In order to determine if attending Ivy League colleges is worthwhile or overrated, let’s examine all the benefits and drawbacks of doing so in this post.
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What Is Ivy League Schools?
Eight highly selective private research colleges in the Northeast formed the first alliance of Ivy League universities in the United States.
Ivy League universities were formerly a group of rival athletic colleges, but today the term is used to describe the eight intellectually superior institutions.
The phrase “Ivy League” probably conjures up pictures of ostentatious Gothic structures, professors wearing tweed jackets and bow ties, and a posh student body, the majority of whom can trace their ancestry to the university back to the early 18th century. Nevertheless, the phrase “Ivy League” was used up until the 1950s. It was only used as the name of a sports league that had just been established. Even the origin of the name “Ivy” is up for discussion. Many people think it truly comes from the initial alliance of four colleges, known as “IV,” in Roman numeral form. Regardless matter where it came from, the phrase is currently used often in higher education. What, then, are Ivy League Universities?
The Ivy League consists of eight universities. As follows:
- Brown University
- Columbia University
- Cornell University
- Dartmouth College
- Harvard University
- The University of Pennsylvania
- Princeton University
- Yale University
Are ivy league schools, colleges & certificates worth it or overrated?
Ivy League schools and colleges are undeniably worthwhile and not overrated because, in addition to being among the best universities in the world, they are also very affordable thanks to numerous scholarships and grants, as well as offering many networking opportunities and higher starting salaries than the typical American university.
I am aware that these universities have certain drawbacks as well, such as very high tuition costs and a very competitive admissions process.
Now let’s examine all the advantages and disadvantages of Ivy League institutions to determine whether they are worthwhile or overvalued.
Pros and cons of ivy league schools
Pros of ivy league
Good faculty and staff
The fact that these institutions offer excellent instructors and staff for the students is one of the key benefits.
For instance, before working as a professor in a university, the faculty of the Ivy League institutions, including Harvard, Stanford, Columbia University, and others, all possess master’s and doctoral degrees in their particular fields of study.
What’s more, outside of the classroom and the chalkboard, both students and professors may connect with one another and participate in research and laboratory work. In most cases, instructors can also serve as mentors to the students, among other unique opportunities.
The instructors at universities like Harvard, Columbia, Princeton, Yale, and other institutions are essentially Nobel Laureates and recipients of many other honours in their fields, so taking classes from them may be quite beneficial to your career.
The instructors are able to spend quality time with the students outside of the classroom, resulting in a positive interaction between the student and professor. This is something that distinguishes Ivy universities from other colleges.
Not only that, but the faculty to student ratio is also excellent in these colleges. For instance, while American colleges and universities generally have a professor to student ratio of about 14 to 1, Ivy League colleges, such as Stanford, Yale, and Harvard, have an excellent faculty to student ratio of about 6 to 1.
In an Ivy League college, there are around one or two professors for every five or six students.
Lots of courses
The variety of courses and disciplines available at colleges and universities is another benefit.
There are hundreds or even thousands of courses available at most institutions, which is fantastic.
You may take classes in the arts, physics, social sciences, philosophy, engineering, biology, architecture, foreign languages, medicine, music, management, and more at practically all Ivy League universities.
And at the majority of colleges, students may also take interdisciplinary and dual degree courses, which is fantastic.
World class infrastructure and facilities
For every institution, infrastructure and facilities are crucial, thus it should come as no surprise that Ivy League universities offer the greatest and highest-caliber amenities.
Even though they are private institutions, the colleges receive significant funding from the government for research as well as numerous gifts, donations, and bequests from wealthy individuals, university alumni, and other private sources. In addition, a significant portion of the tuition that students pay to the colleges goes toward the construction of new facilities and infrastructure for the universities.
As a result, the universities are able to provide students with infrastructure and facilities of the highest calibre thanks to contributions and tuition.
First and foremost, the location of the university is crucial. For example, Harvard University is situated on more than 5000 acres of land, while Princeton University has 600 acres. All of these universities are also surrounded by gorgeous gardens, museums, restaurants, parks, trees, and lakes, which is fantastic.
Let’s then expand on our discussion of the infrastructure.
For instance, Harvard University boasts one of the greatest libraries in the world, including 20 million books, 400 million manuscripts, 10 million photos, and 1 million maps, in addition to a large number of research facilities.
Along with Yale University, Harvard University is a university that publishes the majority of research and white papers. Similarly, Princeton University also has libraries like Harvard University. These universities also have a tonne of museums, art galleries, sports facilities, dormitories, and other amenities.
Great reputation & history
The fact that this college has a stellar reputation and a long history is another benefit.
