10 Amazing “Public Ivies” As Good As the Actual Ivies

8. University of Maryland – College Park (College Park, MD)

photo by Radhika Kshirsagar via Wikimedia Commons

Listed as a Tier One research university by the prestigious Carnegie Foundation, the College Park campus is the flagship institution of the entire University of Maryland system.

Maryland is listed as a member of the Association of American Universities. Only 65 schools throughout the US and Canada are admitted members, making this one of the most prestigious distinctions an American school can have.

UMD College Park is a selective institution; tens of thousands apply every year for enrollment, with less than half of all applicants gaining admission. Additionally, accepted students score well above national averages in terms of GPA, with a typical GPA of an incoming student about 4.2.

This public Ivy has one of the largest alumni bodies of any university worldwide; 360,000 people are within UMD’s alumni network.

Known as a school that gives back, UMD College Park is uniquely positioned in a ranking by the Peace Corps as one of the top volunteer-producing large universities nationwide.


7. University of Minnesota (Twin Cities, MN)

photo by Ben Franske via Wikimedia Commons

Students and faculty at Minnesota are among the most accomplished in the nation. Awards for faculty & alumni include Guggenheims, MacArthur Genius grants, Pulitzer prizes, Nobel Laureates. 

Notably, a number of US Senators as well as Representatives have called Minnesota their Alma Mater.

This Public Ivy extends far beyond accolades and government positions, however; what makes this school truly great is the breadth of academic and student offerings, as well as the university’s significant impact in nearly every major field.

To this end, Minnesota is widely known as an innovator in research. Throughout its history, students and faculty at Minnesota are credited with performing the first bone marrow transplant, advances in the Green Revolution, the creation of the supercomputer industry, innovation in medical infusion pumps, and more.

Today, Minnesota is one of the most internationally diverse public schools in the country; over 130 countries are represented in their student body.


6. University of Arizona (Tucson, AZ)

photo by Huperphuff via Wikimedia Commons

The next school on the list brings us into the desert in Tucson Arizona, home to one of the country’s largest universities. Over 45,000+ students call this Public Ivy their home.

When compared to all universities in the world, University of Arizona consistently stacks up against any Ivy League caliber institution. In 2017’s report by the Center for World University Rankings, Arizona was ranked the 52nd best university worldwide.

Arizona has many lauded programs, including their architecture program, ranked in the top 10 by Design Intelligence in 2015.

University of Arizona is actually, believe it or not, one of NASA’s favorite institutions. NASA has given more funding to the University of Arizona than any other public university in the country save three schools. 

The result of this funding are a number of facilities dedicated to space science and research, including a dedicated Lunar and Planetary Laboratory located within the campus of University of Arizona.

Although Arizona is a university attracting many state residents, the international diversity at the school is significant, with 150 countries represented by the student body.

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