Ivy League

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The Ivy League is an athletic conference
Athletic conference
An athletic conference is a collection of sports teams, playing competitively against each other at the professional, collegiate, or high school level. In many cases conferences are subdivided into smaller and smaller divisions, with the best teams competing at successively higher levels...

 comprising eight private institutions of higher education
University
A university is an institution of higher education and research, which grants academic degrees in a variety of subjects. A university is an organisation that provides both undergraduate education and postgraduate education...

 in the Northeastern United States
Northeastern United States
The Northeastern United States is a region of the United States as defined by the United States Census Bureau.-Composition:The region comprises nine states: the New England states of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont; and the Mid-Atlantic states of New...

. The conference name is also commonly used to refer to those eight schools as a group. The eight institutions are Brown University
Brown University
Brown University is a private, Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, United States. Founded in 1764 prior to American independence from the British Empire as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations early in the reign of King George III ,...

, Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

, Cornell University
Cornell University
Cornell University is an Ivy League university located in Ithaca, New York, United States. It is a private land-grant university, receiving annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions...

, Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College is a private, Ivy League university in Hanover, New Hampshire, United States. The institution comprises a liberal arts college, Dartmouth Medical School, Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business, as well as 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences...

, Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

, Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

, the University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania is a private, Ivy League university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States,Penn is the fourth-oldest using the founding dates claimed by each institution...

, and Yale University
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

. The term Ivy League also has connotations of academic excellence, selectivity in admissions, and social elitism
Elitism
Elitism is the belief or attitude that some individuals, who form an elite — a select group of people with intellect, wealth, specialized training or experience, or other distinctive attributes — are those whose views on a matter are to be taken the most seriously or carry the most...

.

The term became official, especially in sports terminology, after the formation of the NCAA
National Collegiate Athletic Association
The National Collegiate Athletic Association is a semi-voluntary association of 1,281 institutions, conferences, organizations and individuals that organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States...

  athletic conference in 1954, when much of the nation polarized around favorite college teams. The use of the phrase is no longer limited to athletics, and now represents an educational philosophy inherent to the nation's oldest schools. In addition, Ivy League schools are often viewed by the public as some of the most prestigious and are often ranked amongst the best universities in the United States and worldwide.

All of the Ivy League's institutions place within the top 15 of the U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report is an American news magazine published from Washington, D.C. Along with Time and Newsweek it was for many years a leading news weekly, focusing more than its counterparts on political, economic, health and education stories...

college and university rankings
College and university rankings
College and university rankings are lists of institutions in higher education, ordered by combinations of factors. In addition to entire institutions, specific programs, departments, and schools are ranked...

; with five placing in the top nine. Seven of the eight schools were founded during the United States colonial period
Thirteen Colonies
The Thirteen Colonies were English and later British colonies established on the Atlantic coast of North America between 1607 and 1733. They declared their independence in the American Revolution and formed the United States of America...

; the exception is Cornell
Cornell University
Cornell University is an Ivy League university located in Ithaca, New York, United States. It is a private land-grant university, receiving annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions...

, which was founded in 1865. Ivy League institutions, therefore, account for seven of the nine Colonial Colleges
Colonial colleges
The Colonial Colleges are nine institutions of higher education chartered in the American Colonies before the United States of America became a sovereign nation after the American Revolution. These nine have long been considered together, notably in the survey of their origins in the 1907 The...

 chartered before the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

. The Ivies are all in the Northeast geographic region of the United States. All eight schools receive millions of dollars in research grants and other subsidies from federal and state government.

Undergraduate enrollments among the Ivy League schools range from about 4,000 to 14,000, making them larger than those of a typical private liberal arts college
Liberal arts college
A liberal arts college is one with a primary emphasis on undergraduate study in the liberal arts and sciences.Students in the liberal arts generally major in a particular discipline while receiving exposure to a wide range of academic subjects, including sciences as well as the traditional...

 and smaller than a typical public state university
State university system
A state university system in the United States is a group of public universities supported by an individual state, or a similar entity such as the District of Columbia. These systems constitute the majority of public-funded universities in the country...

. Overall enrollments range from approximately 5,900 in the case of Dartmouth to over 20,000 in the case of Columbia, Cornell, Harvard, and Penn. Ivy League university financial endowment
Financial endowment
A financial endowment is a transfer of money or property donated to an institution. The total value of an institution's investments is often referred to as the institution's endowment and is typically organized as a public charity, private foundation, or trust....

s range from Brown's $2.2 billion to Harvard's $27.4 billion, the largest financial endowment of any academic institution in the world.

Members

Institution Location Athletic nickname Undergraduate enrollment Graduate enrollment Motto
Brown University
Brown University
Brown University is a private, Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, United States. Founded in 1764 prior to American independence from the British Empire as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations early in the reign of King George III ,...

Providence, Rhode Island
Providence, Rhode Island
Providence is the capital and most populous city of Rhode Island and was one of the first cities established in the United States. Located in Providence County, it is the third largest city in the New England region...

Bears
Brown Bears
The Brown Bears is a name shared by all sports teams at Brown University, a university located in Providence, Rhode Island in the United States. The Bears are part of the Ivy League conference. Brown's mascot is Bruno. Both the men's and women's teams share the name, competing in 37 National...

6,316 2,333 In Deo Speramus
(In God We Hope)
Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

New York City, New York Lions
Columbia Lions
The Columbia University Lions are the collective athletic teams and their members from Columbia University, an Ivy League institution in New York City, United States. The current director of athletics is M...

7,160 15,760 In lumine Tuo videbimus lumen
(In Thy light shall we see the light)
Cornell University
Cornell University
Cornell University is an Ivy League university located in Ithaca, New York, United States. It is a private land-grant university, receiving annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions...

Ithaca, New York
Ithaca, New York
The city of Ithaca, is a city in upstate New York and the county seat of Tompkins County, as well as the largest community in the Ithaca-Tompkins County metropolitan area...

Big Red
Cornell Big Red
The Cornell Big Red is the informal name of the sports teams, and other competitive teams, at Cornell University. The university sponsors 36 varsity sports, as well as numerous intramural and club teams. Cornell participates in NCAA Division I as part of the Ivy League.The men's and women's hockey...

13,931 6,702 I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any study.
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College is a private, Ivy League university in Hanover, New Hampshire, United States. The institution comprises a liberal arts college, Dartmouth Medical School, Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business, as well as 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences...

Hanover, New Hampshire
Hanover, New Hampshire
Hanover is a town along the Connecticut River in Grafton County, New Hampshire, United States. The population was 11,260 at the 2010 census. CNN and Money magazine rated Hanover the sixth best place to live in America in 2011, and the second best in 2007....

Big Green 4,248 1,893 Vox clamantis in deserto
(The voice of one crying in the wilderness)
Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

Cambridge, Massachusetts
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Cambridge is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States, in the Greater Boston area. It was named in honor of the University of Cambridge in England, an important center of the Puritan theology embraced by the town's founders. Cambridge is home to two of the world's most prominent...

Crimson
Harvard Crimson
The Harvard Crimson are the athletic teams of Harvard University. The school's teams compete in NCAA Division I. As of 2006, there were 41 Division I intercollegiate varsity sports teams for women and men at Harvard, more than at any other NCAA Division I college in the country...

6,655 14,044 Veritas
(Truth)
Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

Princeton, New Jersey
Princeton, New Jersey
Princeton is a community located in Mercer County, New Jersey, United States. It is best known as the location of Princeton University, which has been sited in the community since 1756...

Tigers
Princeton Tigers
The Princeton Tigers are the athletic teams of Princeton University. The school sponsors 31 varsity sports. The school has won several NCAA national championships, including one in men's fencing, six in men's lacrosse, three in women's lacrosse, and eight in men's golf...

5,113 2,479 Dei sub numine viget
(Under God's power she flourishes)
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania is a private, Ivy League university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States,Penn is the fourth-oldest using the founding dates claimed by each institution...

