Lehigh University is a private residential research university, recognized as one of the nation’s premier institutions. Located in the scenic Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, just a short distance away from both New York City and Philadelphia, Lehigh’s grounds cover 2,358 acres which encompass three contiguous campuses – Asa Packer Campus, Mountaintop Campus, and Murray H. Goodman campus. Lehigh’s founding is linked to the rise in industrial power – in 1865 the university was established by Asa Packer, an industrial pioneer, entrepreneur and philanthropist who donated $500,000 for the purpose of building a university that would contribute to the “intellectual and moral improvement” of the Lehigh Valley men. The university began with just 39 men and has since grown to over 7,000 students who are eager to participate in Lehigh’s rigorous academic community.
Academic ProgramsLehigh is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education and awards baccalaureate, masters, and graduate degrees through several colleges, including: the College of Arts and Sciences; College of Business and Economics; P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science; and the College of Education. At Lehigh, undergraduate students may pursue nearly 100 programs and majors and are also given the opportunity to customize their learning experience by choosing from nearly two dozen multidisciplinary programs.
Opportunities for students reach well beyond Lehigh’s classrooms. An estimated 1,050+ undergraduate students participate in research annually, employed through faculty projects, or their own projects – a few (approximately 50) students even receive grants for their projects. In addition to research, students may choose from more than 200 study abroad programs in nearly 100 countries. Lehigh is also affiliated with the United National Partnership which offers Lehigh students more than 55 U.N.-related programs every year. Lehigh has become the 6th university in the world to earn NGO (non-governmental organization) status from the U.N.’s Office of Public Information.
Student LifeMore than 7,000 students are enrolled at Lehigh, including over 5,000 undergraduates. Lehigh’s student body is made up of students from all around the United States and international students hailing from nearly 80 foreign nations. The majority of students live on campus and participation in extracurricular activities is extremely high (more than 95%). A school that seeks to be deeply involved within its surrounding community, approximately two-thirds of students regularly volunteer their time and/or participate in community service.
An NCAA Division I-AA school, Lehigh boasts over two dozen intercollegiate sports teams for men and women as well as nearly 50 intramural and club sports. The Lehigh-Lafayette rivalry is one of the longest-standing and most famous of rivalries in college athletics. The rivalry goes back nearly 150 years as the two colleges, which are located less than twenty miles apart, have played against each other since 1884.
Lehigh is home to several cherished and interesting traditions. An old tradition, recently revived in 2007, is known as the Lehigh Bed Races. Taking place during the annual Spirit Week, students form Bed Racing teams, decorating beds and drag racing them down the length of Memorial Walk.