy or Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps. To be a part of this elite college you need to possess strength both in mind and body, dedication, and the desire to represent yourself and your country at the highest level.
Vanderbilt University, a private research university and medical center in suburban Nashville, Tennessee, ranks #23 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. The university, built in 1875, sits on a beautiful and tranquil campus that has been designated a national arboretum; the Peabody College is a registered National Historic Landmark; and the Dyer Observatory is also on the National Register of Historic Places.
Northwestern University is ranked #22 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings, boasting a wide range of degrees for both undergraduate and graduate students. Located in Evanston, Illinois, it is a research university that is slightly larger than most. Northwestern looks for a diverse group of students that have unique and comprehensive backgrounds.
Founded in 1853, Washington University is a visually stunning private research university that sits primarily on the 169-acre Danforth campus and the 164-acre Medical campus in suburban St. Louis, Missouri. It is ranked #21 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. With a student population of nearly 14.000 students, a little over half are undergraduates. The University is dedicated to providing opportunities for students to discover, explore, and pursue their passions. This medium-sized university draws students and faculty from more than 120 countries worldwide and every ethnic group from the U.S.
Middlebury College is a small liberal arts college located in Middlebury, Vermont. It is currently ranked #19 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. This is a top tier college for liberal arts and was founded in 1800; it’s known for international studies and leadership in language instruction. Students can choose from among 44 majors with over 850 courses.
The University of California, Berkeley, also known as UC Berkeley and Cal, is ranked #20 on the Veritas Prep Elite College Rankings. Cal is a public research university founded in 1868, and located on a 1,232 acre campus overlooking San Francisco Bay. It is home to over 25,000 undergraduate students and 10,000 graduate students in 14 colleges, including professional schools and graduate programs.