1 at 116th St.-Columbia University
Manhattan’s Ivy, Columbia University, was founded in 1754 as King’s College, making it the oldest university in the state and the fifth oldest in the country. The campus dominates a six-block stretch in Morningside Heights as well as a number of research and athletic facilities scattered throughout Manhattan, securing Columbia’s rank as the second largest landowner in the city, topped only by the Catholic Church. Campus buildings, many of which are framed by well-manicured lawns and rows of trees, were modeled after the architecture of the Italian Renaissance, and house three undergraduate schools, four affiliated institutions (including Barnard College for women), and thirteen graduate and professional schools. The design for the central Low Memorial Library, now an administrative building that houses the offices of the university president and provost, was based on Rome’s Pantheon and Athens’ Parthenon, and is topped with the largest all-granite dome in North America. The university counts three former presidents (Alexander Hamilton, Theodore Roosevelt, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt) as well as Barack Obama among its graduates, in addition to political and literary heavyweights like John Jay, Langston Hughes, and Jack Kerouac.