Higher Education Overview
Another tiny New England state with big educational opportunities, New Jersey is home to a large public research university as well as an Ivy League university. In addition to these well known schools, New Jersey also has nine state universities and colleges within its borders, 14 private universities, 19 community colleges, five seminaries and two religious colleges. It makes for an eclectic state filled with many different educational opportunities, allowing students to find the university or college setting that works best for them and their goals.
Rutgers University is a large research university in New Jersey, and is also known as the largest university in the state. Rutgers was founded in 1766 and was originally called the Queen's College. It is one of the Colonial Colleges, one of only 9 institutions of higher learning in the country that was founded before the American Revolution. Rutgers originally began as a private university that only admitted male students, but it grew to become a public university that was also a co-educational facility. Rutgers, along with the College of William and Mary, is one of only two Colonial Colleges that became a public university after beginning as a private institution of higher learning. With more than 100 degree programs to choose from, Rutgers has many academic programs that are ranked nationally. Some of its most well known degree programs include philosophy, geology, statistics and art history, among several others. Several important political figures graduated from Rutgers, including FBI Director Louis Freeh and Vice President of the United States Garret A. Hobart.
Also located in New Jersey is an elite private school, Princeton University. Situated in the heart of Princeton, New Jersey, Princeton University is the only Ivy League school located in the state. It is also a Colonial College that was established in 1746. Originally named the College of New Jersey, the name of the school was changed to Princeton University in 1896. It was the fourth college that was chartered in the country. It is a private university that has always been close with the Presbyterian Church, but it has no official religious affiliation. Princeton is unique because students do not choose specific degree programs. Students at Princeton University work toward general education requirements, and then specialize in their degrees with specific course work and certificates. Students either earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in Engineering. Princeton has long been hailed as a university that promotes independent work and study.