Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (2023)

Do you find the Ivy League Universities too cold for comfort? Check out these 9 top-ranked US universities that deliver both in their academics and their climates.

In deciding where they would like to study, a lot of students looking at US universities often consider the many top universities in the North-East of the country, such as the Ivy League. In many ways, this is understandable, given their performance in university rankings and prestige.

However, a big factor that is often overlooked by students in their decision can be the cold winters experienced at many of these universities. For example, a lot of people don’t realise that in the Boston area (the location of Harvard and MIT), the average winter temperature is a brisk -2˚C (28˚F). At Dartmouth College in New Hampshire it is even colder, with an average January temperature of −7.2˚C (19˚F)!

The good news for students who consider winter temperatures an important factor in deciding their best-fit university is that there are plenty of universities around the US where you won't freeze all winter long. Check out these 9 top-ranked universities where you will experience beautifully mild (and even rather warm) winter climates:

Stanford University

Average Jan Daily High: 16˚C (60˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 8˚C (46˚F)

Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (1)

Stanford University is located in Stanford, California. Part of the San Francisco Bay Area, the region has a Mediterranean-type climate created by the effect of the topography and the nearby ocean currents. The result is some of the most consistent year-round temperatures in the United States, with moist, mild winters.

In addition to the nice weather, the location of Stanford benefits from its proximity to “Silicon Valley,” home to the world’s leading technology companies such as Google, Apple and Facebook. Thus, students have unique access to some of the world’s best internship and job opportunities.

Stanford is often dubbed the “Ivy of the West” and is ranked the number 2 university in the world by Times Higher Education (THE). It has a reputation for producing entrepreneurial students who go on to produce, invent, develop and champion globally significant initiatives. Learn more about Stanford University here.

Did you know- Crimson Students are 3x more likely to gain admission to Stanford and MIT? Find out more about our admissions support service to see how we can help you!

The University of California - Berkeley

Average Jan Daily High: 16˚C (58˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 8˚C (45˚F)

Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (2)

Nearby Stanford is the University of California-Berkeley, on the Eastern Shore of San Francisco Bay. As such, it too has a similar Mediterranean climate, and experiences mild winters.

Academically, UC-Berkeley is a public research university, is regarded as one of the most academic and prestigious public universities in the US. They are ranked the 7th best university in the world by THE. Learn more about UC-Berkeley here.

The University of California - Los Angeles

Average Jan Daily High: 21˚C (70˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 10˚C (49˚F)

Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (3)

Located further south in California is The University of California - Los Angeles (UCLA). The “City of Angels” is even warmer than the San Francisco Bay Area by virtue of being further south and warm desert winds from the East. Occasionally, the warm “Santa Ana Winds” result in LA temperatures reaching over 30˚C (68˚C) in the middle of winter!

UCLA is located in the LA suburb of Westwood, meaning that it is also in close proximity to landmarks such as Sunset Boulevard, the Getty Museum and Hollywood.

UCLA is home to world-renowned faculty who teach in 230 undergraduate and graduate majors, with more than two dozen academic programmes ranked among the top 20 in their disciplines. USNews and World Report rank UCLA as the top public university in the US.

Did you know- Crimson Students are 3x more likely to gain admission to UC-Berkeley and UCLA? Find out more about our admissions support service to see how we can help you!

The University of Southern California

Average Jan Daily High: 21˚C (70˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 10˚C (49˚F)

Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (4)

The University of Southern California (USC) is also located in the vast city of Los Angeles, thus benefiting from the same mild winters. More specifically, USC is close to the downtown area of LA, and is a short walk or metro-ride away from LA landmarks such as the Staples Center and Walt Disney Concert Hall.

USC is one of California’s oldest and top private research universities. They are perhaps best known for their film, communications and journalism programs, as well as their sporting programs. The USC School of Cinematic Arts is ranked the top film school in the USA.

The California Institute of Technology

Average Jan Daily High: 20˚C (68˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 8˚C (46˚F)

Which US Universities Have the Best Climate? - Crimson Education DE (5)

Caltech in Pasadena, California is a third great university in the city of Los Angeles area. Compared with the coastal areas of Los Angeles, the climate in Pasadena is more Mediterranean, with typically hotter summers and slightly cooler winters. Situated at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains, it is known to occasionally snow on the coldest nights of the year.

