2022 Top Private Colleges and Universities in New York

Private institutions frequently top the lists of the best schools in the U.S. These institutions offer rigorous academic programs for students looking for a personalized college experience.

Private colleges and universities generally cost more than their public counterparts, but students often receive the benefits of smaller class sizes, strong alumni networks, and generous financial aid opportunities.

Unlike public colleges and universities, private institutions do not differentiate between in-state and out-of-state tuition. This means students from anywhere can enroll in New York's private institutions without paying higher out-of-state rates.

2022 Top Private Colleges and Universities in New York

#1

The Juilliard School

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

96%

Enrollment

960

Format

In person

From its campus in New York, New York, The Juilliard School enrolls students as a private institution. Learners learn from experts in multiple disciplines. The college offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. Data on the school's average cost per credit is currently unavailable. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. At the institution, 90% of students receive financial aid and 32% take out loans. Students earn their bachelor's degree from the school at a rate of 96%. The admission rate is 7%. Prospective students can contact the admission department for more information about applying. The school holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#2

Columbia University in the City of New York

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

95%

Enrollment

31,456

Format

Online, In person

From its campus in New York, New York, Columbia University in the City of New York awards degrees as a top school. The institution offers multiple degree-granting programs. Academic and technical programs help students reach their professional goals. Students typically earn an associate degree in two years, a bachelor's degree in four years, a master's degree in two, and a doctoral degree in 3-7 years. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. A waiver makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department can provide additional resources on applying. Learners also use financial aid to pay for their college degree. Columbia University in the City of New York has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, an independent accrediting body.

#3

Barnard College

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

92%

Enrollment

2,631

Format

In person

Barnard College, which is often listed among the best schools, operates from its main campus in New York, New York. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. The school's academic and technical tracks help learners meet diverse career goals. Visit the program's website to find information on the typical timeline for completion. Some programs may no longer require standardized tests for admission. A test score waiver makes it easier to apply. The admissions department can help prospective students complete their application. Learners also use financial aid to pay for their college degree or certificate. Barnard College has received accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, an independent accrediting body.

#4

Webb Institute

Glen Cove, NY

Graduation Rate

81%

Enrollment

102

Format

In person

From its campus in Glen Cove, New York, Webb Institute grants college degrees as a private institution. The college offers academic and technical programs to help learners reach their educational goals. Students prepare to contribute to their field by completing courses. Applicants may qualify for test-optional admissions. This makes it easier to enroll. Learners benefit from support services like tutoring and career counseling. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. The accredited school qualifies for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. The school is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#5

Cornell University

Ithaca, NY

Graduation Rate

95%

Enrollment

24,027

Format

Online, In person

Cornell University, located in Ithaca, New York, grants degrees as a private institution. Experts in diverse disciplines teach at the institution. The school offers academic and technical programs for students planning to enter the workforce or pursue further studies degree. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. At the institution, 62% of students receive financial aid and 35% take out loans. Students graduate from the school at a rate of 95%. The admission rate for prospective students is 11%. Contact the admissions department for more details about application requirements. Cornell University holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#6

CVPH Medical Center School of Radiologic Technology

Plattsburgh, NY

Graduation Rate

100%

Enrollment

19

Format

In person

One of the top schools in New York, CVPH Medical Center School of Radiologic Technology offers 1 certificate programs. The rigorous curriculum prepares learners to succeed in careers and further studies. Students acquire knowledge to enter the workforce or advance their careers. Learners take their lessons to the real world with experiential learning opportunities. The postsecondary institution holds accreditation, demonstrating the quality of its academic programs. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Learners enrolled in a program at the accredited institution can receive federal financial aid. The school provides information about program requirements on its website. The institution holds accreditation from the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology.

#7

New York University

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

85%

Enrollment

52,885

Format

Online, In person

From its campus in New York, New York, New York University enrolls learners in 564 programs. Students benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The student-to-faculty ratio at the school is 9-to-1. According to the school, 52% of students receive some form of financial aid. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 85%. Students should explore how workplace experience makes them more competitive employee candidates. Learners participate in internships, research projects, and other forms of experiential learning. The admission rate is 16% for hopeful students. Some programs waive the test score requirement for qualified applicants.

