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University of Colorado at Boulder

CU Boulder

[photo from CU Boulder website]

The University of Colorado at Boulder has become a popular place for California students to apply – they receive nearly 4,000 applications from California, and 800 students enrolled in the freshman class in 2013.

Of the class that just entered in fall, 2013, 56% are from Colorado, and 22% are minority students.  There are students from every state at Boulder, as well as 70 foreign countries.

While Boulder is a large and spirited school, it is also a research intensive institution, emphasizing the opportunity for students to do research and get hands-on experience in every discipline.  Boulder is a top location for start-ups, so students have success finding internships, especially with companies that have an environmental or sustainable focus.  Some professors live in the dorms, giving students the chance to get to know their professors in a personal context.  The student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1.  About a quarter of students spend some time studying abroad, with many faculty personally leading study trips connected to classes they teach.

Boulder

When I attended an info session on Boulder, these were the items they said they consider for admission (click to enlarge).

CU Boulder has 24,000 undergraduate students, and the top-tier college town has about 100,000 residents.  Boulder is about 30 miles from downtown Denver, and 22 miles from the nearest ski resort.  Boulder is a very sporty campus, with 12 Division I varsity sports teams in the Pac 12 conference.  There are also 34 club sports and 26 intramural teams.  Boulder is also one of America’s fittest towns, with 60-80 Olympic athletes making Boulder their home.

Academically, Boulder has the best atomic, molecular and optical physics dept in world, with a Hadron collider (think “Big Bang Theory”).  There are 60 members on faculty in this department, which boasts 10 members of the National Academy of Sciences.

About 70% of the students are in the College of Arts & Sciences, but because there are no impacted majors, students can move easily between majors and colleges.  There are 50 majors within CAS and 80 majors overall.  There are also 32 5-year BA/MA programs, and Boulder offers a four-year tuition guarantee; the tuition will remain the same for eight consecutive semesters.

It’s easy to see why Los Angeles students are drawn to CU Boulder – a break from the big city but a great college town, very serious about sports and very serious about academics.  And beautiful scenery as well!

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