The Most Selective College in Pennsylvania Is…

You might be surprised by the answer.

… Curtis Institute of Music.

Per this chart on eCollegeFinder, Curtis accepts just 5 percent of its applicants. This 5-percent rate would make it the most selective school in the country, edging out Harvard and Stanford (both at 6 percent).


Data from the class of 2012 in U.S. News and World Report ranked Curtis the third-most selective college in the country, just behind those same two schools. (The other selective schools are about what you'd expect: The Naval Academy, Cooper Union — which was, at the time, free — Yale, Julliard.)

Per an article in the Daily Pennsylvanian last year, Penn's admit rate for the class of 2017 was a record-low 12.1 percent.

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  • kclo3

    Not surprising. While most colleges are still trending towards more selectivity. Curtis has always been this selective, being the top music school with Julliard while also being completely free.

  • m_t

    Agree with kclo. Anyone who knows anything about conservatories knows that Curtis is an elite school. But it really shouldn’t be included with “regular” colleges/universities. As with most conservatories, the education it offers is unique and not comparable with a Yale or Stanford.

  • A college graduate

    Note to editor: most-selective should not be hyphenated. Most modifies the word selective, not school. I learned that in college.

  • Ed Trice

    I thought the College for Live Amputation Volunteers was still at the abysmally low rate of 0%?

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