All-Girls Education

Value of an Ellis Education

HOW WELL DOES AN ELLIS EDUCATION PREPARE YOUNG WOMEN FOR COLLEGE?
In spring 2012, The Ellis School conducted an online survey of recent Ellis graduates. We asked alumnae who were still in college to respond to a series of questions about how Ellis prepared them for college-level academic work in a variety of subject areas. We also asked how their leadership, project management, and study skills compared to those of their peers at college. Here’s what our college-aged alumnae said about their Ellis education:
  • 95% of girls feel that Ellis encourages high academic expectations and achievement.
  • 90% of girls feel Ellis was a very supportive environment.
  • 80% of girls feel that their overall confidence level was due to their girls-only education at Ellis.
  • 80% of alumnae state that the girls-only educational environment at Ellis was extremely valuable.
  • 75% of girls state that Ellis was a place where they could safely take risks and try new things.

READINESS FOR COLLEGE-LEVEL WORK:
  • 100% of alumnae indicated that they were exceptionally or very well prepared for college-level English.
  • 98% of alumnae felt an Ellis education prepared them for college-level writing.
  • 90% of alumnae who graduated from Ellis said they were creative and open-minded.
  • 90% of alumnae felt that, because of Ellis, they were excellent test-takers and studiers.
  • 85% of alumnae said that Ellis taught them how to understand challenging information and interpret it for others.
  • 80% of alumnae felt Ellis prepared them very well or exceptionally well in History and Languages.

ACADEMIC ABILITY COMPARED TO THEIR PEERS:
  • 90% of Ellis alumnae said they are more organized and have better study skills than their college peers.
  • 85% of Ellis alumnae said they are better writers than their college peers.
  • 80% of Ellis alumnae ranked their overall academic ability as higher than their college peers.
  • 75% of alumnae indicated they have above-average research skills and perform better than their peers on tests.

LEADERSHIP ABILITY COMPARED TO THEIR PEERS:
  • 85% of alumnae felt they were more creative and open-minded than their college peers.
  • 80% of alumnae felt they have a deeper understanding of culture than their peers at college.
  • 80% of alumnae felt they were more innovative, better problem solvers, and more effective collaborators than their peers.
  • 75% of alumnae thought they were better project leaders than their peers at college.

WHEN ASKED WHAT ASPECTS OF THEIR ELLIS EXPERIENCE WERE MOST VALUABLE, THEIR TOP ANSWERS WERE:
  • Teachers  96%
  • Individual Attention 96%
  • Small classes  96%
  • AP courses  96%
  • Academic courses  94%
 
ATHLETICS:
When asked if they currently play a sport or participate in athletics, 87% indicated that they are involved in athletics, either as part of a collegiate or intramural team, or by going to the gym or running on their own.
 
VOLUNTEERISM:
76% volunteer their time in their community or at the college or university.
 
ADVANCED DEGREES:
42% indicate that they will pursue a master’s degree or doctorate.

If you’d like to learn more about the true value of an Ellis education, contact our office of Alumnae Affairs or our Admissions Office to learn more.
The Ellis alumnae survey is consistent with findings from a national study conducted by UCLA’s Graduate School of Education & Information Studies, which showed that girls’ school graduates have a significant edge over their coeducational peers. The UCLA study found that girls’ school graduates entering their first year of college consistently assess their self-confidence, engagement, ambition, and abilities across academic disciplines as stronger than those of their peers from coeducational schools.

A Question of value

LEADERS DISCUSS WHY INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS ARE WORTH IT
“For 100 years, The Ellis School has provided an excellent education to girls and young women. In this girl-​centered, immersive environment, tailored specifically to the development and empowerment of girls, students push the limits of their potential, pursuing a rigorous curriculum that offers a breadth and depth of study that meets their individual interests, talents and goals. Girls hold every leadership position — they captain every team, are the lead in every play, and sit at the head of every class. Guided by expert faculty, Ellis girls are uniquely equipped with the confidence and authority to be well prepared, personally empowered and intellectually inspired to succeed in school and in life. Supported within a diverse community and by an enduring alumnae network of talented and successful women, every Ellis girl develops the skills and sense of self that will propel her ongoing success as a life-​long learner.”
— Robin O. Newham, Head of School

PITTSBURGH QUARTERLY, FALL 2016