College Review: Colorado School of Mines

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Are you interested in studying engineering? If so, definitely check out “Mines” as a possibility! Colorado School of Mines is gorgeous—set amid the mountains in Golden, Colorado. Mines is very selective, but to boost your chances of getting admitted—apply EARLY. Applications are rolling and your final target date should be November 1st (that means all testing should be completed by October if possible) Mines will accept an “unofficial” test score (which a student sends by fax) for a November sitting of the SAT or ACT ahead of the official scores, but it’s crucial to stay on top of this! After November 15th, perfectly viable candidates are typically waitlisted.

Mines is known for generous merit scholarships, so students should keep taking SAT/ACT’s all the way through November of senior year to boost scholarship amounts. They are looking for a high amount of academic rigor (AP Calculus, AP Physics, AP Chemistry is the norm) and many students end up paying Colorado’s “in state” tuition rate once scholarships are awarded. Mines does not consider SAT Subject tests.

Mines would not be a good school to apply to unless you are absolutely sure that studying math & science is your goal, as there are no “liberal arts” options on campus. Having said that, the students we talked to and observed at Mines appeared to be hard-working, happy, ambitious & well balanced people and the collaborative (rather than competitive) nature of life on campus was obvious! In fact, most students we talked to expressed surprise initially at how social this campus is!

Mines boasts a 32% female population, which for an engineering school (sadly) is quite high. There are many professional women’s organizations on campus such as the Society of Women Engineers, etc. and we definitely noticed a lot of camaraderie & integration between men & women across all ethnicities. This school is into serious teamwork!

Corporations are dying to get Mines students for paid internships, and they pay them well! There’s a big Career Day every year—companies flock to Golden to recruit interns & employees— prior to that event, Mines students get plenty of prep from the Career Office for skills like interviewing, resume building & overall professional expectations.

Growth is obvious on this campus where they have a brand new football stadium, ballroom dancing classes, a crew team and a spanking new dining hall— The Periodic Table! They also have a gorgeous field house & physical education is required of all students for 4 semesters— the reason is simple: they want to make sure students have physical outlets to release stress. Academics on this campus are TOUGH and everyone goes through the same core curriculum so you can always get help. As a matter of fact, Mines has 140 hours per week of FREE tutoring available, and they say most people will likely need it. One more interesting tidbit about Mines—they are known for their International Studies emphasis along with the sciences.