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California University of Pennsylvania (Cal U) is a small public university located in California, Pennsylvania and founded in 1852. It is situated on almost 300 acres roughly 30 minutes from Pittsburgh. The school offers certificates, associate degrees, bachelor’s degrees, and graduate degrees. Their most popular programs are Registered Nursing, Business Administration, Exercise Science, and Criminal Justice.

Overview of California University of Pennsylvania (Cal U)

The school has a population of 6,842 as of 2020, and the majority of students are enrolled as undergraduates. Students have the best of both worlds; they can enjoy all four seasons in both a rural and urban setting and there are many opportunities for entertainment on campus and in California itself, but students can also take advantage of everything Pittsburgh has to offer. For students who prefer a less traditional college experience, distance learning is also an option.

General Information

School Type Public
Campus Setting Suburb: Small
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 18:1
Graduation Rate 50%
Year Founded 1852

Student Enrollment

Total Students6,842


Undergraduate Student

Male 2,185
Female 2,671

Graduate Student

Male 894
Female 1,092

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Top Rankings For California University of Pennsylvania

Cal U Acceptance Rate and Admissions


Male 1,324
Female 1,781


Male 1,271
Female 1,745

Acceptance Rate97%

Male 96%
Female 98%

Enrollment 964

Male 443
Female 521
Application Fee $35
High School GPA Required
High School Rank Considered But Not Required
High School Transcripts Required
College Prep Courses N/A
Recommendations Considered But Not Required
Formal demonstration of competencies Considered But Not Required
SAT/ACT Required
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Required
Application Deadline August 1
Common Application Accepted Yes

Cal U Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

The cost of an education is a definite consideration when trying to choose the right school.

Below is the cost information for those who attend California University of Pennsylvania:

  • Tuition for a full-time in-state student: $11,108
  • Tuition for a full-time out-of-state student: $15,726
  • Room and board for students who live on campus: $10,186
  • Total cost of tuition and room and board: $21,294 in-state, $25,912 out-of-state

Roughly 97% of students who attend CU-Penn receive some form of financial aid. Eighty-two percent of students take out student loans to cover the costs of tuition and room and board, while 14% of students receive Pell grants, scholarships, and other forms of aid. Once the scholarship and grant funds have applied to the cost, students are left with an average net price of $18,264. This is the amount the student must come out of pocket to pay for school. For most students, this amount is covered through student loans.

Average net price 2018-2019
Net Price $18,264
Average Total Aid $7,232
Students Receiving Financial Aid 97%
Room & Board $10,186

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $11,108
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $15,726
  • Books and Supplies - $1,000
  • Room & Board - $10,186
  • Other - $4,924


  • Retention Rate
    California University of Pennsylvania has a retention rate of 72%, which is excellent. This means that out of every 100 incoming freshmen, 72 return for their sophomore year. From a student perspective, this means that you may graduate school with students you’ve known since you started. This makes creating lasting friendships and networking opportunities easier.
  • Graduation Rate
    Fifty percent of CU-Penn students graduate within six years. Some students finish sooner, and others need longer than six years to complete their degree, but a graduation rate of 50% is an indication that either students drop out or they transfer to other schools to complete their education.
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 19:1
    There are 19 students to each instructor. This is a decent class size which will allow for many different viewpoints to be represented but instructors will also be able to reach out to students when necessary. Cal U offers its students a unique educational experience. For students who aren’t worried about slightly larger classes, this school is worth considering.

Student Population Total

Student Population 6,842

Evening Classes : No
Online Learning : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

Health Professions and Related Programs 192 Total Graduates / 18%
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 156 Graduates
Communication Sciences and Disorders, General 20 Graduates
Athletic Training/Trainer 13 Graduates
Health Services/Allied Health/Health Sciences, General 3 Graduates
All Business Majors 116 Total Graduates / 11%
Business Administration and Management, General 95 Graduates
Business/Commerce, General 7 Graduates
Accounting 6 Graduates
Finance, General 4 Graduates
Parks, Recreation, Leisure, Fitness, and Kinesiology 105 Total Graduates / 10%
Exercise Science and Kinesiology 59 Graduates
Sport and Fitness Administration/Management 41 Graduates
Parks, Recreation, and Leisure Facilities Management, General 5 Graduates
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services 90 Total Graduates / 8%
Criminal Justice/Safety Studies 90 Graduates
All Social Science Majors 66 Total Graduates / 6%
Social Sciences, General 45 Graduates
Political Science and Government, General 8 Graduates
Geography 7 Graduates
Anthropology, General 5 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 47%

Outcome & Salary

Graduates of CU-Penn can expect to earn around $43,000 early in their careers, and that income increases to $63,000 by mid-career. This is a projected 10-year maximum income potential of $630,000. With a net price of $18,000 and change, the amount of financial aid a student needs to complete their education is well worth the cost. This is because the net price is lower than the national average, while the income potential is higher than the national average.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $43,500
College Grads Average Salary $60,311
College Grads Mid Career Salary $63,400
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $603,110
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $1,237,110
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $73,056
10 Year Projected ROI $530,054
20 Year Projected ROI $1,164,054
No College Education Salary Comparison
National Average Salary $38,792
10 Year Projected Income $387,920
20 Year Projected Income $775,840

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