For instance, Harvard University, which was established in 1636, is the oldest university in the country. Of the top ten oldest universities in the country, five of them are Ivy League institutions, including Princeton, Columbia, Yale, Pennsylvania University, and others. As a result, these institutions have a long history and are very old.
And aside from that, Ivy League colleges consistently claim the top ranks on lists of the greatest universities in the world. You will commonly find institutions like Harvard Stanford Columbia on these lists.
Whether it’s a US News rating or a list of top institutions, the University of Pennsylvania, Yale, and Princeton University consistently place in the top 20 of the list of the greatest colleges in the world.
Colleges of the Ivy League rank above most universities in the world not only on the list of the best global universities but also in subject-specific rankings.
According to the US News rankings, Columbia University holds the sixth spot among the best universities in the world. If you look at the rankings for individual subjects, it holds the 18th spot for the arts and humanities, the 20th spot for biology and biochemistry, the 10th spot for clinical medicine, and so on.
Similar to this, other colleges like Harvard and Princeton are ranked above the majority of universities.
Therefore, as long as it is relevant, just noting that you attended an Ivy League university like Harvard, Princeton, or Columbia on your resume will help you land any job in the world.
because Ivy League institutions have a good reputation and worth, and because graduating from one of these famous schools may boost your confidence and esteem in society.
Get financial support
If you are accepted into these universities, you can potentially receive a lot of financial aid and scholarships.
Scholarships and financial aid are crucial because students shouldn’t have to sacrifice their education at such institutions due to their financial situation. Because most Ivy League colleges like Harvard, Stanford, Yale, and others understand this, they offer need-based financial aid and scholarships.
What I mean by this is that, at Harvard University, for instance, if your family’s annual income is less than $75,000, you may attend classes there without paying a dime in tuition, and if your family’s income increases, you will be eligible for scholarships.
Remember that this is a grant and you don’t have to pay it back, so think of it as a gift. One in five students at Harvard University receives a free education, and if your family’s annual income is less than $65,000 at Princeton University, you will not be required to pay anything toward your tuition.
Similar to this other university, there are need-based scholarships available there as well. The government also offers financial help through the Pell grant programme, and certain colleges, like Yale, also provide merit-based scholarships.
You may also look for low-interest student loans, and this university also permits you to work over the summer to earn your student share and pay for a portion of your tuition.
The best part is that they are need-based, so you don’t really have to worry about whether you can afford the education or not because you are most likely to receive the scholarship if your family’s financial situation isn’t great. However, what I want to point out is that by enrolling in these universities, you can receive some of the best scholarships and financial support.
Good networking opportunities
By enrolling at this college, you may also benefit from excellent networking chances.
The University is extremely selective in terms of what types of students can get admission to the college because they have some set of criteria and characteristics which they look for. As a result, admission into these colleges is very difficult, with the acceptance rate being only around 7% on average.
look for while examining the admission application, and thousands of international students come to the United States to attend ivy colleges, so having people of different ideologies, cultures, and mindsets coexist while pursuing an education is really beneficial for you in terms of expanding your network.
And historically speaking, it’s amazing to see how many students from Ivy League universities went on to become legislators and other high-ranking professionals.
include the president of the United States, Olympians, Nobel laureates, writers, scientists, physicians, artists, filmmakers, celebrities, business leaders, CEOs, inventors, innovators, etc. Studying at Ivy institutions has many more advantages than studying at other universities.
Another advantage is that after graduating from an Ivy League school, you may expect to earn more money and have more employment options.
- The typical Harvard graduate makes $85,000 a year.
- An average Dartmouth graduate makes $80,000 annually.
- The typical Yale University graduate earns $89,000 per year.
- The typical graduate from Princeton University earns 96,000 dollars.
- The typical income for Brown University graduates is $80,000.
- The typical graduate from Cornell University earns $91,000.
- The typical student that graduates from Penn makes $103,000.
- Graduates from Colombia University typically earn $90,000.
You can plainly notice the difference as ivy league institutions pay substantially more than the national average income when we compare this to the average salary of students who graduate from typical American Universities, which is roughly $50,000 per year.
Remember that your actual earnings will vary based on your field, experience, and talent. Your pay may be significantly more than you anticipate.
By graduating from an Ivy League school, you may also find placement and work at major tech firms like Google, Facebook, Amazon, Twitter, and others, as well as in top business firms and all others. Most Ivy League institutions have placement rates of more than 90%.
Gain new skills
A further benefit of entering the Ivy League is that you may learn a lot of new talents.
Like, you may join any of the hundreds of student organisations, groups, and societies at any Ivy League university to make new friends.
For instance, Harvard University boasts nearly 400 clubs and organisations in a variety of fields, including music, space exploration, history, athletics, politics, LGBT issues, and more.
