While most folks outside the Delaware Valley associate Villanova with basketball, the university has plenty of outstanding academic opportunities that shouldn’t be overlooked. The undergraduate business program was ranked seventh in the United States by Businessweek in 2011. For aspiring engineers, U.S. News ranks Nova 10th among undergraduate programs where no doctorate is offered. Meanwhile, Villanova proudly celebrates its founding as a Roman Catholic Augustinian university. The campus ministry is prominent, and the Augustine and Culture Seminar is a core curriculum requirement for all students.
The numbers: 7,100 full-time undergrads … 1940 median SAT (comparable to a 29 ACT) … $44,580 annual tuition, $11,370 annual room and board … 37 undergrad majors … ranked first among northern universities by U.S. News … 45.6% acceptance rate. Extra credit: Famous for their magical March championship in 1985, the Wildcats are a perennial powerhouse in the Big East and Philadelphia’s Big Five. While most of the high-profile games are played at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, the Pavilion, with its raucous student section, hosts the remaining contests on campus. Compare to: Lehigh University, Lafayette College, Bucknell University. Contact: 800 E. Lancaster Ave., Villanova, Pa., (610) 519-4500, villanova.edu.