The fourth college on my recent tour was Hamilton College in Clinton, New York. It is not in Hamilton, New York, which is important to note since one of our next visits is at a college in Hamilton, New York.
Hamilton, like most of the other colleges I visited this trip, is a small liberal arts college with almost 1,900 students from throughout the US. 75% of these students are from the Mid Atlantic and Northeast so like many other colleges in this area, you may have a geographical advantage if you are from some other part of the country.
With a campus of 1,300 acres on a hilltop overlooking the surrounding area, the campus feels very spread out with lots of room. The buildings on campus are all very well maintained as I would expect at a top liberal arts college. Visually, this was my favorite campus of the six I visited. And given that it was snowing and blowing wind when I visited, this is saying something.
The college is named after Alexander Hamilton, of dueling with Aaron Burr fame.
Greek life has a definite presence on campus with about one third of the students involved. However, according to students, non Greek students are welcome at most of the parties held so there isn’t a dividing line between the two camps as sometimes occurs at campuses with a Greek system.
Unlike most colleges, Hamilton does not have any distribution requirements for classes. What does this mean in layman’s terms? There are no required classes that a student has to take. But Hamilton does have a very strong advising commitment so students are counseled on what might be appropriate classes for each particular student. 83% of students do graduate within four years.
The college has 28 varsity teams that play Division III sports in the very competitive New England Small College Athletic Conference.
Hamilton is highly selective with a mid range of SAT score of 1,340 to 1,500 for the SAT Reading and Math sections. The average writing score on the SAT is 710. Hamilton has adopted a testing policy that allows students to submit a combination of scores from difference sources as an alternative the the traditional SAT or ACT. If you wish you may submit three exams of your choice of which one must be quantitative, one must be a verbal or writing test and one is your choice. Examples of quantitative tests include SAT math section, SAT subject tests in math or science, and AP or IB tests in math or science. Here is a full list of Hamilton’s standardized testing options.
Early decision gives an admissions advantage at Hamilton with almost 50% of admitted students admitted in one of the two early decision rounds. The admit rate for ED I was 46% while it was only 28% for the regular decision applicants.
Hamilton does encourage personal interviews for students and your chances of admittance increases if you have an interview. Each year Hamilton does offer 25 to 30 students admission for January rather than the traditional September admission. These students may wait to start until January or they can go on a program that the college offers in London.
The college has substantial need based financial aid available for students and meets the full financial need of all of its students.
Hamilton has a great campus with great students and great academics. This is the kind of college that makes me want to go back to college.