#8

Arnot Ogden Medical Center

Elmira, NY

Graduation Rate

100%

Enrollment

48

Format

In person

One of the top schools in New York, Arnot Ogden Medical Center offers 2 certificate programs. Enrollees complete a rigorous curriculum to prepare them for jobs and further studies. Students gain skills necessary to enter the workforce or advance professionally. The school's experiential learning opportunities help learners apply their knowledge in the real world. Like students at other accredited schools, learners at this institution can qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. The school's cost per credit is unknown. As an accredited postsecondary institution, learners who enroll qualify for federal financial aid. Students can learn about requirements through the school's website. The postsecondary institution is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

#9

Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

952

Format

In person

Located in New York, New York, Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art operates as a private institution. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for a successful career. The school's cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited institution, students qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. At the institution, 100% of students receive financial aid and 17% take out loans. Enrollees graduate from the school at a rate of 91%. Applicants can expect admission rates of 15%. Prospective students can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying. Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#10

Colgate University

Hamilton, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

2,992

Format

In person

From its Hamilton, New York campus, Colgate University enrolls students in 65 programs. The institution's top-ranked programs offer students a challenging course of study. According to the school, the student-to-faculty ratio stands at 9-to-1. A total of 51% of students receive some form of financial aid. Students graduate from the school at a rate of 91%. Experiential learning opportunities help graduates on the job market. The admission rate for prospective students is 23%. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. Prospective students can contact an admission advisor to learn more about applying.

#11

Vassar College

Poughkeepsie, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

2,439

Format

In person

From its campus in Poughkeepsie, New York, Vassar College offers multiple programs as a private institution. The school's accredited programs prepare learners for the workforce. Learners benefit from academically rigorous programs at an affordable price. The school offers nationally ranked programs in diverse fields. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. The institution offers both academic and technical programs. Depending on their major, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. The school is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#12

Hamilton College

Clinton, NY

Graduation Rate

93%

Enrollment

2,012

Format

In person

Located in Clinton, New York, Hamilton College grants degrees as a private institution. With both academic and technical programs, the college helps learners reach their professional goals. Students complete courses and experiential learning opportunities to bolster their knowledge. Some programs may offer test-optional admission policies. Test-optional policies make it easier to enroll. The school provides support such as tutoring and career services. The school's average cost per credit is unknown. At the accredited school, learners qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Hamilton College has received accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, an independent accrediting body.

#13

Skidmore College

Saratoga Springs, NY

Graduation Rate

88%

Enrollment

2,663

Format

In person

Located in Saratoga Springs, New York, Skidmore College enrolls students as a private institution. Enrollees study with experts in many different fields. Students who complete an academic or technical program often enter the workforce right away. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Enrollees at the accredited institution qualify for federal financial aid, including grants and loans. At the institution, 60% of students receive financial aid and 29% take out loans. Bachelor's students graduate from the school at a rate of 88%. Applicants can expect admission rates of 30%. Applicants can reach out to the admissions office to learn more about enrolling. Skidmore College has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, an independent accrediting body.

#14

New York School of Interior Design

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

76%

Enrollment

588

Format

Online, In person

Located in New York, New York School of Interior Design offers 4 academic programs. Degree-seekers benefit from rigorous programs that rank among the best in the nation. The school provides a student-to-faculty ratio of 11-to-1. The school reports that 54% of students take advantage of financial aid. The private institution reports a graduation rate of 76%. The institution understands that real-world experience helps job seekers stand out. The admission rate is 24% for prospective students. Many schools no longer require test scores for admission. Prospective applicants can contact the admission department for more information about applying.

#15

New York Seminary

Brooklyn, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

132

Format

In person

From its Brooklyn, New York campus, New York Seminary offers 2 program options for students. The institution's programs offer a rigorous course of study. The school provides a student-to-faculty ratio of 13-to-1. According to the the school's reports, 55% of its students receive financial assistance. The private institution reports a 91% graduation rate. The institution's commitment to experiential learning helps graduates become more competitive in the job market. The admission rate is 66% for prospective students. Some programs no longer require standardized tests for admission. The admission department can provide more information about application requirements.

#16

Yeshiva of the Telshe Alumni

Riverdale, NY

Graduation Rate

81%

Enrollment

74

Format

In person

From its campus in Riverdale, New York, Yeshiva of the Telshe Alumni offers multiple programs as a private institution. The school offers programs that prepare learners for the workforce. The institution offers an academically rigorous course of study at an affordable price. Students can enroll in nationally ranked programs. The cost per credit is unknown. Degree-seekers at the accredited school may qualify for federal financial aid, including the Pell Grant. Degree-seekers choose from academic and technical programs at the school. Depending on their major, learners complete fundamentals courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Yeshiva of the Telshe Alumni has received accreditation from the Association of Advanced Rabbinical and Talmudic Schools, an independent accrediting body.

