Confidence, courage, grit.

We are a women's college with a storied history. Choosing Sweet Briar is a bold statement that says you have the confidence and resolve to make your own way.

Learning at Sweet Briar is hands-on and personal. A residential liberal arts college, classes average just 8 students, and our student-to-faculty ratio is 5:1. Our professors, coaches and peers will push you to your limits — one ambitious goal at a time. For career guidance, jobs and lifelong friendships, take advantage of our powerful alumnae network.

At Sweet Briar, we'll help you harness what makes you fierce. For more than 110 years, Sweet Briar students have become women of consequence — self-directed and independent, they are strong leaders for their communities and the world.


At Sweet Briar, you can create a learning experience that matches your individual goals. You'll work one-on-one with professors — and their excitement will feed yours. Here's what you can expect:

  • An interdisciplinary arts and sciences curriculum centered around contemporary issues and solving global problems, including business, computer science, environmental science and new media
  • An ABET-accredited engineering degree program — one of just two at a U.S. women's college 
  • Experiential learning and vigorous class discussions
  • 8 in 10 students work on research projects with faculty — three times the number of students at other colleges
  • 8 in 10 students study abroad while attending Sweet Briar — twice as many as students at other colleges
  • 8 in 10 students have at least one internship experience while attending Sweet Briar — compared to 5 out of 10 at other colleges
  • A dynamic Honors Program and a Phi Beta Kappa chapter
  • An expansive outdoor classroom in the foothills of Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains that inspires creativity and learning

Stellar outcomes: In surveys, seniors rate their growth — as a result of their experience at Sweet Briar — in writing, speaking, critical thinking and acquiring job- and work-related knowledge above students at other colleges. More than 90% are employed or in graduate school 6 months out.

Sweet Briar at glance

  • Founded in 1901
  • 4th-largest campus among liberal arts colleges: 3,250 acres, 8 nature sanctuaries, 2 lakes, 1 boathouse, 18 miles of hiking and biking trails and 21 buildings on the National Register of Historic Places
  • Recognized as one of the most beautiful campuses in the country
  • Mascot: Vixen
  • Motto: Rosam Quae Meruit Ferat: "She who has earned the rose may bear it."
  • 25 majors and minors, plus the option to design an interdisciplinary major
  • Pre-law, pre-medicine and pre-veterinary programs
  • Master of Arts in Teaching

Recent Rankings:

  • Named among most Innovative Schools in nation (U.S. News)
  • 300 Best Value Colleges, Top Colleges in the South, Top 10 Best Women's Colleges, America's Most Beautiful Campuses (Forbes)
  • Best Bang for the Buck among liberal arts colleges (Washington Monthly)
  • 20 Best College Campuses in the U.S. (Business Insider)


Life at Sweet Briar

Sweet Briar's student life programs complement your academic experience, getting you ready for a career and life after college. About 80% of students hold formal leadership roles in a student organization. Historically, 35% of our students have studied abroad. Here are some ways you can get involved in Sweet Briar's vibrant campus life:

Find your FIERCE at Sweet Briar.

Application timeline

Sweet Briar is a Rolling Admission institution with a priority financial aid deadline of Feb. 1, so we encourage you to apply early. Early Action deadline is Oct. 1. First-year students may apply for spring 2020 or fall 2020.

We recommend the following steps for first-year students:

Sophomore/Junior Year

  • Come see us anytime, but we recommend you start campus visits early. Sign up to visit Sweet Briar at
  • Take the SAT and/or ACT. Send us your results. Retake them if you know you can do better.

Senior Year

  • Sign up for an open house: Stay in a residence hall, attend a class and check out our dining services.
  • Beginning in August, apply to Sweet Briar at, through the Common Application or the Coalition Application. Our Early Action deadline is Oct. 1. Sweet Briar has Rolling Admission with a priority financial aid deadline of Feb. 1.
  • Request your high school transcripts and test scores be sent to the admissions office. (We are test optional for those with a GPA of 3.0 and above.)
  • Complete the FAFSA at beginning Oct. 1.
  • Apply for every scholarship and grant you can — as early as you can. 
  • Tell us you’re coming by May 1.

Call an admissions counselor if you have questions:
P | 800-381-6142 
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Transfer students should apply as early as possible. International students should apply by Nov. 1 for priority consideration. Visit for details.

Financial aid

Sweet Briar offers comprehensive financial aid, merit scholarships, institutional, state and federal grants, and a range of student loan options. The bottom line: a quality education, with a price tag that rivals state colleges. That's why we're consistently ranked by Forbes as a "top-value" college.

We know everyone's situation is different. Our financial aid staff will work with you and your family to provide thoughtful, caring assistance throughout the financial aid process. We're invested in your future success — and that means ensuring you graduate with as little debt as possible.

Please contact the Office of Financial Aid with any questions:
P | 800-381-6156
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