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Quakers 10,337 10,306 Leges sine moribus vanae
(Laws without morals are useless)
Yale University
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

New Haven, Connecticut
New Haven, Connecticut
New Haven is the second-largest city in Connecticut and the sixth-largest in New England. According to the 2010 Census, New Haven's population increased by 5.0% between 2000 and 2010, a rate higher than that of the State of Connecticut, and higher than that of the state's five largest cities, and...

Bulldogs
Yale Bulldogs
The Yale Bulldogs are the athletic teams of the Yale University. The school sponsors 35 varsity sports. The school has won two NCAA national championships in women's fencing, four in men's swimming and diving, and twenty one in men's golf.-Men's baseball:...

5,275 6,391 אורים ותומים
Urim and Thummim
In ancient Israelite religion and culture, Urim and Thummim is a phrase from the Hebrew Scriptures or Torah associated with the Hoshen , divination in general, and cleromancy in particular...


Lux et veritas
(Light and truth)


Year founded

Institution Founded Founding religious affiliation
Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

1636 as New College Calvinist (specifically Congregationalist
Congregational church
Congregational churches are Protestant Christian churches practicing Congregationalist church governance, in which each congregation independently and autonomously runs its own affairs....

 puritan
Puritan
The Puritans were a significant grouping of English Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries. Puritanism in this sense was founded by some Marian exiles from the clergy shortly after the accession of Elizabeth I of England in 1558, as an activist movement within the Church of England...

s)
Yale University
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

1701 as Collegiate School Calvinist (Congregationalists
Congregational church
Congregational churches are Protestant Christian churches practicing Congregationalist church governance, in which each congregation independently and autonomously runs its own affairs....

)
University of Pennsylvania
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania is a private, Ivy League university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States,Penn is the fourth-oldest using the founding dates claimed by each institution...

1740 as Church and Charity School of Philadelphia Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian, in its most literal sense, refers to a lack of sectarianism. The term is also more narrowly used to describe secular private educational institutions or other organizations either not affiliated with or not restricted to a particular religious denomination though the organization...

, but founded by Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

/Methodists members
Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

1746 as College of New Jersey Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian, in its most literal sense, refers to a lack of sectarianism. The term is also more narrowly used to describe secular private educational institutions or other organizations either not affiliated with or not restricted to a particular religious denomination though the organization...

, but founded by Calvinists (Presbyterians
Presbyterianism
Presbyterianism refers to a number of Christian churches adhering to the Calvinist theological tradition within Protestantism, which are organized according to a characteristic Presbyterian polity. Presbyterian theology typically emphasizes the sovereignty of God, the authority of the Scriptures,...

)
Columbia University
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

1754 as King's College Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

Brown University
Brown University
Brown University is a private, Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, United States. Founded in 1764 prior to American independence from the British Empire as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations early in the reign of King George III ,...

1764 as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations Baptist
Baptist
Baptists comprise a group of Christian denominations and churches that subscribe to a doctrine that baptism should be performed only for professing believers , and that it must be done by immersion...

, but founding charter promises "no religious tests" and "full liberty of conscience"
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College is a private, Ivy League university in Hanover, New Hampshire, United States. The institution comprises a liberal arts college, Dartmouth Medical School, Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business, as well as 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences...

1769 Calvinist (Congregationalist
Congregational church
Congregational churches are Protestant Christian churches practicing Congregationalist church governance, in which each congregation independently and autonomously runs its own affairs....

)
Cornell University
Cornell University
Cornell University is an Ivy League university located in Ithaca, New York, United States. It is a private land-grant university, receiving annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions...

1865 Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian
Nonsectarian, in its most literal sense, refers to a lack of sectarianism. The term is also more narrowly used to describe secular private educational institutions or other organizations either not affiliated with or not restricted to a particular religious denomination though the organization...


Note: Founding dates and religious affiliations are those stated by the institutions themselves. Many of them had complex histories in their early years and the stories of their origins are subject to interpretation. See footnotes for details where appropriate. "Religious affiliation" refers to financial sponsorship, formal association with, and promotion by, a religious denomination. All of the schools in the Ivy League are private and not currently associated with any religion.

Origin of the name


Students have long revered the ivied walls of older colleges. "Planting the ivy" was a customary class day ceremony at many colleges in the late 1800s. In 1893 an alumnus told the Harvard Crimson
Harvard Crimson
The Harvard Crimson are the athletic teams of Harvard University. The school's teams compete in NCAA Division I. As of 2006, there were 41 Division I intercollegiate varsity sports teams for women and men at Harvard, more than at any other NCAA Division I college in the country...

 that "In 1850, class day was placed upon the University Calendar.... the custom of planting the ivy, while the ivy oration was delivered, arose about this time.". Ivy planting ceremonies are reported for Yale, Simmons
Simmons College
Simmons College may refer to:*Simmons College of Kentucky, a historically black college in Louisville, Kentucky*Simmons College , a liberal arts college in Boston, Massachusetts...

, Bryn Mawr
Bryn Mawr College
Bryn Mawr College is a women's liberal arts college located in Bryn Mawr, a community in Lower Merion Township, Pennsylvania, ten miles west of Philadelphia. The name "Bryn Mawr" means "big hill" in Welsh....

 and many others. Princeton's "Ivy Club" was founded in 1879.

The first usage of Ivy in reference to a group of colleges is from sportswriter Stanley Woodward (1895–1965).
According to the book Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins (1988), author William Morris writes that Stanley Woodward actually took the term from fellow New York Tribune
New York Tribune
The New York Tribune was an American newspaper, first established by Horace Greeley in 1841, which was long considered one of the leading newspapers in the United States...

sportswriter Caswell Adams. Morris writes that during the 1930s, the Fordham University
Fordham University
Fordham University is a private, nonprofit, coeducational research university in the United States, with three campuses in and around New York City. It was founded by the Roman Catholic Diocese of New York in 1841 as St...

 football
College football
College football refers to American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities, colleges, and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities...

 team was running roughshod over all its opponents. One day in the sports room at the Tribune, the merits of Fordham's football team were being compared to those of Princeton
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

 and Columbia
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

. Adams remarked disparagingly of the latter two, saying they were "only Ivy League." Woodward, the sports editor of the Tribune, picked up the term and printed the next day.

Note though that in the above quote Woodward used the term ivy college, not ivy league as Adams is said to have used, so there is a discrepancy in this theory, although it seems certain the term ivy college and shortly later Ivy League acquired its name from the sports world.

The first known instance of the term Ivy League being used appeared in The Christian Science Monitor
The Christian Science Monitor
The Christian Science Monitor is an international newspaper published daily online, Monday to Friday, and weekly in print. It was started in 1908 by Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of the Church of Christ, Scientist. As of 2009, the print circulation was 67,703.The CSM is a newspaper that covers...

on February 7, 1935. Several sportswriters and other journalists used the term shortly later to refer to the older colleges, those along the northeastern seaboard of the United States, chiefly the nine institutions with origins dating from the colonial era
Colonial colleges
The Colonial Colleges are nine institutions of higher education chartered in the American Colonies before the United States of America became a sovereign nation after the American Revolution. These nine have long been considered together, notably in the survey of their origins in the 1907 The...

, together with the United States Military Academy
United States Military Academy
The United States Military Academy at West Point is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located at West Point, New York. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, north of New York City...

 (West Point), the United States Naval Academy
United States Naval Academy
The United States Naval Academy is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in Annapolis, Maryland, United States...

, and a few others. These schools were known for their long-standing traditions in intercollegiate athletics, often being the first schools to participate in such activities. However, at this time, none of these institutions would make efforts to form an athletic league.
The Ivy League universities are also called the "Ancient Eight" or simply the Ivies.

A common folk etymology attributes the name to the Roman numerals for four (IV), asserting that there was such a sports league originally with four members. The Morris Dictionary of Word and Phrase Origins helped to perpetuate this belief. The supposed "IV League" was formed over a century ago and consisted of Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and a 4th school that varies depending on who is telling the story. However, it is clear that Harvard
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

, Princeton
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

, Yale
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

 and Columbia met on November 23, 1876 at the so-called Massasoit Convention to decide on uniform rules for the emerging game of football, which rapidly spread.

