Be a Part of Our Community

Watch our short video to get a sense of the beauty of our campus and, more importantly, the spirit of our community that makes Amherst feel like home.

At Amherst, we embrace opportunities for discovery, and we work together to transform them into outcomes that can change the lives of people down the street and around the world.

1,850

Students

7:1

Student-to-faculty ratio

94%

First-year retention rate

1821

Year of the College’s founding

Amherst College is in western Massachusetts

Courses: 850
Majors41
Classes with fewer than 30 students: 93%
Women-to-men ratio*: 51:49
Six-year graduation rate: 95%
Students graduating with more than one major: 40%+
Students who received financial aid from Amherst last year: 60%
Demonstrated financial need met: 100%
Active alumni: 22,000+

* Binary language doesn’t capture everyone’s experience. Amherst celebrates all gender identities and expressions.

three students sit in on the quad talking with the mountain range in the distance

Into the Great Wide Open

Amherst professors are among the world’s foremost authorities in their fields, renowned for their scholarship and research, and they work with students every day—in and out of class—as teachers, advisors, and mentors from the moment our students arrive on campus.

Amherst students—1,850 of the most interesting, intellectually adventurous, independent-minded people you’d want to meet—publish papers in major professional journals, present at national and international conferences, and undertake research, internship, study, and service projects around the world.

Choose your own path—with our support.

The liberal arts experience at Amherst College is rooted in the flexibility and freedom of our open curriculum, a curriculum that few other institutions offer. With no distribution or general education requirements, Amherst allows you to choose the courses that define the shape of your education. Our faculty will advise and support you all along the way.

Join an intellectual community that makes a difference.

We’re a member of the Five College Consortium: four liberal arts colleges and one large research university. Amherst students can take courses at any of the nearby member institutions, finding a broad and diverse collection of courses right here at home. Amherst students are part of a lively intellectual community—a community that prepares you to use ideas to make a major difference wherever you go, whatever you do.

Courses available through the Five College Consortium: 6,000+
Items in the Five College Consortium libraries: 11 million+
Amherst students taking courses through the Five College Consortium: 50%

Professor Darryl Harper teaches a music class

A Campus that Looks Like the World

48%

Students identifying as U.S. students of color

10%

International students

8%

Dual-citizenship students

30,000

Students within a 10-mile radius

45%

Students studying abroad

150+

Study-abroad programs

48

States represented

54

Countries represented

three students in class with Professor Natasha Staller

The campus experience at Amherst starts with our students. 

Our 1,850 bright, ambitious, high-spirited people come from all walks of life—from nearly every state and more than 50 countries. A full 48 percent of our students self-identify as U.S. students of color. About 10 percent of our students are international. Typically, about 60 percent of our students receive need-based financial aid, 25 percent are eligible for Pell grants, and 15 percent of our students are the first members of their families to attend college. We believe that diversity is an engine of innovation, and that a great intellectual community should look like the world. With every incoming student, that community comes to life here.

Mammoth logo with caption Amherst Mammoths
We’ve won 13 NCAA team titles. Our students have won 80 NCAA individual titles and 35 Academic All-American awards. Not coincidentally, we have the oldest college athletics program in the country.

Our students perform in at least a dozen musical ensembles, play on 27 Division III teams and run more than 150 clubs and organizations. They’re engaged in everything from community service to political activism, from student publications to affinity groups (cultural, religious, and more). 

This is a place where learning includes living. 

