See what students say:


Hamilton College in upstate New York is steeped in the ideals of intellectual pursuit, allowing students to plot their course of study through an open curriculum under the guidance of multiple advisors. Critical thinking is one core skill developed, though, and that’s accomplished through classroom projects and methods like “writing a mock grant proposal for biology” or “student-led discussions where we bring in a topic…and tie it in to the theories being taught in class.” Finding topics that are personal draws is a crucial element that makes Hamilton tick, and students often “pursue interests that don’t seem traditionally compatible” on the surface. However, this allows students “to enjoy [their] major while being able to supplement [it] with other classes” of interest. “The open curriculum gives you freedom and responsibility over what and how you want to learn,” boasts one student. Others say “the ability to mix and match your interests to create your major is incredibly liberating.” Hamilton is truly “a living and learning community where learning happens outside the classroom.”

The academics at Hamilton would be nothing without professors who are “highly invested in their field and…bring that energy to their classrooms.” They “make their expectations clear,” “will challenge students to produce reasonable yet impassioned results,” and “are open to new opinions and discussions, but obviously have a plan for discussion-based classes.” Those discussions are still manageable due to Hamilton’s small class sizes—which also means “it’s almost impossible to slide under the radar.” And there are even more positives to those small classes: They “[give] you such an advantage when taking difficult classes” because students can “get one-on-one interaction during office hours or even during class.”

Student Body

Hamilton has a “quintessential small, communal, and progressive liberal arts feel” that its students seek out and adore. The “weirdly nice” group here is “predominantly white and from the northeastern area” and has “a healthy sense of irreverence.” The open curriculum tends to “attract a diverse set of interests and values among its student body,” which makes this a “perpetually stimulating environment” where “everyone wants to contribute to campus.” The social aspects of that contribution mean “everyone is looking to make friends” and is “very inclusive and welcoming.” Life here is “very balanced” and students “generally know how to take a joke and make a joke.” As one student sums it up: People here are “friendly and academic, but not cut-throat or competitive in any way.”

Campus Life

Hamilton’s campus is separated into what students call “a Light Side and a Dark Side,” and students tend to socially segregate to one or the other. “The Light Side is where the athletes and Greek life participants” can be found, and the Dark Side is where the “artsy, hipster, and alternative” students will hang out. There is “no animosity between lightsiders and darksiders, except for a few jokes here and there,” and “most of the time students utilize this dynamic to explore new classes and friends.” Opportunities for those new experiences abound here since the school features “an incredible array of student clubs and organizations”—there are “lots of activities happening all the time.” On weekends, different student clubs will typically have an all-campus event—“a dance club might have a night where they teach people how to salsa, a Harry Potter club might host a Yule Ball”—and students definitely enjoy a party, although attendance is “pretty optional.”

Many students “love the outdoors and that is a huge culture here.” When the weather is favorable, students “often sit outside for meals or in Adirondack chairs scattered around campus doing work.” Those looking for things to do off campus can rest easy: students (only those sophomore year and above are permitted to have vehicles on campus) who have cars can “go off campus to local restaurants, to see movies, or to go bowling or shopping,” whereas those without “can use the jitney [shuttle service] which drives on a loop to all of these places.”

Contact & Visit

Campus Visits Contact

Office of Admission
198 College Hill Rd.
Clinton, NY 13323



Experience College Life

Most Popular Places On Campus
Kennedy Center for Theatre and the Studio Arts (2014)
Blood Fitness and Dance Center (2006)
Wellin Museum of Art (2012)
Sadove Student Center (2010)
Root Glen/Outdoor Leadership Center (2006)

Most Popular Places Off Campus
Adirondack Park/Gore Mountain
Clinton Cider Mill
Turning Stone Resort
Sangertown Mall

Campus Tours

Campus Visiting Center


Campus Tours
Appointment Required: Yes
Dates: Year-round
Times: Varies
Average Length: 1 hour

On Campus Interview

Campus Interviews

Information Sessions


Faculty and Coach Visits

Dates/Times Available

Contact Coach Directly

Class Visits

Dates/Times Available
Academic Year


Overnight Dorm Stays

Overnight Dorm Stays
Not Available


Types of Transportation Available to Campus
For those who wish to come by rail, Amtrak has daily scheduled service to Utica, where taxi service is available to Clinton. Both Greyhound and Trailways offer bus service to Utica. Air service is available to all major American cities via Syracuse, which is 45 minutes west of campus, or Albany, which is 90 minutes east of campus.

Driving Instructions to Campus
From the NY State Thruway (I-90), take Exit 32 (Westmoreland. After the toll booth, turn right, then turn left onto State Route 233 South. Proceed for 5.2 miles into Clinton (crossing Route 5). At the blinking light at the foot of a steep hill (look for the Hamilton College sign on the right), turn right up the hill onto College Hill Road. Proceed for 0.5 miles and turn right onto Campus Road. The Chet & Joy Suida House will be about 0.2 miles on your left. From the south, Follow Interstate 81 through Binghamton, New York, to New York State Route 12, exit 6 off I-81. Follow Route 12 North through the village of Waterville. After leaving Waterville on Route 12, drive approximately 9 miles to Kellogg Street. Turn left onto Kellogg Street and follow it 2.8 miles to the stop sign in the village of Clinton. Proceed straight onto College Street and continue until you reach the flashing light at the entrance to the campus. Proceed for 0.5 miles and turn right onto Campus Road. The Chet & Joy Suida House will be about 0.2 miles on your left.

Local Accommodations
On campus, the newly renovated 4th floor of the Bristol Campus Center (315-859-4271) has moderately priced rooms available. Bed and breakfasts in Clinton are Amidst The Hedges Inn (180 Sanford Avenue; 800-883-5883), Arbor Inn at Griffin House (3919 Griffin Road; 888-424-3074), The Artful Lodger (7 East Park Row; 888-563-4377), The Welch House (67 College Street; 315-853-2911), all about one mile from campus.


Applicants: 9,285
Acceptance Rate: 12%



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