Vanderbilt is located in Nashville, TN with just under 7K undergrads. Historically “Vandy” was a conservative favorite amongst the southern elite, but the University has grown and modernized over time. Academically, Vanderbilt has many nationally ranked programs. Students come from all over the country and Vanderbilt only accepts about 9% of applicants.
There are four different schools to choose from: Arts and Sciences, Engineering, Education & Human Development and School of music (200 students) mostly classical music focus with some jazz. Conservatory style of music study and audition is required. All undergrads have core liberal arts requirements in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Vanderbilt’s most popular major is Human and Org Development (HOD), other popular majors are engineering (mechanical), bio sciences, medicine health and society, economics and education. Vanderbilt has the top special education program in the country. 50 of the 67 majors offered are in the College of Arts and Sciences. If you aren’t sure what you want to study, that school is your best bet. You can still take classes in the other schools as a College arts and sciences major. In addition, there’s a 3-2 program with the business school at Vanderbilt so students can save a year and complete a BA and MA in 5 years. Vanderbilt is well known for healthcare management and being in Nashville with access to great hospitals lends to great internship and work opportunities.
There is a 7:1 student to faculty ratio and 66% of classes have fewer than 20 students. Vanderbilt and its community pride themselves on their collaborative environment. The school is governed by an honor system that puts a lot of trust in the students. In addition, the school has a living and learning model. Each dorm has a faculty member that lives there and 90% of students live on campus.
The Greek system is strong at Vanderbilt; about 50% of women and 35% of men join. Students say social life focuses on the Greek system, but aren’t all consuming. The campus is 2 miles from downtown Nashville where 20,000 music shows are performed a year-fun fact only ⅓ of those are country music concerts! Students love the access to downtown Nashville and talk about what a fun city it is. There are also plenty of places to road trip to from Nashville – lakes, state parks, the smoky mountains and skiing in the winter. Students love this school and rave about the quality of life.
As for sports, Vanderbilt is the only private school in the DI Southeastern Conference. While their football games are fun, Vanderbilt’s baseball team is a powerhouse. All students get free tickets to sporting events.