#17

University of Rochester

Rochester, NY

Graduation Rate

87%

Enrollment

12,233

Format

In person

University of Rochester, which operates a campus in Rochester, New York, often ranks as one of the best colleges. The institution provides a variety of programs and coursework. The school's academic and technical tracks help learners meet diverse career goals. Degree-seekers typically earn an associate degree in two years, a bachelor's degree in four years, a master's degree in two, and a doctoral degree in 3-7 years. Applicants may qualify for a standardized test score waiver. Students may find it easier to apply without a test score requirement. The admissions department provides more information about the application process. Degree-seekers at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. University of Rochester has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#18

Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage-Syracuse

Syracuse, NY

Graduation Rate

100%

Enrollment

57

Format

In person

Based in New York, Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage-Syracuse offers a total of 1 certificate programs. Most credential programs take just weeks or months to complete. These credential programs enable students to build specialized skills and advance their careers quickly. Students gain specific skills that can make them more competeive in the job market. The school is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. To learn more about the application process, students should contact Onondaga School of Therapeutic Massage-Syracuse's admission office. Graduates seek careers in their area of expertise after finishing their programs.

#19

St. Joseph's College of Nursing

Syracuse, NY

Graduation Rate

100%

Enrollment

337

Format

In person

A top-ranked school, St. Joseph's College of Nursing enrolls learners in programs from its campus in Syracuse, New YorkExperts in diverse disciplines teach at the institution. With academic and technical tracks, the school offers programs for students with a variety of professional goals. Completing a program can take anywhere from a few months to seven years depending on degree or certificate type and whether the student chooses part-time or full-time enrollment. Applicants may qualify for a standardized test score waiver. A waiver makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides additional resources on submitting an application. Financial aid helps degree-seekers pay for their education. St. Joseph's College of Nursing is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#20

Samaritan Hospital School of Nursing

Troy, NY

Graduation Rate

100%

Enrollment

136

Format

In person

A private institution, Samaritan Hospital School of Nursing grants degrees and certificates from its campus in Troy, New York. Enrollees take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The school's academic and technical programs prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The amount students pay per credit is currently unknown. At the accredited institution, degree-seekers qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. The institution reports that 100% of students receive financial aid and 74% take out loans. The school reports a graduation rate of 100%. The admission rate is 83%. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements. The school is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

#21

Manhattan School of Music

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

88%

Enrollment

1,009

Format

In person

Manhattan School of Music ranks as a top college from its campus in New York, New York. Students choose from multiple degree-granting programs and courses. The programs offer academic and technical tracks to help learners meet their career goals. Enrollees typically earn an associate degree in two years, a bachelor's degree in four years, a master's degree in two, and a doctoral degree in 3-7 years. Some programs provide a test-optional admission option. Test-optional policies make it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides more information about the application process. Degree-seekers at the accredited institution also qualify for financial aid to cover costs. The school is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#22

Charles Stuart School of Diamond Setting

Brooklyn, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

12

Format

In person

A top choice for students seeking professional eduation in New York, Charles Stuart School of Diamond Setting hosts 2 certificate programs. Students often complete a program in weeks or months, rather than years. These credential programs enable students to build specialized skills and advance their careers quickly. The program highlights specialized skills that can help students increase their job prospects. The institution holds national accreditation from Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Prospective students should contact Charles Stuart School of Diamond Setting's admissions office with any questions about the application process. After finishing a program, graduates seek careers in a corresponding field.

#23

Monroe College

Bronx, NY

Graduation Rate

60%

Enrollment

6,517

Format

Online, In person

Monroe College, located in Bronx, New York, often ranks as one of the best schools. Students study with experts in many different fields. The school offers academic and technical tracks to help learners meet a variety of professional goals. Academic programs can take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete, depending on degree or certificate type. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. A test score waiver makes it easier to enroll. The admissions department provides additional resources on submitting an application. Financial aid provides options for degree-seekers to pay for their education. The school holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, an independent accrediting body.

