Campus Life

Princeton brings together undergraduate and graduate students from all backgrounds, and every corner of the earth, to share their experiences and perspectives with one another. All University programs and activities are open to all eligible students without regard to identity.

Housing and Dining

First- and second-year students live and dine in one of the University’s seven residential colleges: Butler, Forbes, Mathey, New College West, Rockefeller, Whitman or Yeh. In junior and senior year, students have the option of continuing to live in their residential college or of moving into the upperclass dormitories.

Approximately 96% of Princeton undergraduates live on campus. Approximately 61% of juniors and seniors in the Class of 2021 and 2022 took their meals at one of 11 private, coed eating clubs. Many juniors and seniors choose to continue eating in the residential colleges; others may join a cooperative, cook their own meals in dormitory kitchens or make other independent arrangements. In addition to dining at one of the residential dining halls, all students may enjoy meals at the Center for Jewish Life (which houses the University’s kosher dining facility), Frist Campus Center or one of the numerous campus cafés. Halal options are available to students in the residential colleges and at Frist Food Gallery. Students can also order kosher meals to have in any of the residential dining halls with 24 hours’ advance notice.

Eating Clubs

The 11 eating clubs are private, coeducational dining and social clubs that are part of a tradition that extends over 140 years. Each club has its own distinctive architecture and culture, and members often think of their club as a “home away from home.” Six clubs have a selective membership process, while five clubs are open to any student who wants to join. In addition to meals and social events, the clubs provide a range of activities and opportunities. While the club fees, billed separately, are more expensive than other meal plan options, Princeton provides increased financial aid to upperclassmen, contributing toward the additional cost.

Housing for Enrolled Graduate Students

Approximately 70% of regularly enrolled graduate students currently live in University housing. Dormitories include historic and modern rooms in the Graduate College and rooms in converted homes, known as annexes. Another dormitory living option for graduate students is to apply to be a resident graduate student in one of the undergraduate residential colleges. For students choosing apartment communities at Lakeside Apartments and other locations, there is a range of unit sizes in both high-rise and garden configurations. University residential life offers academic, athletic, social, cultural, personal-development and community-service opportunities to graduate students and their families. In Winter 2024, the new Meadows Neighborhood is scheduled for completion, which will allow the University to offer on-campus housing to all regularly-enrolled graduate students who want to live on campus.

Graduate students gather for meals in Procter Hall at the Graduate College, in dining halls at the residential colleges, at Frist Campus Center, at campus cafés, and in the dining hall at the Center for Jewish Life.

Campus Centers

  • Frist Campus Center is a place where the entire campus community, as well as visitors, meet and interact, engaging in a variety of programs, events and services that enrich campus life.
  • Campus Club is a social facility for undergraduate and graduate students. The club hosts numerous student-organization activities and offers flexible spaces for casual relaxation and formal gatherings.
  • The Center for Jewish Life is a welcoming and inclusive community where all students on campus can explore their connection to Jewish life through Shabbat and holiday celebrations, as well as social, cultural, religious and educational activities.
  • The Kathryn W. and Shelby Cullom Davis ’30 International Center is the primary resource for international students and scholars.  Advisors offer specialized support including immigration advising and resources to assist with cultural and practical adjustment issues. Davis IC programs and events offer opportunities to develop social connections and gather information that will help students and scholars as they settle into life at Princeton. The staff of the Davis International Center work closely with units across campus to continue to provide support for students.
  • The Carl A. Fields Center for Equality and Cultural Understanding focuses on exploring issues of diversity, equity and cultural pluralism and also provides a variety of flexible spaces for cultural, educational and community building programs by student organizations. The Center engages the campus community through University-wide programming.
  • The Gender + Sexuality Resource Center (GSRC) at Princeton launched in fall 2021. Building upon the historical legacy and impactful work of Princeton’s Women*s Center and LGBT Center, the GSRC seeks to center often marginalized populations, especially women, femme, queer, and trans students. The GSRC serves the entire campus community and offers gender and sexuality programming, connections to resources, educational opportunities, mentorship programs, and co-curricular experiences. 

Religious Life

The Princeton community is home to many religious denominations that welcome involvement by students, faculty and staff. The Office of Religious Life supports the religious traditions that flourish on Princeton’s campus and encourages interfaith dialogue and cooperation. Through its own programs and in collaboration with others, the office provides opportunities for community service, cross-cultural understanding and constructive social action. The University also supports 17 campus chaplaincies and numerous faith-based student organizations. Religious facilities at Princeton include the University Chapel and the Center for Jewish Life. The Office of Religious Life is housed in Murray-Dodge Hall, which includes the Muslim Prayer Room, the Interfaith Prayer Room and the Murray-Dodge Café.

Athletics

Princeton sponsors 38 varsity intercollegiate teams (19 for men, 19 for women), with approximately 1,000 participants—about 20% of the undergraduate population. In 2022–23, Princeton added its 38th varsity sport with the elevation of women’s rugby to varsity status. In addition, an estimated 1,000 students participate in the University’s 39 club teams.

Varsity Sports. Princeton teams have won more Ivy League championships than any school since the formation of the league in 1956. With 527 overall Ivy titles, nearly one-quarter of all Ivy championships won have gone to Princeton teams. Since 2000, 31 of the 33 Princeton teams that compete in official Ivy League sports have won at least one league championship.

Princeton won 13 Ivy League championships in 2022-23, and three other Princeton teams won championships in leagues outside of the Ivy League. The 13 Ivy championships marked the 12th time in 14 years, and 28th time overall, that Princeton has reached double figures in Ivy League championships, something only one other league school has ever done even once. Princeton also finished first in the Ivy League and 26th overall in the Directors’ Cup standings, which measure overall athletic success based on NCAA tournament participation and results. 