In addition, representatives from four schools: Rutgers
Rutgers University
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey , is the largest institution for higher education in New Jersey, United States. It was originally chartered as Queen's College in 1766. It is the eighth-oldest college in the United States and one of the nine Colonial colleges founded before the American...

, Princeton, Yale, and Columbia, met at the Fifth Avenue Hotel in Manhattan
Manhattan
Manhattan is the oldest and the most densely populated of the five boroughs of New York City. Located primarily on the island of Manhattan at the mouth of the Hudson River, the boundaries of the borough are identical to those of New York County, an original county of the state of New York...

 on October 19, 1873, to establish a set of rules governing their intercollegiate athletic competition, and particularly to codify the new game of college football (which at the time, largely resembled what is currently called rugby
Rugby union
Rugby union, often simply referred to as rugby, is a full contact team sport which originated in England in the early 19th century. One of the two codes of rugby football, it is based on running with the ball in hand...

). Though invited, Harvard
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

 chose not to attend. While no formal organization or conference was established, the results of this meeting governed athletic events between these schools well into the 20th century.

Before there was an Ivy League


Seven of the Ivy League schools were founded before the American Revolution
American Revolution
The American Revolution was the political upheaval during the last half of the 18th century in which thirteen colonies in North America joined together to break free from the British Empire, combining to become the United States of America...

; Cornell was founded just after the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

. These seven provided the overwhelming majority of the higher education in the Northern and Middle Colonies; their early faculties and founding boards were largely, therefore, drawn from other Ivy League institutions; there were also some British graduates—more from the University of Cambridge
University of Cambridge
The University of Cambridge is a public research university located in Cambridge, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest university in both the United Kingdom and the English-speaking world , and the seventh-oldest globally...

 than Oxford
University of Oxford
The University of Oxford is a university located in Oxford, United Kingdom. It is the second-oldest surviving university in the world and the oldest in the English-speaking world. Although its exact date of foundation is unclear, there is evidence of teaching as far back as 1096...

, but also from the University of Edinburgh
University of Edinburgh
The University of Edinburgh, founded in 1583, is a public research university located in Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The university is deeply embedded in the fabric of the city, with many of the buildings in the historic Old Town belonging to the university...

 and elsewhere. Similarly, the founder of The College of William & Mary, in 1693, was a British graduate of the University of Edinburgh. The founders of Rutgers University
Rutgers University
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey , is the largest institution for higher education in New Jersey, United States. It was originally chartered as Queen's College in 1766. It is the eighth-oldest college in the United States and one of the nine Colonial colleges founded before the American...

, in 1766, were largely Ivy. Cornell provided Stanford University
Stanford University
The Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly referred to as Stanford University or Stanford, is a private research university on an campus located near Palo Alto, California. It is situated in the northwestern Santa Clara Valley on the San Francisco Peninsula, approximately northwest of San...

 with its first president
David Starr Jordan
David Starr Jordan, Ph.D., LL.D. was a leading eugenicist, ichthyologist, educator and peace activist. He was president of Indiana University and Stanford University.-Early life and education:...

, and most of Stanford's initial faculty members were Cornell professors.

The influence of these institutions on the founding of other eastern colleges and universities is notable. This included the Southern public college movement which blossomed in the first two decades of the 19th century when Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia established what became the flagship universities for each of these states. In 1801 a majority of the first board of trustees for what became the University of South Carolina
University of South Carolina
The University of South Carolina is a public, co-educational research university located in Columbia, South Carolina, United States, with 7 surrounding satellite campuses. Its historic campus covers over in downtown Columbia not far from the South Carolina State House...

 were Princeton alumni. They appointed Jonathan Maxcy
Jonathan Maxcy
Jonathan Maxcy was the second president of Brown University ; the third president of Union College; and the first president of the University of South Carolina.Born in Attleboro, Massachusetts on September 2, 1768, Maxcy was educated at an academy in Wrentham, Massachusetts and...

, a Brown graduate, as the university's first president. Thomas Cooper
Thomas Cooper
Thomas Cooper may refer to:*Thomas Buchecker Cooper U.S. congressman from Pennsylvania*Thomas Cooper, 1st Baron Cooper of Culross , Scottish politician, judge and historian...

, an Oxford alumnus and University of Pennsylvania faculty member became the second president of the South Carolina college. The founders of the University of California
University of California
The University of California is a public university system in the U.S. state of California. Under the California Master Plan for Higher Education, the University of California is a part of the state's three-tier public higher education system, which also includes the California State University...

 came from Yale, hence the school colors of University of California are Yale Blue
Yale Blue
Yale Blue is the dark blue color used in association with Yale University.University Printer John Gambell, who was asked to standardize the color in 2005, characterized its spirit as "a strong, relatively dark blue, neither purple nor green, though it can be somewhat gray...

, and California Gold.

Some of the Ivy League schools have identifiable Protestant roots, while others were founded as nonsectarian schools. Church of England
Church of England
The Church of England is the officially established Christian church in England and the Mother Church of the worldwide Anglican Communion. The church considers itself within the tradition of Western Christianity and dates its formal establishment principally to the mission to England by St...

 King's College broke up during the Revolution and was reformed as public nonsectarian Columbia College
Columbia College of Columbia University
Columbia College is the oldest undergraduate college at Columbia University, situated on the university's main campus in Morningside Heights in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It was founded in 1754 by the Church of England as King's College, receiving a Royal Charter from King George II...

. In the early nineteenth century, the specific purpose of training Calvinist ministers was handed off to theological seminaries, but a denominational tone and such relics as compulsory chapel often lasted well into the twentieth century. Penn and Brown were officially founded as nonsectarian schools. Brown's charter promised no religious tests and "full liberty of conscience", but placed control in the hands of a board of twenty-two Baptists, five Quakers, four Congregationalists, and five Episcopalians. Cornell has been strongly nonsectarian from its founding.

"Ivy League" is sometimes used as a way of referring to an elite
Elite
Elite refers to an exceptional or privileged group that wields considerable power within its sphere of influence...

 class
Social class
Social classes are economic or cultural arrangements of groups in society. Class is an essential object of analysis for sociologists, political scientists, economists, anthropologists and social historians. In the social sciences, social class is often discussed in terms of 'social stratification'...

, even though institutions such as Cornell University were among the first in the United States to reject racial and gender discrimination in their admissions policies. This sense dates back to at least 1935. Novels and memoirs attest this sense, as a social elite; to some degree independent of the actual schools.

After the Second World War, the present Ivy League institutions slowly widened their selection of students. They had always had distinguished faculties; some of the first Americans with doctorate
Doctorate
A doctorate is an academic degree or professional degree that in most countries refers to a class of degrees which qualify the holder to teach in a specific field, A doctorate is an academic degree or professional degree that in most countries refers to a class of degrees which qualify the holder...

s had taught for them; but they now decided that they could not both be world-class research institutions and be competitive in the highest ranks of American college sport; in addition, the schools experienced the scandals of any other big-time football programs, although more quietly.

History of the athletic league


The Ivies have been competing in sports as long as intercollegiate sports have existed in the United States. Boat clubs from Harvard and Yale met in the first sporting event held between students of two U.S. colleges on Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee
Lake Winnipesaukee is the largest lake in the U.S. state of New Hampshire. It is approximately long and from wide , covering — when Paugus Bay is included—with a maximum depth of ....

, New Hampshire
New Hampshire
New Hampshire is a state in the New England region of the northeastern United States of America. The state was named after the southern English county of Hampshire. It is bordered by Massachusetts to the south, Vermont to the west, Maine and the Atlantic Ocean to the east, and the Canadian...

, on August 3, 1852. Harvard's team, "The Oneida", won the race and was presented trophy black walnut oars from then presidential nominee General Franklin Pierce
Franklin Pierce
Franklin Pierce was the 14th President of the United States and is the only President from New Hampshire. Pierce was a Democrat and a "doughface" who served in the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate. Pierce took part in the Mexican-American War and became a brigadier general in the Army...

