Williams is often ranked as the #1 liberal arts college in the country (usually trading places with its top rival, Amherst). Classes are small, teachers are excellent, and students are enthusiastic in academics and athletics. The beautiful and secluded campus in Williamstown, Massachusetts adds to the school’s culture, although it may be too rural or remote for some student’s tastes.
There’s been a certain intensity yet fun-loving spirit about my students who have attended Williams. The alumni that I’ve met over the years have been impressively thoughtful. When my son applied to Williams, I appreciated the fact that all students would graduate in 4 years and students can not add a major that would extend their time. This was an appealing distinction because my son loves learning and could be easily interested in studying longer if possible. 🙂
Quick facts about Williams
Freshman from out of state: 86%
Most popular majors: Economics, Psychology, History, Political Science, Biology, Art History, English
Housing: Guaranteed housing all four years, but seniors have the option to live off campus
4-year Graduation rate: 93%
Academics: Williams emphasizes an interdisciplinary education, so all students are required to complete three courses in each area – humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. “Tutorials” are a favorite for students, where a class is comprised of two students who alternate writing and critiquing assignments and a supervising professor.
Social: “Ephs take their work seriously, but not themselves,” according to an admissions rep I recently met. Social life is active and mostly centered on campus as Williamstown is somewhat of a quiet town. Guests and clubs provide outlets for students, but most enjoy weekend dorm parties. No need to worry though, Williams students boast of its safe, regulated, and still fun campus.
Similar Colleges to Consider: Amherst, Brown, Dartmouth, Middlebury, Princeton, Yale
Financial: Williams offers need-based financial aid and grants. 100% of need is fully met. 79% of students receive scholarships.Although the tuition and fees are approximately $71,000, the average financial aid package is $50,000. For any student who receives financial aid, books, art and lab supplies, and music lessons are free. About 60% of international students receive aid, even though Williams is need-aware.
What do you think about this college? What else would you like to learn about it? Please post your comments below.
Author: Pamela E
Dr. Pamela has helped thousands of teens attend the college of their choice. She brings her 25 years experience in education to assist families, schools, and employers with college selection, admissions, financial aid, and more. Dr. Pamela holds a PhD from Stanford School of Education, and an MBA from Dartmouth.