This School in Pennsylvania Has Been Named The Best College in the State

Pennsylvania is home to many prestigious and renowned colleges and universities, but one school stands out among the rest. According to the latest rankings by U.S. News & World Report, Swarthmore College has been named the best college in the state and the third-best national liberal arts college in the country.

What makes Swarthmore College so special?

Swarthmore College is a private liberal arts college located in Swarthmore, a suburb of Philadelphia. Founded in 1864 by Quakers, the college is known for its academic excellence, social responsibility, and intellectual freedom. Swarthmore offers more than 40 majors and minors, as well as a flexible curriculum that allows students to design their own courses of study. The college also has a strong commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, with more than 40% of its student body identifying as students of color and more than 20% as first-generation college students.

Swarthmore is also famous for its honors program, which is modeled after the tutorial system of Oxford and Cambridge. The honors program allows students to pursue a rigorous and in-depth study of their chosen fields, with small seminars, independent research, and oral and written examinations. Students who complete the honors program receive both a degree and a certificate of honors.

Another distinctive feature of Swarthmore is its Tri-College Consortium, which is a partnership with two other nearby liberal arts colleges: Bryn Mawr and Haverford. The consortium allows students to cross-register for courses, access library resources, and participate in extracurricular activities at any of the three campuses. The consortium also offers a fourth campus option: the University of Pennsylvania, which is a member of the Quaker Consortium.

What are the benefits of attending Swarthmore College?

Swarthmore College provides its students with a high-quality education that prepares them for a variety of careers and life paths. The college boasts a 95% graduation rate and a 90% retention rate, indicating that students are satisfied and successful at Swarthmore. The college also has a low student-faculty ratio of 8:1 and an average class size of 12, ensuring that students receive individual attention and mentorship from their professors.

Swarthmore graduates are highly sought-after by employers and graduate schools, as evidenced by the college’s impressive outcomes. According to the college’s website, 87% of Swarthmore alumni report being employed or in graduate school within six months of graduation. Swarthmore alumni also earn high salaries, with a median annual income of $71,000, according to PayScale. Additionally, Swarthmore alumni have a strong presence in academia, with more than 20% of graduates earning a doctoral degree, the highest percentage among liberal arts colleges.

Swarthmore College also offers its students a vibrant and supportive campus community, with more than 100 student clubs and organizations, 22 varsity sports teams, and numerous events and traditions. Some of the most popular and unique traditions include the Crumb Cookie Night, where students enjoy homemade cookies baked by the president of the college, the Pterodactyl Hunt, where students dress up in costumes and hunt for inflatable dinosaurs, and the Screw Your Roommate, where students set up blind dates for their roommates.

How can you apply to Swarthmore College?

Swarthmore College is a highly selective institution, with an acceptance rate of 9% for the class of 2024. The college requires applicants to submit the Common Application or the Coalition Application, along with a supplemental essayhigh school transcriptschool reportcounselor recommendation, and two teacher recommendations. The college also recommends that applicants submit SAT or ACT scores, although they are optional for the 2020-2021 admission cycle. The college does not require or consider subject testsAP scores, or interviews.

The college offers two application plans: Early Decision and Regular Decision. Early Decision is a binding agreement that requires applicants to attend Swarthmore if admitted. The deadline for Early Decision is November 15, and the notification date is mid-December. Regular Decision is a non-binding agreement that allows applicants to apply to other colleges and compare offers. The deadline for Regular Decision is January 1, and the notification date is late March.

The college is also committed to making its education affordable and accessible to all students, regardless of their financial circumstances. The college meets 100% of demonstrated financial need for all admitted students, with an average financial aid package of $54,000. The college also has a no-loan policy, which means that students do not have to take out loans to cover their educational costs. The college also offers merit scholarships to a small number of students who demonstrate exceptional academic achievement and potential.


Swarthmore College is a top-notch liberal arts college that offers its students a rigorous and personalized education, a diverse and engaged community, and a bright and successful future. If you are looking for a college that will challenge you intellectually, inspire you socially, and support you financially, Swarthmore College might be the perfect fit for you. To learn more about Swarthmore College, visit its website at

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