Parent and Family Information

Clark University students

Passionate leaders with creativity and guts

The world needs a new kind of college graduate — one not just with the confidence, integrity and unrelenting drive to solve daunting problems, but also with the global awareness, personal experiences and professional understanding to get the job done.

LEEP: Advancing liberal education in the 21st century

That's exactly what Clark University develops in its students. You may know us as a small, liberal-arts-based research university that changes lives, but we're also one of the most innovative, transformative forces in higher education today. Drawing from our expertise in emerging adulthood, Clark designed LEEP (Liberal Education and Effective Practice), a pioneering model of education that combines liberal education with high-quality opportunities to address and impact the social, scientific and economic challenges facing the world today.

LEEP fills a gap in higher education by ensuring students develop both the traditional skills associated with a liberal-arts education — including the ability to analyze and communicate ideas —— and the abilities needed to thrive in the 21st century, including collaboration, persistence and adaptability. LEEP helps prepare our students for remarkable, purposeful careers and upholds Clark's mission to provide students with a superior return on education.

Education experts like Sir Ken Robinson, Ph.D., who mentioned Clark and the LEEP program in a chapter of his book “Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution that’s Transforming Education,” and Carol Geary Schneider, president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, have recognized Clark’s commitment to education innovation.

Creative Schools by Ken Robinson

LEFT: Education leader and author Ken Robinson highlights Clark in his new book "Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution That's Transforming Education." Read more [PDF]

Who is the right student for Clark?

The ideal Clark student is relentlessly curious about the world — and eager to work with others to change it for the better. Our students welcome the chance to collaborate with pioneering faculty, industry experts and other students on issues of global consequence.

For the fall 2015 admissions cycle, Clark:

  • received more than 8,000 applications for first-year admission (an 87% increase over the 4,200 applications we received just three years ago)
  • experienced a concurrent decline in our admit rate from 70% to 55% over the same period
  • enrolled students with a record average GPA of 3.66
  • welcomed U.S. students from 28 states, plus Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C.

Of the students accepted to Clark:

  • 44% are in the top 10 percent of their high school class (based on schools that provide a class rank)
  • 16% are international students who are citizens of 46 different countries
  • 28% of U.S. students are ALANA (African-, Latino-, Asian-, Native-American)

Eighty-five percent of our students receive financial aid, and we offer a range of merit scholarships, including the Presidential LEEP Scholarship for academically talented students who demonstrate incredible drive and the determination to grapple with complex global issues.

Presidential LEEP Scholarship. Wanted: change agents

Each year, a select group of Presidential LEEP Scholars are selected to receive full tuition, room and board for four years, as well as the chance to complete a master's degree tuition-free. These Presidential LEEP Scholars are driven to innovate and apply their knowledge while testing their ideas in authentic world and workplace settings. The Presidential LEEP Scholarship is designed to recognize those students with the most exceptional academic records and who demonstrate the drive, creativity and passion to tackle complex challenges at home and abroad.

Resources for guidance counselors

The world has changed, and today’s youth are changing with it. With so many choices, helping emerging adults address decisions ahead is a daunting task. At Clark University, we want to equip guidance counselors and college advisers like you with research and materials that will benefit your efforts in preparing students to succeed in today's increasingly interconnected and constantly evolving global economy. Consider registering for our professional development symposium and enjoy the LEEP resources and strategy documents. Please let us know how we can continue to help you successfully address the key developmental issues confronting emerging adults today.

SAT/ACT-optional policy

All Clark applicants can choose whether to submit their SAT or ACT scores for consideration. Of the many reasons for adopting a test-optional policy, the most compelling for Clark is that our detailed research suggests there’s little correlation between standardized test scores and college performance for many of our students. At Clark, our review of undergraduate applications is designed to consider multiple dimensions of a student's educational background and life experiences. A close review of an applicant's day-to-day academic performance, course selection and writing ability is enhanced by consideration of extracurricular involvement, personal background and real-world experiences.

We encourage applicants to submit test scores if they believe those scores are a good reflection of their potential for success at the University. Students who submit scores can expect the test results to have a moderate impact on their admission decision.

An accelerated B.A./master's degree with the fifth year tuition-free

Clark students find the University's combined B.A./Master's programs allow them to accelerate their studies, deepen their knowledge and enhance their credentials for the job market. Students who meet certain requirements are eligible for a full-tuition scholarship (50% scholarship for transfer students) during their fifth year, earning a master's degree for the same tuition as a bachelor's degree, or at a substantially reduced price. The program has received national and international attention through such media as CNN, The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

The value of a strong return on a student's education

What is a college education worth? Today's families are looking for universities that not only provide an excellent education, but give students the tools for career and lifelong success. Of our 2014 undergrads, 97% were employed or in graduate school six months after graduation (based on an 82% response rate).

Clark University's Return on Education page provides prospective students and families answers to questions like what students can do with a Clark degree, what companies employ Clark graduates and more, but here’s a quick snapshot:

  • Clarkies are employed at leading global, national and local companies and organizations like Merck, Google, The Walt Disney Studios, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Worcester Art Museum.
  • Graduates have been accepted into graduate programs at prestigious institutions like Brown University, Harvard Medical School, the London School of Economics and Political Science and the Princeton Theological Seminary.
  • Clarkies have started well-known companies like Panera Bread and Blue Man Group.

How we measure up

National publications have recognized Clark’s commitment to education innovation. Here are just a few ways we measure up to other schools across the country. For more, visit our rankings page.

U.S. News & World Report 2016

  • No. 75 in Best National Universities
  • No. 32 in Best Value Schools
  • No. 156 in Undergraduate Business Programs

Forbes America’s Top Colleges

  • No. 16 in America’s Most Entrepreneurial Universities
  • No. 76 in Best (Colleges) in the Northeast
  • No. 163 in America’s Top Colleges

Princeton Review

Fiske Guide to Colleges

Named a “Best Buy” in the 2015 edition of the Fiske Guide to Colleges, which identifies "the best and most interesting schools in the United States." Also included in the 2016 guide.