#24

Union College

Schenectady, NY

Graduation Rate

82%

Enrollment

2,189

Format

In person

From its campus in Schenectady, New York, Union College grants degrees and certificates as a top school. Instructors draw on their expertise in diverse fields. With academic and technical tracks, the school offers programs for learners with a variety of professional goals. Consult the institution's website to find information on the typical timeline for program completion. Some applicants qualify for a waiver for standardized test scores. Flexible admission score requirements make it easier to apply. The admissions department provides more information about the application process. Learners also use financial aid to pay for their college degree or certificate. The school is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#25

Yeshiva University

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

82%

Enrollment

5,357

Format

Online, In person

Yeshiva University, a private organization located in New York, New York, offers multiple programs. The school offers accredited degrees that prepare learners for the workforce. Learners benefit from the school's academic rigor and affordable tuition rate. Several of the school's programs appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. Students attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners choose from academic and technical majors at the school. Depending on their program, students complete foundational courses, technical classes, and general education requirements. Yeshiva University holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#26

Excelsior College

Albany, NY

Graduation Rate

Not Provided

Enrollment

25,245

Format

Online

Excelsior College enrolls students at its Albany, New York campus as a private institution. Degree-seekers take courses with experts in diverse disciplines. The school's academic and technical programs prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The amount students pay per credit is unknown at this time. At the accredited school, learners qualify for financial aid, including federal loans, scholarships, and grants. The percent of students who graduate is unavailable. The admission rate is unknown at this time. The admissions office provides more information about application requirements. Excelsior College has been accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#27

Center for Allied Health Education

Brooklyn, NY

Graduation Rate

80%

Enrollment

323

Format

In person

A private school located in in New York, Center for Allied Health Education offers professional education for many career paths. Students can study on campus in Brooklyn or online. Learners can choose from 6 certificate programs. Students in programs gain specialized professional training. Learners can complete diplomas and certificates in far less time than traditional four-year bachelor's degrees. Certificate and diploma programs can impact students' careers long term. Graduates can often pursue more job opportunities with higher salary levels. Many students pursue additional education in the form of an associate or bachelor's degree. Some schools allow students to transfer the credits from a certificate or diploma program to another degree program.

#28

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Troy, NY

Graduation Rate

85%

Enrollment

7,528

Format

In person

From its campus in Troy, New York, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute awards degrees as a private institution. Students leave the school with an accredited degree that prepares them for the workforce. The institution's affordable programs provide a rigorous course of study. The school boasts several programs that appear in national rankings. The amount students pay per credit on average is unknown. Degree-seekers attending the accredited institution may qualify for federal financial aid programs, such as the Pell Grant. Learners at the institution choose from academic and technical programs. The school offers foundational courses, technical classes, and general education courses in multiple majors. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has received accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#29

Jewish Theological Seminary of America

New York, NY

Graduation Rate

91%

Enrollment

335

Format

Online, In person

Jewish Theological Seminary of America grants degrees as a private institution from its location in New York, New York. Experts in diverse disciplines teach at the institution. The school offers academic and technical programs that prepare graduates for the workforce or further study. The school's cost per credit is unknown. Students at the accredited institution qualify for federal student aid programs, including the Pell Grant. At the institution, 84% of students receive financial aid and 22% take out loans. Bachelor's students graduate from the school at a rate of 91%. Applicants can expect admission rates of 59%. The admission department can provide more information about application requirements. Jewish Theological Seminary of America holds accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

#30

Beis Medrash Heichal Dovid

Far Rockaway, NY

Graduation Rate

81%

Enrollment

142

Format

In person

A top-ranked school, Beis Medrash Heichal Dovid enrolls learners in programs from its campus in Far Rockaway, New YorkDegree-seekers study with experts in many different fields. With academic and technical tracks, the school offers programs for students with a variety of professional goals. Academic programs can take anywhere from a few months to several years to complete, depending on degree or certificate type. Some programs may operate with a test-optional policy for admissions. Applicants may find it easier to enroll without a test score requirement. The admissions department provides additional resources on submitting an application. At the accredited institution, students also qualify for financial aid to pay for school. Beis Medrash Heichal Dovid holds accreditation from the Association of Advanced Rabbinical and Talmudic Schools, an independent accrediting body.

Why Choose a Private College or University in New York?

New York is home to more than 100 private colleges and universities. Private 4-year colleges offer standout academics, top-notch professors, and smaller class sizes, so students often receive a more personalized experience. While these schools tend to cost significantly more than public schools, the best private schools in New York offer a wide variety of financial aid opportunities.

Prospective students should evaluate their academic and career goals, financial factors, and the type of college experience they want when choosing a college. Some private colleges in New York have serious name recognition: Top schools include Cornell University, New York University, and Columbia University.

