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  • Writer's pictureAlison Merzel

School Spotlight: University of Richmond

Updated: May 8, 2023

If anyone has had the chance to hear Gil Villanueva speak about the university for which he is VP and Dean of Admissions, you can immediately hear the passion and excitement he feels for the school. Applications for University of Richmond have continued to climb, making the school more selective each year. Maybe it is because UR continuously earns a top 10 ranking for the Happiest College Students by Princeton Review.

Here are 5 other Fun Facts that should make you fond of Spiders:

1) UR is located in Richmond, the capital of the Commonwealth of Virginia, giving students access to an economic hub in the region - a city that is the center of business and government and one that has been called one of "America's Top 5 Cities to Keep on Your Radar."

2) While most liberal arts colleges are in Division III athletics, University of Richmond happens to be a Division I school in the Atlantic 10 conference for all sports except football and golf. They are the only team with a spider as a mascot and the only basketball program win NCAA tournament games as a 12, 13, 14, and 15 seed.

3) University of Richmond has 3 undergraduate colleges - Arts and Sciences, Business and the School for Leadership Studies - and 2 graduate schools - Law and Professional & Continuing Studies. Faculty in the law school also teach in the undergraduate program and zero undergraduate classes are taught by teaching assistants.

4) When you apply to University of Richmond, you do not have to select a college or major - there is one track to admissions, giving you time to explore what you want to study. Interested in the Jepson School for Leadership Studies? You apply midway through your sophomore year. There is typically room for around 80 students each year from about 100 applications, so chances are good that you can take advantage of studying leadership in a school that is "the first institution of its kind in the world with a full-time, multidisciplinary faculty dedicated to the pursuit of new insights into the complexities and challenges of leadership and teaching undergraduates what they know."

5) Many families incorrectly assume that a private college education will be cost-prohibitive as compared to a public university. University of Richmond practices need-blind admissions AND guarantees to meet 100% of demonstrated need. All first-year applicants are considered for merit-based aid, including the full-tuition Richmond Scholars and the Presidential Scholarship, offering 1/3 tuition.

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