<span>3.9 GPA Colleges: Browse Schools That Accept a 3.9 GPA</span>

3.9 GPA Colleges: Browse Schools That Accept a 3.9 GPA

Grade point average, or GPA, provides a numeric snapshot of high school academic performance by taking the average of all your final grades. A 3.9 GPA conveys that every grade you’ve earned has been an A.

 

Is a 3.9 GPA Good?

GPA is scored on a 4.0 scale. So strictly speaking, a 3.9 GPA is just a tenth shy of a perfect score and demonstrates academic excellence in every class. A 3.9 GPA far exceeds the average GPA that most colleges use as their unspoken baseline for competitive admission (3.0) as well as the benchmark GPA for more selective colleges (3.5). Because of this, a 3.9 GPA makes it possible to be considered for admission at most colleges and universities throughout the country, including at elite schools.

 

What Colleges Can I Get Into With a 3.9 GPA?

A 3.9 GPA qualifies for admission to a large number of colleges and universities and we’ve compiled a sample list of them below. While GPA alone won’t guarantee admission, all of these institutions have a history of accepting students in the 3.9-4.0 range.

If you’re a freshman or sophomore, continue practicing all the good study and testing habits that earned a 3.9 GPA and stay motivated to maintain this academic performance. Since your GPA is in such a good place, it’ll be beneficial to focus some effort on extracurricular activities. Not only will joining after school clubs and organizations help you find something that you’re passionate about, but it will also benefit you during the college admission process. Colleges are looking for well-rounded students, so joining a sport and/or participating in community service projects looks great on your applications.

For juniors, it’s time to focus on preparing for standardized testing while continuing to maintain your GPA. Remember that many colleges weight SAT or ACT scores similarly with GPA when considering applications so it’s important to devote enough energy to preparing for an entrance exam. Download a few practice tests and time yourself while taking them to get used to the format. If one’s available, sign up for a test prep class through your high school and put in the effort to make sure your standardized test score lives up to the precedent your GPA has set.

As for seniors, make sure that every part of your application depicts you in the best possible light including the essay, after school activities list, and test scores. Have your college counselor read your essay and offer suggestions for improvement. Meet with visiting college admissions representatives and do some networking to determine what they’re looking for on an application. And if you’re looking for ways to further enhance your academic record, consider taking a class for college credit. Explore your high school’s AP offerings or the “early college” classes offered at the local community college. These courses help show prospective schools that you’re able to handle a college-level academic workload.

 

What Are Colleges Looking At Other Than a 3.9 High School GPA?

There’s always a lot of focus on GPA during high school — which is very likely how you achieved a 3.9! Congratulations! Also know that colleges and universities are interested in knowing more about you than just that single snapshot of your academic career — they want to know how you spend your time outside of the classroom. What are you interested in? Where do you imagine your life taking you? To show that, include as many of the following as possible into your application packet: 

  • SAT Scores / ACT Scores
  • Extracurricular/Afterschool activities
  • Sports
  • Application Essays
  • Volunteer Work / Community Service
  • Jobs / Internships / Special Projects
  • FAFSA

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a 3.9 GPA in high school considered good? 

Considering the highest possible GPA is 4.0, it’s pretty easy to unequivocally say yes, a 3.9 is a great GPA. The average high school student graduates with a 3.0, so your achievement is well-above average and qualifies for you for acceptance into even the most competitive institutions.

 

What colleges can I get into with a 3.9 GPA?

With a 3.9 GPA, you’re eligible for admission at a vast majority of colleges, even at the top tier of the most competitive. You can apply to some truly big-name colleges with reasonable chance for acceptance, including the University of California-Los Angeles, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, and Boston College.

 

You’re also eligible to apply to Ivy League Institutions, including the University of Pennsylvania and Princeton University, but remember that no GPA or standardized test score guarantees admission to Ivy Leagues. Apply! You qualify for acceptance! But know that they turn away great candidates every year, so don’t be disheartened if you don’t get accepted. 

 

What percentile is a 3.9 GPA? 

A 3.9 GPA, or A-average, indicates a percentile of 94. 

 

What scholarships can you get with a 3.9 GPA? 

You can apply to just about every scholarship requiring a GPA minimum! You may find a scant few that require a 4.0, but they’ll be few and far between. Make sure to apply for as many scholarships as possible, no matter the dollar amount, because even small amounts of money can help offset the cost of tuition. 

