The United States has been the most influential and powerful state in the world since the end of World War I. US domination is manifested in all aspects - economic, scientific, military and technological. What factor had a decisive influence on such a fast development of this country? A perfectly organized educational system. Studying in the US is not only prestige, it is primarily a huge opportunity!

For decades, American universities have been associated with prestige, the highest level of education, excellent conditions and top specialists. There may not be many people who have never heard the names of universities such as Harvard, Columbia University, Princeton, Yale or MIT. These universities are ranked among the world's top year. There are currently over 4000 higher education institutions in the US. Presenting them all, however, definitely exceeds the framework intended for this article. Nevertheless, the specialization and organizational diversity of American universities requires a wider presentation. In that case, let us do it!

Recruitment at American Universities

Do you think that applying to college in the United States is a long and complicated process? It's not exactly true. Although every university has its own recruitment rules, you can find many common elements, such as the documents and exams you need to pass.
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Public University

The organization of American public universities is very similar to the current standards on the old continent. Similar, however, does not mean identical. A feature that distinguishes universities from across the ocean is the source of university funding. In Poland, the money comes from the central state budget, and the universities are subordinate to the Ministry of Education and Higher Education. On the other hand, American universities are only subordinate to the state authorities that are responsible for financing them. As a result, individual state universities are diametrically different from each other in terms of financing methods, operating rules, study programs, etc.

State Universities are widely considered to be less prestigious than private (e.g. Harvard). Their existence is the result of dissemination of education in American society and an attempt to provide access to higher education to broader group of people. As a result, the majority of American students study there. The tuition is very often many times lower than those to be paid at private universities. In theory, everything looks great. Low tuition and a large number of students are undoubted advantages of public universities. However, there are also cons: state universities are poorer than private universities and, in consequence, worse equipped. Scholarship programs very often do not include foreign students, which reduces their number practically to zero. What about the economic crisis that has been occurring around the world since 2008? The state university is the first place on the list where the governor looks for savings. As a result, there is no or little chance for foreign students to get to the public university these days.

Private University

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Private universities are a typical American product - the first private university in the world was Harvard. What distinguishes this type of university from the one described above? Private universities are developing without any interference from central and state authorities. They are funded by organizations, graduates and their own income system.

After some time, the trend of private universities also came to the old continent, but the prestige and reputation of the American originals has not been repeated. Who of us has never heard of Harvard? It is probably the most recognizable university in the world, speaking of which we can certainly use the expression: "well-established and recognized brand". Graduates are very much connected to their Alma Mater, and thus - they do not spare any money they earn in the future for "paying back". In return for financial support, they receive, for example, a name plate with their name on the college corridor or in special "rooms of meritorious people".

Is this system working? Currently, Harvard is the richest university in the world, whose assets are valued at 35 billion dollars. Is it a lot? All Polish universities would only dream about at least the fraction of this property!

American private universities are diametrically different from Polish in another aspect- selection. Efforts to preserve its elitism mean that only a few percent of people submitting applications are admitted to university. If yousucceed – you will enter the exclusive world of the best universities, where you will find various scholarship systems, the best lecturers and the worlds top level of teaching.
 

Research University

Does it sound mysterious enough for you? This type of university does not have its faithful reflection in the European realities, but we will try to bring you closer to its activities and organizational principles. In a nutshell, this is a university that has access to huge research funds. The main role of these universities is research in various fields. Youth are also educated there, but, to put the things clear, the educational process is only an addition in this case. Most research universities are private (but there is also no lack of public universities), which are each year at the top of all world rankings. There are currently around 100 research universities in the USA. One of them is ... Harvard! Is this a surprise for you?

Is it worth to study in the USA?

Much has been heard lately about the constantly growing level of Polish universities - in practice, however, it is difficult to find them in global rankings. We do not have such a problem in the case of American universities, as they usually occupy leading positions. In the first hundred places of the Shanghai ranking, you can distinguish "stars and stripes" well-known from the flag of the United States of America.

Private colleges offer the highest, world-class teaching, diversified scholarship programs, the best lecturers and excellent learning and living conditions. Prestige, reputation and excellent education will probably in be a pass to your dream job and development opportunities in the future. Who knows - maybe one day a tablet with your name will decorate the walls of Harvard, Yale or Princeton?

In the next part of the article, we will familiarize you with more practical issues of studying in the US – the costs of living, job opportunities and future prospects. You can, however, already discuss studyingin the country of Lincoln and Washington in our forum - subject „Studying Overseas- Destination: the USA”.

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