We guarantee housing for all of our students for all four years; almost all of our students live on campus; and all first-year students live in dormitories on our first-year quad, right in the heart of campus, as part of a comprehensive first-year experience. A number of theme communities allow students who share an interest to live together on the same residence hall floor or in the same house. Current theme communities include: Asian Culture House, Charles Drew Memorial Culture House (black culture), Humphries House Coop (cooperative living), Health and Wellness Quarter, La Casa (Latinx culture), Marsh Arts House, Sylvia Rivera Community (queer and trans culture) and French, German, Russian, and Spanish Houses.

downtown Amherst with Antonios pizza shop and a sign for Thai Corner restaurant

A Place Where Discovery Happens

Amherst College is located in Amherst, Massachusetts. An area of exceptional natural beauty, our town is bordered by the Holyoke Mountain Range of Western Massachusetts and is home to more college students and more cultural events* than any region in New England except metro Boston. It’s also home to a remarkable range of opportunities and activities—restaurants and music clubs, concerts and museums, hiking and skiing, lectures and operas, eclectic cafes and independent bookstores, farmers’ markets, and a proudly alternative culture fostered by a politically active and socially conscious population. Amherst College is an integral part of the Town of Amherst, often cited as one of the best college towns in America. The ethos here is: Start local, think big, work together.

College students within a 10-mile radius: 30,000
Annual number of cultural events in the Valley: Thousands
Population of the Town of Amherst: 35,000+
Distance from Boston: 90 miles
Distance from New York City: 150 miles

After Amherst

Jeremy Thomas ’21

Rhodes Scholar
Jeremy Thomas ’21

Thanks to an exceptionally active research program, an expansive Loeb Center for Career Exploration and Planning and a robust roster of internships (including many opportunities provided by our alumni), our students apply their knowledge as they learn. They graduate with a profound sense of the power of their own ideas and a long list of achievements, with a combination of knowledge and experience that helps them confidently choose their next steps and successfully pursue principled lives of consequence.

Our seniors regularly win prestigious, competitive scholarships.

Churchill, Fulbright, Gates, Goldwater, Rhodes, Watson, and other scholarships fund research and international experience.
Students offered Fulbright fellowships in the past 5 years: 62
Students offered National Science Foundation fellowships in the past 5 years: 19
Students offered Watson fellowships in the past 5 years: 7

Our alumni are leaders everywhere.

Amherst alumni are leaders in government and finance, science and technology, law and civic activism, education and the arts. They are people who move the world forward in essential ways—people like Amy Rosenzweig ’88, a pioneering interdisciplinary scientist who won a MacArthur Fellowship for her work toward advancing our ability to treat many diseases. (Or David Foster Wallace ’85, one of the most influential writers of his generation. Or Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz ’64. Or Ana Salas Siegel ’91, general counsel for NBC Universal Telemundo Enterprises. Or Kimmie Weeks ’05, founder of Youth Action International.) In unusually high numbers, they’re actively involved in determining the shape and character of the global community. They’re also actively involved in helping new generations of Amherst students and alumni make their way. 
Alumni reporting graduate or professional school attendance: 80%
Alumni who volunteer for Amherst each year: 3,500+

Admission & Financial Aid

Students leave Amherst with the freedom to build their future without the burden of student-loan debt.

three graduates walk down the steps from Memorial Hill with blue sky ahead of them

Our need-blind admission policy allows us to seek and admit students from across the country and around the world based not on family income, but rather on achievement and promise.

When families demonstrate financial need, we meet it one hundred percent. The majority of our students pay less—often far less—than the cost of attendance. Not coincidentally, The Chronicle of Higher Education called us the “best of the best” American liberal arts colleges for supporting low-income, high-talent students.

In our financial aid packages, we’ve replaced loans with additional scholarship grants, so our students can graduate with no debt. We were one of the first and remain one of the only colleges in the country to adopt a no-loan policy.

Percent of applicants admitted last year: 9%
Students receiving financial aid from Amherst: 60%
Demonstrated financial need met: 100%
Average financial aid award last year: $59,600+
Financial aid offered last year: $60+ million
Loans replaced by grants and scholarships: 100%
Students who are Pell Grant recipients: 25%

Learn more about financial aid in Affording Amherst.


a tour being led on campus on a sunny day

Visit Us

The best way to see if Amherst is the right fit for you is to visit, whether in-person or virtually. Or join our mailing list to receive more information.

Considering College

Amherst College students share some thoughts on what they wish they had known in high school about the college search process.