 

View All Scholarships

 

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The University of California in Los Angeles, better known as UCLA, is one of 10 campuses in the UC system. With 109 academic departments and more than 125 majors offered, as well as an average of one billion dollars funded for research every year and...

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UCLA offers a great balance between being a challenging school and not being impossible. The classes are tough, and the quarter system makes it absolutely essential to stay on top of things. Classes last only ten weeks, so a missed lecture or a...

” – Liz

Harvard College is an undergraduate liberal arts school located in Cambridge, MA, within Harvard University. Founded in 1636, this private, very selective, Ivy League college is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and was...

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The students are great, teamwork is encouraged (I've heard from transfers that it is to a unique degree), there are a lot of ambitious people but nobody is too competitive. There are a million things to do, in terms of academics, extracurriculars...

” – Current Sophomore

Stanford University is a research institution located in the California town of the same name. The more than 8,000-acre campus features seven schools, the largest of which is the School of Humanities and Sciences, and 80 residential facilities. With...

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” – Dahlton from Jackson, CA

Founded in 1868, the University of California at Berkeley is the flagship of the University of California system of higher education, with a campus overlooking the San Francisco Bay. UC Berkeley is known for its academic excellence, student activism...

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The environment is incredibly welcoming and you'll always find a place to fit in. It's definitely challenging, but incredibly rewarding. Personally, I adore it.

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One of the few land-, space-, and sea-grant institutions in the US, the University of Florida is a public research university founded in 1853. It is the eighth largest single-campus university in the United States. U.S. News & World Report have...

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UF is a Research 1 facility. Most faculty conduct their own research in their academic fields and are great resources. There are a multitude of tutoring services available & professors are very approachable at office hours.

” – Nicole from Clermont, FL

Founded in 1890, The University of Chicago is a private urban research institution. U of Chicago is home to an undergraduate college noteworthy for establishing the fields of Ecology and Sociology. In addition to classroom facilities, the U of...

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The University of Chicago is an urban neighborhood filled with Gothic architecture and students passionate about learning. While the workload at times feels unbearable, getting to learn from some of the best professors in the field makes up for it...

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Founded in 1817, University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is the state’s oldest university. U of M has very high research activity and is a often referred to as a Public Ivy. The university at Ann Arbor offers upwards of 260 degrees for undergraduates...

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Not only did I learn a lot academically, I grew astronomically as a person. The campus is diverse and exciting and there are always new opportunities for students to expand their horizons. Classes are fun and challenging and intellectually...

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Featuring the largest single-campus enrollment in the United States, the University of Central Florida is a public university in Orlando. UCF is home to 13 colleges granting degrees in over 200 academic majors. Additionally, UCF is a space-grant...

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This is no high school!! I went from being a honor student getting straight A's without much studying to hitting the books for hours... and (BEST OF ALL) ACTUALLY LEARNING!! I actually feel FULFILLED now and CHALLENGED! The courses and professors...

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The classes, while crammed full of information, are taught by exceptional professors who know how to teach. These professors work with you, taking time from their day and even making special arrangements to meet with you, to help you better...

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The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is an institution in the UNC system and the first public university to confer degrees. A member of the Association of American Universities, UNC Chapel Hill is considered a Public Ivy and houses a...

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UNC Chapel Hill is an outstanding school with outstanding people. The school work is challenging, but it is rewarding. The university introduces you to people from all walks of life and exposes you to some of the most gifted professors and students...

” – Rebecca

Founded in 1746, Princeton University is a private, highly selective, Ivy League, the fourth oldest higher education institution in the nation, and one of the original nine colonial colleges. Princeton features a liberal arts education in the...

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Princeton was my life dream, two months in I have no doubt I made the right choice. I have met so many unique, passionate, and amazing people. My classes are very challenging, but engaging and fun.

” – 2016 Tiger

The University of Southern California is a high-research institution located in Los Angeles, California, where it’s been educating students since 1880. The university is comprised of two campuses, the main University Park and the Health Sciences...

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USC is the place for opportunities. You are not only paying for a great education, but also connections and resume builders that will help you get where you want in life. USC is a school for leaders and overachievers.

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Brown University is a private Ivy League research university that was founded in 1764. The university offers more than 40 academic departments. The campus is home to program housing for students who share similar interests, plus substance-free...

