Seven striking Gilded Age estates along Newport’s famed cliff walk form the core of this 2,800-student Catholic university’s 80-acre campus. Founded by the Sisters of Mercy of Providence in 1934 as a women’s college, the school began admitting men in the 1970s.
The student body remains heavily female, with male enrollment at 32%. Salve Regina is known for its selective nursing program, but it offers more than 40 majors. Several programs, including business administration, international relations, health care administration and clinical counseling, offer a combined master’s degree. The school has a reputation for attracting preppier students, and it’s got a Division III sailing team (Newport is considered the sailing capital of the world) as well as rugby and equestrian programs. Seahawks willing to pay a little extra for housing can live in Victorian homes that have been updated and converted to rentals.
Most Salve Regina students are eligible for some form of financial assistance, with 96% of the student body receiving some type of federal, state or college grant. A decade after enrolling, students earn about $77,000 per year.