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About Elizabethtown College

Welcome to Etown

Elizabethtown College combines the most sought-after professional programs, guaranteed high-impact experiences like research, internships, and cross-cultural study, with a 124+ year tradition of learning to think critically, analyze deeply, and communicate effectively. Etown offers an essential education that makes 98% of our graduates agree they have what it takes to be successful.

Our mission is to Educate for Service and we believe that learning is most noble when used to benefit others, regardless of chosen career path. We prepare our students to lead rich lives of purpose and meaning while advancing independent thought, personal integrity, and social responsibility. These are the foundations for a life of learning. We foster the values of peace, non-violence, human dignity, and social justice.


Value in the Numbers

At Etown, we understand that quality and value need to go hand in hand. Our educational philosophy fosters an understanding of education for a life of purpose based on a model of student development that integrates career readiness and a commitment to civic engagement. As a result, graduates are prepared to make the world a better place and be successful while doing so. Etown delivers a high-quality, high-value education that provides the kind of earning power that ranks us among the country’s highest value-added institutions with mid-career earnings 27% more than predicted.


of Etown graduates are employed or pursuing continuing education within one year of graduation


of students receive some form of financial aid


of graduates had at least one faculty member who made them excited about learning


of graduates report their professors cared about them as a person

Active Campus and Interactive Education

Etown's student-centered culture is at the heart of everything we do. Our students have every opportunity to get involved.



Athletics Activities:

  • 24 NCAA DIII Athletic Teams
  • 20 Intramural Sports
  • 28.5% of full-time, undergraduate, traditional, degree-seeking students are Varsity Athletes.
  • 470 Students are Varsity Athletes



Other Extracurricular Opportunities:

  • 82 Clubs & Organizations
  • 204 Acres of Campus
  • 39.6% of traditional students Worked on Campus
  • 80,000+ square foot Sports, Fitness & Well-Being Center
  • 133,232 Volumes in High Library


Class Size


Centralized Learning Environment:

  • 108 Full-Time Faculty Members
  • 87% of full-time faculty hold a doctorate or terminal degree in their field
  • 24,425 Living Alumni
  • 13 FTE Student/Faculty ratio
  • 18 Average Class Size

Commitment to Diversity

Elizabethtown College is committed to valuing and fostering the diversity reflected in our life together and in the world beyond our campus. We strive to ensure that the members of the community—students, faculty, staff, and administrators—are diverse in race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, religion, ability, gender, gender identity and expression, age and national origin. We also seek to provide our community members, especially our students, with educational opportunities, programs, and services that are multicultural in content and expressive of a diverse life of experiences and worldviews that underrepresented groups bring to the learning environment.

Gender Identity

Gender Identity:
  • 58.7% of students identify as female
  • 41.3% of students identify as male

Ethnicity & Racial Identity

Ethnicity of Traditional Undergraduate / Degree-seeking Full-time Students:
  • White/Caucasian: 1,430 students (83.6%)
  • Hispanic/Latino: 105 students (6.1%)
  • Black: 49 students (2.9%)
  • Two or more races: 40 students (2.3%)
  • Asian: 35 students (2.0%)
  • Unknown: 16 students (0.9%)
  • Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 1 students (0.1%)

Geographic Breakdown

Geographic breakdown percentages of traditional undergraduate, degree seeking students:
  • Pennsylvania = 72.0%
  • Maryland = 9.1%
  • New Jersey = 8.6%
  • Delaware = 3.2%
  • New York = 1.4%

Rich History

Elizabethtown College was chartered on September 23, 1899 by members of the Church of the Brethren who were interested in establishing an institution of higher education for their denomination in eastern Pennsylvania. Etown has a rich history and has amassed numerous collegiate traditions in the years since our founding.


The College has changed a lot since it was founded, but still holds the same values of peace, non-violence, human dignity and social justice, and the belief that learning is most noble when used to benefit others.


Elizabethtown College History 


Alpha Hall

Sustainable Campus

All major decisions at Etown are made with sustainability in mind. Elements of our efforts can be found throughout all facets of our campus community. As our college community grows and advances every year, our commitment to sustainability continues to gain momentum. We have placed a huge focus on monitoring the efficiency of our current operations in order to target our weaknesses and make improvements.


We welcome projects of all shapes and sizes. In the past, efforts have been led by passionate students, faculty, and staff. Projects include water conservation, energy use, and recycling initiatives. We've even implemented a bike-share program. Join us in our search for innovative ways to create a sustainable campus!


Sustainability Efforts

solar array

Around the Region

Elizabethtown, Pa. is located in the south central region of the state, in the northwestern corner of historic Lancaster County. Elizabethtown features small shops and chain stores, eateries and coffee shops, a movie theater, and parks and sport fields. There is also an Amish farm market within walking distance to campus. And it's no secret Elizabethtown College is a very large part of the community, offering the surrounding communities a venue for arts and cultural events. And, on many days, the aroma of chocolate fills the air because Mars Chocolate has a manufacturing facility right in town. If you're just coming to visit, the local area offers multiple lodging and dining opportunities.

Elizabethtown is a short drive from Hershey, Harrisburg, the city of Lancaster and PA Dutch Country; each of these neighboring cities and rural areas provide plenty of recreational, educational and entertainment opportunities. And, with an Amtrak station in town, you are only a quick train ride from major urban centers Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Baltimore, or New York City.


The city of Lancaster is 19 miles from Etown and is home to vibrant artistic and cultural experiences. Visit the Fulton Theatre for Broadway-caliber shows, stroll along Gallery Row to see artwork from local residents and beyond, or try regional food specialties that are famous among the Pennsylvania Dutch communities at the Lancaster Central Market.


The state capital of Pennsylvania is just 16 miles from campus and is the hub for state government and corporate connections in the area. Visit the National Civil War Museum and the State Museum of Pennsylvania, take a tour of the State Capitol or sit in the gallery to view the proceedings of the Pennsylvania House or Senate to see state politics up close.


Only 11 miles from Etown is where all chocolate-based dreams come true. But there's so much more to Hershey than just their candy! Tour Hershey Gardens to see hundreds of tropical butterflies and botanical displays, play mini-golf or drive around in a go-cart at Adventure Sports, ride more than 13 rollercoasters at Hersheypark or catch a Hershey Bears hockey game.
Elizabethtown College