Desert Fox wrote:I've noticed people from the Northeast have a huge anti-state school bias. Are your state schools there terrible or something?
Penn state is known for anything but it's academics around here. The fact that they have satellite campuses that is not selective doesn't help either. Pretty much anyone can go to Penn State. It isn't bad, but it isn't "impressive" because of the lack of selectivity. People think ivies are elites because they are hard to get into, and harder to pay for.
My guess is also time. With the exception of Cornell(who was late to the party in 1865), 7 of the 8 Ivy League universities constitute 7 of the 9 colonial colleges (chartered, and in most cases founded, pre-American Revolution). The other 2 non-Ivy colonial colleges are The College of William & Mary and Rutgers. So you've got Harvard and The College of William & Mary in the 1600s, the others in the 1700s(Dartmouth bringing up the rear in 1769).
In comparison, the UConn was established in 1881 and UMass in 1863 and Penn State in 1855. The Ivies (with the exception of Cornell) came 100+ years earlier.
Other top private schools that came later include, but are not limited to, MIT(1861), Stanford (1891), UChicago(1890, though not a lot of lay prestige), Duke (1838), but MIT got a lot of money through government funding and had a niche for being technologically focused, and the other 3 are star private schools in their region.