One of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world, the California institute of Technology has six academic divisions with strong emphases on science and engineering. Although it is a small university, over thirty faculty members and alumni are Nobel laureates and even more have been honored with a National Medal of Science or Technology. Most students participate in research through Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships; not surprising for a university with almost 800,000 square feet dedicated research space and almost $300 million in annual research expenditures. An intense rivalry with MIT has manifested itself through the years in a series of elaborate pranks and jokes. Students and faculty abide by a strictly defined honor code enforced by undergraduate students that allows a majority of exams to be administered as ‘take-home’. With one of the best student to faculty ratios in the country and an extremely challenging workload, its a wonder students find ways to enjoy the southern California sunshine.
|Admissions Phone||626 395-6341|
|Codes||SAT: 4034 ACT: 0182 FAFSA: 001131 CSS Profile: 4034|
|Location||Pasadena, California; Medium city between the city of Los Angeles and the Angeles National Forest|
|College Type||Private (nonprofit)|
|College Newspaper||The California Tech|
|Enrollment||~1,000 undergraduate students|
|Popular Programs||Engineering, Physical Sciences, Mathematics|
|Student Life||All first year students live in the ‘house system’ which comprises of 4 south and 3 north houses. While Caltech is known as one of the most challenging academic institutions in the world, students find time to have a laugh. Pranks against MIT are well documented and diverse. Other traditions include ‘Ditch Day’ where seniors devise complicated traps to prevent underclassmen from entering their rooms as well as the Millikan pumpkin-drop experiment on Halloween.|
|International||~10% of undergrads; TOEFL: Recommended; SAT or ACT: Required; Financial Aid Available|
|Transfer||Yes, Fall; Minimum 3.5 GPA and students must take Caltech’s physics and mathematics exams|
|Crossover||MIT, Stanford, Carnegie Mellon, Harvard|
|Other||Most Selective (~10% admitted), Early Action, Common Application|
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Lynn Radlauer Lubell, Publisher of InLikeMe.com and Founder of Admission By Design, an Educational Consultancy based in Boca Raton, Florida.