From waiting for their letter from Hogwarts as kids to rewatching the movies as teenagers, every Harry Potter fan has at least once in their life wished to attend Hogwarts, the school of magic for wizards.
While, unfortunately, that dream couldn’t become a reality, there is the next best thing, a regular college for you to earn your desired degree that looks a whole lot like the famous school that changed the life of Harry Potter.
So, here, we’ve put together 10 colleges in the United States of America that bear striking similarities to Hogwarts and would be a perfect choice for a die-hard Harry Potter fan.
1. Yale University
Founded in 1701, Yale University is one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the United States of America.
It is a research university with various programs, departments, and centers. It offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees to its students, along with on-campus living accommodations.
The architecture of the stone buildings of Yale is just one of the many similarities it has with Hogwarts. The dining halls of the residential colleges are oddly reminiscent of the place where Harry, Ron, and Hermione had their meals.
Besides, the biggest event of the year at Yale is the football match between Yale and Harvard. It draws a massive audience like the Triwizard tournament in Hogwarts.
2. Cornell University
Although established in 1865, Cornell University began admitting students 3 years later, in 1868. Then, in 1870, it began accepting female students too, becoming one of the first institutions in the United States to do so.
It is currently an accredited institution with an acceptance rate of 10.9%. The university offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees to its students in various fields.
Situated near Cayuga lake, Cornell University provides a peaceful and calm atmosphere away from the noise and bustle of the city. The architecture is based on a gothic theme, which plays a huge role in imparting the Hogwarts vibe.
Cornell University also gives much importance to sports. The players and the audience do their best to showcase their school spirit by wearing red scarves to all sporting events.
3. Boston College
Boston College is a private Jesuit research college founded in 1863. It was the first institution to offer higher education in Boston. However, it currently has an acceptance rate of 27.2%.
This institute offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. Also, it boasts of high research activity and a strong core curriculum, which enables students to excel in more than just academics.
The area of Boston College that bears the most resemblance to the Great Hall in Hogwarts is Gargan Hall at the Bapst Library. It is also one of the oldest buildings. Moreover, there is a hidden bookcase in the Connors retreat center that recreate the magical vibes surrounding Hogwarts.
4. Bryn Mawr College
Bryn Mawr College is a liberal arts college for women established in 1885. Located in Pennsylvania, it aims to render women a high level of education that was only reserved for men in earlier times. However, the institute is now well-known for social sciences and psychology majors.
The college building has such an architectural style that it closely resembles the fictional school of magic. For instance, in the interior, the college uses house flags that serve as a reminder of the house banners in Hogwarts.
Besides, the college also organizes a ball at the end of the year based on the Harry Potter theme.
5. University of Chicago
The University of Chicago is a private research university that has been ranked as one of the top universities in the world for many years. It offers a wide range of postgraduate and undergraduate degrees to students.
Currently, the institute has an acceptance rate of 6.5%. However, the students receive immense support through resources, guidance, and an intellectually stimulating environment.
The buildings of the University of Chicago have a gothic style. Moreover, the dining hall has been directly modeled after the hall that was used to shoot the Harry Potter film series.
Perhaps, the most appealing part of this university is that a few students have even managed to start a Quidditch league, which is gaining utmost popularity.
6. Kenyon College
Kenyon is a private liberal arts college in Ohio founded in 1824. It is an accredited institution that uses a semester-based academic calendar. Also, it offers a variety of undergraduate degrees and has notable alumni, including President Rutherford B. Hayes.
The great hall, situated on the college campus, looks similar to the wizardry school. Hence, people often mistake it for the actual shooting location of the Harry Potter films. While this isn’t true, it is an easy lie to believe.
The environment of the college can easily fit into the movies. With lots of trees and greenery surrounding the campus, the students might feel like they’re wandering into ‘The Forbidden Forest.’
7. University of Michigan
Established in 1817, the University of Michigan is a public research university. It is one of the best in terms of campus and student diversity.
The university offers more than a hundred majors and ranks high in academics. It has an acceptance rate of 23%, making it a highly selective institution.
However, the building that most resembles Hogwarts is the Law Library. The reading room inside the building has massive glass-stained windows and is 10-stories tall. It is breathtaking to observe a room that seems straight out of Hogwarts.
8. Dartmouth College
Dartmouth was established in 1769 and is a private research university. It has a rigorous academic structure and small class sizes, which work in favor of the students. In addition, it is a top-ranked university that offers a variety of major and minor degrees.
The Dartmouth college campus comprises towering stone buildings, just like the school of wizardry. Not to mention, the grounds are full of green trees and shrubbery that perfectly fits into the Harry Potter aesthetic.
The housing system is pretty similar to Hogwarts, but with 6 houses instead of 4.
9. University of Washington
Founded in 1861, the University of Washington is a well-known public research university. It boasts a famous medical center and renowned medical, engineering, business, and law programs.
The university offers over 12,000 postgraduate courses. Also, it renders a higher number of undergraduate degrees. As a result, it has consistently retained a high rank in the US and world college rankings.
The Suzzallo Library at the University of Washington looks similar to the homework hall at Hogwarts. It has beautifully-designed stained glass windows and ornate chandeliers that can make any Harry Potter fan feel like they’ve entered the famous magic world.
10. Mount Holyoke College
It is a private liberal arts college for women, founded in Massachusetts in 1837. Mount Holyoke College offers various graduate and undergraduate degrees to students.
The institute has a beautiful architectural style similar to Hogwarts, surrounded by natural greenery and a lake. Also, it houses a well-maintained high-ceiling library like the fictional school of magic, with an extensive collection of books of all genres for the students.
However, the one thing that connects it to Hogwarts is the legend of the ghost that allegedly haunts the hallways of the institute. It is said that the soul of a former student of this college roams the hall at night. But till now, no strong evidence has been found regarding the truthfulness of the incident.
Although nothing could replicate the true experience of the magical world of Harry Potter, there are some great institutes in the US you can manage to feel like you are at Hogwarts with a bit of imagination.
A college is a place of learning and fun. But these colleges will ensure that you experience the best of both.