. As an informal football
American football
American football is a sport played between two teams of eleven with the objective of scoring points by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone. Known in the United States simply as football, it may also be referred to informally as gridiron football. The ball can be advanced by...

 league, the Ivy League dates from 1900 when Yale
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

 took the conference championship with a 5-0 record. For many years Army (the United States Military Academy
United States Military Academy
The United States Military Academy at West Point is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located at West Point, New York. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, north of New York City...

) and Navy (the United States Naval Academy
United States Naval Academy
The United States Naval Academy is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in Annapolis, Maryland, United States...

) were considered members, but dropped out shortly before formal organization. For instance, Army traditionally had a rivalry with Yale, and Rutgers had rivalries with Princeton and Columbia, which continue today in sports other than football
American football
American football is a sport played between two teams of eleven with the objective of scoring points by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone. Known in the United States simply as football, it may also be referred to informally as gridiron football. The ball can be advanced by...

.

The first formal league involving Ivy League teams was formed in 1902, when Columbia, Cornell, Harvard, Yale and Princeton formed the Eastern Intercollegiate Basketball League
Eastern Intercollegiate Basketball League
The Eastern Intercollegiate Basketball League is a defunct athletic conference comprising the predecessor institutions of higher education in the Northeastern United States that subsequently formed the Ivy League. Its membership ranged between five and eight institutions...

. They were later joined by Penn, Dartmouth and Brown.

Before the formal establishment of the Ivy League, there was an "unwritten and unspoken agreement among certain Eastern colleges on athletic relations". In 1935, the Associated Press
Associated Press
The Associated Press is an American news agency. The AP is a cooperative owned by its contributing newspapers, radio and television stations in the United States, which both contribute stories to the AP and use material written by its staff journalists...

 reported on an example of collaboration between the schools:

Despite such collaboration, the universities did not seem to consider the formation of the league as imminent. Romeyn Berry
Romeyn Berry
Romeyn Berry was an American sports administrator.Nicknamed "Rym," Berry attended Cornell University, graduating in 1904 and earning a law degree in 1906. During his senior year, Berry was elected to the Sphinx Head Society and editor of the Cornell Widow with George Jean Nathan as business manager...

, Cornell's manager of athletics, reported the situation in January 1936 as follows:
Within a year of this statement and having held one-month-long discussions about the proposal, on December 3, 1936, the idea of "the formation of an Ivy League" gained enough traction among the undergraduate bodies of the universities that the Columbia Daily Spectator
Columbia Daily Spectator
Columbia Daily Spectator is the daily student newspaper of Columbia University. It is published at 112th and Broadway in New York, New York. Founded in 1877, it is the oldest continuously operating college news daily in the nation after The Harvard Crimson, and has been legally independent of the...

, The Cornell Daily Sun
The Cornell Daily Sun
The Cornell Daily Sun is an independent daily newspaper published in Ithaca, New York by students at Cornell University. It is the oldest independent college daily in the United States....

, The Dartmouth
The Dartmouth
The Dartmouth is the daily student newspaper at Dartmouth College. Founded in 1799, it is America's oldest college newspaper. It is published by The Dartmouth, Inc., an independent, nonprofit corporation chartered in the state of New Hampshire.-History:...

, The Harvard Crimson
The Harvard Crimson
The Harvard Crimson, the daily student newspaper of Harvard University, was founded in 1873. It is the only daily newspaper in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and is run entirely by Harvard College undergraduates...

, The Daily Pennsylvanian
The Daily Pennsylvanian
The Daily Pennsylvanian is the independent daily student newspaper of the University of Pennsylvania.It is published every weekday when the university is in session by a staff of more than 250 students. During the summer months, a smaller staff produces a weekly version called The Summer...

, The Daily Princetonian
The Daily Princetonian
The Daily Princetonian is the daily independent student newspaper of Princeton University. It is published five days a week from September to May and three days a week during the University's Reading Period in January and May.- Finances :...

and the Yale Daily News
Yale Daily News
The Yale Daily News is an independent student newspaper published by Yale University students in New Haven, Connecticut since January 28, 1878...

would simultaneously run an editorial entitled "Now Is the Time", encouraging the seven universities to form the league in an effort to preserve the ideals of athletics. Part of the editorial read as follows:

The proposal did not succeed—on January 11, 1937, the athletic authorities at the schools rejected the "possibility of a heptagonal league in football such as these institutions maintain in basketball, baseball and track." However, they noted that the league "has such promising possibilities that it may not be dismissed and must be the subject of further consideration."

In 1945 the presidents of the eight schools signed the first Ivy Group Agreement, which set academic, financial, and athletic standards for the football
American football
American football is a sport played between two teams of eleven with the objective of scoring points by advancing the ball into the opposing team's end zone. Known in the United States simply as football, it may also be referred to informally as gridiron football. The ball can be advanced by...

 teams. The principles established reiterated those put forward in the Harvard-Yale-Princeton Presidents' Agreement of 1916. The Ivy Group Agreement established the core tenet that an applicant's ability to play on a team would not influence admissions decisions:

In 1954, the date generally accepted as the birth of the Ivy League, the presidents extended the Ivy Group Agreement to all intercollegiate sports. Competition began with the 1956 season.

As late as the 1960s many of the Ivy League universities' undergraduate programs remained open only to men, with Cornell the only one to have been coeducational from its founding (1865) and Columbia being the last (1983) to become coeducation
Coeducation
Mixed-sex education, also known as coeducation or co-education, is the integrated education of male and female persons in the same institution. It is the opposite of single-sex education...

al. Before they became coeducational, many of the Ivy schools maintained extensive social ties with nearby Seven Sisters
Seven Sisters (colleges)
The Seven Sisters are seven liberal arts colleges in the Northeastern United States that are historically women's colleges. They are Barnard College, Bryn Mawr College, Mount Holyoke College, Radcliffe College, Smith College, Vassar College, and Wellesley College. All were founded between 1837 and...

 women's college
Women's college
Women's colleges in higher education are undergraduate, bachelor's degree-granting institutions, often liberal arts colleges, whose student populations are composed exclusively or almost exclusively of women...

s, including weekend visits, dances and parties inviting Ivy and Seven Sisters students to mingle. This was the case not only at Barnard College
Barnard College
Barnard College is a private women's liberal arts college and a member of the Seven Sisters. Founded in 1889, Barnard has been affiliated with Columbia University since 1900. The campus stretches along Broadway between 116th and 120th Streets in the Morningside Heights neighborhood in the borough...

 and Radcliffe College
Radcliffe College
Radcliffe College was a women's liberal arts college in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and was the coordinate college for Harvard University. It was also one of the Seven Sisters colleges. Radcliffe College conferred joint Harvard-Radcliffe diplomas beginning in 1963 and a formal merger agreement with...

, which are adjacent to Columbia and Harvard, but at more distant institutions as well. The movie Animal House includes a satiric version of the formerly common visits by Dartmouth men to Massachusetts to meet Smith
Smith College
Smith College is a private, independent women's liberal arts college located in Northampton, Massachusetts. It is the largest member of the Seven Sisters...

 and Mount Holyoke
Mount Holyoke College
Mount Holyoke College is a liberal arts college for women in South Hadley, Massachusetts. It was the first member of the Seven Sisters colleges, and served as a model for some of the others...

 women, a drive of more than two hours. As noted by Irene Harwarth, Mindi Maline, and Elizabeth DeBra, "The 'Seven Sisters'
Seven Sisters (colleges)
The Seven Sisters are seven liberal arts colleges in the Northeastern United States that are historically women's colleges. They are Barnard College, Bryn Mawr College, Mount Holyoke College, Radcliffe College, Smith College, Vassar College, and Wellesley College. All were founded between 1837 and...

 was the name given to Barnard, Smith, Mount Holyoke, Vassar
Vassar College
Vassar College is a private, coeducational liberal arts college in the town of Poughkeepsie, New York, in the United States. The Vassar campus comprises over and more than 100 buildings, including four National Historic Landmarks, ranging in style from Collegiate Gothic to International,...

, Bryn Mawr
Bryn Mawr College
Bryn Mawr College is a women's liberal arts college located in Bryn Mawr, a community in Lower Merion Township, Pennsylvania, ten miles west of Philadelphia. The name "Bryn Mawr" means "big hill" in Welsh....

