10 “Little Ivies” As Good As The Actual Ivies

Which are the little ivies that are as good as the actual ivies? Ivy League schools are known for their high-quality education and it’s quite obvious why almost everyone knows about them. 

From well-stocked state-of-the-art facilities to lots of career opportunities, one would not deny opting for these schools. But, there are other lesser-known academic institutions still in the same United States that are worthy of being classified as ivy league. 

These schools operate on rigorous academic coursework and have selective admission offers. They also provide a global-standard undergraduate education as well as lots of travel abroad programs. 

So, which schools in the U.S. fall under the category of “little ivy”? They are listed below…

  1. Connecticut College
  2. Colby College 
  3. Amherst College
  4. Hamilton College 
  5. Union College
  6. Swarthmore College
  7. Trinity College
  8. Williams College
  9. Wesleyan University

10. Colgate University

Location: Hamilton, New York

Kicking off our list, Colgate University is one of the best little ivy league schools in the United States. Being home to more than 50 majors, this academic institution offers a quality education that is characterized by a strong faculty, state-of-the-art facilities, and high teaching quality. 

The prestigious academic service provider also offers the Wilderness First Responder certification – here, scholars are taught how to tackle the various form of emergencies in the wild. Even so, the educational institution has a student-faculty ratio of 9:1 hence learning is made easier and personalized.

Additionally, the school’s graduates are scattered across the workforce in the United States hence the possibility of getting a job after graduation is quite high.

9. Wesleyan University

Location: Middletown, Connecticut

As one of the best Universities in Connecticut, this liberal arts college offers a standard of education that can be compared head-to-head with some of the big-boys ivy league schools.

This prestigious academic institution is home to a dual-track engineering program that is done in affiliation with both the School of Engineering at Columbia University and the California Institute of Technology.

The school also offers unique BA/MA programs in psychology and math. Participants of the programs stand to earn their undergraduate (bachelor’s) degree after 4-years and a master’s degree in the 5th. Surprisingly, this comes with no extra fee charged.

Even so, the school has graduated several alumni most especially in the field of politics, film, and Music.

8. Williams College

Location: Williamstown, Massachusetts

Located in the booming city of Williamstown, Massachusetts Williams College is one of the little ivy league schools that is as good as the actual ones. As the best liberal arts college in the United States for more than a decade (currently and still counting), the academic institution has continued to supply the country with a viable workforce.

Moreover, the prestigious academic service provider is home to the Williams’ Tutorial program. Through this program, a pair of students are guided and tutored by a lecturer and they are involved in intensive coursework. As a result, these scholars get to be independent and a majority of them do co-publish academic works with the faculty.

Another outstanding program offered by this notorious ivy league standard school is the Williams’ Winter Study program. This program usually takes place during the spring and fall season and what students do is they will take a month-long lesson outside that of the classroom. Hence, they expand their knowledge and gain more insight.

Moreover, the school has graduated many liberal arts scholars, especially politicians. Close to 100 members of the Congress, former Singapore prime minister, Goh Chok Tong among others are products of William College.

7. Trinity College

Location: Hartford, Connecticut 

Coming in next on the list, Trinity College is one of the best little ivy league schools in the United States. Being home to over 40 major offerings, the prestigious academic institution has several career paths in stock for scholars to choose from.

The school is characterized by strong faculty members with years of experience and also has a curriculum that is rigorous, comprehensive, and intensive. As a result, the school emphasizes innovation which is why lots of their students have contributed immensely to the growth of their respective fields.

6. Swarthmore College

Located: Swarthmore, Pennsylvania

Located in the beautiful city of Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, Swarthmore College is one of the best little ivy league academic institutions in the United States. Established in 1864, the school has a  diverse student population and there are lots of student-led organizations on campus.

More so, the American education service provider is a beneficiary of the Quaker Consortium, a program formed as a result of the collaboration between the Bryn Mawr, Haverford, Philly colleges Swarthmore, and the University of Pennsylvania.

A total number of 1500 scholars are selected from the school to partake in the Quaker Consortium program. Through this program, these scholars can afford the opportunity to freely choose an academic discipline from any of the four partner academic institutions and get the certification.

Even so, the American educational establishment offers Swarthmore’s distinctive Honors Program. Via this route, students are guided and taught to be innovative by the faculty. At the end of the academic session, these students get to discuss with industry experts from other universities including the Switzerland’s University of Geneva.

5. Union College

Location: Schenectady, New York

Located in the popular and booming city of New York, Union College is one of the best little ivy league schools in the United States. The school is home to a stellar study-abroad program and more than 65% of scholars doing this program are studying outside the country; the highest on the list. 

With this program, it is quite obvious why the school has consistently graduated many globally-competent scholars. It is also one of the few schools in the country that is home to an ABET-accredited undergraduate degree program in the field of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, biomedical engineering, and computer engineering.

4. Hamilton College

Location: Clinton, New York

Coming in among the top four best little ivy league schools in the United States, Hamilton College is a one-of-a-kind academic institution. The school only offers undergraduate degree programs and houses several centers aimed at sharpening the communication and writing skills of its scholars. 

Offering an open curriculum, scholars have no limitation to what they can learn. The school also offers a dual engineering track which is courtesy of Dartmouth College’s Thayer School of Engineering and Columbia University’s School of Engineering and Applied Science.

3. Amherst College

Location: Amherst, Massachusetts

Located in Massachusetts, Amherst College is the third (3rd) best little ivy league school in the United States. Just like Hamilton College, this prestigious academic institution offers an open curriculum and is home to one of the performing league football teams in the country.

Even so, the academic institution holds the record for being the first school in the United States to offer an undergraduate neuroscience major. The school has also graduated many successful talents including award-winning actor Jeffrey Wright and one-time U.S. President Calvin Coolidge.

2. Colby College

Location: Waterville, ME

Colby College is among the top educational establishments in the United States. The school offers Colby’s “Jan-plan” program which takes place during the spring and fall semesters. Through this program, students are given the luxury of gaining extra knowledge aside from what they are taught in the classroom.

Moreover, this liberal arts college is home to the Davis Institute for Artificial Intelligence which is the first interdisciplinary AI institute of its kind. This liberal arts college also offers intense, rigorous, and comprehensive coursework and parades high-quality faculty members who have contributed immensely to the growth of their fields.

Additionally, scholars also get access to study abroad opportunities and stand to earn course credits from international schools.

1. Connecticut College

Location: New London, Connecticut

Located in the artistic city of New London, Connecticut, the crown for the best little ivy school in the United States goes to Connecticut College.  Established in 1911, this liberal arts college has a small-size campus and offers a learning experience that is widely praised by many. 

The school also operates on intensive and comprehensive coursework and allows room for scholars to create dynamic relationships with their tutors. Additionally, the school has graduated a handful of notable alumni including writer Sloane Crosley and Biological expert David Haussler.


Ivy league schools are popularly known for their qualitative education but there is not all there is. Some colleges and universities in the United States offer an education quality similar to theirs. 

Hence, this post deals with the best little ivy league schools. Hope it helps.

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