20 Best Non Ivy League Schools To Consider In 2023

Many colleges, including Duke, Northwestern, Vanderbilt, University of Chicago, and others, are frequently misidentified for Ivy League schools, yet they are non-Ivy League schools.

Why aren’t these colleges’ members of the Ivy League?

For starters, it has nothing to do with the school’s quality. Instead, the Ivy League is a sports conference made up of eight universities founded in the twentieth century.

The Ivy League is widely recognized as one of the most prestigious university networks in the United States.

On the other hand, many top-tier universities are not Ivy League members.

These colleges do, however, offer engaging degree programs, skilled teachers, and the extensive resources that students expect from a world-class university.

Today, we’ll look at the top 20 non-Ivy League institutions, according to U.S. News & World Report.

These ten programs offer some of the most comprehensive curricula in the world, encompassing law, business, the performing arts, finance, and more.

Furthermore, these ten colleges are among the most selective programs in the world.

Let’s get started!

Why is MIT not ivy?

Because the term “Ivy League school” has come to be associated with high educational standards, one would question why famous colleges like Stanford, Duke, and MIT are not members of the Ivy League.

There is currently no way to get into the Ivy League because becoming an Ivy League college requires being in a specific situation at a specific time.

Does this imply that these universities do not provide a high-quality education?

No, since they continue to rank among the top 15 finest institutions in the country for most of the courses they offer, often outperforming their Ivy League peers.

They did not have exceptional athletic accomplishments when the Ivy League began. This may not be the whole story, but it definitely kept them out from being an Ivy League.

Your degree will be equally valuable in education, but remember that cultural shifts take time, so the attitude shift is still incomplete.

Some businesses will still favor candidates who attended an Ivy League institution to those who attended Stanford or Duke.

Check Out: Top 17 Ivy League Universities in Canada, 2023 [Updated]

Are Career Opportunities Better at Ivy League Schools?

Somehow. Because we are amid a paradigm shift among employers, it’s a difficult question to address.

Going to an Ivy League school would have been a ticket to better jobs 10-15 years ago, but currently, any of the top 20 institutions in the United States is enough to secure employment.

You’ll still meet people who believe Ivy League institutions are the greatest, and candidates with an Ivy League degree may get a job ahead of those without one, but these are the exceptions.

What counts is that you acquire a decent education and demonstrate that your abilities are valuable to an employer, not where you went to school.

Read Also: How to Get a Scholarship to an Ivy League School

What are my Chances at these Non-Ivy Schools?

Shooting for selective institutions can be intimidating, as only a few students can reasonably expect to be accepted. You may be concerned about your chances of admission based on the low acceptance rates.

The acceptance rate is calculated by dividing the number of admitted students by the total number of applicants. It only pertains to the entire group. Within that applicant pool, some students have a 99 percent chance of being accepted, while others have a chance of getting in of less than 1%.

The low acceptance rates apply to the whole application pool at each school; consequently, this number should not be used to determine your chances of acceptance.

Comparing yourself to students with your history and being able to evaluate all areas of your profile is one approach to understand better your rate of admission (including extracurricular). This is simple to do with our free admissions calculator.

To make the best decisions for your school list moving forward, it’s critical to evaluate your prospects.

See a list of some of the Best schools in the world and yet not an Ivy League School.

See Also: Ivy League Medical Schools Ranking 2023

What are Some of these Best Schools that are not Ivies?

It’s no secret that graduating from an Ivy League university carries a certain amount of prestige.

In terms of student satisfaction, extracurricular options, study abroad opportunities, and other metrics. However, the best non-Ivy League colleges in the country score similarly high.

The following are ten of the best non-Ivy League schools in the country. They’re still picky, so keep reading for ten other schools with better acceptance rates!

Read Also: Best Ivy League Online MBA Programs – World Scholarship Forum

The 10 Best Schools That Aren’t Ivy League

Here are some of the best schools that are non-Ivy league schools:

1. Stanford University

Stanford is ranked No. 6 on US News & World Report’s list of national universities, placing it ahead of several Ivies.

As a result, it’s no surprise that they know this university as the Ivy of the West.

Small class sizes — nearly 70% of classes have fewer than 20 students. And the opportunity to work closely with faculty are among the school’s many advantages.

While pursuing their degrees, we encourage students to join instructors’ research endeavors and seek mentorship opportunities.

Learn more about Stanford, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Check Also: What Are The Easiest Ivy League Schools To Get Into?

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

MIT is tied with Columbia for third place on the list of national universities, just after Princeton and Harvard.

MIT students have access to the Independent Activities Program, a month-long January term filled with special courses and projects, besides world-class research facilities and innovative technology.

While the university’s engineering school has the largest enrollment, non-tech programs such as political science and economics also receive high marks.

Find out more about MIT, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Read Also: How To Get Into An Ivy League School | Step-By-Step Guide

Duke University

Duke students have 53 majors and 52 minors to choose when customizing their education.

