4. Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina
Clemson University is a public, co-educational, land-grant, sea-grant research university located in Clemson, South Carolina. A total of 19,743 students attend Clemson. In 2016 there are 4,647 new undergraduate students enrolled at Clemson. Clemson is ranked #66 in “National Universities”, #41 in “Best Colleges for Veterans”, #56 in “High School Counselor Rankings”, #23 in “Top Public Schools”, #63 in Business “Programs”and #53 in “Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs”. (colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com).
Clemson has 6 colleges that make up Clemson University; they are the College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Life Sciences; the College of Education; the College of Architecture, Arts, and Humanities; the College of Engineering, Computing, Applied Sciences; the College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences and the College of Science.
A lovely suburban setting of 17,000 acres houses the campus. The in-state tuition and fees are $14,240 and the room, and board cost is $8,718. The out of state tuition and fees are $32,796, and room and board is $8,718. The average student debt upon graduation is $30,480, and the average starting salary at graduation is $43,000. Forty-four percent of the full-time students receive financial aid. The average need-based scholarship or grant is $8,946. The acceptance rate at Clemson is 51%.
The student to faculty ratio is 18:1 and 52.5% of the classes have fewer than 20 students. The most popular majors are Business, Management, Marketing and Related Support Services, Engineering, Biological and Biomedical Sciences and Health Professions and Related Programs. The average student retention rate of freshman is 92%. (colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com).
Forty-one percent of the student population live on campus. There are fraternities and sororities that are very active when it comes to campus life. There are more than 400 student clubs and organizations. Clemson is next to Hartwell Lake which offers students a place to swim, fish and sail. On campus, students flock to the Underground Recreation Center where there are billiards, bowling, and an arcade.
There are Club Sports for those who are not participating on an athletic team, and they range from golf, air rifle, basketball, baseball, equestrian, fencing, running to water polo and many more choices. There is also a very active intramural program as well. If you are looking for a break from being on campus, the city of Clemson is within walking distance. It offers everything a city can offer to a student from shopping, restaurants, and many entertainment options.
Even though Clemson is a top competitor in the ACC, its Campus Life statement says this: “Clemson is, first of all, a place to get a top-quality education.” (clemson.edu). This is why Clemson is ranked #4 of the 5 top schools in the ACC.
3. Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia
Georgia Tech is a leading research university located in Atlanta, Georgia. Its research benefits industry, businesses and the federal government. Georgia Tech is ranked #34 in “National Universities”, #21 in “Best Colleges for Veterans” and #23 in “High School Counselor Rankings”.
There is a total enrollment at Georgia Tech of 25,034. In-state tuition is $12,212, and out-of-state tuition is $32,404, with room and board for both at $13,640. The average student debt upon graduation is $31,660. Forty percent of full-time undergraduates receive some need-based financial aid. The average need-based scholarship or grant awarded is $10,915. The average starting salary upon graduation is $55,000. The percentage acceptance is 32%.
The most popular majors are Engineering, Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services, Biological and Biomedical Sciences and Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies. Georgia Tech has five separate colleges: the College of Business, the College of Computing, the College of Design, the College of Engineering, the College of Liberal Arts and the College of Sciences. The average freshman retention rate is 96%. Fifty-three percent of the students live in college-owned and operated housing, and 47% live off campus.
The college campus consists of 400 beautiful wooded acres in the center of Atlanta. The location allows students to experience a myriad of activities, on or off the campus. Atlanta boasts fine entertainment, museums, sports, exceptional dining, theater and different concert venues. Atlanta has all kinds of attractions, small businesses, and multinational corporations.
But, if you need to get away from the urban hustle, there are green spaces and parks throughout the city. Public transit options help students get around and Atlanta, which, by the way, is one of the most walkable cities in the US. Georgia Tech is the only bike friendly campus on the East Coast.
Part of the educational experience is what takes place on campus outside the classroom. There are over 400 student organizations and 56 Greek Organizations and hundreds of clubs and activities. Opportunities to volunteer abound on campus and beyond. There are many club sports and intramural sports for students for student participation. The Campus Recreation Center gives students an option for exercise. There is also a fabulous outdoor recreation program.
The Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets participate in Division I athletics in the ACC and they are a huge part of student life. Yet, most students at Georgia Tech focus on getting a great education and college experience. Georgia Tech provides both, and that is why they are ranked #3 in the ACC for the top schools.