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Brown University is a great place to expand not only your knowledge in academia but also your personal context in the world. This university is a place of diversity and freedom. The students, faculty, staff, and courses are all wonderful attributes...

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The University of Washington is a selective institution located in Seattle, WA, with two satellite campuses in Bothell and Tacoma. At this Public Ivy, sustainability is a major focus and the school has made The Princeton Review Green College Honor...

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The University of Washington is a challenging school that blossoms independence and creativity. The majority of all faculty members are enthusiastic about the subject they teach, and are willing to assist all students. This school provides excellent...

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Penn has a lot of opportunities academically and socially which I absolutely love. As most colleges are, you get a mix of both good and bad teachers based on how you learn best, but there are always tutors, friends, TAs, and office hours there to...

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Founded in 1855, Michigan State University is a large public research institution in East Lansing, Michigan, and a multicultural student population representing more than 140 countries. MSU is home to more than 200 areas of study through 17 degree...

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Being a student at Michigan State allows one to receive a well rounded education while still focusing on specific areas of study and allowing students to still have a bit of fun while doing it. All undergraduate students are required to take...

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The University of California in Davis is a public institution in northern California and one of the largest universities by enrollment in the UC System. UC Davis is home to four colleges conferring undergraduate degrees and six professional schools...

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I have met amazing students. The talent here stretches all over the board from I can't believe you got in... to You also got into Cal Tech? Why didn't you go there instead? Because of my major, Biomedical Engineering, I don't associate with the...

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The University of Georgia is a land- and sea-grant public research university in Athens, GA. Founded in 1785, University of Georgia is one of three public universities to hold the title of the oldest public university in the US. With 17 different...

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We get a rep for being a huge party school, but that's only partially true. Personally, I am a science major, pre-med, and our program is chalk-full of weeder classes. No matter what major you're in, if you don't work, you're instantly on the 5 year...

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Georgia Institute of Technology, more commonly known as Georgia Tech, is a 4-year research institution offering technology-focused education based out of Atlanta, GA. The institution has a number of instructional sites, including online and physical...

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Florida State University is the oldest institution of Higher Education in Florida. Located on 1,633 acres of land in Tallahassee, FSU is a space- and sea-grant research university offering more than 300 degree programs. The campus is home to the only...

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Whether you take classes taught by professors or graduate students you are guaranteed to expand your knowledge immensely! Every person on our faculty is incredibly knowledgeable and a great resource for students. I have learned something new everyday...

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San Diego State University is a public research institution located in San Diego, California. What began as an all-female college for elementary school teachers now consists of 8 colleges that offer 95 undergraduate programs plus a variety of...

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The classes are great! The campus staff offers tons of help to pick out your classes to make sure you are utilizing your time and expediting your stay here on campus. I am currently taking Sociology, Political Science, Spanish, Communication...

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I am glad that I actually joined CSSA CAMP Summer Science Academy, which I highly recommend for those who are of a Chicano/Latino, African-American, Native American, or Pacific Islander and must be majoring in Biological Sciences...

” – Sal from Whittier, CA

Founded in 1856, the University of Maryland-College Park is a 4-year public research university in Maryland’s Capital Region and the flagship campus of the UMD system. UMD hosts 12 colleges and schools granting undergraduate degrees in 92 academic...

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I've finished my first year here and I definitely enjoyed most of my classes. The professors are really there for you if you just walk into their office when you need them. There's a lot of information you have to take in so you really have to study...

” – Nicole from Silver Spring, MD

Clemson University is America’s second-largest university by student population and South Carolina’s land- and sea-grant institution. Clemson is home to seven colleges and schools offering bachelor’s degrees in more than 80 academic majors. For...

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Clemson University is a great school! The students are friendly and the professors are incredibly willing to work with you!

” – Victoria from Easley, SC

A private research institution located in Boston, Northeastern University was founded in 1898. Northeastern is home to nine colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 90 academic majors. Additionally, the university operates a...

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Some of the professor's are wonderful, but those seem to be the upper classman professors. The freshman professors are good, some aren;t as good as others. There is a lot of help offered (via tutoring, review sessions, etc.) if you need it.

” – Kimberlie from Beverly, MA

The University of Notre Dame was founded in 1842 by members of the Congregation of Holy Cross. It is one of the nation’s top religious schools and holds mass multiple times a day. U.S. News & World Report rates the school as #18 in National...