, Wellesley, and Radcliffe, because of their parallel to the Ivy League men’s colleges."

In 1983, following the admission of women to Columbia College, Columbia University and Barnard College entered into an athletic consortium agreement by which students from both schools compete together on Columbia University women's athletic teams, which replaced the women's teams previously sponsored by Barnard.

Cohesiveness of the group


The Ivy League schools are highly selective, with acceptance rates ranging from 7 to 18 percent.

These universities engage in a heated competition to attract students, illustrated by a 2002 incident in which admissions officers at Princeton logged into the Yale admissions website fourteen times to view the admissions status of cross-applicants, using the names, birth dates, and Social Security number
Social Security number
In the United States, a Social Security number is a nine-digit number issued to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and temporary residents under section 205 of the Social Security Act, codified as . The number is issued to an individual by the Social Security Administration, an independent...

s indicated on their Princeton applications; Princeton later asserted that it had been considering a similar system of early Internet notification, and was surprised to find that Yale had used no password besides the Social Security number. Yale's administration notified the FBI about the actions after conducting its own investigation. Princeton moved one admissions official to a different department over the incident and the university's dean of admissions retired soon thereafter, though Princeton president Shirley Tilghman said that the dean's decision to retire was unconnected to the incident.

Collaboration between the member schools is illustrated by the student-led Ivy Council
Ivy Council
The Ivy Council is a 501c3 Federal Tax-Exempt Organization of student government leaders, student organization leaders, and students at large from the colleges and universities of the Ivy League...

 that meets in the fall and spring of each year, with representatives from every Ivy League school.

Social elitism


The phrase Ivy League historically has been perceived as connected not only with academic excellence, but also with social elitism. In 1936, sportswriter John Kieran noted that student editors at Harvard
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

, Yale
Yale University
Yale University is a private, Ivy League university located in New Haven, Connecticut, United States. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States...

, Princeton
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

, Cornell
Cornell University
Cornell University is an Ivy League university located in Ithaca, New York, United States. It is a private land-grant university, receiving annual funding from the State of New York for certain educational missions...

, Columbia
Columbia University
Columbia University in the City of New York is a private, Ivy League university in Manhattan, New York City. Columbia is the oldest institution of higher learning in the state of New York, the fifth oldest in the United States, and one of the country's nine Colonial Colleges founded before the...

, Dartmouth
Dartmouth College
Dartmouth College is a private, Ivy League university in Hanover, New Hampshire, United States. The institution comprises a liberal arts college, Dartmouth Medical School, Thayer School of Engineering, and the Tuck School of Business, as well as 19 graduate programs in the arts and sciences...

, and Penn
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania is a private, Ivy League university located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States,Penn is the fourth-oldest using the founding dates claimed by each institution...

 were advocating the formation of an athletic association. In urging them to consider "Army
United States Military Academy
The United States Military Academy at West Point is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located at West Point, New York. The academy sits on scenic high ground overlooking the Hudson River, north of New York City...

 and Navy
United States Naval Academy
The United States Naval Academy is a four-year coeducational federal service academy located in Annapolis, Maryland, United States...

 and Georgetown
Georgetown University
Georgetown University is a private, Jesuit, research university whose main campus is in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington, D.C. Founded in 1789, it is the oldest Catholic university in the United States...

 and Fordham
Fordham University
Fordham University is a private, nonprofit, coeducational research university in the United States, with three campuses in and around New York City. It was founded by the Roman Catholic Diocese of New York in 1841 as St...

 and Syracuse
Syracuse University
Syracuse University is a private research university located in Syracuse, New York, United States. Its roots can be traced back to Genesee Wesleyan Seminary, founded by the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1832, which also later founded Genesee College...

 and Brown
Brown University
Brown University is a private, Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, United States. Founded in 1764 prior to American independence from the British Empire as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations early in the reign of King George III ,...

 and Pitt
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Pittsburgh, commonly referred to as Pitt, is a state-related research university located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. Founded as Pittsburgh Academy in 1787 on what was then the American frontier, Pitt is one of the oldest continuously chartered institutions of...

" as candidates for membership, he exhorted:

The Ivy League has sometimes been specifically associated with the WASP
White Anglo-Saxon Protestant
White Anglo-Saxon Protestant or WASP is an informal term, often derogatory or disparaging, for a closed group of high-status Americans mostly of British Protestant ancestry. The group supposedly wields disproportionate financial and social power. When it appears in writing, it is usually used to...

 establishment. Phrases such as "Ivy League snobbery" are ubiquitous in nonfiction and fiction writing of the twentieth century. A Louis Auchincloss
Louis Auchincloss
Louis Stanton Auchincloss was an American lawyer, novelist, historian, and essayist. He is best known as a prolific novelist who parlayed his firsthand knowledge into dozens of finely wrought books exploring the private lives of America's East Coast patrician class...

 character dreads "the aridity of snobbery which he knew infected the Ivy League colleges". A business writer, warning in 2001 against discriminatory hiring, presented a cautionary example of an attitude to avoid (the bracketed phrase is his):
Aspects of Ivy stereotyping were illustrated during the 1988 presidential election, when George H. W. Bush
George H. W. Bush
George Herbert Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 41st President of the United States . He had previously served as the 43rd Vice President of the United States , a congressman, an ambassador, and Director of Central Intelligence.Bush was born in Milton, Massachusetts, to...

 (Yale '48) derided Michael Dukakis
Michael Dukakis
Michael Stanley Dukakis served as the 65th and 67th Governor of Massachusetts from 1975–1979 and from 1983–1991, and was the Democratic presidential nominee in 1988. He was born to Greek immigrants in Brookline, Massachusetts, also the birthplace of John F. Kennedy, and was the longest serving...

 (graduate of Harvard Law School) for having "foreign-policy views born in Harvard Yard's boutique." New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd
Maureen Dowd
Maureen Bridgid Dowd is a Washington D.C.-based columnist for The New York Times and best-selling author. During the 1970s and the early 1980s, she worked for Time magazine and the Washington Star, where she covered news as well as sports and wrote feature articles...

 asked "Wasn't this a case of the pot calling the kettle elite?" Bush explained however that, unlike Harvard, Yale's reputation was "so diffuse, there isn't a symbol, I don't think, in the Yale situation, any symbolism in it.... Harvard boutique to me has the connotation of liberalism and elitism" and said Harvard in his remark was intended to represent "a philosophical enclave" and not a statement about class. Columnist Russell Baker
Russell Baker
Russell Wayne Baker is an American Pulitzer Prize-winning writer known for his satirical commentary and self-critical prose, as well as for his autobiography, Growing Up.-His career:...

 opined that "Voters inclined to loathe and fear elite Ivy League schools rarely make fine distinctions between Yale and Harvard. All they know is that both are full of rich, fancy, stuck-up and possibly dangerous intellectuals who never sit down to supper in their undershirt
Undershirt
A vest, undershirt, tank top, , singlet or a wife beater is an article of underwear worn underneath a dress shirt intended to protect them from body sweat and odors. It can have short sleeves or be sleeveless. The term most commonly refers to upper-body wear worn by males.It also makes dress...

 no matter how hot the weather gets." Still, the last four presidents have all attended Ivy League schools for at least part of their education—George H.W. Bush (Yale undergrad), Bill Clinton (Yale Law School), George W. Bush (Yale undergrad, Harvard Business School), and Barack Obama (Columbia undergrad, Harvard Law School).

Cooperation


Up until recently, seven of the eight schools (Harvard excluded) participated in the Borrow Direct interlibrary loan
Interlibrary loan
Interlibrary loan is a service whereby a user of one library can borrow books or receive photocopies of documents that are owned by another library...

 program, making a total of 88 million items available to participants with a waiting period of four working days. This ILL
Interlibrary loan
Interlibrary loan is a service whereby a user of one library can borrow books or receive photocopies of documents that are owned by another library...

 program is not affiliated with the formal Ivy arrangement. Harvard and MIT joined the Direct Borrow partnership in January 2011, together contributing over 70 million books to the existing collection.

