Colleges in Philadelphia: Universities, Trade and Technical Schools

From climbing the 72 steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and getting a picture with the statue of Rocky to historical attractions such as the Liberty Bell or simply dining on a world-famous cheesesteak sandwich, Philadelphia — the City of Brotherly Love — offers many diversions for college students.

There are also dozens of vocational schools, colleges and universities in Philadelphia. The city is home to several of the nation's top postsecondary institutions, including Temple University, Drexel University, and the University of Pennsylvania.

Fun Facts about Trade and Technical Schools in Philadelphia

Many residents of Philadelphia get their careers started at Brightwood Career Institute. The school's most popular vocational programs include dental and medical assisting and electrician training. Other career-focused trade colleges in Philadelphia include Philadelphia Technician Training, PITC Institute for practical nursing, and Lincoln Technical Institute.

Community College of Philadelphia also offers a wide range of technical programs, such as automotive technology, biomedical equipment technician, and process technology for students interested in working as process operators for large Philly employers such as Philadelphia Gas Works or the Philadelphia Water Department.

Fun Facts about Philadelphia Colleges and Universities

There are many highly respected fine art and music universities in Philadelphia, including Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, University of the Arts, Curtis Institute of Music, and Hussian College School of Art.

The largest undergraduate enrollment at public colleges in Philadelphia is at Temple University. And the University of Pennsylvania, founded in 1740, is the oldest institution of higher education in the city. Drexel and Saint Joseph's University are the largest private universities in Pennsylvania. Drexel, founded in 1891, three campus locations in Philadelphia. Drexel in 1983 became the first college in America to require every incoming student to have a computer.

Graduate Schools in Philadelphia

Students who wish to advance their education past the baccalaureate level have many different options through Philadelphia colleges. While many students pursue master's degrees in art and music at one of the city's fine arts colleges, the majority of graduate students attend Temple, Drexel, or University of Pennsylvania. Finance and business were two of the most popular master's programs at the University of Pennsylvania, while nursing and library sciences were most the most widely pursued master's degrees at Drexel.

To learn more about higher education opportunities in the Keystone State, see our extensive listing of Pennsylvania colleges.


  • Programs, Brightwood Career Institute, College Navigator, https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=PA&zc=19102&zd=10&l=91&of=0&od=0&id=214254#programs, accessed September 2018
  • About, University of Pennsylvania, https://www.upenn.edu/about, accessed September 2018
  • About, Drexel University, https://drexel.edu/about/glance/, accessed September 2018
  • Fast Facts, Drexel University, https://drexel.edu/about/glance/fast-facts/, accessed September 2018
  • Programs, University of Pennsylvania, College Navigator, https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=PA&zc=19102&zd=10&of=3&l=94&id=215062#programs, accessed September 2018
  • Programs, Drexel University, College Navigator, https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=PA&zc=19102&zd=10&of=3&l=94&id=212054#programs, accessed September 2018

Education Institutes in Philadelphia
Total Number of Educational Institutes
Total Enrollment in all institutes
Number of Public Educational Institutes
Number of Private For-Profit Institutes
Number of Private Non-Profit Institutes
Graduation Rate
Total Graduates With Bachelors Degree
On Campus and Online Programs in Philadelphia
Number of Institutes Offering on-campus programs
Number of Institutes Offering on-line programs
Number of Institutes Offering both
Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/
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Colleges and Universities in Philadelphia
SchoolTotal EnrollmentInstitution LevelAvg In-State TuitionPrograms Offered
Academy of Vocal Arts28Four or more yearsN/A1
Chestnut Hill College1,838Four or more years33,93087
Curtis Institute of Music173Four or more yearsN/A10
Drexel University24,232Four or more years48,660270
Holy Family University2,737Four or more years28,76280
Hussian College School of Art50Four or more years18,6002
La Salle University5,197Four or more years40,400160
Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia190Four or more yearsN/A8
Roxborough Memorial Hospital School of Nursing154At least 2 but less than 4 years11,2501
The Workforce Institute's City College31At least 2 but less than 4 years11,9972
Moore College of Art and Design401Four or more years37,03214
Orleans Technical College358At least 2 but less than 4 yearsN/A8
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts287Four or more years34,60812
University of Pennsylvania24,960Four or more years45,556327
The University of the Arts1,917Four or more years41,46446
Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/
Study Online in Philadelphia