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In my first semester here, I feel like I learned more than I did in my last two years of high school. Classes really challenge you and they don't just teach you the material, they teach you how to think, as in how to approach an intellectual issue...

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The University of South Florida is a public research university located on Florida’s Gulf Coast, offering more than 180 majors and concentrations. Ranked on multiple lists for its research efforts, USF’s Office of Undergraduate Research at the Tampa...

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I'm in the Honors College and a double major in Science and Language. All of my professors know what they are talking about and most are very willing to help you understand the material.

” – Joana from Viera, FL

Founded in 1787 as the Pittsburgh academy, the University of Pittsburgh is a 4-year state-related research institution. Pitt is composed of 16 colleges and universities granting undergraduate degrees in numerous academic majors and minors. The Pitt...

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My favorite thing about Pitt is that you don't just learn in the classroom. I've gained more life experience here in the last year and a half than I have my entire life. The professors are hit or miss at times, but the you will always take something...

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Boston College is a 4-year Jesuit Catholic University and the first institution of higher learning founded in the city of Boston. BC is home to eight schools and colleges conferring degrees in over 50 fields of study. As a Catholic university, Boston...

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At the beginning of my college search, I thought I'd prefer a school with an open curriculum rather than jump through the hoops of a core curriculum. I thought an open curriculum would let me study exactly what was right for me and that required...

” – Peter from Glastonbury, CT

Auburn University
Auburn University, AL

Auburn University is a 4-year public research institution and the second largest university in Alabama. Auburn encompasses 15 colleges and schools offering undergraduate degrees in over 140 academic majors. Outside of the classroom, Auburn is home to...

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Auburn is definitely a highly academic school. Just because Auburn is in Alabama does not mean that it is by any means easy. It was actually just ranked as one of the hardest grading colleges in the nation. This is not a place for slackers. Be ready...

” – Jennifer from Snellville, GA

Vanderbilt University was founded in 1873 as a private research university in Nashville, Tennessee. Academically, the university focuses on an interdisciplinary approach,  encouraging students to take courses from any of the 143 areas of study. The...

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Choosing to attend Vanderbilt was, quite honestly, one of the most wise decisions I have ever made in my short, 20 year life!!! Vanderbilt offers a wide variety of opportunities for all of it's students. From hosting a beautiful campus, to taking an...

” – Walisha from Louisville, KY

Founded by Thomas Jefferson in 1819, the University of Virginia is a public institution in Charlottesville. UVA encompasses 12 colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over 70 fields of study. For artistically-inclined students, UVA...

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The courses here are very rigorous and challenging, but if you love to learn and work hard, then UVA is the place for you. The professors and even the TAs are all very knowledgeable about their subjects and are always available to help you with you...

” – Elizabeth from Bethesda, MD

Named for a well-known abolitionist and philanthropist, Johns Hopkins University is a private institution in Baltimore and the first research university in the United States. JHU confers degrees and certificates in over 260 academic programs...

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Johns Hopkins University has truly brought together the ideal three characteristics of a school, in my perspective. The atmosphere is challenging but the people are willing to help. The education is top-notch, yet one must work for the desires grades...

” – Marysol from Dundalk, MD

The University of South Carolina is a 4-year public research institution in the state capital of Columbia. South Carolina encompasses 12 colleges conferring undergraduate degrees. Additionally, U of SC is home to the first freestanding academic...

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There is a wide range of classes available at the University of South Carolina. From various business classes, to languages, to music class (one about the beatles!), to whatever you want. The University has a wide range of majors, and is ranked...

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The Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, also known as Virginia Tech, is a 4-year public research university in western Virginia. Virginia Tech encompasses nine colleges offering bachelor’s degrees in 110 academic majors. To promote...

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The teachers are always here to help. Tech also has several study groups and tutoring programs for students who need a little extra to grasp a concept.

” – Marecka from Spring Grove, VA

Emory University is a liberal arts institution located in Atlanta, Georgia, with a second campus in Oxford. The 600-acre campus in the Druid Hills neighborhood is home to four undergraduate and seven graduate colleges, as well as over a dozen...

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Emory University has a variety of resources available for students-- great interning opportunities as well as opportunities to work with amazing scientific researchers in a variety of fields. Starting out in my college career, I did question the...