Campus Recreation. Campus Recreation engages the Princeton University community in co-curricular experiences to inspire lifelong health and well-being. Dillon Gymnasium is the dedicated recreation space where students and members can access our fitness facilities, basketball courts, swimming pool and multipurpose rooms. Over 500 teams are active in the intramural program, which schedules competition among residential colleges, eating clubs, independent groups, and faculty and staff. Students can participate in 39 active clubs in the sport club program. Princeton’s group fitness and instructional program offers a variety of strength, cardio, dance, yoga/pilates, cycling and skill development classes that are available for all undergraduate and graduate students with the presentation of their ID (faculty/staff have access via FlexPass purchase). The Campus Recreation facility and programs are led by Princeton students, and Campus Recreation has over 150 student employees who assist in providing a safe and fun environment for the campus community.

Athletic Facilities

  • Jadwin Gymnasium provides 250,000 square feet of indoor space for intercollegiate sports and a practice area for outdoor field sports. Jadwin is the site of Pete Carril Court, home of the men’s and women’s basketball teams, and is also home to the wrestling, fencing, and squash programs.
  • Dillon Gymnasium has facilities for recreational activities and houses the Stephens Fitness Center while also serving as the home venue for varsity men’s and women’s volleyball.
  • DeNunzio Pool provides complete facilities for competitive swimming and diving and water polo.
  • Princeton Stadium has a seating capacity of 27,800. The field was named Powers Field at Princeton Stadium beginning with the 2007–08 season. Powers Field is covered by a “bubble” each winter to enable year-round use. 
  • Weaver Track and Field Stadium has an eight-lane Olympic track and has hosted some of the nation’s premier college track and field events.
  • Class of 1952 Stadium is a lighted facility that accommodates approximately 4,000 spectators for both lacrosse and field hockey, with a shared grandstand and pressbox between two fields.
  • Sherrerd Field is the home for men’s and women’s lacrosse located at Class of 1952 Stadium. Bedford Field is the home of Princeton field hockey.
  • Myslik Field at Roberts Stadium opened in the fall of 2022 and is the home to varsity men’s and women’s soccer.
  • Shea Rowing Center is home to the crew program.
  • Hobey Baker Memorial Rink houses men’s and women’s hockey and ice skating.
  • Clarke Field has been the home of Princeton’s baseball team for six decades and was renovated in 2016 to include new dugouts for team use.
  • Princeton Softball Stadium at Strubing Field began as the temporary home of the Princeton softball team in the fall of 2019 and will be in use until its new stadium in the Meadows Neighborhood, the planned development on the south side of Lake Carnegie, is completed.
  • Temporary tennis courts have been built adjacent to Bedford Field while a new state-of-the-art racquet facility is completed in the Meadows Neighborhood.
  • Outdoor athletic facilities also include an 18-hole golf course with a new golf performance center. The University has more than 50 acres of fields, including the Finney/Campbell FieldTurf fields, for baseball, softball, soccer, lacrosse and rugby, as well as many intramural sports.

Student Activities

Student Organizations

Student organizations are created and run by students with support from the University through the Office of the Dean of Undergraduate Students, the Pace Center for Civic Engagement, the Office of Religious Life, and Campus Recreation. Some 500 organizations make it easy for students to engage their interests outside the classroom.

Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC)

Princeton students may participate in the Army, Air Force or Navy ROTC programs. The Army program is hosted at Princeton and includes students from TCNJ, Rider University and Rowan University. The Air Force and Navy programs are cross-town programs hosted at Rutgers University. Princeton ROTC celebrated its 100th anniversary on Veterans Day 2019. Fifty-eight students chose to participate in the ROTC programs during the 2022-23 academic year. These programs are conducted by the United States Armed Services. Participants engage in courses and activities that, if successfully completed, lead to a commission as an officer.

Student Creative and Performing Arts Spaces

  • The programs of the Lewis Center for the Arts occur in venues throughout the Princeton campus including the Lewis Arts complex and its state-of-the-art Wallace Theater, Hearst Dance Theater, Hurley Gallery, Forum, Co-Lab, and acting and dance studios; the James Stewart Film Theater, the Lucas Gallery, Hagan Gallery, photography darkrooms, sculpture shop, and specialized studios at 185 Nassau St.; the 350-seat Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center; and writing seminar rooms and dance and theater studios in the New South building. Creative activities also take place at galleries, studios and theater spaces in the residential colleges; and other traditional and nontraditional spaces around campus.  
     
  • McCarter Theatre Center offers theater, music, dance, film and other events. The theater also hosts the annual show presented by student members of the Triangle Club. McCarter’s Berlind Theatre houses major productions of the Program in Theater and Music Theater and the Program in Dance.
     
  • Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall hosts musical, dramatic and other performances, most open to the public.
     
  • Theatre Intime, a student-run facility, schedules dramatic productions, dance concerts and comedy shows throughout the year at Murray-Dodge Hall.
  • The residential colleges are also home to rehearsal and performance spaces for students, including the Choi Glass Box Theater, the Class of 1970 Theater, the Whitman Dance Studio and other music and dance practice rooms. 

  •  The Frist Campus Center Performance Theater is a multipurpose performance space that hosts theatrical productions, musical events, and other performances throughout the year.

  • The music department’s facilities span the campus. Classes, rehearsals, masterclasses, workshops and performances take place throughout the Woolworth Center for Music Studies, the Effron Music Building, Taplin Auditorium in Fine Hall, and Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall. All Princeton University students may request access to practice rooms through the music school’s website.