The governing body of the Ivy League is the Council of Ivy Group Presidents. During their meetings, the presidents often discuss common procedures and initiatives.

Competition and athletics



Ivy champions are recognized in 33 men's and women's sports. In some sports, Ivy teams actually compete as members of another league, the Ivy championship being decided by isolating the members' records in play against each other; for example, the six league members who participate in ice hockey
Ice hockey
Ice hockey, often referred to as hockey, is a team sport played on ice, in which skaters use wooden or composite sticks to shoot a hard rubber puck into their opponent's net. The game is played between two teams of six players each. Five members of each team skate up and down the ice trying to take...

 do so as members of ECAC Hockey, but an Ivy champion is extrapolated each year. Unlike all other Division I basketball
Basketball
Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players try to score points by throwing or "shooting" a ball through the top of a basketball hoop while following a set of rules...

 conferences, the Ivy League has no tournament for the league title; the school with the best conference record represents the conference in the Division I NCAA Basketball Tournament (with a playoff, or playoffs, in the case of a tie). Since its inception, an Ivy League school has yet to win either the men's or women's Division I NCAA Basketball Tournament.

On average, each Ivy school has more than 35 varsity teams. All eight are in the top 20 for number of sports offered for both men and women among Division I schools.
Unlike most Division I athletic conferences, the Ivy League prohibits the granting of athletic scholarships; all scholarships awarded are need-based (financial aid). Ivy League teams non-league games are usually against the members of the Patriot League
Patriot League
The Patriot League is a college athletic conference which operates in the northeastern United States. It participates in the NCAA's Division I) for a number of sports; in football, it participates in the Football Championship Subdivision...

, which have similar academic standards and athletic scholarship policies.

In the time before recruiting for college sports became dominated by those offering athletic scholarships and lowered academic standards for athletes, the Ivy League was successful in many sports relative to other universities in the country. In particular, Princeton won 24 recognized national championships in college football
College football
College football refers to American football played by teams of student athletes fielded by American universities, colleges, and military academies, or Canadian football played by teams of student athletes fielded by Canadian universities...

 (last in 1911), and Yale won 19 (last in 1927). Both of these totals are considerably higher than those of other historically strong programs such as Alabama
Alabama Crimson Tide football
|TeamName = Alabama football |Image = Alabama Crimson Tide Logo.svg |ImageSize = 110 |Helmet = Alabama Football.png |ImageSize2 = 150 |CurrentSeason = 2011 Alabama Crimson Tide football team...

, which has won 13, Notre Dame
Notre Dame Fighting Irish football
Notre Dame Fighting Irish football team is the football team of the University of Notre Dame. The team is currently coached by Brian Kelly.Notre Dame competes as an Independent at the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision level, and is a founding member of the Bowl Championship Series coalition. It is an...

, which has won 12, and USC, which has won 11. Yale, whose coach Walter Camp
Walter Camp
Walter Chauncey Camp was an American football player, coach, and sports writer known as the "Father of American Football". With John Heisman, Amos Alonzo Stagg, Pop Warner, Fielding H. Yost, and George Halas, Camp was one of the most accomplished persons in the early history of American football...

 was the "Father of American Football," held on to its place as the all-time wins leader in college football throughout the entire 20th century, but was finally passed by Michigan
Michigan Wolverines football
The Michigan Wolverines football program represents the University of Michigan in college football at the NCAA Division I Football Bowl Subdivision level. Michigan has the most all-time wins and the highest winning percentage in college football history...

 on November 10, 2001. Currently Dartmouth holds the record for most Ivy League football titles, with 17.

Beginning with the 1982 football season, the Ivy League has competed in Division I-AA (renamed FCS in 2006). The Ivy League teams are eligible for the FCS tournament held to determine the national champion, and the league champion receives an automatic bid (and any other team may qualify for an at-large selection) from the NCAA. Through the 2009 season, all eligible teams have declined the invitation, citing rules governing the league's academic concerns posed by the extended December schedule. The Ivy League plays a strict 10 game schedule, compared to other FCS members' schedules of 11 or 12 regular season games, plus post-season, which was expanded in 2010 to five rounds with 20 teams, with a bye week for the top 12 teams. Football is the only sport in which the Ivy League declines to compete for a national title.


Although no longer as successful nationally as they once were in many of the more popular college sports, the Ivy League is still competitive in others. One such example is rowing
College rowing (United States)
Rowing is one of the oldest intercollegiate sports in the United States. However, rowers comprise only 2.2% of total college athletes. This may be in part because of the status of rowing as an amateur sport and because not all universities have access to suitable bodies of water. In the 2002-03...

. All of the Ivies have historically been among the top crews in the nation, and most continue to be so today. (Other historical top crews include Cal
California Golden Bears
The California Golden Bears is the nickname used for 29 varsity athletic programs and various club teams of the University of California, Berkeley...

, Washington
Washington Huskies
Washington Huskies is the nickname of the University of Washington's athletic teams. The school is a member of the Pacific-12 Conference. The athletic program is made up of 9 men's sports and 10 women's sports Washington Huskies is the nickname of the University of Washington's athletic teams. The...

, Wisconsin
Wisconsin Badgers
The Wisconsin Badgers are the collegiate athletic teams from the University of Wisconsin–Madison. This NCAA Division I athletic program has teams in football, basketball, ice hockey, volleyball, soccer, cross country, tennis, swimming, wrestling, track and field, rowing, golf, and softball...

 and Navy
Navy Midshipmen
The United States Naval Academy sponsors 30 varsity-sports teams and 12 club-sports teams . Both men's and women's teams are called Navy Midshipmen or "Mids"...

). Most recently, on the men's side, Harvard won the Intercollegiate Rowing Association
Intercollegiate Rowing Association
The Intercollegiate Rowing Association runs the IRA Championship Regatta, which is considered to be the United States collegiate national championship of rowing. Since 1995, it has been held on the Cooper River in Pennsauken, New Jersey, and includes both men's and women's events for sweep boats...

 Championships in 2003, 2004, 2005, and on the women's side Brown won the team championship in 2007, 2008 and 2011 NCAA Rowing Championships and Yale won the NCAA title for the I-eight event (the most elite event) in 2007, 2008 and 2010. Additionally, Cornell's men's lightweight team won back to back to back IRA National Championships in 2006, 2007 and 2008. The Ivy League schools are also very competitive in men's lacrosse and both men's and women's hockey.

The Ivy League is home to some of the oldest college rugby teams. These teams meet annually to compete in a tourney. The 2006 Ivy League Tournament was hosted by Yale, and the 2005 tournament was hosted by Penn. Though the women's rugby teams at the Ivy League schools are much younger, they too compete in an annual Ivy League Tournament, often hosted by Brown.

Internal rivalries


Rivalries run deep in the Ivy League. For instance, Harvard and Yale are celebrated football and crew
Harvard-Yale Regatta
The Harvard-Yale Boat Race or Harvard–Yale Regatta is an annual rowing race between Yale University and Harvard University. First contested in 1852, annually since 1859 except during major wars fought by the United States, The Race is America's oldest collegiate athletic competition, predating The...

 rivals.

Princeton and Penn are longstanding men's basketball rivals; "Puck Frinceton", and "Pennetrate the Puss" t-shirts are worn at games. In only five instances in the history of Ivy League basketball, and in only five seasons since Dartmouth's 1957–58 title, has neither Penn nor Princeton won at least a share of the Ivy League title in basketball, with each champion or co-champion 25 times. Penn has won 21 outright, Princeton 18 outright. Princeton has been a co-champion 7 times, sharing 4 of those titles with Penn (these 4 seasons represent the only times Penn has been co-champion). Princeton and Harvard are the reigning (2011) Ivy League men's basketball co-champions.

Rivalries exist between other Ivy league teams in other sports, including Cornell and Harvard in hockey
Cornell-Harvard hockey rivalry
The Cornell-Harvard Hockey Game is a men's ice hockey sports rivalry between the Big Red of Cornell University and the Crimson of Harvard University dating back to 1910....