Caltech is notorious for having some of the most prestigious science and technology programs in the world. They are ranked the 4th best university in the world by THE.

University of Arizona

Average Jan Daily High: 19˚C (66˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 6˚C (42°F)

The University of Arizona is located in Tuscon, Arizona, beside the sunny Sonoran Desert. As expected, the climate is dry and hot in summer, as well as mild in winter. However, it should be noted that Tucson is not as dry as the rest of Arizona, and benefits from orographic rainfall from the nearby mountains. On the coldest nights of the year, it has on-occasion snowed in the city, but this is extremely rare. For those willing to go on a sightseeing trip, a few hours drive North is the Grand Canyon and Monument Valley, some of America’s greatest natural landmarks.

Arizona is known for their architecture programs and their athletics programs.

Rice University

Average Jan Daily High: 16˚C (60˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 7˚C (45˚F)

In Houston, Texas, Rice University experiences pleasant Southern winter temperatures due to its consistent winds from the humid Gulf of Mexico. There are some cold spells each year, where temperatures dip below 0˚C (32˚F) for around 13 nights per year. However, the humidity in the city often makes the temperature seem hotter than it actually is.

Rice University, a private research university, is academically known for being one of the top STEM universities in the US. They are ranked the 16th best university in the US by USNews.

The University of Florida

Average Jan Daily High: 20˚C (68˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 6˚C (43˚F)

Also in the South is the University of Florida. Located in Gainesville, Florida, the university has a humid and subtropical climate. It is known as “Tree City,” due to the fact that a dense tree canopy covers 47% of the city’s area. Like in Houston, there is some variation in temperature and some cold evenings each year, but generally the weather often seems hotter than it is due to the humidity.

The University of Florida are known for being one of the best public universities in the US. They are known for their biology and engineering programs.

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Average Jan Daily High: 27˚C (81˚F)

Average Jan Daily Low: 18˚C (65˚F)

We saved the US university with the most glorious winter climate until last...

Located in the island state of Hawai’i, the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa boasts the most glorious climate all year round. With a sizzling average January daily high of 27˚C (81˚F), Hawaiian winters are as warm as some mainland universities' summers! Whats more, ocean temperatures rarely drop below 24 °C (75 °F), meaning you can comfortably swim or surf at the beach in the winter months.

The University of Hawai’i system is the largest public college and university system in Hawai’i, operating on all 6 Hawaiian islands. The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is the flagship university of this system with 12,968 undergraduate students and 17 schools and colleges.

Crimson Education is the world’s leading university admissions support company helping students navigate the US and UK university application process. We assist you to find your best-fit university, create a personalised roadmap, ace your standardised tests, craft the perfect essay, build candidacy through extracurriculars, and more. Check out our student success page to find more Q&As and case studies about our successful Crimson students.


Is Cornell University Ivy League? ›

An elite Ivy League school, Cornell University offers diverse educational and cultural experiences on its beautiful campus in Ithaca, New York.

What is the Ivy League? ›

Ivy League, a group of colleges and universities in the northeastern United States that are widely regarded as high in academic and social prestige: Harvard (established 1636), Yale (1701), Pennsylvania (1740), Princeton (1746), Columbia (1754), Brown (1764), Dartmouth (1769), and Cornell (1865).

Is Washington University Ivy League? ›

Despite its prestige and high standing, it is important to clarify that WashU is not a member of the Ivy League, a group comprising eight private institutions on the East Coast of the United States.

How many universities are in the Ivy League? ›

The eight institutions are Brown University, Columbia University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, and Yale University.

What GPA gets you into Cornell? ›

Selection decisions (both on-campus and at the national level) are based on the following criteria: Academic record: Students should have a GPA of 3.5 or higher, and should have excellent analytic and communication skills.

What's the hardest Ivy League to get into? ›

Harvard is the oldest institution of higher education in the US and consistently ranks #1 hardest Ivy League to get into.

What GPA do Ivy Leagues want? ›

If you're aiming for a top university such as one in the Ivy League, Stanford, MIT, or others of the same caliber, a 4.0 GPA — or close to it — is expected.

What GPA is considered Ivy League? ›

Average GPAs at Ivy League schools start at 3.9. Any lower than 3.5, however, you'll have to either have an impressive, relevant achievement or pray for a miracle to get an offer.

