Dartmouth College

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Updated August 6, 2020

Dartmouth, founded in 1769, is a member of the Ivy League and home to a celebrated liberal arts curriculum and pioneering professional school. It is the ninth oldest institution of higher education in the United States. The school was founded by Reverend Eleazar Wheelock, a Congregational minister from Connecticut, who started the school to educate Native Americans.

Reverend Wheelock, who graduated from Yale in 1733, settled in the rural community of Lebanon, Connecticut, taking boys into his home who were studying for college. Samuel Occom, a Mohican Indian, was one of those boys and Reverend Wheelock became his mentor. Mr. Occom eventually became an ordained minister and returned to his people in Montauk on Long Island. It was his success with Mr. Occom that led Reverend Wheelock to believe he could train other Native Americans as ministers and teachers. He created an Indian charity school which was also attended by English youth who were unable to afford traditional schooling. Reverend Wheelock felt that if he could train the English youth to be missionaries for the Native American population, it may be of even greater worth.

Reverend Wheelock had difficulty raising money for the school. He reached out to Mr. Occom in 1766 for assistance. Mr. Occom, accompanied by Reverend Nathanial Walker, traveled to England in order to raise money from churches in the country with great success. In fact, King George III donated two hundred pounds for the new school. Overall, the two men raised £12,000, a significant sum for that era, and returned to the United States. However, the location of the school was not drawing the Native American population and Reverend Wheelock felt he had to move the school closer to areas with heavier Indian populations. He settled on the Connecticut Valley of New Hampshire, an area that was on the travel route for Native Americans and close to Canadian Indians as well.

Reverend Wheelock reached out to John Wentworth, the Royal Governor of New Hampshire who was also interested in missionary work and education. His only request was that the school be called a "college" rather than an "academy." On December 13, 1769, Governor Wentworth, acting in the name of King George III, granted the charter to Reverend Wheelock. In gratitude, Reverend Wheelock suggested that the school be named Wentworth, but the governor preferred to name if for an English friend, William, the Earl of Dartmouth, who had also given generously to the fund brought back from England.

Reverend Wheelock received grants for 3,300 acres of land in Hanover and another 1,400 acres in Lebanon. The acreage was contiguous so the reverend began taking steps to move his small school to the new location. He arrived at the location in 1770 and set about building a college in a location where the closest neighbor was almost three miles away. It was difficult at first as the winters in the area are notoriously difficult, but the first class graduated from the college in 1771. Five years later, the War of Independence began, yet Dartmouth remained the only college of the era that continued educating students without interruption.

After Reverend Wheelock's death, management of Dartmouth fell to his son, John, who eventually fell into a disagreement with the Church of Christ, the congregation started by his father. In 1805, there was a change of pastors and John felt he had the right to dictate who the next pastor should be. John appealed to the Trustees of the College, asking them to enforce his wishes and they refused. John began a public campaign against the Trustees which resulted in his removal from the presidency, appointing Reverend Francis Brown as his replacement. John filed a complaint with the legislature who passed an act that changed the makeup of the Trustees, reestablishing John as the president and renaming the school Dartmouth University. John Wheelock died within the year and his position was taken over by his son-in-law, William Allen. The original trustees continued operating Dartmouth College during this period. Eventually, the trustees at the college brought suit, a case which traveled to the Supreme Court. In 1819, the Supreme Court ruled that Dartmouth College should prevail and Dartmouth University ceased to exist.

Today, Dartmouth College is ranked first in undergraduate teaching by U.S. News and World Report and is recognized by the Carnegie Foundation as a research university with high activity. It is home to 4,200 undergraduate students and 1,900 graduate students.

Dartmouth College Accreditation Details

Dartmouth College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Commission on Institutions of Higher Education. Programs may also be accredited by specialized accrediting agencies.

Dartmouth College Application Process

Students entering college for the first time must complete an application and pay an application fee. In addition, they must complete the Dartmouth writing supplement and provide official high school transcripts. Students must also provide two teacher evaluations, SAT or ACT scores with writing as well as two SAT subject tests. A peer evaluation is also encouraged and students entering art programs must provide an arts supplement. Students transferring from another college or university must complete the transfer application and pay the application fee. In addition, they must provide the Dartmouth writing supplement and provide official transcripts from any college or university they have attended. They must submit two academic evaluations, SAT or ACT scores and two SAT subject tests. Students who wish to attend graduate programs at Dartmouth are urged to contact an admissions counselor before applying.

Dartmouth College Tuition and Financial Aid

Undergraduate tuition at Dartmouth College is $48,120 per year. Financial aid is available in the form of grants, scholarships, work-study, student employment, student and parent loans. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order to qualify for any type of financial aid. Tuition for graduate studies vary based on the program chosen. Students are encouraged to discuss financial arrangements with a financial aid counselor before enrolling in graduate studies.

Dartmouth College Online Degree(s) Offered

Executive Program on Strategic Reputation Management

The Reputation Institute and Tuck Executive Education at Dartmouth now offer a dynamic online program that addresses how organizations can strengthen relationship with key stakeholders and leverage their corporate reputations. The courses are taught by experts in the field of reputation management. The program provides theoretical frameworks that guide corporate reputations and clarifies the importance of reputation management. Students learn to develop the connection between strategy development and execution. Students also learn to define brand equity and to develop a brand architecture strategy.

Dartmouth University has added the Executive Program on Strategic Reputation Management as an online option for those who are seeking ways to improve their company reputation or those who wish to enter the field of reputation management.

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