 (the only two League members to have won the NCAA tournament), Harvard and Princeton in swimming, and Harvard and Penn in football (Penn and Harvard have each had two unbeaten seasons since 2001). In men's lacrosse
Field lacrosse
Field lacrosse, sometimes referred to as the "fastest sport on two feet," is a full contact outdoor men's sport played with ten players on each team. The sport originated among Native Americans, and the modern rules of field lacrosse were initially codified by Canadian William George Beers in 1867....

, Cornell
Cornell Big Red men's lacrosse
The Cornell Big Red Men's Lacrosse team represents Cornell University in National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I men's lacrosse. Cornell competes as a member of the Ivy League, of which they have won 23 conference championships. The Big Red have appeared in the NCAA tournament 22...

 and Princeton
Princeton Tigers men's lacrosse
The Princeton Tigers men's lacrosse team represents Princeton University in National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I men's lacrosse...

 are perennial rivals, and they are the only two Ivy League teams to have won the NCAA tournament. In 2009, the Big Red and Tigers met for their 70th game in the NCAA tournament
2009 NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Championship
The 2009 NCAA Division I Men's Lacrosse Tournament was held from May 9 through May 25, 2009. This was the 39th annual Division I NCAA Men's Lacrosse Championship tournament...

.

Furthermore, no team other than Harvard or Princeton has won the men's swimming conference title outright since 1972, although Yale, Columbia, and Cornell have shared the title with Harvard and Princeton during this time.

Football rivalries

Teams Name Trophy First met Games played Series record
Columbia-Cornell Empire State Bowl (known to players as Megabowl) Empire Cup 1889 98 games 35-60-3
Cornell-Penn None Trustee's Cup 1893 117 games 44-68-5
Dartmouth-Princeton None Sawhorse Dollar 1897 90 games 43-43-4
Harvard-Yale The Game None 1875 127 games 54-65-8

Athletic facilities

School Football stadium Basketball arena Hockey rink Soccer stadium
Name Capacity Name Capacity Name Capacity Name Capacity
Brown Brown Stadium
Brown Stadium
Brown Stadium is a football stadium located in Providence, Rhode Island. It is the home of Brown University's football and outdoor track teams. The athletic teams at Brown University, known as the Bears, compete in the Ivy League....

20,000 Pizzitola Sports Center
Pizzitola Sports Center
The Paul Bailey Pizzitola Memorial Sports Center, often referred to as "the Pitz" by students, is a 2,800-seat multi-purpose athletic center in Providence, Rhode Island which was built in 1989. It is home to the Brown University Bears men's and women's basketball, volleyball, gymnastics, wrestling...

2,800 Meehan Auditorium
Meehan Auditorium
The George V. Meehan Auditorium is a 3,059-seat hockey arena, in Providence, Rhode Island. The arena opened in 1961 and was dedicated on January 6, 1962. On September 28, 1964, at the same time that he was campaigning to stay in office, U.S. President Lyndon B...

3,100 Stevenson Field
Stevenson Field
Stevenson Field is a stadium in Providence, Rhode Island on the campus of Brown University. It is home to the Brown Bears soccer and lacrosse programs....

3,500
Columbia Wien Stadium 17,000 Levien Gymnasium
Levien Gymnasium
Francis S. Levien Gymnasium is a 3,408-seat arena at Columbia University in New York City. Named for New York lawyer-industrialist Francis S. Levien , it is home to the Columbia Lions basketball team, and is also used for gym classes in between games...

3,408 N/A Columbia Soccer Stadium
Columbia Soccer Stadium
Columbia Soccer Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium located in New York City. It is home to the Columbia Lions soccer teams of Columbia University, and is located next to Baker Field on the extreme northern tip of Manhattan, north of 218th street, rather than on the main Morningside Heights...

3,500
Cornell Schoellkopf Field
Schoellkopf Field
Schoellkopf Field is a 25,597-capacity stadium at Cornell University's Ithaca-campus that opened in 1915 and is used for the Cornell Big Red football, sprint football, lacrosse and field hockey teams...

25,597 Newman Arena
Newman Arena
Newman Arena is a 4,473-seat multi-purpose arena at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, located in Bartels Hall, which is adjacent to Lynah Rink. It is home to the Cornell Big Red basketball and volleyball teams. It opened in January 1990, replacing Barton Hall, which was remodeled to become a...

4,472 Lynah Rink
Lynah Rink
Lynah Rink is a 4,267-seat hockey arena at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, that opened in 1957. Named after James Lynah, Class of 1905, who was the director of Cornell athletics from 1935-1943, it is home to the Big Red men's and women's ice hockey teams.Lynah has been home to hockey greats...

4,267 Charles F. Berman Field
Charles F. Berman Field
Charles F. Berman Field is a multi-use stadium in Ithaca, New York on the campus of Cornell University. It is used for soccer and track and field competitions. It is located on a portion of the upper alumni fields....

1,000
Dartmouth Memorial Field
Memorial Field (Dartmouth)
Memorial Field is a football stadium located in Hanover, New Hampshire, USA. It is the home of Dartmouth Big Green football and outdoor track teams. The athletic teams at Dartmouth College compete in the Ivy League....

15,600 Leede Arena
Leede Arena
Edward Leede Arena is a 2,100-seat, multi-purpose arena in Hanover, New Hampshire. Built in 1986, it is home to the Dartmouth College Big Green basketball team. It is located within the John W...

2,100 Thompson Arena
Thompson Arena
Rupert C. Thompson Arena is a 3,500-seat hockey arena in Hanover, New Hampshire. It is home to the Dartmouth College Big Green men's and women's ice hockey teams. The barrel-vaulted, reinforced concrete arena was designed by renowned architect Pier Luigi Nervi. It was named for Rupert C...

4,500 Burnham Field
Burnham Field
Burnham Field is a soccer specific stadium located on Dartmouth College and used exclusively for Dartmouth's men's and women's soccer teams. The field was finished in time for the 2007 college soccer season and includes full lighting, 1,600-seat stands, a press box and a level 10 natural grass...

1,600
Harvard Harvard Stadium
Harvard Stadium
Harvard Stadium is a horseshoe-shaped football stadium in the Allston neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts, in the United States. Built in 1903, the stadium seats 30,323. The stadium seated up to 57,166 in the past, as permanent steel stands were installed in the north end of the stadium in 1929...

30,898 Lavietes Pavilion
Lavietes Pavilion
The Ray Lavietes Basketball Pavilion at the Briggs Athletic Center is a 2,195-seat multi-purpose arena in the Allston neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts...

2,195 Bright Hockey Center
Bright Hockey Center
The Alexander C. Bright Hockey Center is a 2,850-seat ice-hockey arena in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. It is home to the Harvard University Crimson men's and women's ice hockey teams. It is named for Alec Bright '19, a former hockey player. Known as Lynah East for Cornell's dominance in...

2,850 Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium
Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium
Soldiers Field Soccer Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium located on the campus of Harvard University in the Allston neighborhood of Boston. It opened in September 2010 and replaced Ohiri Field as the primary home of the Harvard Crimson men's and women's soccer teams...

2,500
Penn Franklin Field
Franklin Field
Franklin Field is the University of Pennsylvania's stadium for football, field hockey, lacrosse, sprint football, and track and field . It is also used by Penn students for recreation, and for intramural and club sports, including touch football and cricket, and is the site of Penn's graduation...

52,593 The Palestra
Palestra
The Palestra, also known as the Cathedral of College Basketball, is a historic arena and the home gym of the University of Pennsylvania Quakers men's and women's basketball teams, volleyball teams, wrestling team, and Philadelphia Big 5 basketball. Located at 215 South 33rd St...

8,722 The Class of 1923 Arena
Class of 1923 Arena
The Class of 1923 Arena is the skating rink of the University of Pennsylvania.In 1968, alumni from the Class of 1923 formed the group "Friends of Pennsylvania Hockey," led by Howard Butcher, III. Butcher donated over 3 million dollars for the creation of the facility, along with John Cleveland and...

