Scimago Institutions Ranking has ranked 4 Peruvian universities among the 1000 best in the world, La Republica reports. Of the 4 institutions, three are private (in order of ranking): the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru, Cayetano Heredia University, and the Peruvian University of Applied Sciences. These universities are all expensive and generally accessible only to the middle and upper class in Peru.
The fourth-ranked university in Peru, the National University of San Marcos, stands as the only public university of the four that made the list. It is also the oldest currently active university in the Americas, founded in 1551 by Carlos V, the king of Spain at the time. It has passed through nearly every era of Peru’s history since the arrival of the Spanish and its reputation has developed from a conservative and religious to secular, autonomous, and progressive throughout the centuries.
Public universities in Peru are free of charge for undergraduate degrees to those who can pass the entrance exams, making San Marcos the only university on the list actually accessible to the majority of Peruvians of lower-middle and lower economic means. However, the entrance exam is extremely difficult and less than 10% of those who apply actually enter, according to UniRank, making this public university highly selective in that it only accepts the most prepared applicants.
All 4 universities on the list are located in the capital city of Lima.