In reality, the university offers Program II, which allows students with interdisciplinary interests to create their degree programs.

In addition, the school offers 18 students the chance to participate in the Robertson Scholars Leadership Program each year.

The victors will be awarded a four-year scholarship and exceptionally academic and extracurricular opportunities.

Find out more about Duke, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Northwestern University

Northwestern University, also in Illinois, is ranked No. 9 on the list of the finest national universitiesthe finest national universities.

While Northwestern University offers 112 undergraduate degrees, it is best recognized for its journalism program, which has produced notable alumni such as Pulitzer Prize winner Lisa Gartner and author George R.R. Martin.

Additionally, Northwestern students have numerous possibilities to study abroad. In reality, half of all undergraduates participate in study abroad programs.

Find out more about Northwestern, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

California Institute of Technology

Students who are interested in pursuing a career in science should consider Caltech.

The university is home to the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the nation’s foremost center for robotic space exploration. And it offers students several opportunities to participate in research during the school year and over the summer.

Caltech is famed for its academics, but it also offers various extracurricular activities and student groups, such as archery, karate, and Ultimate Frisbee.

Find out more about Caltech, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

UC Berkeley

UC Berkeley is a public institution with a tuition rate for California residents of roughly $14,000 per year, making it one of the cheaper colleges on this list.

Berkeley’s prestige, however, is unaffected by this. In fact, the school boasts over 90 Nobel Laureates among its teachers and graduates.

While we know UC Berkeley for drawing pre-med students, undergraduates can pick from over 150 majors, including uncommon options such as peace and conflict studies, atmospheric science, and Tibetan studies, depending on their acceptance rate and your chances of admission.

Johns Hopkins University

They regard Johns Hopkins University as one of the best medical schools in the country.

The institution has a strong reputation in the humanities and social sciences, with popular majors such as public health and international studies.

Furthermore, students admire the school’s financial aid program. According to data from U.S. News, the average aid package is $47,492, and graduates earn an average beginning income of $62,700.

Find out more about Johns Hopkins University and calculate your odds of acceptance.

University of Chicago

Regarding academics, the University of Chicago encourages students to participate in research opportunities at the Argonne National Laboratory, the Marine Biological Laboratory, and the Giant Magellan Telescope.

The school is regarded for more than simply its outstanding scientific and technology offerings.

The University of Chicago, for example, offers over 50 different degrees, including a nationally acclaimed economics program.

With 400 student clubs, you won’t have trouble finding your place at this prestigious university.

Learn more about the University of Chicago, its acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Williams College

You’re not alone if you’ve never heard of Williams College.

Williams is one of the most significant non-Ivy institutions in the country, with majors spanning from economics to political science, government, and history, despite its reputation as a liberal arts college.

In addition, Williams provides 60-70 courses in the form of Oxford and Cambridge’s tutorial system. These tutorials, which consist of a professor and two or three students, allowing undergraduates to learn in a small, customized setting.

Williams students enjoy various outdoor activities in Western Massachusetts during their leisure time, including hiking, canoeing, and cross-country skiing.

Learn more about Williams, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Amherst College

Amherst College, another liberal arts college in Massachusetts, is ranked No. 2 on the list of best national liberal arts colleges.

Along with Northwestern and Stanford, Amherst is considered one of the Hidden Ivies since it is one of the few open curriculum colleges. Which means there are no general education requirements.

Amherst is also a member of the Five Colleges consortium, which allows students to attend classes and join groups at nearby colleges like Smith and the University of Massachusetts.

Also, Amherst College is noted for its substantial need-blind, no-loan financial aid, promising to satisfy 100% of each student’s demonstrated need.

More than half of the students at this school get financial aid, with the average need-based grant amounting to $54,715.

Find out more about Amherst College and calculate your odds of admittance.

10 Non-Ivy League Schools with Higher Acceptance Rates and Intellectual Rigor

Because there are more eligible applicants than spaces at highly selective schools. Including schools on your list that provide intellectual rigor but have higher acceptance rates is essential.

It maybe well know to you some items on this list, while others may be hidden gems.

Brandeis University

Brandeis University is a nonsectarian research university with a strong emphasis on undergraduates.

It is built on the principles of justice, transparency, and inclusivity. It’s hardly unexpected, given that the American Jewish community created it-the American Jewish community created it in 1948. At a time when Jews, other racial and ethnic minorities, and women experienced prejudice in higher education.

The school is still guided by the ideals of inclusion, appreciation for learning, critical thinking, and self-criticism after over 70 years.

Learn more about Brandeis and see whether you’re a good fit.

Carleton College

The Carleton experience might be summarized as a close-knit community in rural Minnesota fueled by intellectual curiosity.

The liberal arts approach of the institution fosters deep, comprehensive, and dynamic study to make sense of life’s “interesting chaos.”

