Sweet Briar

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Frequently Asked Questions...

What university has that old, classic, gothic feel?

I want to go to a school with a lot of history, beautiful architecture, lots of wood, old.

Oxford? Cambridge? Harvard? Yale? Princeton? Well I can't get in there.

Best Answer...


The schools you list do either have that feel (Oxford) or have that feel to a good part of their campus. But you can't get in there, as you said, so you need some somewhat less competitive alternatives. I'll suggest a few to get you started. All have that sort of old-school (LOL, bad pun) feel, beautiful architecture, lots of wood, old, historic, gothic, etc.
- Flager College, in Florida. The school is in an old, converted luxury hotel: the dorms are all dark wood, there are fireplaces everywhere, the darn dorm rooms have Tiffany windows - not Tiffany "style", but TIFFANY. OMG. Beautiful. And overlooking the ocean. Really, you need to see this place. Decent school. Not super strong, but good, and a good value for what you get.
- Smith College, in MA. Lots of old brick buildings, the dorms still have the original dining halls (not cafeterias, mind you, but halls) in them. Very nice.
- Mt. Holyoke, in MA
- Emerson College. Much of the school is in an area of Boston that has the feel you're describing. The dorms are converted old hotel rooms.
- Amherst College, which maybe you wouldn't get in to, based on what you said.
- Brooklyn College, part of CUNY. Has just that old collegy feel to the place, despite being very much a part of the city.
- Wellesley College, again, maybe can't get in to
- Sweet Briar College. Absolutely charming.
- Wagner College, on Staten Island, in NY. Lovely, and the views are killer.
- Swarthmore, maybe a reach
- Rensselaer Polytechnic, in NY. Red brick, very gothic looking, in very much an "old factory town" sort of way. Even the newer buildings, which do look a bit tech, seem to fit with the old.
- Savannah College of Art, in Georgia. Not an exact match in style, and maybe not at all in terms of your major, but this school has been taking over old homes and buildings in Savannah and fixing them up. It ends up having an eclectic style due to that, but wow, what a beautiful place.