Vassar College


Founded in 1861, Vassar College is a highly selective liberal arts college. A pioneer for women’s education and liberal arts education, Vassar opened its doors as a coeducational institution in 1969. Home to approximately 2400 full-time undergraduates, Vassar is known for its small classes and dedicated professors. The campus is situated in a more suburban-feeling section of Poughkeepsie called Arlington. It's about a  5-minute walk to Arlington center from the Vassar dorms. The Juliet, their impressive campus bookstore, housed in a former theater (and where Burger-Fi is), is located there and worth a visit. 


Stay: Alumnae House | Breakfast: BC Kitchen

Lunch: Rossi and Sons  | Dinner: The Mill House


Visitor Information: Tour Vassar

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Transportation: Air service is available from Stewart International Airport (SWF) in Newburgh, New York, 35 minutes from Vassar. In addition, other nearby airports include Westchester County Airport in White Plains, Albany International Airport in Albany, or the three major airports in the New York City metro area (LaGuardia, JFK, Newark Liberty). Amtrak or Metro-North Commuter Railroad connects New York City’s stations with Poughkeepsie. NYC is a 90 minute train ride.

Stay: Alumnae House is a guest house located across the street from Vassar College. Also close by, you’ll find a Courtyard by Marriott and a Best Western. One parent, with a current student, recommends the Holiday Inn.

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Fun Fact: Each dorm at Vassar has a parlor with its own Steinway piano. Students note how lovely it is to hear music coming from the dorms while walking around campus.

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Anytime of Day: The new dining center,Gordon Commons (formally ACDC), has been transformed—from the awesome new seating arrangements to the wide range of food offerings! One freshman remarked, “Vassar students get UNLIMITED visits to the dining hall and it's open from 7 am to 1 am! The space is gorgeous and modern and the food is absolutely incredible. There are many stations (grill, global, paninis, brick oven, Root/vegan.) They also have a section where you can cook your own food. The offerings are so delicious and fresh and varied-- I'm really not missing out on anything from home.” A current parent suggests eating here for lunch after your tour - it’s a true highlight.

Coffee:The Crafted Kup serves locally roasted high quality coffee. If you are looking for coffee on campus , head to the The Bridge Cafe in the biological sciences building.

Breakfast: BC Kitchen is a favorite eatery and neighborhood hangout for the Vassar College community and locals alike. The Eveready Diner and The Palace Diner are your typical diners serving pancakes and eggs (both are about a 15-minute drive away.) Closer to campus, there are lots of breakfast specials at Julie’s Restaurant. Great for breakfast or lunch, Big Tomato has something for everyone.

Lunch: Lola’s Cafe offers made to order sandwiches, chopped salads, vegetarian “bowls”, and homemade soups. According to Rossi & Sons, the best-selling sandwich by far among Vassar students is the breaded chicken cutlet and Prosciutto Panini. Vassar students feel lucky to have chain restaurant BurgerFi in their small town. Twisted Soul is a student go-to. Order the noodle bowls, bubble tea, and leave room for their cupcakes.



Casual: Crew is popular for delicious local and organic fare. Closer to campus, The Mill House is well liked by students and parents for good pub food and a fun night out. On a recent visit, a parent recommended Bacio for pizza. For good Thai food, head to Thai Spice.


A Step Up: When parents are in town reservations are hard to come by at The Artist’s Palate the best option near campus.  It’s worth the 15 or so minute drive to dine at CIA, the world’s premier culinary college. Known for having some of the best food in the area, make your reservation well in advance of your visit. Shadows on the Hudson is an award-winning waterfront restaurant perched 40 feet above the Hudson River. Just 8 miles away, in Wappingers Falls, Aroma Osteria serves up excellent Italian food.

Local Attractions: A definite must-do for anyone visiting Vassar is the Walkway Over the Hudson, about 10-minute drive from campus.  It's one of the longest, elevated pedestrian bridge in the world. One parent commented, “The views are unbelievable. This should be on everyone's must-see list, especially awesome in the fall with the foliage.” Also a must is a visit to Vassar’s Shakespeare Garden, where all plants and flowers and seeds mentioned in Shakespeare's works are planted. The Vassar Farm and Ecological Preserve is located to the south of Vassar’s campus, across Hooker Avenue. You can enjoy the gardening center or hike the many trails. Head for New Paltz, about 20 minutes from campus, there are tons of restaurants and shops! Don’t miss the Water Street Market, a lovely area with antique shops and fun take-out places like Dohnut, Kosiner Bros Fry Shack and Kosiner Bros Organic Hot Dog Cart. Other great nearby places to visit are Hyde Park (FDR homes and Vanderbilt Mansion- 15 min from campus), Rhinebeck and Cold Spring (1/2 hour), and Mohonk Mountain House (35 min.).  A half-hour away, you can drive to DiaBeacon, a premier destination for contemporary art.

A Look Inside Students' Houses

— Quotes From Campus —

Public transportation in NY is great and the station is 7 minutes away. There’s a bus that goes straight to JFK or LGA from Grand central station. The bus is free for Vassar students.
— Cara
Everything is close by, and the campus is gorgeous. I really appreciate how engaged the professors are as well as the small class size.
— Drew
We have our very own street food truck - which parks in various places on campus and changes menus every month.
— Lucy





The Brewer

School Colors

Grey & Maroon

Acceptance Rate


Common Application


Supplement Essays


Early Action/Decision

Early Decision


Average - 1440


Average - 32




Small - 2300 Undergraduates




Admissions Office

124 Raymond Ave, Kautz Admission House
Poughkeepsie, NY 12604

(p) 845-437-7300
(f) 845-437-7063

Sports Divisions

NCAA Division III

Greek Life


Noteworthy Alumni

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
Anne Hathaway
Meryl Streep

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