umass & western mass
The University of Massachusetts is one of today's leading centers of
public higher education in the Northeast, with a strong commitment to
its land grant mission of education, research, and public service. In
recent years, it has extended its reputation for excellence and
broadened its academic offerings, while external support of research
has doubled. Its ten schools, colleges, and faculties offer bachelor's
degrees in ninety-two fields, master's degrees in seventy-one fields,
and doctorate degrees in fifty fields. Enrollment of undergraduates and
graduates is approximately twenty-four thousand.
Amherst College, Smith College, Mount Holyoke College, and Hampshire
College are also located in the Pioneer Valley, in close proximity to
UMass. Along with UMass, these "Five Colleges," as they are known, have
established cooperative arrangements that allow students to take
classes and use resources at the other four institutions.
The Pioneer Valley location of the University offers a rich cultural
environment in a rural setting. At the south end of the valley is the
city of Springfield, a diverse city of two hundred thousand. To the
west are the Berkshire Mountains, an ideal vacation spot offering white
water rafting, hiking, and camping in the spring and summer, and skiing
in the winter. Ten minutes from the campus is Northampton, with a
vibrant main street filled with unique boutiques, European-style cafes,
and a rich cultural life. The University is only ninety miles from
Boston and three hours from New York City.