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Ambitious Together

We are an intellectually insatiable group of people. We approach learning with enthusiasm, energy, and a distinctly Carleton brand of playfulness. Carleton is a collaborative place where students and professors work together to make sense of the messiness of life.

Video: A circle of several hundred students throw Frisbees on the Bald Spot

Excellence in Education

Carleton consistently ranks among the country’s top 10 liberal arts colleges.

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We’re #1 in undergraduate teaching among US liberal arts colleges
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Our student:faculty ratio is 9:1
More than 2/3 of our students complete an internship
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More than 75% of Carleton alumni go on to graduate school within five years

Campus Photos

A group of students walks towards the camera, smiling and carrying backpacks

Explore Our Campus

Located in a charming river town in southern Minnesota, Carleton’s campus is a perfect place to call home. You’ll never lack for things to do on campus or in Northfield, but it’s nice to know the bustling cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul are only 40 miles away.

A crowd of people gather at tables for lunch in the large, vaulted space of Sayles-Hill Campus Center

Sayles-Hill Campus Center

The center of campus life, Sayles is home to Carleton’s snack bar, bookstore, post office, and many other student gathering spots. It’s also where you’ll find the time-honored tradition of Friday Flowers, when students stuff each other’s mailboxes with blooms from a local florist.

Many bikes line up at the bike racks by the main entrance to Gould Library

Gould Library

Carleton students aren’t kidding when they say the “Libe” is their favorite place on campus. See an art exhibit, visit Oscar the penguin, or attend a lecture on creating comic books. Or spend a couple hours studying — or napping — in your favorite spot.

Silhouetted in the autumn sunset, two people walk along a path canopied by trees

Cowling Arboretum

Just steps away from academic buildings and residence halls is the Cowling Arboretum, 800 acres of forests, wetlands, oak savannas, and prairies. The Arb offers endless opportunities for recreation and enrichment, and is a perfect place to enjoy Minnesota’s four seasons.

A student in snow gear smiles as he holds up a hand to stop a friend's snowball from getting even more snow in his beard

Winter Full of Wonder

The Swedes say, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.” At Carleton, we say winter means clearer nights for stargazing and a chance to take to the rink for hockey or broomball. It’s also a perfect excuse to stay inside for hot cocoa and a study session.

In Our Own Words

Whatever your passions and talents, you can express them here. We want to get to know you. And we want you to get to know us.

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Carleton Alumni

Carleton alumni do amazing things. Here are some of their stories.

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True Brit

Filmmaking helped Brit Fryer ’15 discover how to be true to both himself and his artistic voice.

Alumni Story
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Ready to Play

Recognizing a void in the marketplace, Jamie Glover ’06 and Fatimah Hussein teamed up to found ASIYA Sport, a company that manufactures modest sportswear for Muslim athletes.

Alumni Story
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Science Meets Fiction

Four Carls are converting the dreams of science fiction writers into reality at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Alumni Story