2,900 Rhodes Field 1,700
Princeton Princeton University Stadium
Princeton University Stadium
Princeton University Stadium is a stadium in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. It is primarily used for American football, and is the home field of the Princeton Tigers...

27,800 Jadwin Gymnasium
Jadwin Gymnasium
The L. Stockwell Jadwin Gymnasium is a 6,854-seat multi-purpose arena in Princeton, New Jersey. The arena opened in 1969. It is home to the Princeton University Tigers basketball team...

6,854 Hobey Baker Memorial Rink
Hobey Baker Memorial Rink
Hobey Baker Memorial Rink is a 2,092-seat hockey arena in Princeton, New Jersey. It is home to the Princeton University Tigers men's and women's ice hockey teams as well as the venue for club and intramural hockey teams, intramural broomball, figure skating and recreational skating. It is the only...

2,094 Roberts Stadium
Roberts Stadium
Roberts Stadium is the name of several stadiums in the United States.*M. M. Roberts Stadium in Hattiesburg, Mississippi as part of the The University of Southern Mississippi's campus...

3,000
Yale Yale Bowl
Yale Bowl
The Yale Bowl is a football stadium in New Haven, Connecticut on the border of West Haven, about 1½ miles west of Yale's main campus. Completed in 1914, the stadium seats 61,446, reduced by renovations from the original capacity of 70,869...

64,269 Payne Whitney Gymnasium
Payne Whitney Gymnasium
The Payne Whitney Gymnasium is the gymnasium of Yale University. Built in the prevailing Gothic architecture style of the campus in 1932, it is a remarkable building, possessing a Gothic tower, a third-floor swimming pool, a polo practice room, and a rooftop running track. It is the second-largest...

3,100 Ingalls Rink
Ingalls Rink
David S. Ingalls Rink is a hockey rink in New Haven, CT designed by architect Eero Saarinen and built between 1953 and 1958 for Yale University. It is commonly referred to as The Whale, due to its appearance. The rink stands at the intersection of Prospect and Sachem Streets. The building was...

3,486 Reese Stadium
Reese Stadium
Reese Stadium is a multi-purpose stadium located on the campus of Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut. It is home to the Yale Bulldogs soccer and lacrosse teams....

3,000

Other Ivies


Marketing groups, journalists, and some educators sometimes promote other colleges as "Ivies," as in Little Ivies
Little Ivies
Little Ivies is a colloquialism referring to a group of small, selective American liberal arts colleges; however, it does not denote any official organization....

, Public Ivies or Southern Ivies. These uses of Ivy are intended to promote the other schools by comparing them to the Ivy League. For example, in the 2007 edition of Newsweek's How to Get Into College Now, the editors designated twenty-five schools as "New Ivies."

The term "Ivy Plus" is sometimes used to refer to the Ancient Eight plus several other schools for purposes of alumni associations, university affiliations, or endowment comparisons. In his book Untangling the Ivy League, Zawel writes, "The inclusion of non-Ivy League schools under this term is commonplace for some schools and extremely rare for others. Among these other schools, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology is a private research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. MIT has five schools and one college, containing a total of 32 academic departments, with a strong emphasis on scientific and technological education and research.Founded in 1861 in...

 and Stanford University
Stanford University
The Leland Stanford Junior University, commonly referred to as Stanford University or Stanford, is a private research university on an campus located near Palo Alto, California. It is situated in the northwestern Santa Clara Valley on the San Francisco Peninsula, approximately northwest of San...

 are almost always included. The University of Chicago
University of Chicago
The University of Chicago is a private research university in Chicago, Illinois, USA. It was founded by the American Baptist Education Society with a donation from oil magnate and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller and incorporated in 1890...

 and Duke University
Duke University
Duke University is a private research university located in Durham, North Carolina, United States. Founded by Methodists and Quakers in the present day town of Trinity in 1838, the school moved to Durham in 1892. In 1924, tobacco industrialist James B...

 are often included as well.

See also


  • Big Three (colleges)
    Big Three (colleges)
    The Big Three 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. High schools' college admissions counselors and colleges' admissions guides sometimes use the...

    —a term used to refer to Harvard, Yale, and Princeton
  • Little Three
    Little Three
    The "Little Three" is an unofficial athletic conference of three elite liberal arts colleges in New England, United States. The "Little Three" are:* Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts* Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut...

    —three liberal arts colleges in New England
    New England
    New England is a region in the northeastern corner of the United States consisting of the six states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut...

     (Amherst
    Amherst College
    Amherst College is a private liberal arts college located in Amherst, Massachusetts, United States. Amherst is an exclusively undergraduate four-year institution and enrolled 1,744 students in the fall of 2009...

    , Wesleyan
    Wesleyan University
    Wesleyan University is a private liberal arts college founded in 1831 and located in Middletown, Connecticut. According to the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Wesleyan is the only Baccalaureate College in the nation that emphasizes undergraduate instruction in the arts and...

    , and Williams
    Williams College
    Williams College is a private liberal arts college located in Williamstown, Massachusetts, United States. It was established in 1793 with funds from the estate of Ephraim Williams. Originally a men's college, Williams became co-educational in 1970. Fraternities were also phased out during this...

    ), in contrast to the Big Three
    Big Three (colleges)
    The Big Three 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. High schools' college admissions counselors and colleges' admissions guides sometimes use the...

     of the Ivy League
  • List of Ivy League law schools—schools of the Ivy League universities that offer various law degrees.
  • List of Ivy League medical schools—schools of the Ivy League universities that offer medical education (both MDs
    Doctor of Medicine
    Doctor of Medicine is a doctoral degree for physicians. The degree is granted by medical schools...

     and PhD
    PHD
    PHD may refer to:*Ph.D., a doctorate of philosophy*Ph.D. , a 1980s British group*PHD finger, a protein sequence*PHD Mountain Software, an outdoor clothing and equipment company*PhD Docbook renderer, an XML renderer...

    s).
  • List of Ivy League business schools—schools of the Ivy League universities that offer various business degrees, especially the MBA
    Master of Business Administration
    The Master of Business Administration is a :master's degree in business administration, which attracts people from a wide range of academic disciplines. The MBA designation originated in the United States, emerging from the late 19th century as the country industrialized and companies sought out...

    .
  • Hidden Ivies: Thirty Colleges of Excellence
    Hidden Ivies: Thirty Colleges of Excellence
    Hidden Ivies: Thirty Colleges of Excellence is a college educational guide published in 2000. It concerns college admissions in the United States...

  • Jesuit Ivy
    Jesuit Ivy
    "Jesuit Ivy" is the title of a commencement speech delivered at and, subsequently, a nickname given to Boston College, a Jesuit university in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, United States. The term was coined in a 1956 commencement address by then-Massachusetts Senator John F. Kennedy...

    —complementary use of Ivy to characterize Boston College
    Boston College
    Boston College is a private Jesuit research university located in the village of Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts, USA. The main campus is bisected by the border between the cities of Boston and Newton. It has 9,200 full-time undergraduates and 4,000 graduate students. Its name reflects its early...

  • Black Ivy League
    Black Ivy League
    The Black Ivy League is a colloquial term that at times referred to the historically black colleges in the United States that attracted top African American students prior to the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. Similar groups include: Public Ivies, Southern Ivies, and the Little Ivies, among...

    —informal list of colleges that attracted top African American students prior to the Civil Rights Movement
    Civil rights movement
    The civil rights movement was a worldwide political movement for equality before the law occurring between approximately 1950 and 1980. In many situations it took the form of campaigns of civil resistance aimed at achieving change by nonviolent forms of resistance. In some situations it was...

     in the 1960s.
  • Coimbra Group
    Coimbra Group
    The Coimbra Group is a network of 40 European universities, some among the oldest and most prestigious in Europe. It was founded in 1985 and formally constituted by charter in 1987....

    —network of prestigious European universities, sometimes considered to be the European counterpart to the Ivy League.
  • Russell Group
    Russell Group
    The Russell Group is a collaboration of twenty UK universities that together receive two-thirds of research grant and contract funding in the United Kingdom. It was established in 1994 to represent their interests to the government, parliament and other similar bodies...

    —top UK universities