College of the Week: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

Each week, Mrs. Nilsen will provide insight into unique college options for learners and families. The source is the Fiske Guide to Colleges 2019, an annual comprehensive catalog of diverse universities here in California and nationwide, Colleges That Change Lives, and 50 Colleges that Create Futures.

THIS WEEK: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology/Terre Haute, Indiana

Click here for Admissions Info

Click here for Tuition & Financial Aid Info

Enrollment: 2,171

Acceptance Rate: 61%

Strong Programs:  Mechanical Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Mathematics, Physics

DETAILS:  Co-ed since 1995, Rose-Hulman offers that rare combination of technical education and personal attention. The Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology may not be as well known as Caltech, MIT, or even Carnegie Mellon, but it was the first private college to offer an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering, and it continues to innovate today. If you can handle the lopsided male/female ratio (75 male/25 female) and the limited list of majors (all engineering and the sciences, with the exception of an economics major), Rose-Hulman offers an outstanding technical background and bright prospects for future employment. Students are smart, motivated, and highly competitive, and love using their computers for work and play. “We are all dorks,” says a senior.  “Some of us just hide it better than others.”

General education requirements at Rose-Hulman include math, physics, chemistry, and humanities and social sciences. Humanities professors “are very eager to educate and expose science and engineering-oriented people to a different way of thinking,” an applied biology major says. In the first quarter, freshmen must take a College and Life Skills course that covers such topics as time management and study skills. Students in every program except mathematics must work in a team and complete a project for an outside company.

When it comes time to to start the job search, Rose-Hulman students are in good hands.

“Career services works with every student individually to assist them in finding the right job for them,” cheers a senior.

A chemical engineering major says Rose-Hulman students “are always tinkering, and their hands can’t move as fast as their minds do.”

“Students are conservative but don’t really get involved politically,” one senior explains.

Sixty percent of students live on campus. Freshman are guaranteed rooms to the residence halls, which boast weekly maid service as are any sophomores who want them.  “We’re allowed to do almost anything to the rooms, like add lofts or decks to gain space,” says a civil engineering major. (At an engineering school, would you expect anything less?) Two living/learning communities are available:  the HERE (Home for Environmentally Responsible Engineering) program for freshmen, which focuses on sustainability topics and design projects, and ESCALATE, for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Varsity teams (the Engineers) play in Division III, and recent conference champions include men’s soccer, track and field, and swimming; women’s basketball; and men’s and women’s tennis.  Competitive tech teams like the Human Powered Vehicle Team, Team Rose Motorsports, and Cyber Defense Team are strong. Just over half of the student body participate in 32 intramural sports, with flag football, basketball, and ultimate Frisbee the most popular.