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Vanderbilt University

Vanderbilt University (or Vandy) is a private research university located in Nashville, Tennessee, United States. Founded in 1873, the university is named in honor of shipping and rail magnate "Commodore" Cornelius Vanderbilt, who provided the school its initial $1 million endowment despite having never been to the South. The Commodore hoped that his gift and the greater work of the university would help to heal the sectional wounds inflicted by the Civil War. Today Vanderbilt enrolls approximately 12,000 students from all 50 U.S. states and over 90 foreign countries in four undergraduate and six graduate and professional schools. Several research centers and institutes are affiliated with the university, including the Vanderbilt Institute for Public Policy Studies, Freedom Forum First Amendment Center, Dyer Observatory, and Vanderbilt University Medical Center, the only Level I trauma center in Middle Tennessee.

With the exception of the off-campus observatory and satellite medical clinics, all of university's facilities are situated on its 330-acre (1.3 km2) campus in the heart of Nashville, only 1.5 miles (2.4 km) from downtown. Despite its urban surroundings, the campus itself is a national arboretum and features over 300 different species of trees and shrubs. Notable alumni and affiliates include two Vice Presidents of the United States, 25 Rhodes Scholars, seven Nobel Prize laureates, Pulitzer Prizewinners, and Academy Award winners. As of December 2009, Vanderbilt had an enrollment of 6,794 undergraduate and 5,720 graduate and professional students. Students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries attend Vanderbilt, with 60% of the total student body coming from outside the Southeast; 8% of students are from outside the United States.

Moreover, 24% of the undergraduate class of 2010 was non-Caucasian, while roughly half were women. Vanderbilt offers undergraduates the chance to pursue 70 majors, or the chance to create their own, in its four undergraduate schools and colleges: the College of Arts and Science, the School of Engineering, Peabody College of Education and Human Development, and Blair School of Music. The university also has six graduate and professional schools, including the Divinity School, Graduate School, Law School, School of Medicine, School of Nursing, and Owen Graduate School of Management. The university's undergraduate programs are highly selective: in 2012, the Office of Undergraduate Admissions accepted 14.2% of applicants, thus making Vanderbilt one of the most selective universities in the United States and the most selective university in the state of Tennessee.

In its most recent annual comparison of admissions selectivity, The Princeton Review gave Vanderbilt a rating of 99 out of 99. The admitted first-year class of 2016 had standardized test scores that were well above average: the interquartile range (25th percentile-75th percentile) of SAT scores was 1400-1560 (Math plus Critical Reading subscores), while the interquartile range of ACT scores was 32-34.For students whose schools reported exact class rankings, 90.4% ranked in the 10% of their class, with an average rank of 2.77%.

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