Why is Stanford not an ivy? ›

Ivy League schools may have prestige and history, but they aren't the only great universities in the U.S. Schools like Stanford, MIT, and the University of Chicago often outrank Ivies in terms of academics. However, since they aren't in the same athletic conference, they technically aren't Ivy League schools.

What is a hidden Ivy school? ›

The Hidden Ivies include many small colleges, such as Davidson College, Pomona College, Carleton College, and Oberlin College, as well as some large research universities, like Georgetown University, Vanderbilt University, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Southern California.

Is Dartmouth the worst Ivy? ›

The eight worst Ivy League institutions are, in arbitrary order, Penn, Princeton, Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, and Brown. Ordering this list is quite subjective, but these are definitively the 8 worst.

What are the Tier 2 universities in the US? ›

Tier 2 schools include: USC, Washington University in St Louis, Tufts, Tulane, NYU, Boston University, UNC Chapel Hill, University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Notre Dame, Emory, University of Virginia, Wake Forest, UT Austin College of Natural Sciences, Boston College, Georgia Tech, William and Mary, UCLA, UC Berkeley, ...

Why are Ivy League schools so prestigious? ›

Because of their strong alumni networks, the Ivy League schools are well endowed and offer quality resources and education, including small class sizes, access to new technology, low student to faculty ratio, and renowned faculty.

Has anyone got into all 8 Ivy League schools? ›

"I just decided to shoot my shot at all of them and see if it would land," says Ashley Adirika, a Nigerian American teen who was accepted into all eight Ivy League schools.

What are the prestigious Ivy League universities? ›

The prestigious Ivy League universities, which include Columbia University, Harvard and Princeton, among others, fare particularly well in the rankings, but many younger or public universities also perform extremely well when judged on teaching, research, international outcome and influence.

What GPA is needed for Harvard? ›

The average high school GPA of admitted students at Harvard is around 4.2. 73% of students had a GPA of at least 4.0, indicating that admitted students typically mostly earned A grades in high school. If you're studying the IB, this translates to scoring mostly 7s and achieving a minimum score of at least 42.

What GPA is required for Yale? ›

GPA Requirements

Yale University does not have a strict minimum GPA requirement for undergraduate admissions. However, admitted students typically have very high GPAs, ranging from 3.8 to 4.0, with an average GPA of 3.9.

What is the hardest college to get into at Cornell? ›

The most selective schools at Cornell for admissions are:
  • College of Arts & Sciences.
  • College of Engineering.
  • College of Architecture, Art & Planning.

What is the happiest Ivy League? ›

Brown is ranked by the Princeton Review as the 10th happiest campus in the country and the happiest school in the Ivy League, and has a general reputation for being the “Happy Ivy.” But why does Brown have this reputation?

Which Ivy gets the least applicants? ›

Dartmouth University is the Ivy League school that receives the least amount of applications. On average, they receive nearly 23,000 applications each year, and this year they received 28,841 applications.

What is the easiest Cornell college to get into? ›

Cornell Acceptance Rate by College

The Hotel School in the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business is the least competitive with an acceptance rate of 30% The School of Human Ecology has a 23 % acceptance rate, the second-highest acceptance rate of all the schools at Cornell.

Can I get into Harvard with 2 B's? ›

Does Harvard Accept B Students? Yes, just like I mentioned above, it's completely possible to get admitted into Harvard University with B grades.

What is the highest GPA in the world? ›

Normally, you would expect the highest score to be the 'perfect' 4.0 score, however, there are several things that a student can do to receive an even higher score. For example, one student actually managed to get a 10.03 GPA score. He did this by taking 17 advanced classes at his school, which awarded him many points.

What's an excellent GPA? ›

In most cases, a 4.00 GPA is considered to be excellent. However, the number of students from a student's high school who also have 4.00 GPAs may affect whether that score is considered good or average.

Will one C ruin my chances of Ivy League? ›

Just one bad grade in an advanced level course is not going to ruin your chances at an Ivy League. However, consistently underperforming in advanced classes in your area-of-interest classes will penalize you in the applications process.

What is the lowest GPA ever accepted Ivy League? ›

And maybe, you can get into a top tier college with a low GPA. We've always stated that the lowest GPA student we've ever helped get into an Ivy League school had a 3.3 unweighted GPA. And we're not saying that we could get anyone in with a 3.3 GPA. But it has happened before – and the student was Asian American too.

