Special Report

The Hardest College to Get Into in Every State

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South Dakota: Augustana University
> Location: Sioux Falls
> Acceptance rate for 2018-2019: 65.4%
> Applicants for 2018-2019: 2,201
> Median SAT score: 1195 out of 1600
> Avg. annual cost of attendance: $45,145
> Four-year undergraduate enrollment, fall 2018: 1,752

Augustana College, located at Sioux Falls, South Dakota, is a private liberal arts school affiliated with the Lutheran Church. The school was founded in 1860, before South Dakota became a state. “Entertainment Tonight” host Mary Hart is an alumna of Augustana.

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Tennessee: Vanderbilt University
> Location: Nashville
> Acceptance rate for 2018-2019: 9.6%
> Applicants for 2018-2019: 34,313
> Median SAT score: 1505 out of 1600
> Avg. annual cost of attendance: $67,392
> Four-year undergraduate enrollment, fall 2018: 6,840

Vanderbilt University owes its origins to railroad mogul Cornelius Vanderbilt, who gave $1 million to the university in 1873. Vanderbilt, one of the South’s most prestigious schools, is known for its undergraduate pre-med program and medical school. Vanderbilt alumni Al Gore Jr. and Muhammad Yunas each won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 and 2006, respectively.

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Texas: Rice University
> Location: Houston
> Acceptance rate for 2018-2019: 11.1%
> Applicants for 2018-2019: 20,923
> Median SAT score: 1505 out of 1600
> Avg. annual cost of attendance: $63,158
> Four-year undergraduate enrollment, fall 2018: 3,962

Rice University, founded in 1912 and located in Houston’s Museum District, has been ranked by the Princeton Review as having the happiest students in the United States. Princeton Review cited Rice students’ favorable experiences with faculty, research capabilities, and collaboration with outside institutions. Rice alumnus Alberto R. Gonzales became the nation’s first Hispanic attorney general in 2005.

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Utah: Brigham Young University-Provo
> Location: Provo
> Acceptance rate for 2018-2019: 64.5%
> Applicants for 2018-2019: 11,205
> Median SAT score: 1305 out of 1600
> Avg. annual cost of attendance: $18,136
> Four-year undergraduate enrollment, fall 2018: 31,441

Brigham Young University was founded by the Mormon Church in 1875. Students are asked to adhere to its “honor code” that requires abstinence from drugs, alcohol, tobacco, coffee, tea, and what the church views as “inappropriate” “sexual activity, such as sex outside of marriage. About 25% of Brigham Young students are married.

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Vermont: Middlebury College
> Location: Middlebury
> Acceptance rate for 2018-2019: 16.7%
> Applicants for 2018-2019: 9,227
> Median SAT score: 1415 out of 1600
> Avg. annual cost of attendance: $69,464
> Four-year undergraduate enrollment, fall 2018: 2,550

Middlebury College, founded in 1800, is regarded as one of the most rigorous small private liberal arts colleges in the U.S. Middlebury’s scenic location near mountains, lakes, and ski trails, likely attracts students who value the outdoors.