First Impressions: Lebanon Valley College (PA)

Sometimes a college visit will surprise you, especially when attending an open house event for prospective and admitted students. My visit to Lebanon Valley College certainly did. I gathered enough material to prepare First Impressions and found pictures to make a Pinterest page.

Central Pennsylvania has several small private colleges, including Lebanon Valley College which opened its doors in 1866. While closer in size to a liberal arts college (1,600 undergraduates), this school also grants masters degrees in Accounting, Athletic Training, Business, Music Education, STEM Education and Speech-Language Pathology as well as a doctorate in Physical Therapy.

The school sets itself apart with several pre-professional programs as well as hybrid majors that combine the liberal arts with skill-based education. Offerings in Education are extremely comprehensive for a small school as are the options in Digital Communications, Mathematical Sciences, Music, Visual Arts, and health-related fields.  There is also an Applied History major which applies hands-on research skills with the reading and study of history which would be a self designed program at other colleges.

Lebanon Valley College is also quite residential. Nearly 80 percent of the undergraduates live on campus, including more than 90 percent of a first-year class. This immaculate campus offers an impressive selection of upper-class housing options for a small school, although first-year students live in the more traditional style residence halls.

From First Impressions it’s really hard to fault Lebanon Valley College for the efforts it makes to guide students towards a degree. There is even a four-year guarantee, a commitment to offer the courses necessary for students in good standing to complete their degrees on time as well as some impressive accelerated options towards graduate study. However, the campus is quite isolated. If you want to travel to Harrisburg, Hershey or Lancaster, it really helps to have access to a car.

The Report Card for Lebanon Valley College

  • Four-Year/Six-Year Graduation Rates: A/A
  • Freshman Retention: B+
  • Costs: B
  • Curriculum: A
  • Community: B
  • Comforts: A
  • Connections: B+ (Central Pennsylvania and Philadelphia)

Check out my First Impressions of Lebanon Valley College!

Check out my Lebanon Valley College Pinterest page!

Need help in considering and comparing colleges? Contact me at or call me at 609-406-0062.