Colorado School of Mines

2014 Quick Stats
1500 Illinois Street

Golden, CO 80401

Phone: (303) 273-3000
2013-2014 Tuition
male /
May 1
application deadline

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U.S. News Rankings

Ranking score and category
U.S. News rank Category Name
#91 Overall Score: 50 out of 100. National Universities

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Colorado School of Mines is a public institution that was founded in 1874. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 4,169, its setting is suburban, and the campus size is 491 acres. It utilizes a semester-based academic calendar. Colorado School of Mines's ranking in the 2014 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 91. Its in-state tuition and fees are $16,485 (2013-14); out-of-state tuition and fees are $32,415 (2013-14).

For students who want to work in the sciences, opportunities abound at the Colorado School of Mines. A public engineering and applied sciences school in Golden, Colorado, Mines has 14 academic departments, including Mechanical Engineering and Geophysics. The school also offers courses in the Liberal Arts & International Studies and Economics & Business departments. When students aren’t studying, the school’s location is ideal for outdoor recreation. Golden is 13 miles from the state capital of Denver and lies in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, where students can bike, hike and climb. The campus also has a climbing wall for students to test their skills before attempting the Rockies. Cold-weather sports fans can partake in the annual Winter Carnival, a student-run affair packed with skiing and snowboarding at a local resort. The Mines sports teams, known as the Orediggers, compete in the NCAA Division II Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, which is mostly made up of other teams from Colorado. The school mascot is Blaster the burro, and a giant "M" emblazoned onto nearby Mount Zion signifies the school spirit. There are more than 140 student clubs and organizations, including seven fraternities and three sororities. First-year students are required to live on campus. Even the student newspaper, The Oredigger, is decidedly science based; sections include weekly roundups of new discoveries and a Geek of the Week feature.

Research opportunities abound for undergraduate and graduate students at the Renewable Energy Materials Research Science and Engineering Center and the Unconventional Natural Gas and Oil Institute, two on-campus powerhouses for energy innovation. The school campus is also home to a geology museum, where admission is free and students can check out displays from moon rocks to fossilized dinosaur tracks. Mines alumni garner some of the highest-paid starting salaries in the country, and graduates have gone on to excel as engineers, scientists and entrepreneurs. Notable alumni include Andrew Swiger, senior vice president and principal financial officer of ExxonMobil, and Harold M. Korell, executive chairman of the board of Southwestern Energy.

School mission and unique qualities (as provided by the school):

Colorado School of Mines is a public research university long known for its excellent, accredited academic programs in engineering and applied sciences. It has the highest admissions standards of any public university in Colo. and among the highest of any public university in the U.S. Mines has distinguished itself by developing a curriculum and research program geared towards responsible stewardship of the earth and its resources. Mines has a specialized and focused mission to enhance understanding of the earth, energy and the environment. Mines is helping find answers to some of the major problems of our times. Mines' renowned faculty creates a challenging and supportive learning environment for our students. Our graduates are in great demand by companies and government agencies around the world. Mines' rigorous degree programs provide a technical education and students receive exposure and training in areas such as communication, leadership, teamwork and ethics. Additionally, our extensive laboratory infrastructure ensures students have plenty of hands-on training in their coursework. Graduate students join a community of scholars who are global leaders in their fields. Research funding from government agencies and private corporations supports cutting-edge work in alternative and traditional energy resources, mineral economics, earth sciences, materials, and environmental science and engineering. Strong partnerships with local government laboratories, including the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, the Bureau of Reclamation and the US Geological Survey, provide rich opportunities for students to become involved in world-class research. In addition to strong education and research programs in traditional fields of science and engineering, Mines is one of a very few institutions in the world having broad expertise in resource exploration, extraction, production and utilization. Mines offers all the advantages of a world-class research institution with a size that allows for personal attention. With a student body of about 5,300, Mines has a student/faculty ratio of 16:1. Situated in Golden, Colorado, against the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains, the Mines community enjoys nearby hiking, camping, bicycling, kayaking, fly fishing, rock climbing, white-water rafting, skiing, and snowboarding; there are about a dozen major ski areas within a 1-3 hours' drive from campus. Denver and Boulder are within 20 miles of campus, offering all the attractions of a large metro area. Recent campus improvements, a new, 290-bed residence hall Maple Hall; and a $33 million addition to Brown Hall - making it the largest classroom facility on campus opened in the fall 2011. In fall 2012. the new Marquez Hall opened its doors; a state-of-the-art $25 million facility for pioneering teaching, research and service. Also in fall 2012, the new W. Lloyd Wright Student Wellness Ctr. opened as home to the Student Health, Dental, Counseling, Disability Services, and Health Insurance Program. Established in fall 2012 - CASA: Center for Academic Services and Advising. Planned to open in fall 2014, a new residence and dining hall - Elm Hall, and campus Welcome Center. The social environment is informal and friendly, and the academic environment is competitive, but also collaborative. Mines attracts an ambitious and motivated group of students, staff and faculty, and the career and graduate school opportunities for graduates are exceptional. Mines offers 18 varsity sports teams, our student athletes are competitive in the NCAA, Division II arena, and over 50 club and intramural teams meet the recreational interests of our highly active campus community. Students are involved in more than 170 clubs and organizations including music, student government, Greek Life, religious, cultural, special interest and professional associations and groups.

