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Rank: 75

California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo

San Luis Obispo, CAhttps://calpoly.edu
Since its founding in 1903 as a vocational school with an emphasis on learning by doing, Cal Poly has evolved into a skills-focused university with 65 majors, including one in wine and viticulture and several within its well-known engineering school. The population is diverse, with 17% of students Hispanic and 13% Asian. Cal Poly covers more than 9,100 acres and uses canyons, ranches, beaches, and even a farm to teach students hands-on lessons in agriculture, biology, and forestry. Students will also find hiking and biking trails located throughout the properties. The university's graduation rate is 79%, and graduates report starting salaries of about $63,500, which is around 15% higher than their peers at similar universities, according to MONEY's calculations. In recent years, the school has been the beneficiary of formidable alumni largesse. In 2018, it opened an equestrian pavilion made possible by a $20 million gift from a former Apple executive and his wife. Another alum recently made a $110 million donation to the College of Science and Mathematics to support undergraduate research. Cal Poly's home is sunny San Luis Obispo, located on the California coast about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco. Surrounded by vineyards and farm-to-table restaurants, the campus is minutes from the beach and also close to Hearst Castle.
costs
Est. Full Price 2019-2020
$28,400
% of students who get any grants
52%
Est. price for students who receive aid
$20,300
Average price for low-income students
$12,250
admissions
Acceptance rate
35%
Median SAT/ACT Score
1290/29
SAT/ACT required?
Yes
Enrollment
21,303
Financial Aid
% of students with need who get grants
88%
% of need met
58%
% of students who get merit* grants
13%
Average merit grant
$2,301
student success
Graduation rate
79%
Average time to a degree
4.5 years
Average student debt
$18,630
Average salary within 3 years
$63,500
% of low-income students who become upper middle class
54%
key deadlines
Early decision application
N/A
Regular application
Nov 30

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Opportunity Insights.

* Share of full-time undergraduates who had no financial need and were awarded grants.

Sources: U.S. Department of Education, Peterson's, PayScale.com, MONEY/College Measures calculations, Opportunity Insights.

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