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Since Hobart's founding in 1822 and William Smith's founding in 1908, Hobart and William Smith Colleges have stayed true to their mission of providing a student-centered, residential learning environment, globally focused, and grounded in the values of equity and service. Located on 320 acres on the shore of Seneca Lake in a setting of incomparable beauty, Hobart and William Smith Colleges enjoy a rich heritage based on a two-college system now unique in higher education.

As an institution of higher education, Hobart and William Smith are dedicated to educating young men and women to lead lives of consequence. In all their work, the Colleges are bolstered by the dedication and philanthropy of loyal alumni, alumnae, parents, faculty, staff, students and friends. Through a challenging liberal arts curriculum, the Colleges prepare students to think critically and make astute connections. In partnership with the Geneva and global communities and through robust programs in career development, study abroad, service, leadership and athletics, the Colleges foster an environment that values global citizenship, teamwork, ethics, inclusive excellence, social justice and cultural competence.

The Colleges offer three degrees ' Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts in Teaching. The Master of Arts is designed exclusively for HWS graduates enrolled in the Teacher Education Program. The student body includes 2,061 undergraduate students and nine graduate students. HWS has 203 full-time faculty members and a student-faculty ratio of 10:1. The average class size is 16 students.

Sixty percent of HWS students study abroad on six continents and 100% of students take part in community service. Hobart and William Smith Colleges are nationally recognized for their sustainability efforts. HWS recently achieved LEED Gold certification for the Gearan Center for the Performing Arts and installed two solar farms that together will produce 50% of the institution's energy. The Colleges have more than 22,500 alumni and alumnae with distinguished careers around the globe.

In the past decade, HWS students have been awarded a Marshall Scholarship, Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Fellowship, six Ernest F. Hollings Scholarships, one Morris K. Udall Scholarships, three Barry M. Goldwater Scholarships and 36 Fulbright's. Students have received FBI internships, a Pfizer Fellowship, an EPA internship, American Chemical Society Scholarships and Merck Fellowships. Recent graduates are teaching English in Taiwan, working for NGOs, and have accepted assignments in the Peace Corps and Teach for America. Others are working on Wall Street, Capitol Hill, or attending prestigious graduate and professional schools. The Colleges boast over a 90% placement rate within 7-9 months after graduation.

Why is there an S on the end of our name?

We were founded as two separate colleges - Hobart for men in 1822 and William Smith for women in 1908 - and are proud of that heritage and everything it stands for, namely that we value gender and inclusion. HWS graduated the first woman to receive a medical degree in the U.S., were the first in the nation to have an LGBTQ undergraduate program and among the first to offer majors and minors in Africana, Women's and Men's studies. Today, that means that in attending HWS, you are part of a community that pays attention to equity, race, gender and justice. We think about it. We study it. We act on it. And we are committed to creating change that leads to a better future.


Hobart and William Smith Colleges prepare students to lead lives of consequence.


Hobart and William Smith Colleges is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (formerly the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc.). Inquiries regarding the accreditation status by the Commission should be directed to the administrative staff of the institution. Individuals may also contact: New England Commission of Higher Education, 3 Burlington Woods Drive, Suite 100, Burlington, MA 01803-4514; (781) 425 7785; E-Mail:

Registered Programs

The following is Hobart and William Smith Colleges' inventory of registered programs approved by the New York State Education Department. The listing contains program title, degree awarded, and HEGIS code number.

Africana Studies, B.A., 0305
American Studies, B.A., 0313
Anthropology, B.A., 2202
Anthropology and Sociology, B.A., 2208
Architectural Studies, B.A., 0202
Art History, B.A., 1003
Asian Studies, B.A., 0301
Biology, B.A., B.S., 0401
Biochemistry, B.S., 0414
Chemistry, B.A., B.S., 1905
Classics, B.A., 1504
Comparative Literature, B.A., 1503
Computer Science, B.A., B.S., 0701
Critical Social Studies, B.A., 2299
Dance, B.A., 1008
Economics, B.A., 2204
Educational Studies, B.A., 0801
English, B.A., 1501
Environmental Studies, B.A., B.S., 0420
European Studies, B.A., 0310
French and Francophone Studies, B.A., 1102
Geoscience, B.A., B.S., 1999
Greek, B.A., 1110
History, B.A., 2205
Individual Studies, B.A., B.S., 4901
International Relations, B.A., 2210
Latin, B.A., 1109
Latin American Studies, B.A., 0308
Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Studies, B.A., 4903
Mathematics, B.A., B.S., 1701
Media and Society, B.A., 0699
Music, B.A., 1005
Philosophy, B.A., 1509
Physics, B.A., B.S., 1902
Political Science, B.A., 2207
Psychology, B.A., B.S., 2001
Religious Studies, B.A., 1510
Russian Area Studies, B.A., 0307
Sociology, B.A., 2208
Spanish and Hispanic Studies, B.A., 1105
Studio Art, B.A., 1002
Theatre, B.A; 1007
Women's Studies, B.A., 4903
Writing and Rhetoric, B.A., 1599

Teacher Certification

The Colleges offer a broad and innovative Teacher-Education Program (TEP) that combines extensive classroom experience in local schools and related seminars in the HWS Education Department. The TEP works in combination with the student's liberal arts major.

Students can be certified (initial) to teach elementary grades 1-6 in the following areas:

  • Childhood
  • Childhood and Students with Disabilities (dual certification)

Note: Students pursuing childhood certification or dual certification can select almost any of the majors that HWS offers; however, there are a few exclusions including studio art, theater, and writing and rhetoric. Students cannot have any one of these majors as their only major if they want to pursue one of these teacher certification programs.

Students can be certified (initial) to teach adolescent grades 7-12 in the following areas (with a major in that area):

  • Biology, B.A., B.S., 0401
  • Chemistry, B.A., B.S., 1905
  • Earth Science, B.A., B.S., 1999 (with a major in Geosciences)
  • English, B.A., 1501
  • French, B.A., 1102
  • Latin, B.A., 1109
  • Mathematics, B.A., B.S., 1701
  • Physics, B.A., B.S., 1902
  • Spanish, B.A., 1105
  • Social Studies (with a major in History, Political Science, or Economics; and additional coursework)

Students can also be certified (initial) in the areas listed below:

  • Art (P-12), B.A., 1002 (with a major in Studio Art)
  • Music (P-12), B.A., 1005 (with a major in Music)
  • TESOL (P-12) (with a major in: Anthropology, English, French And Francophone Studies, History, Individual Studies (BA), International Relations, Psychology (BA), Sociology, Spanish And Hispanic Studies, Theatre, or Writing and Rhetoric)

The major in Educational Studies cannot be used as the basis for any teacher-certification program.

Teacher-certification students may complete a major in Educational Studies as a second major, provided their first major is the appropriate basis for their teacher-certification program.

The major in Educational Studies is intended for students with interests in issues that intersect education, but who do not necessarily want to become certified classroom teachers.

HWS students can also earn a Master of Arts degree through a fifth-year program at HWS, in the following areas:

  • Adolescent Education, M.A.T., 0803
  • Childhood Education, M.A.T., 0802
  • Special Education Childhood, M.A.T., 0808*

*Certification in Special Education requires dual certification in Childhood Education and Students with Disabilities.

Graduation Rate

The graduation rate for Hobart students entering in the fall of 2014 and graduated by 2020 (six years later) was 70 percent. The graduation rate for William Smith students entering in the fall of 2014 and graduated by 2020 (six years later) was 82 percent. The overall graduation rate for both Colleges was 76 percent. Additional information on graduation rates and student retention is available from the Office of the Registrar.