The Top 25 Smartest Colleges and Universities in The United States
These 25 universities are the best of the best when it comes to higher education. On this year's list, you'll find a strong mix of colleges. From the hallowed institutions that rank perennially on these lists to the more modern universities proving they can excel, the students from these universities have shown that they are a cut above the rest.
25. Carnegie Mellon University
The private higher-education institution in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania comes in 25th on this year's list. While computer science and engineering are its strongest points, CMU is a great institution all-around, ranking 4th in finance, 7th in economics, and 10th overall by the Wall Street Journal. On average, a Carnegie Mellon graduate will be making a starting salary of nearly $70,000. The urban university is a very selective school, and only one in five applicants are accepted. Among the alumni, you’ll find countless Nobel laureates, Turing Award recipients, National Medal of Science recipients, and many other prestigious people.
24. University of Southern California
USC is consistently ranked as one of the best schools in California and the country. This prestigious private institution in Los Angeles is a well-balanced school featuring everything from top-notch academics, competitive collegiate athletics, and a thriving Greek Life. Consider yourself lucky if you are one of the 17% of applicants to be accepted.
23. University of California - Los Angeles
Another Los Angeles school makes the list. UCLA is well-known for its storied sports teams, especially basketball. However, it has also been establishing itself as one of the top academic schools in the country. With an acceptance rate of just 18%, UCLA is very selective of its students. Those who get in can expect a college experience unlike any other, balancing a quality education with the best of everything else college has to offer. Sports, Greek Life, and of course, the fun stuff.
22. University of California - Berkeley
It's no secret that California has its fair share of world-class higher education institutions. Cal Berkeley makes that three straight colleges in the UC network, but at least we're working our way away from Los Angeles. Among the things to note from Berkeley are its low acceptance rate of 16%, median starting graduate salary of $61,800 and its perfect location overlooking the San Francisco Bay.
21. Emory University
Moving over to the East Coast now, the list takes us all the way to Atlanta, Georgia. Emory University is one of Georgia's top colleges, if not its top college. Only a quarter of applicants are accepted into the prestigious school located in an Atlanta suburb. The academics are demanding but if you get out of Emory alive, you can expect an average starting salary of around $55,000.