Continue reading to review some pros and cons of attending a private college in New York, a rundown on for-profit colleges, and how much private tuition costs.

Pros and Cons of Attending a Private College or University in New York

Pros

Private institutions typically boast smaller class sizes. Private school students can expect more personalized interactions with their professors.Private colleges and universities typically enroll fewer students than public institutions. This helps foster a tight-knit community where students can thrive academically and socially.Many private schools in New York have a religious affiliation. For some students, religious ties mean that the school reflects their own views and values.Many private colleges offer more extensive merit- and need-based financial aidopportunities for students.

Cons

Private 4-year colleges typically cost more than public institutions.While some private institutions are household names, many small private colleges are relatively unknown and lack the name recognition of some flagship public colleges.The size of private schools can result in a limited academic catalog with fewer degree programs.Private colleges can have less diverse student bodies than their public counterparts.

Nonprofit vs. For-Profit Institutions in New York

Whether a student enrolls in a public or private school, the best colleges in New York are nonprofit institutions. Unlike nonprofit colleges, for-profit colleges and universities aim to turn a profit off tuition and fees. These institutions often prioritize financial gains over academic standards.

For-profit institutions have come under significant scrutiny recently due to their high cost, lack of accreditation, and lack of student support services. Nonprofit schools receive oversight from their board of trustees and accrediting organizations. For-profit schools often rely on investors to make academic decisions.

In addition to poor reputations, for-profit students often do not have access to meaningful financial aid and carry a disproportionately large volume of U.S. student debt.

How Much Does It Cost to Attend a Private College or University in New York?

The cost to attend a private college or university in New York can vary dramatically between schools. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the average tuition cost for private institutions in New York exceeds $41,000 per year, while public in-state tuition is about $8,500 annually.

Data from the NCES reveals room and board at public and private schools cost about the same. When deciding whether to attend a private or public school, students should consider the true cost of college, unlearn any misconceptions about paying for college, and explore various financial aid and scholarship opportunities.

Find the Tools You Need to Get Started on Your Degree

Frequently Asked Questions About Private Colleges and Universities in New York

How many private institutions are there in New York?

The state of New York is home to over 100 private colleges and universities. These schools include prestigious institutions like Vassar College and Columbia University, as well as lesser-known schools dotted throughout the state. As a result, private colleges in New York can meet the needs of a broad spectrum of students.

The private institutions in New York vary significantly in what they offer. Students interested in the Ivy League experience can apply to Cornell, while those pursuing standout STEM programming can seek out Troy, New York's Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

What is the most expensive private institution in New York?

The average tuition for New York private schools was $56,960 in the 2019-20 academic year, according to the NCES. Schools like Vassar College and Colgate University top the list of most expensive private institutions in New York, costing around $60,000 per year.

The cost to attend a private institution in New York can vary significantly between schools and depends on several factors on top of tuition rates. Alongside tuition, room, and board, students should also consider other factors that make college expensive. For example, the cost of living in New York City dramatically exceeds that of more rural schools. Students can mitigate costs through financial aid, scholarships, grants, and work-study programs.

What is the least expensive private institution in New York?

While tuition rates vary between private colleges and universities, searching for the least expensive private college or university in New York can often prove difficult. That said, scholarships, grants, and other financial aid opportunities can help students reduce the cost of private institutions.

Additionally, New York is home to many private colleges that pay 100% of demonstrated financial need for accepted students. Some of these schools include Barnard College, Colgate University, and Skidmore College, and Columbia University.

Is a private institution right for me?

Private institution in New York offer an array of educational opportunities that can fit the unique needs of many students. Private colleges often boast small class sizes and provide students with a strong background in the liberal arts. Private school students can anticipate a more personalized academic experience with a small-town feel on campus.

Prospective students should consider cost, campus life, student services, and academics when researching potential schools. If elements like a small student-to-teacher ratio and tight-knit community sound appealing, consider private colleges in New York.

Can I get more scholarship money at a private college or university?

While private schools typically cost the most, they sometimes offer more in scholarships than public institutions. Finances play a significant role in determining which colleges are feasible options, and scholarships can dramatically impact whether a student can afford the hefty tuition rates of private schools.

Merit scholarships, grants, and other financial aid opportunities are popular ways private schools incentivize enrollment. According to NCES, students at nonprofit private schools received an average of $24,080 in grants and scholarships during the 2018-2019 school year. Students with strong academic performance in high school can often receive generous scholarships from private colleges in New York.