What is the easiest Ivy League school to get into for Masters? ›

Which Ivy League is easiest to get into for Masters? If we go solely by acceptance rates, the answer to this question would be Cornell University. Out of all the Ivies, Cornell has the highest acceptance rate at 8.7% overall. The next easiest would be Dartmouth, with an overall acceptance rate of 6.2%.

Which Ivy has the smartest students? ›

Here are America's Ivy League schools ranked by student brainpower:
Smarts RankOverall Smarts RankSchool
13Harvard University
13Yale University
35Princeton University
48Columbia University
4 more rows
Oct 9, 2015

Is Johns Hopkins an Ivy League? ›

Is John Hopkins University Ivy League? Ans. Johns Hopkins is not a member of the Ivy League. It is, however, one of the top universities in the country.

Why is Vanderbilt so prestigious? ›

Vanderbilt Admission Stats

It is recognized for its strong academic programs in the sciences, engineering, humanities, and social sciences. The university is also renowned for its research opportunities, cutting-edge facilities, and collaborations with leading institutions worldwide.

What is the most laid back Ivy League school? ›

Brown. Located in Providence, Rhode Island, Brown is more commonly known as the laid-back Ivy League.

Is Johns Hopkins a hidden ivy? ›

These 7 Hidden Ivies regularly feature in the Top 20 Best National Universities: Stanford University. Northwestern University. John Hopkins University.

What is the most prestigious Ivy? ›

For instance, in the Wall Street Journal rankings, Harvard is ranked the nation's top college overall, which means that it's also the highest-ranked Ivy League school.

What is the prettiest Ivy League campus? ›

The Ivy League with the best campus is Princeton. It's reputed as having the prettiest campus. But beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. Some people see Columbia as the most beautiful because of its gothic and classical buildings, while some will pick Cornell because of its breath-taking landscape.

Which Ivy League has the best student life? ›

Campus happiness: Brown is widely known as the happiest Ivy, perhaps because of students' freedom to choose courses with almost complete autonomy. Students report feeling less competition amongst themselves and an overall sense of campus community.

Which Ivy has the best social life? ›

UPenn: Commonly called 'The Social Ivy'. Students from here often attend its top business school, and are active in Greek Life. Many reports suggest students from here have a rich social life, love to party and still achieve excellent grades while they do so.

What are Tier 3 universities in USA? ›

Some of the third-tier Universities in the USA include College of Liberal Arts, Babson College, and Virginia Tech.

What is the #1 university in America? ›

Harvard University

This Ivy League school is the oldest higher education institution in the country and has the largest endowment of any school in the world. Harvard University is a private institution in Cambridge, Massachusetts, just outside of Boston.

What are Tier 1 universities in USA? ›

Tier 1 is comprised of major private research universities, including MIT, UChicago, Stanford, John Hopkins, Northwestern, California Institute of Technology, Duke, Vanderbilt, and Rice (amongst many others).

Which school is harder to get into? ›

Harvard, Stanford and Princeton, unsurprisingly, are America's toughest colleges to get into in 2023, according to Niche's most recent rankings.

Is Vanderbilt University Ivy League? ›

No, it is not. Eight North East colleges make up the Ivy League. Despite having a higher ranking than Cornell and tying with Brown, Vanderbilt is not actually a member of the Ivy League.

Are Ivy League prices pushing $90000 a year? ›

The cost of attending Ivy League universities is nearing $90,000 a year as high school students are receiving their acceptance letters to the highly competitive institutions. Cornell University most recently announced a hike in tuition prices that brings the school to one of the closest to the $90,000 mark.

What is the average student accepted into an Ivy League? ›

The acceptance rate for Ivy League schools is typically around 5-10%, which means that only a small percentage of applicants are admitted. Factors that are considered in the admissions process include academic achievements, extracurricular activities, test scores, essays, and letters of recommendation.

Who was the black kid accepted to all Ivy League schools? ›

MIAMI -- First-generation Nigerian American Ashley Adirika became one of few prospective students to be accepted into all eight Ivy League universities. "The tears just started to come out. Like they started to flow out," she said of her reaction to finding out.

Is Duke an Ivy League school? ›

While Stanford, Duke, and MIT are all clearly prestigious schools with high national rankings and low selectivity rates comparable to those of Ivy League schools, they are not Ivy League schools simply because they are not members of the Ivy League.