A former long-term employee who regularly invited students to her home for chocolate chip cookies donated her home to the college, where students can hang out—and even bake her favorite chocolate chip cookies and make bran, beer, or carrot muffins using ingredients from the fully stocked refrigerator.

Find out more about Carleton University and calculate your chances of admittance.

Colgate University

Colgate University boasts a beautiful campus in upstate New York where students can grow as knowledgeable, intelligent, critical thinkers and perceptive leaders while having direct access to faculty.

The university is neither a large research institution nor a small liberal arts college.

Colgate’s goal demands that all sophomores finish a course in its core curriculum’s five categories by the end of their sophomore year: Legacies of the Ancient World, Challenges of Modernity, Communities and Identities, Scientific Perspectives of the World, and Global Engagements.

Learn more about Colgate, its acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

William and Mary College

The College of William and Mary is a prestigious public research university in Williamsburg, Virginia, rich in history and beauty.

It offers liberal arts and business undergraduate degrees. It is the second-oldest institution of higher education in the United States. It was founded in 1693 by a royal charter issued by King William III and Queen Mary II (Harvard is the oldest). William & Mary is one of a small group of elite public universities known as “Public Ivies.”

Learn more about William & Mary, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Connecticut College

Conn Institution is the typical college on a hill, located across the street from the Coast Guard Academy and overlooking Long Island Sound.

It is two hours from Boston, one hour from Providence, and three hours from New York City and features a 750-acre arboretum.

“Connections” is the name of the school’s new liberal arts approach, which encourages students to integrate their interests into a meaningful interdisciplinary curriculum or educational pathway (rather than a checklist of classes), as well as study abroad and/or a college-funded internship, to prepare them for a fulfilling and influential career.

Learn more about Connecticut College, its acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Grinnell College

Students at Grinnell work with a faculty advisor to plan their academic paths. (The approach is known as Individually Advised Curriculum at the school.)

There are no general education prerequisites and only one obligatory class (a First-Year Tutorial), a small, writing-intensive, discussion-based class with topics like Kendrick Lamar, Coping with Climate Change, and Exploring the Magical World of Calvin and Hobbes).

The school takes pride in recruiting curious and intelligent pupils to ask difficult questions and challenge simple solutionssimple solutions.

Learn more about Grinnell, their acceptance rate, and your chances of admission.

Kenyon College

Kenyon is Ohio’s oldest private institution and the first in the United States to employ the model of faculty members functioning as academic advisors.

With a robust literary legacy and the home of the Kenyon Review (an acclaimed literary magazine), it’s no surprise that 100% of recent alumni think Kenyon taught them how to write better.

You might be surprised that the school ranks 8th in the US (ahead of every Ivy) for the percentage of STEM graduates who acquire a doctorate in the field.

Learn more about Kenyon and calculate your chances of admittance.

Macalester College

Macalester educates students to have an outsized impact on the world with students from all 50 states and 98 countries, a global citizenship mindset, and a collaborative learning style.

The school’s culture emphasizes civic participation, strengthened by Macalester’s Civic Engagement Center and the Kofi Annan Institute for Global Citizenship.

Learn more about Macalester and calculate your chances of admittance.

Oberlin College

Oberlin is a school that fosters significant linkages between intellectual and creative discovery, with both a top-rated College of Arts and Sciences and a top-rated Conservatory of Music.

At Oberlin, moral idealism, social participation, and innovation are also valued. It was the first co-ed college to enroll Black students and award undergraduate degrees to women.

Find out more about Oberlin and calculate your chances of admittance.

Occidental College

Occidental College, Los Angeles’ first and only liberal arts college, is nestled in the magnificent slopes of Eagle Rock, where it was founded in 1887, long before the city had its first paved roadway.

Oxy students have access to the resources of a thriving, global city and a high-quality multidisciplinary and intercultural education that will prepare them for leadership roles in a complex, autonomous, and pluralistic society. The institution has a history of attracting brilliant students from all walks of life.

Learn more about Occidental and calculate your chances of admittance.


Why is MIT not ivy?

Because the term “Ivy League school” has come to be associated with high educational standards, one would question why famous colleges like Stanford, Duke, and MIT are not members of the Ivy League.
We can only say they did not have exceptional athletic accomplishments when the Ivy League began. This may not be the whole story, but it definitely kept them out from being an Ivy League.

What are the best non Ivy League schools?

Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Stanford University.
University of California, Berkeley.
California Institute of Technology.
Northwestern University.
Johns Hopkins University.
University of California: Los Angeles.
New York University.


These universities, including the Ivy Leagues, make up the Top 30 Colleges in the United States.

Although mist people regard them as non-Ivy League School, they are the best private and public universities in the area.

UC Berkeley is the top-ranked public university, while MIT and Cal Tech are the most outstanding engineering and science colleges.

Stanford, Duke, and Notre Dame are strong colleges with excellent Division I athletic programs.

Consider your child fortunate if he or she gets accepted into one of these colleges; more significantly, it implies they have kicked their butts!



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