” – Monique from Columbus, GA

Founded in 1847, the University of Iowa is a 4-year public research institution in Iowa City, often considered one of the nation’s top college towns. Iowa grants undergraduate degrees in over 200 academic majors, minors, and certificate programs. The...

“…

The education is top-notch here at U of Iowa. The campus is beautiful and it's a Big Ten school with a small school feeling. At University of Iowa you will really feel like it's your home away from home.

” – Kevin from Crystal Lake, IL

Originally founded as the William Marsh Rice Institute for the Advancement of Literature, Science, and Art, Rice University is a 4-year private institution in Houston. Rice encompasses six colleges and schools conferring undergraduate degrees in over...

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The people--students, professors, staff--are kind and open, establishing a great atmosphere to make friends, have fun, and of course, learn. Academics are difficult as expected, but the help that is accessible to you really does get you through the...

” – Rachel from Oklahoma City, OK

Founded in 1960, the University of California of San Diego is a research institution located in La Jolla, CA. The 1,200 coastal woodland campus along the Pacific Ocean is home to six undergraduate colleges, five academic divisions, 5 graduate and...

“…

A beautiful campus that challenges you to do well academically. There is a non-competitive atmosphere and students are willing to help each other do well. The quarter system is extremely fast paced and requires focus and dedication.

” – Student from Tucson, AZ

The University of San Diego is a private research university affiliated with the Roman Catholic church. USD offers 42 different bachelor's degrees and 54 minors, in addition to various study abroad programs, and more than half of the student body...

“…

this school offers a diverse curriculum. studying abroad is heavily encouraged, and mandatory for multiple majors. the professors want you to succeed, you need only ask!

” – Scott from San Diego, CA

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, more commonly referred to as MIT, is a private research university that focuses on scientific and technological research. Located on 166 acres of land in Cambridge, MA, MIT maintains five schools hosting 30...

“…

An awesome place full of students and professors who are excited to learn and teach each other, who collaborate every day on projects that advance knowledge on topics ranging from aerospace technology to brain and cognitive sciences. Not only do you...

” – Margaret from Cambridge, MA

Rutgers University is a public research university, one of the first nine original colonial colleges, and a land grant institution, as well. The largest university in New Jersey, Rutgers maintains 29 schools and colleges between its three campuses...

“…

Rutgers University provides a broad range of academic programs and exiting career fields. Students come from all over the world to take part in Rutgers academic tradition that has an educational legacy for over 235 years. The School of Arts and...

” – Samir from Jersey City, NJ

Founded in 1864, the University of Denver is the oldest private university in the Rocky Mountain Region. DU confers bachelor’s degrees in over 100 academic fields of study and every major enables students to take courses across different subjects...

“…

DU is a school that will challenge you, no matter which field you pursue. The course matter is more in depth than to that of which you have ever been exposed, but the way of thinking that the school gives you is unmatched. For example, if you take a...

” – Travis from Morrison, CO

The University of Rochester is private, research university highly ranked in the National Universities list by U.S. News & World Report. It operates under the mission "Learn, Discover, Heal, Create—and Make the World Ever Better" and students can...

“…

One of the great things about the University of Rochester is its curriculum. Unlike many other schools, the curriculum is not rigid and allows students to explore many different subjects. The one required course that all students must complete is the...

” – Ashley from Rochester, NY

Founded two years before Tennessee achieved statehood in 1794, the University of Tennessee-Knoxville is the flagship campus of the UT system and the first public university west of the Appalachian Divide. UT is home to nine colleges and schools...

“…

The University of Tennessee has a grueling science program. They have one of the most challenging science programs in the South, but the teachers are willing to help you out with anything and they are very flexible. If you are majoring in any...

” – Brittney from Knoxville, TN

North Carolina State University is a public land-, sea-, and space-grant research university located in the state capital, Raleigh, home of the annual state fair and Winterfest. The largest university in the Carolinas by enrollment, NC State is home...

“…

I am going to be a junior here and have already completed most of my core classes for my major. I have learned so much information about not just the field I am interested in, but other fields as well. I never find myself bored here.

” – Jennifer from Staten Island, NY

Originally founded as a school for math and science teachers, Stony Brook University is a 4-year public university on Long Island and part of the State University of New York system. Stony Brook is home to 12 schools and colleges conferring degrees...

“…

Most of the classes I have encountered are great. There are some where the instructor preforms less than expected. I discovered many new interests of mine while taking diverse classes.

” – A