"Chartered in 1746 as the College of New Jersey -- the name by which it was known for 150 years -- Princeton University was British North America's fourth college. Located in Elizabeth for one year and then in Newark for nine, the College of New Jersey moved to Princeton in 1756. It was housed in Nassau Hall, which was newly built on land donated by Nathaniel FitzRandolph. Nassau Hall contained the entire College for nearly half a century. In 1896 when expanded program offerings brought the College university status, the College of New Jersey was officially renamed Princeton University in honor of its host community of Princeton. Four years later in 1900 the Graduate School was established.
Fully coeducational since 1969, Princeton during the 2000-01 academic year enrolled 6,438 students -- 4,554 undergraduates (634 of whom are New Jersey residents, representing every county in the state) and 1,853 graduate students. The ratio of full-time students to faculty members (in full-time equivalents) is 5.6 to 1.
Living up to its motto "In the Nation's Service and in the Service of All Nations," Princeton University has educated thousands of individuals who have dedicated their lives to public service, including two U. S. presidents (Woodrow Wilson and James Madison); hundreds of U. S. and state legislators (the House of Representatives, for example, has housed a Princeton alumnus every year since it first met in 1789); and 44 governors, including 11 New Jersey governors. Each year, more than 2,500 members of the student body, faculty, and staff volunteer in community service projects throughout the region. Reflecting this public service spirit, the University as an institution supports many service initiatives (see Service/Outreach, page 36).
Today Princeton's main campus in Princeton Borough and Princeton Township consists of more than 6 million square feet of space in 160 buildings on 500 acres.
The University, with 11,754 employees (permanent and casual), is Mercer County's largest private employer and one of the largest in the region. It plays a major role in the educational, cultural, and economic life in the area by bringing an estimated 500,000 visitors and $1.5 billion in economic activity to the region."www.princeton.edu