The main advantage of participating in these student organisations and societies is that you not only get to know like-minded people and expand your network, but you also pick up new skills like communication, networking, leadership, negotiation, critical thinking, teamwork, and other things that can be very useful to you in your career.
In addition, the Ivy Leagues are well-known for their athletics and sporting activities. For instance, at Harvard University, more than 80% of the student body participates in sports and athletics, and comparable percentages apply at other universities.
You may engage in a variety of activities, including swimming, rugby, football, baseball, basketball, climbing, wrestling, water polo, volleyball, and many more sports and athletics.
Additionally, you can regularly compete in a variety of competitions between teams from the same university and teams from Ivy League schools. In addition to earning medals for your efforts in sports, participating in sports teaches you valuable skills like teamwork and leadership that will help you greatly in your career.
As a result, by participating in Ivy League clubs and sporting activities, you not only learn and improve in your academic and subject areas, but also gain new abilities.
Start a business
The ability to launch your own company and turn into an entrepreneur is the final major benefit of attending an Ivy League school.
Since you cannot rely solely on finding employment, entrepreneurship culture is crucial. If you choose to become an entrepreneur, you will have the opportunity to not only increase your income and gain financial independence, but also to help the economy of your nation by creating more employment opportunities for others.
Therefore, the Ivy League places a lot of focus on entrepreneurship and recognises the value of an entrepreneurial culture.
For instance, you must be aware that Harvard University grads launched Facebook and Microsoft. Other firms founded by Ivy League graduates include Airbnb, Birch Box, Jet, and Amazon.
The reason for this is because Ivy League universities offer a wide range of educational programmes and courses to its students in an effort to prepare them to launch their own businesses by imparting the necessary information and skills.
Therefore, compared to other institutions in the nation, Ivy League colleges might be quite useful if you want to become an entrepreneur and launch your own firm.
Cons of ivy league
High admission cost
They are incredibly expensive to acquire admission into, which is one of the key downsides and cons that many people talk about Ivy League universities.
To be quite honest, that is true!
The average tuition at Harvard University, which includes books, rent, food, and other expenses, is $75,000 per year.
Like this, the admission and tuition fees are quite pricey, but thankfully there are many need-based scholarships you can obtain. For example, in Harvard, even though 75,000 is the average cost, if you receive scholarships and all grants and aid, then the amount you will have to pay is only $15,000 because other costs are covered by scholarships. If your family’s household income is less than $30,000, then the average cost is less than $3,000, which you need to pay.
The takeaway is that even if tuition is fairly expensive, you may still finance your education by applying for scholarships and grants, working over the summer, or taking out student loans.
Small acceptance rate & high competition
The fact that it is extremely difficult to gain admission to these universities is another major drawback.
You may hear the term “acceptance rate,” which refers to the percentage of applicants who are granted admission to a college out of every 100 applicants. The acceptance rate at Harvard University is 5%, while it is 6% at Princeton and Yale and 7% at Columbia University.
The average acceptance rate for all ivies is roughly 6%, meaning that 6 out of every 100 applicants will be accepted.
Thus, it is evident that admission is not a simple process and that the institution is highly picky about whose applicants it accepts.
Even though there are a variety of factors that contribute to the low acceptance rate, one of them is that these elite colleges, like Harvard, look for more than just academic aptitude and entrance exam scores. They also consider the student’s leadership potential, extracurricular involvement, and curiosity when evaluating their application for admission.
Given that they have additional criteria that are more essential than your academics, which I described before, and that they only want to admit the top students who can, it is simply impossible for you to win admission into the Ivy League based purely on your academics and grades.
Utilize the university’s resources and amenities to their fullest and, as graduates, achieve greatness by joining the ranks of politicians or other well-respected members of society. This will help the university’s reputation and popularity in the future.
Additionally, there are a very small number of seats available in these universities, but as I already mentioned, students from over 100 different countries apply for admission, meaning that there are more applicants than there are seats, making it relatively difficult to get into an Ivy League school.
High work load
Another drawback is that, in comparison to other institutions, the workload and academic pressure on students may be higher.
Ivy League students have a lot of work and a rigorous schedule since they must routinely complete examinations, assignments, projects, attend classes, engage in internships, and practicals.
Not the only option
Another factor is that there are various institutions you may choose from if you wish to receive a top-notch education and amenities.
Ivy League universities can be substituted with others such Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, Duke University, University of California, and University of Florida. College of Maryland College of Oklahoma Ohio State University, University of Michigan, etc.
As a result of the extremely low admission rate, there are currently excellent alternatives to Ivy League universities that nonetheless offer high-quality instruction and infrastructure.