Amherst College | Rankings, Profile and Data

amherst college

About Amherst College

Amherst College was founded in 1821 as a private liberal arts college. It is one of the oldest and most prestigious liberal arts colleges in the United States. The college is known for its rigorous academic programs, close-knit community, and picturesque campus.

Here are some key points about Amherst College:

Academic Excellence

Amherst is highly regarded for its strong academic programs and commitment to intellectual rigor. It offers a wide range of majors and interdisciplinary studies, with a focus on fostering critical thinking, creativity, and analytical skills.

Small Class Sizes

One of the hallmarks of Amherst College is its small class sizes and low student-to-faculty ratio. This allows for more personalized attention from professors and facilitates meaningful interactions among students and faculty.

Open Curriculum

Amherst follows an open curriculum, which means that students have significant flexibility in designing their academic paths. There are minimal core requirements, giving students the freedom to explore various fields of study.

Diverse and Inclusive Community

The college is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive campus environment. It actively seeks to enroll students from different backgrounds and perspectives, fostering a vibrant community.

Related: Swarthmore College

Campus and Facilities

The Amherst College campus is known for its beautiful and well-maintained grounds. It features a mix of historic and modern buildings, libraries, research centers, art galleries, and athletic facilities.

Libraries and Resources

The college has several libraries, including the Frost Library, which is the main library on campus. These libraries provide extensive resources, research materials, and support for academic pursuits.

Extracurricular Activities

It offers a wide range of extracurricular activities, including student clubs, organizations, sports teams, and cultural events. These activities contribute to a vibrant and well-rounded college experience.


The college is a member of the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) and competes in NCAA Division III sports. Amherst College has a strong tradition of athletic excellence and offers various sports programs for students.

Alumni Achievements

It has a notable alumni network that includes successful individuals in various fields, including academia, business, arts, politics, and more.


It is known for its selective admissions process. Prospective students typically go through a competitive application process, which includes submitting transcripts, standardized test scores, recommendation letters, essays, and other materials.

Related: Pomona College

Amherst College Data

Total Students:#1,849 
Total Faculty Staff:#279 
International Students:#222
Official Website:
Address: Mailing address: Amherst College P.O. Box 5000 Amherst, MA 01002-5000.

Popular Major At Amherst College

  • Economics
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • English
  • Biology
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Sociology
  • Computer Science
  • Environmental Studies

Related: Wellesley College

Amherst College Campus Life

It offers a vibrant and engaging campus life that provides students with a wide range of opportunities for personal growth, social interaction, and extracurricular involvement.

Residential Life

The majority of students live on campus, fostering a close-knit and inclusive community. Students are assigned to one of the college's residential houses, where they build strong relationships with their peers through shared activities, meals, and events.

Student Organizations

Amherst College has a diverse array of student clubs and organizations that cater to various interests and passions. These groups cover academic, cultural, social, political, artistic, and recreational activities.

Arts and Culture

The campus is home to various arts and cultural events, including theater performances, art exhibitions, music concerts, and dance shows. The Mead Art Museum and the Holden Theater are spaces where students can engage with and showcase their artistic talents.

Athletics and Recreation

It is a member of NCAA Division III and offers a range of varsity sports teams. In addition to varsity sports, students can participate in intramural and club sports, as well as use the college's athletic facilities for fitness and recreation.

Community Service and Engagement

The college emphasizes community service and civic engagement. Students have opportunities to participate in volunteer work, community projects, and social justice initiatives to make a positive impact both on and off campus.

Lectures and Speakers

It regularly hosts lectures, seminars, and guest speakers from various fields. These events provide students with the chance to engage in intellectual discussions and learn from experts.

Dining and Social Spaces

The campus offers multiple dining options, including cafeterias and cafes, where students can gather and socialize. Common spaces and lounges in residential houses and academic buildings provide places for students to study, relax, and interact.

Student Government

The Student Government Association (SGA) allows students to have a voice in campus affairs, advocate for their needs, and plan events and activities.

Study Abroad

Amherst College encourages students to explore global perspectives through study abroad programs. Students can choose from a variety of international programs to enhance their academic experience.


The college has several long-standing traditions, such as Convocation and Commencement ceremonies, Homecoming weekend, and other cultural and social events that contribute to a sense of community and pride.

Related: Middlebury College

FAQs (Amherst College)

What is the student-to-faculty ratio at Amherst College?

Amherst College has a low student-to-faculty ratio, typically around 7:1, which allows for close interactions and personalized attention between students and faculty.

Does Amherst College offer financial aid?

Yes, it is committed to meeting the full demonstrated financial need of admitted students through need-based financial aid packages. The college practices need-blind admissions, which means admissions decisions are made without considering the applicant's financial circumstances.

Is there an open curriculum at Amherst College?

Yes, it follows an open curriculum, which gives students significant flexibility in designing their academic paths. There are minimal core requirements allowing students to explore a wide range of subjects.

What is the application process like?

The application process for Amherst College typically includes submitting standardized test scores (often optional), transcripts, letters of recommendation, essays, and other application materials.

What majors and academic programs are offered at Amherst College?

Amherst offers a variety of majors and interdisciplinary programs across different fields of study, including humanities, sciences, social sciences, and more. Students have the opportunity to pursue their academic interests and engage in research.

What is the campus housing like?

The majority of students live on campus in residential houses. These houses foster a sense of community and provide students with a supportive living environment. Each house has its unique character and may offer various amenities.

Are there opportunities for research and internships?

Yes, it provides opportunities for students to engage in research projects, both independently and collaboratively with faculty. The college also supports students in pursuing internships and experiential learning opportunities.

What types of extracurricular activities are available?

Amherst College offers a wide range of extracurricular activities, including student clubs, organizations, sports teams, cultural events, and community service initiatives. Students can get involved in various ways to enhance their college experience.

Is there support for international students?

Yes, Amherst provides support and resources for international students, including assistance with visa processes, cultural integration, academic advising, and language support.

What is the college's commitment to diversity and inclusion?

Amherst College is dedicated to creating a diverse and inclusive campus community. The college actively seeks to enroll students from different backgrounds and perspectives.

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