The best Universities

“Knowledge is power” said the English philosopher Francis Bacon. Cambridge University boasts 81 nobel prize winners, Harvard 43, and Oxford 46. It’s not without good reason then, that these three elite universities stand as the pinacle of institutionalized education. Consistently, from different ranking systems, among others the Shanghai ranking of the University of Jiatong, the following are rated at the best in the world:

Yale University

Another worldwide leading U.S based university is Yale University in the harbor city of New Haven, 120 kilometers northeast of New York. The goal of the university, opened in 1701 was to provide a similar scientific education to what was being provided in Europe and to shape the leaders of the future. The third oldest university in the U.S.A, Yale has an endowment capital of more than 20 Million USD and boasts an especially strong offering in the social sciences. Additionally, Yale takes a leading spot with regards to undergraduate education, which is especially due to the fact that the introductory classes are given by the best professors that the university has to offer. The student body numbers approximately 11500 students, and has student fees of around 46000 USD per year. The university was one of the first to make it possible for students from other countries to study in the U.S.A. Until 1969, the university was reserved exclusively for male students. The second largest university library in the world, the Yale library contains over 11 million objects. With its impressive campus containing many architectural masterpieces and parks, Yale is also considered one of the most beautiful institutions of its kind in the world. Former students include presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.

Oxford University

After the Parisian Sorbonne University, and the University of Bologna, Oxford is the third oldest university in Europe. It was grounded in 1167 as a reaction to the decree of the english king that it would be no longer allowed to visit the university in Paris. The institution jokingly referred to as ‘the other place’ by its Cambridge rivals lies about 100 km northwest of London and is divided into 36 colleges populated by around 20 000 students from more than 100 different countries. The dropout rate is less than 1 percent, a fact which no doubt is due to the extremely high entrance requirements. Student fees run along the order of 25000 USD. In return, the university offers an excellent academic education and administration, not to mention the benefits of an extremely good outlook on the job market in the fields of politics, science or economics promised to graduates. Amongst the past past students can be counted 47 nobel prize winners, 6 kings, and 26 prime ministers including Tony Blair. Another important part of the university is the world celebrated ‘Oxford University Press’ (OUP) which is especially known for the publishing of its famous English dictionary. The Oxford University was also featured as the location for the world famous magic school ‘Hogwarts’ in the Harry Potter films.

University of Cambridge

The east England university celebrated its 800th birthday in 2009, making it one of the oldest universities in the world. Grounded in 1209 by students and staff of Oxford university that had a slightly different vision of the university environment. Since then, there has of course been enormous rivalry between the two establishments rising quickly to the surface in particular at the yearly rowing regatta. This worldwide recognized duel broadcast live in many different countries finds 8 of the best rowers of both universities pitted against each other over a stretch of 4 miles. Cambridge, with 80 wins is close before its rival. Cambridge university consists of 31 independent colleges which contribute largely to the shaping of the city’s image and the atmosphere there. The student body which continues to be a leading force, especially in the fields of medicine, physics, and chemistry can be currently counted at around 18000 students all of whom must pay student fees of 23000 USD yearly. No university in the world can boast as many Nobel prize winners (a total of 88) as Cambridge. Many famous scientists such as Isaac Newton and members of the royalty (such as Prince Charles) have completed their education at Cambridge University.

Stanford University

Stanford University was grounded in 1891 and named after the son of Californian businessman Leland Stanford. With an endowment capital of in excess of 17 million Euro, the university belongs to the richest in the world and takes a leading position especially in the fields of engineering, IT and medicine. Stanford continues to have a large influence on the economic development of the San Fransisco region and is one of the formative forces behind Silicon Valley, the worldwide microchip center. In total, approximately 15000 students are enrolled at a cost of 36000 USD per year. To make it possible for interested students coming out of financially weak situations to enroll in this elite university, a rule was created that those whose families have a yearly income of less than 100000 USD do not have to pay the student fees. For enrollment, there is no minimum grade requirement or political activity expectation, instead successful students are chosen based on criteria such as creativity or intellectual potential.

Harvard University

Regarding the best universities worldwide, throughout all the various ranking systems, no other university is so consistently rated at No 1 as Harvard university in Cambridge Massachusetts. Grounded in 1636, it is the oldest university in the U.S.A. To be accepted into the extremely elite circle of more than 20000 Harvard students, there are very strict entrance requirements which must be met (school grades, political engagement, and recommendations) which are generally met by no more than 10 percent of applicants. Enrollment is an extremely cost intensive rate of more than 50000 USD per year. However, successful students can expect some of the most tremendous studying conditions in the world, and of course the prospect of graduating from one of the most renowned universities in the world. This means things such as small classroom situations, an incredibly high research budget, and the extraordinary caliber of professors who all belong to the best in their respective fields (for example Bill Gates) in the whole world and are all the winners of numerous prizes. The Harvard library consists of more than 14.5 million tapes, manuscripts, and microfilms, making it the largest university library in the world. Harvard also has the honor of having educated a great number of Nobel prize winners, among them Al Gore, and Henry Kissinger. Additionally, the current U.S president, Barrack Obama is now the 8th head of state that has graduated from Harvard. Also the unstoppable success story of the social networking site ‘Facebook’ is the product of a Harvard student. From Mark Zuckerberg’s 2004 idea to link the Harvard student body together, a worldwide network that now consists of more than 550 million members was born.



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