Counting colleges in Washington DC is difficult. If you want to visit some of the colleges on your next trip to DC or if you’re interested in attending a college in the country’s capital but don’t know much about your options, here are the main schools of interest for tourists, exchange students and more:
Catholic University of America
George Washington University
Strayer University–District of Columbia
Trinity Washington University
University of the District of Columbia
All of these colleges are either research Universities or Master’s schools.
There are other special focus schools or campuses from neighboring universities in Washington DC, including:
Institute of World Politics
National Intelligence University
Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception at the Dominican House of Studies
Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family at the Catholic University of America
University of Phoenix – Washington DC Campus
University of the District of Columbia David A. Clark School of Law
University of the Potomac–Washington DC Campus
Washington Theological Union
Wesley Theological Seminary
What’s it all mean?
The most popular college in Washington DC is Georgetown University. It also happens to be the oldest, founded in 1789 and is recognized as the oldest Jesuit and Catholic university in the United States. More than 25,000 students enroll at the start of the year.
In comparison to other school on this list, the Washington Theological Union has an enrollment of only 80 students.
Gallaudet University is a fully bilingual post secondary institution, teaching students who are deaf or partially deaf in both English and American Sign language.
This captures pretty well how vastly different the colleges in Washington are in terms of enrollment and education.
To make matters even more confusing, there are four more colleges in Washington DC, only these schools are not listed under the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education or by the United States Department of Education Institute of Education Sciences.
These DC colleges include:
Graduate School USA
National Defense University
Johns Hopkins University Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies
St. Paul’s College
All this to say, if you’re interested in colleges in Washington DC, your choices are somewhat limited. Despite the long(ish) list of school for the fairly small area, most of these schools are specialty related.
Georgetown college may be nice to visit, but if you’re just a tourist passing through Washington DC it’s better to visit the White House rather than a college campus. It’s much more telling of the district.