Skidmore College's slogan, "Creative Thought Matters," seems to permeate all facets of academic and campus life. With an eclectic list of classes, an artsy student body of about 2,700 and a home in historic Saratoga Springs, New York, Skidmore is just about the quintessential Northeast liberal arts college.

Professors are extremely accessible (some students have done house-sitting gigs and walked their professors' dogs), and they tend to voice their opinions as loudly as the students themselves. Academics are rigorous, and the art and science programs are some of the best in the Northeast. At roughly $222,500, Skidmore has an above-average cost of a degree, but the college gives out generous grants to students with financial need. Plus, its six-year graduation rate of 89% is above average, too, according to Money’s calculations.

The school provides a lot of weekend entertainment in the way of concerts, theater, improv comedy and film. Every spring, right before final exams, the campus celebrates Fun Day, an outdoor party replete with games, food and music as a last hurrah for the semester (Skidmore’s website calls it a “mini version of Coachella). The charming downtown of Saratoga Springs is available for students looking for an off-campus excursion (don’t miss the macaroni and cheese at Druthers Brewing Company).