Top U.S. Women's Colleges
In the past decade, the number of women 25-29 with a bachelor’s degree increased by 13 percent. Women have made great advancements in the field of academia, contributing to research, biological innovations and progress in the humanities and social sciences across the country.
However, disparities in wages, postgraduate employment rates and holders of management positions still persist. In order to combat this inequality, a number of historic women’s colleges continue to provide higher education to women, offering some of the best resources, classes and research opportunities.
Below are a few of the best women's colleges in the nation:
With a 2,510 students, this private, liberal arts college is located just west of Boston in Wellesley, Mass. Wellesley has its own lake, woods and grassy quad at the center of its main campus. The school provides students with opportunities to join more than 150 student-run organizations. Its cross-registration program with MIT and celebrated science program encourage students to become strong presences in the fields of science and engineering, both during college and later in the professional world.
Another liberal arts school in the northeast, Barnard College is home to 2,500 students in New York City. Among other things, Barnard is known for the Barnard Center for Research on Women, which classifies itself as a nexus of feminist thought, activism and collaboration for scholars and activists. The college also shares resources, libraries, classes and even dorms with Columbia University, where undergraduates can participate and take leadership positions in student organizations.
Less than 1,000 students attend Scripps College, a small school located in Claremont, Calif. Its campus, celebrated for its architectural beauty and unusual landscaping, belongs to the National Register for Historic Places. Scripps emphasizes environmental sustainability. It provides extensive research opportunities in neuroscience, computer sciences, linguistics, chemistry and other interdisciplinary fields. As one of the five Claremont Colleges, its students have access to resources at other schools in the consortium like Claremont McKenna and Pomona College.
Smith College is a private liberal arts school in Northampton, Mass. It is slightly larger than the other schools on this list, with more than 3,000 enrolled undergraduate students. Its student body is very diverse, representing 48 states and 68 different countries. Rather than dorms, students live in one of the campus’s 35 separate houses with up to 100 other students, all situated on sprawling, 147-acre grounds. The school is known for its old traditions like Rally Day and Otelia Cromwell Day, which commemorates the first African American female to attend Smith.
Meredith is an urban college located in downtown Raleigh, N.C. It offers students a choice of more than 80 undergraduate study options, and the women at Meredith have access to fantastic opportunities in North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park, a network that includes Duke University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and other schools in the area. This private liberal arts school has 13 research labs based in their Science and Mathematics Building; furthermore, more than a third of Meredith students study abroad while attending.