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This upstate South Carolina public land grant university, founded in 1889, is one of the nation’s leading public research institutions. It is a Carnegie R1 institution, renowned for its high research activity. Clemson offer more than 80 undergraduate majors and 130 graduate degree programs and it has the second-largest student population of any college or university in the state.

Overview of Clemson University

Clemson University’s seven colleges consist of Agriculture, Forestry, and the Life Sciences; Architecture, Arts, and Humanities; Business; Behavioral, Social, and Health Sciences; Education; Engineering, Computing, and Applied Sciences; and Science. The college of Engineering, Computing, and Applied Sciences has the largest number of students, with Business coming in second.

This university is committed to expanding its graduate programs while continuing its focus on improving its already highly ranked undergraduate offerings. In sports, the university is part of the NCAA I Division. Considered a more selective school, Clemson University has an acceptance rate of 47%. Fifty percent of the applicants admitted to the school have SAT scores between 1220 and 1400 or ACT scores of 27 and 32. U.S. News and World Report ranks Clemson University as #70 in its list of national universities.

As of Fall 2019, 51 percent of applicants were accepted by Clemson University.

General Information

School Type Public
Campus Setting Suburb: Large
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 16:1
Graduation Rate 84%
Year Founded 1889

Student Enrollment

Total Students24,951


Undergraduate Student

Male 10,031
Female 9,638

Graduate Student

Male 2,694
Female 2,588

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Male 12,885
Female 16,185


Male 6,314
Female 8,578

Acceptance Rate51%

Male 49%
Female 53%

Enrollment 3,855

Male 1,739
Female 2,116
Application Fee $70
High School GPA Required
High School Rank Considered But Not Required
High School Transcripts Required
College Prep Courses Required
Recommendations NA
SAT/ACT Required
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Required
Application Deadline May 1
Common Application Accepted No

Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

For a recent academic year, tuition at Clemson University was $15,558 for in-state students, and $38,550 for out-of-state students. On-campus room and board were around $11,400. This means that total expenses for in-state students paying room and board was $32,462 and it was $55,454 for out-of-state students.

For the same year, 92% of undergraduates received some form of financial aid. The average amount of grant or scholarship aid received was $10,698, while the average Pell Grant was $4,521 and the average amount of federal student loan aid was $5,503. The average net price for in-state, full-time, freshmen a recent year was $21,482.

Average net price 2018-2019
Net Price $21,482
Average Total Aid $10,698
Students Receiving Financial Aid 92%
Room & Board $11,414

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $15,558
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $38,550
  • Books and Supplies - $1,436
  • Room & Board - $11,414
  • Other - $4,054


You’ll want to pay close attention to certain metrics when considering schools. As an example, the retention rate shows the number of first-time students who came back to the school the following year. Low retention rates may indicate serious underlying problems at the institution. Graduation rates reveal the percentage of first-time students completing their degrees within six years, or 150% of the standard program time. The same underlying issues may affect schools with low graduation rates.

Clemson University’s student-to-faculty ratio is solid at 16 to 1; this is quite good for a school of this size. Its retention rate for first-time students pursuing a bachelor’s degree is excellent, with 93% of full-time students and 100% of part-time students. The overall graduation rate is also fantastic, sitting at 84%.

Student Population Total

Student Population 24,951

Evening Classes : No
Online Learning : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

All Engineering Majors 951 Total Graduates / 20%
Mechanical Engineering 245 Graduates
Industrial Engineering 154 Graduates
Civil Engineering, General 118 Graduates
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering 112 Graduates
All Business Majors 938 Total Graduates / 20%
Business Administration and Management, General 330 Graduates
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 268 Graduates
Finance, General 142 Graduates
Accounting 141 Graduates
All Biological & Biomedical Majors 442 Total Graduates / 10%
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 280 Graduates
Biochemistry 58 Graduates
Microbiology, General 57 Graduates
Animal Genetics 47 Graduates
Agriculture, Agriculture Operations, and Related Sciences 348 Total Graduates / 7%
Animal Sciences, General 108 Graduates
Food Science 61 Graduates
Agricultural Business and Management, General 59 Graduates
Aquaculture 46 Graduates
All Social Sciences Majors 283 Total Graduates / 6%
Economics, General 119 Graduates
Political Science and Government, General 79 Graduates
Sociology 50 Graduates
Criminology 24 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 36%

Outcome & Salary

College graduates will earn considerably more than non-college graduates over their careers. College graduates can expect to earn around $58,000 annually in their early careers, with a mid-career salary average of around $108,000.

For the average net education price of $74,000, the ROI for 10 years of salary earnings potential is $656,170, while the ROI for 20 years of salary earnings potential is $1,745,170. That makes the 10-year projected ROI $581,338 and the 20-year projected ROI $1,670,338.

Compare that to the national average salary of $38,792 for someone without a college education. Their 10-year projected income is $387,920 and their 20-year projected income is $775,840.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $57,500
College Grads Average Salary $68,116
College Grads Mid Career Salary $106,700
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $681,160
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $1,748,160
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $85,928
10 Year Projected ROI $595,232
20 Year Projected ROI $1,662,232
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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