Next stop: Villanova University! Located in Villanova, Pennsylvania, a short train ride from downtown Philadelphia, Villanova is a medium-sized, Augustinian Catholic institution with 6,500 undergraduates, an average class size of 22, and a total enrollment around 10,000 including graduate students. If you are looking for a school that blends individual attention with HUGE school spirit, you may want to put up your “V” and join the Nova Nation! Of all my school visits, I have never seen more people wearing school apparel than at Villanova! Here's other info you should know to see if this is the right fit for you:
1. “Become what you are not yet.” This quote from St. Augustine can be seen around campus, and its spirit shapes students’ experiences at Villanova. The university meets you where you are and gives you tools so you can be successful.
2. The university has 4 colleges: Arts and Sciences, Business, Engineering, and Nursing. There are accelerated health programs, including dentistry and optometry, and a new 3+3 accelerated law program. Through the Summer Business Institute, any student can earn a minor in business in one summer.
3. A freshman research program matches freshman with professors who need research assistants. You don’t need any experience, and you receive a stipend if selected. Many students also participate in summer research fellowships.
4. Communications students can do an internship in the Vatican running the Pope’s social media accounts. Villanova is the only school that offers this opportunity.
5. Villanova’s guiding principles are truth, unity, and love. Inclusiveness is the hallmark of Augustinian tradition, which means Villanova is focused on creating a better community and building each other up. People hold the door open for each other, support each other, genuinely care for each other.
6. Villanova literally translates into “new home,” and they take this seriously. A few weeks into the school year, faculty and staff members knock on students’ doors and ask if they need anything. Villanova also has a nationally-ranked new student orientation program to welcome first years.
7. The Villanova academic experience begins with the Augustine and Culture Seminar (ACS), a two-semester humanities sequence that is interdisciplinary and concerned with foundational texts and offers broad engagement with the Augustinian intellectual tradition. First years
8. The focus on bettering community extends beyond the school. Community service is a critical piece of being at Villanova. The spirit of “serving” permeates everything students do. St. Thomas of Villanova Day is an all-campus community service day in the fall, and many students participate in service trips over fall and spring breaks. There are mission trips within and outside of the US.
9. Villanova hosts the largest student-run Special Olympics on the east coast.
10. Villanova is the second largest producer of commissioned naval officers in the country, right behind the Naval Academy.
11. 30% of students participate in Greek life, which is not residential. Much of Greek life is philanthropy-driven.
12. Villanova was the 2018 NCAA Men’s Basketball National Champions!