A small college with about 1,300 undergraduate students, Claremont McKenna College is a highly selective school, admitting just 10% of applicants. The school offers over 30 majors, but it's best known for its programs in economics, psychology and government.

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Claremont McKenna is a member of the Claremont Colleges, a consortium that includes Pomona College, Scripps College, Harvey Mudd College and Pitzer College. Students can take classes at member colleges, and participate in co-curricular activities through those schools.

The school boasts a high graduation rate; 95% of its students graduate within six years, and a degree from the college can lead to a high salary. The median earnings of students 10 years after enrolling was about $97,000.

Construction is currently underway for a new state-of-the-art sciences center, which is scheduled to open in 2025 and will provide students with “first-hand experiences engaging in scientific discovery,” according to the school. Well-known alums include former Google executive Jonathan Rosenberg and former Montana Gov. Steve Bullock.

In their downtime, CMC students can relax at the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum, a college club where students and faculty gather to dine and listen to guest speakers like author Michael Chabon, astronaut Ellen Ochoa and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Peter Balakian.