Brown University is a private, Ivy League university located in Providence, Rhode Island, United States. Founded in 1764 prior to American independence from the British Empire as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations early in the reign of King George III (1760-1820), Brown is the third oldest institution of higher education in New England and seventh oldest in the United States.
Brown was the first college in the nation to accept students regardless of religious affiliation.Academically, Brown consists of The College, Graduate School, Alpert Medical School, and the School of Engineering. Brown's international programs are organized through the Watson Institute for International Studies.
The New Curriculum, instituted in 1969, eliminated distribution requirements and allows any course to be taken on a satisfactory/no credit basis.In addition, there are no pluses or minuses in the letter grading system.
Founded in 1764, The College is the oldest school of Brown University. Nearly 6,000 undergraduate students are currently enrolled in the college, and approximately 80 concentrations (majors) are offered. Completed concentrations of undergraduates by area are Social Sciences (42%), Humanities (26%), Life Sciences (17%), and the Physical Sciences (14%).The concentrations with the greatest number of students are Biology, History, and International Relations.
The highest fields of employment for graduates of the College are Business (36%), Education (19%), Health/Medical (6%), Arts (6%), Government (6%), and Communications/Media (5%) in highest order.
Established in 1887, The Graduate School currently houses around 2,000 students studying over 50 disciplines. 20 different master's degrees are offered as well as Ph.D. degrees in over 40 subjects ranging from applied mathematics to public policy.
Alpert Medical School:
The University's medical program started in 1811, but the school was suspended by President Wayland in 1827 after the program's faculty declined to live on campus (a new requirement under Wayland). In 1975, the first M.D. degrees from the new Program in Medicine were awarded to a graduating class of 58 students.
It is currently ranked 29th among U.S. medical schools in research and 28th in primary care according to US News and World Report.Admissions to Alpert is one of the most competitive in the nation, with only less than 2% of those applying through the Standard Route accepted in 2008 (5,902 applications for 94 spots).
The medical school is known for its eight-year Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME), which was started in 1984 and is one of the most selective programs in the nation. Each year, approximately 60 high school students matriculate into the PLME out of an applicant pool of about 1,600.
School of Engineering:
Brown has the oldest engineering program in the Ivy League. In 1916, multiple Departments of Engineering were consolidated into the Division of Engineering. As part of a broader growth initiative, in 2010, the Division of Engineering was authorized to begin operating as the School of Engineering.
Several projects of note involving hypertext and other forms of electronic text have been developed at Brown, including FRESS, Brown University Interactive Language (BRUIN), Hypertext Editing System, and Women Writers Project.
In addition, the Computer Science department at Brown is home to The CAVE. This project is a complete virtual reality room, one of few in the world, and is used for everything from three-dimensional drawing classes to tours of the circulatory system for medical students.
In 2000, a group of students from the university's Technology House converted the south side of the Sciences Library into a giant video display which allowed bystanders to play Tetris, the largest of its kind ever in the Western Hemisphere.
Constructed from 11 custom-built circuit boards, a 12-story data network, a personal computer running Linux, a radio-frequency video game controller, and over 10,000 Christmas lights, the project was named La Bastille and could be seen for several miles.
Brown is the largest institutional landowner in Providence,with properties in the East Side and the Jewelry District.Unlike some other schools, there are also no clear physical landmarks to determine where Brown's campus begins or ends.
John Hay Library:
The John Hay Library is the second oldest library on campus. It was named for John Hay (class of 1858, private secretary to Abraham Lincoln and Secretary of State under two Presidents) at the request of his friend Andrew Carnegie, who contributed half of the $300,000 cost of the building.Constructed with Vermont white marble in an English Renaissance style, the library was dedicated on November 10, 1910 and had an estimated collection of 300,000 volumes.
The Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women manages the Elizabeth Weed Feminist Theory Papers and the Christine Dunlap Farnham Archives, both rich resources for feminist scholars.
John Carter Brown Library:
The John Carter Brown Library, founded in 1846, is administered separately from the University, but has been located on the Main Green of the campus since 1904. It is generally regarded as the world's leading collection of primary historical sources pertaining to the Americas before 1825.
The JCB holdings comprise more than 50,000 early titles and about 16,000 modern books, as well as prints, manuscripts, maps, and other items in the library's specialty. The JCB occupies a Beaux-Arts style building designed by Shepley, Rutan, and Coolidge. The 1904 edifice was expanded in 1990 by architects Hartman-Cox of Washington, D.C.