Which Ivy has the highest GPA? ›

Harvard College, Yale University

These two Ivy Leagues are tied for third place with a 3.63 average GPA, coming in right behind Stanford University. Unlike Stanford, neither Harvard or Yale University offer A+ grades to students and stick to the 4.0 grading scale.

What is the Holy Trinity of the Ivy League schools? ›

The Big Three, also known as the Holy Trinity, is a historical term used in the United States to refer to Harvard, Yale, and Princeton. The phrase Big Three originated in the 1880s, when these three colleges dominated college football.

What Ivy is ranked by acceptance rate? ›

What are the Ivy Leagues' acceptance rates? As we discussed in the article above, the overall Ivy League acceptance rates are: Brown – 6.3%, Columbia – 5.1%, Cornell – 10.6%, Dartmouth – 7.9%, Harvard – 4.5%, UPenn – 7.4%, Princeton – 5.8%, and Yale – 5.9%.

Is Cornell as prestigious as Harvard? ›

Even though Harvard and Cornell are both incredibly prestigious schools where you can receive a world-class education and become part of a successful alumni network, the general consensus is that Harvard is the better school.

Is Cornell a prestigious university? ›

Rankings & ratings. Cornell University is one of the top private universities in Ithaca, United States.

How hard is it to get into Cornell? ›

Yes, what you may have heard is true: Admission to Cornell is highly selective, with approximately 10% of applicants admitted each year. Access and affordability are extremely important to us, as are diversity and inclusion.

Is Cornell a top ivy? ›

Determining the best Ivy League school can be subjective because each school has strengths that set them apart from the others. While Harvard, Princeton, and Yale tend to rank near the top of most lists, Brown, Penn, and Cornell may rank highest for a particular major or program.

What degree is Cornell most known for? ›

Its graduate schools include the highly ranked S.C. Johnson Graduate School of Management, College of Engineering, Law School and Weill Cornell Medical College. Cornell is also well known for its top-ranked College of Veterinary Medicine and the highly esteemed School of Hotel Administration.

Is Yale or Cornell harder to get into? ›

Acceptance Rate5.3%8.7%
Enrolled %71.2%63.5%
Avg High School GPA3.953.9
Typical High School GradesA-A-
9 more rows

What majors is Cornell known for? ›

The most popular majors at Cornell University include: Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services; Engineering; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services; Agricultural/Animal/Plant/Veterinary Science and Related Fields; Social Sciences; Physical ...

Which is better Cornell or Columbia? ›

Cornell University rankings are higher for engineering & technology, life sciences, computer science while Columbia University rankings are higher for arts & humanities, law, business & management.

Is Columbia or Cornell more prestigious? ›

While the faculty in both the institutions is, without question, among the finest globally, the number of Nobel Laureates at Columbia far surpass that at Cornell.

What is the hardest major at Cornell? ›

AEP's educational programs offer a unique combination of engineering, mathematics and physics. EP is often considered as one of the hardest undergrad programs at Cornell, with strong emphasis on basic physics and mathematics.

Do you need straight A's to get into Cornell? ›

Cornell University requires you to be in the top 5%-10% of your high school classes. On average, accepted students have an average GPA of around 3.9. This means that successful applicants need to be at the top of their class and achieve straight A's in nearly all their subjects.

Why is Cornell so expensive? ›

This is due to its private, Ivy League status and its location in Ithaca, New York, where the cost of living is relatively high. Students who are interested in attending Cornell should be prepared to pay high tuition costs or seek out need-based financial aid, merit scholarships, or other financial aid packages.

What is unique about Cornell? ›

Cornell University offers over four thousand different courses. The eight colleges offer nearly 80 unique majors and a choice of over 120 possible minors. Over fifteen thousand undergraduates attend Cornell University each year, and the student-faculty ratio is nine to one.

Is Cornell better than Princeton? ›

Unsurprisingly, both schools receive acclaim on the nation's most recognized rankings lists. While Princeton has a higher overall ranking as #1 National University and #3 in Best Undergraduate Teaching from sources like U.S. News, Cornell's high rankings are in more specialized fields.

Is Cornell more prestigious than Duke? ›

International Rankings: Looking at the 5 to 10-year averages, Duke ranks higher than Cornell in all national rankings, but it's the other way round when it comes to international rankings, which includes reputation rankings.


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