General Information

School type public, coed college
Year founded 1874
Religious affiliation N/A
Academic calendar semester
Setting suburban
2012 Endowment $128,969,000


When applying to Colorado School of Mines, it's important to note the application deadline is May 1. Scores for either the ACT or SAT test are due February 1. The application fee at Colorado School of Mines is $45. It is most selective, with an acceptance rate of 37.4 percent.

For more information about the tests, essays, interviews, and admissions process, visit the Applying to College knowledge center.

Selectivity most selective
Fall 2012 acceptance rate 37.4%
Application deadline May 1
SAT/ACT scores must be received by February 1

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Academic Life

The student-faculty ratio at Colorado School of Mines is 16:1, and the school has 36.5 percent of its classes with fewer than 20 students. The most popular majors at Colorado School of Mines include: Engineering; Mathematics and Statistics; Physical Sciences; and Social Sciences. The average freshman retention rate, an indicator of student satisfaction, is 89 percent.

Class sizes
Class sizes
Student-faculty ratio 16:1
4-year graduation rate 35%
Five most popular majors for 2012 graduates
Engineering 88%
Mathematics and Statistics 7%
Physical Sciences 3%
Social Sciences 2%

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Student Life

Colorado School of Mines has a total undergraduate enrollment of 4,169, with a gender distribution of 73.5 percent male students and 26.5 percent female students. At this school, 43 percent of the students live in college-owned, -operated, or -affiliated housing and 57 percent of students live off campus. Colorado School of Mines is part of the NCAA II athletic conference.

Total enrollment 5,632
Student gender distribution
Student gender distribution
Undergraduate men who are members of a fraternity
Undergraduate men who are members of a fraternity
Undergraduate women who are members of a sorority
Undergraduate women who are members of a sorority
Collegiate athletic association NCAA II

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Campus Info & Services

Colorado School of Mines offers a number of student services including nonremedial tutoring, women's center, placement service, health service, and health insurance. Colorado School of Mines also offers campus safety and security services like 24-hour foot and vehicle patrols, late night transport/escort service, 24-hour emergency telephones, lighted pathways/sidewalks, and controlled dormitory access (key, security card, etc). Of the students at Colorado School of Mines, 55 percent have cars on campus. Alcohol is permitted for students of legal age at Colorado School of Mines.

Students who have cars on campus 55%
Health insurance offered Yes

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Paying for School

At Colorado School of Mines, 53.8 percent of full-time undergraduates receive some kind of need-based financial aid and the average need-based scholarship or grant award is $5,859.

Paying for college doesn't have to be difficult or devastating. Go to the Paying for College knowledge center to get advice on raising cash and reducing costs.

In-state tuition and fees $16,485 (2013-14)
Out-of-state tuition and fees $32,415 (2013-14)
Room and board $10,103 (2013-14)
Financial aid statistics
Financial aid statistics

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* Overview details based on 2012 data

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