A Visit to Hamilton

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Hamilton College, Clinton, NY

Hamilton College, Clinton, NY

After our visit to St. Lawrence, Tom and I drove down to the beautiful Finger Lakes area in central New York. We made our way to Mirbeau Inn & Spa named “Best for Romance, Cuisine & Yoga!” This inn became our home for three days as we explored the surrounding areas and colleges.

Here are my notes and observations about Hamilton College, in Clinton, New York.


  • Centrally located historic town
  • New England type village with a village green, cute little shops, etc.
  • Close to the Adirondacks, Utica, and Syracuse
  • Many other cute little towns near by
  • Malls are about 15 minutes away
  • Syracuse Airport about 40 minutes away


  • Residential campus, students live on campus all four years
  • Truly a community, no need to leave campus
  • 1800 students
  • Creative, engaged fun students
  • Became co-ed in the early 70s when Hamilton merged with all-female Kirkland College
  • You will find all different types of students who all seem to get along
Hamilton College Dining Hall

Hamilton College Dining Hall


  • Housing is a lottery
  • No separate freshman housing, may be some floors that are all freshman
  • Lots of unique housing options
  • Housing is great because freshman are not put in a freshman dorm. They are not put in the worse dorm as is the case at other
    colleges. They are mixed in with other students so nice housing for all students.


  • Liberal arts, all the majors are strong
  • No distribution requirements or core curriculum
  • Benefits are students are happy and engaged because they want to be in the classes they choose
  • Advising system really good and personal
  • Dynamic and organic experience, advisors ensure students get a broad education
  • Course of study will be individually tailored and structured to ensure an experience to prepare students to reach their goal
  • Faculty are committed to the open curriculum
  • There may be a quantatative requirement if students are not at the level they need to be, for example Stats.
  • Hamilton is a writing intensive college. This means you don’t have to write tons of big papers, but smaller papers and several drafts to become a better, focused writer.
  • Professors are here to teach, vast majority live within 3 miles of campus
  • Professors know if you are not there
  • Senior projects and some full year thesis available
  • Pre-professional advisors for business, law, medicine, etc.
  • Liberal arts train you for nothing but prepare you for everything
  • 5 main off-campus Hamilton programs – New York, Washington DC, China, Spain, and France – 100s of others available.
  • Opportunity to be involved in the arts are vast
  • Opening an art museum and teaching museum
  • Strong theater, a capella groups, jazz band, orchestra, etc.


  • The New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) – most prestigious Division III conference, same conference as Williams, Middlebury, Amherst, Wesleyan, Colby, Bates, Bowdoin, Trinity.
  • These colleges are overlaps
  • Students can contact coaches themselves. Coaches prefer that over a box e mail bought from a company
  • National championship women’s lacrosse team
  • Ham, the pig, is the mascot – dresses like a revolutionary war soldier
  • Lots of school spirit!


  • Lots of competitive club and intra-mural teams
  • Hamilton will fund any club students want to start
  • Pub for students over 21 on campus
  • Greeks live in the dorms

Career information

  • Career-Related-Experience (CRE) – every student has at least one before end of sophomore year
  • Hamilton is in the top 1 percent for alumni giving of money, time, networking, connections.
  • Great alumni network! For example a girl got an internship at MTV in NYC ( unpaid internship).
  • The career center funded her summer internship expenses such as rent, food and fun. Very impressive program.
  • Summer research opportunities with professors
  • Internships open the door to that first job
  • Great Names Series – impressive speaker series.
Hamilton College Walkway

Hamilton College Walkway


  • Interviews recommended. Students need to set this up on the Hamilton website. Alum interview available in the Twin Cities

Financial aid

  • 50 percent of students on financial aid, still need blind
  • Meets 100 percent of need
  • No merit scholarships
  • Hamilton, like all colleges, recommends families use the net price caculator to determine if you will qualify for financial aid on the school’s website.

What separates Hamilton from the others? The friendly, warm, welcoming atmosphere, centrally located, not shared with a major
city. – Sue Luse

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