Drexel University

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#122, overall score 46/100

Fun Fact:

In 1984, Drexel became the first university to require students to use microcomputers. University president William Hagerty thought that personal computers were just a fad but correctly predicted that it would be a good publicity stunt and spike enrollment.

Why should Jewish students attend Drexel? Drexel University is one of America’s 15 largest private universities, characterized by its world-renowned co-operative education model. A premier urban research center with over 13,000 undergraduate students, Drexel University has programs of particular strength in technology, industry, health professions and the arts. Drexel is home to an estimated population of over 900 Jewish undergraduates, and the University is committed to ensuring that Drexel is a welcoming and accessible campus for Jewish students. In addition supporting Hillel’s home at the University’s state-of-the-art Raymond G. Perelman Center for Jewish Life, the University boasts a minor in Judaic studies, study abroad opportunities in Israel and opportunities to co-op within the Jewish community locally and abroad. At Drexel we value each students intellectual, professional and personal growth, and Hillel and other Jewish organizations offer robust opportunities for Jewish undergraduate life that match the innovative, entrepreneurial and civic-minded heartbeat of our broader campus community. - Rabbi Isabel de Koninck, Director and campus rabbi, Hillel at Drexel University


  • Location: Philadelphia, Pa.
  • Region: Mid-Atlantic
  • Campus type: Big city
  • Public/Private: Private
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 13,251
  • Jewish undergraduate enrollment: 900
  • Jewish population share: 7%
  • Student origin: 49% in-state / 51% out-of-state
  • Student newspaper: The Triangle
  • NCAA Division: I
  • NCAA team: Dragons
  • Ultimate Frisbee teams: Dragons / Spitfire

What Students Say:

“Drexel is unique because of our proximity to the city of Philadelphia, as well as the fact that we use a quarter system, which makes for a fast-paced and engaging learning environment.”

COST & AID Score: 5/15

  • Score: 5/15
  • Tuition: $52,002
  • Room & board costs: $14,367
  • Average annual scholarship/grant package: $32,749
  • Scholarship for Jewish students: No

ACADEMICS Score: 5/20

  • Score: 5/20
  • Acceptance rate: 79%
  • Student/faculty ratio: 11:1
  • Median SAT range: 1160-1360
  • Jewish Studies program: Yes
  • Jewish Studies major: Minor
  • Hebrew major: Certificate

What Students Say:

“Drexel prepares us for life after college by providing the opportunity to go on co-op and get real work experience.”…“Packing everything into 10-week quarters can be super intense at times.”

ISRAEL Score: 14/20

  • Score: 14/20
  • Size of Birthright trip: 85
  • School-approved study abroad program in Israel: Yes
  • Israel Studies center: No
  • Israel-related clubs: Dragons for Israel, IAC Mishelanu
  • Jewish Agency for Israel fellow: No
  • BDS vote in last four years: Never introduced

SAFETY Score: 3.67/11

  • Score: 3.67/11
  • Anti-Semitic incidents in 2017: 2
  • Campus crime rate: 1.65/1,000 students (low)
  • City crime rate: 41.3/1,000 people (medium high)
  • LGBT center: Yes

JEWISH LIFE Score: 18.33/34

  • Score: 18.33/34
  • Hillel: Hillel at Drexel University
  • Chabad: Chabad Serving Drexel University
  • OU-JLIC: No
  • Other Jewish outreach group: Meor
  • Jewish fraternities: AEPi, ΣAM
  • Jewish sororities: No
  • Can you get kosher food on the school meal plan? No
  • Chicken soup hotline: No
  • Active Hillel clubs: 5
  • Hillel Friday night services: 2
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Hillel: 70
  • Average Shabbat attendance – Chabad: 60
  • Synagogues within 10 miles: 26 (7 Orthodox, 11 Conservative, 8 Reform)
  • Eruv: Yes
  • Where do Jewish students come from? All over the country.
  • Kosher food details: Aramark, the campus dining service provider, runs a small kosher grab-and-go-style cafe in the Perelman Center for Jewish Life, serving lunch and dinner four days a week. Hillel provides free kosher Shabbat dinner every week, Shabbat lunch once a month and holiday dinners. Students who keep strictly kosher are also able to opt-in to special “kosher-suites” for their first-year housing, and some students purchase supplemental meal plans at the University of Pennsylvania (located a few blocks away).

What Students Say:

“Drexel Hillel is truly pluralistic in that members from all over the Jewish spectrum gather and get along as a community.”…“The Jewish community could improve by growing and building more infrastructure for observant students.”

Do you attend this school? Do you want to tell us more about what life there is like? Take our survey here, and your feedback could be featured in next year’s guide! And if you’re a student or campus professional, join our online community Jewish Campus Confidential, and apply to become a Forward Campus Ambassador.

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