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Santa Clara University is located in the heart of innovation central, also known as Silicon Valley, with 5,520 undergraduate students and 8,642 in total when you include graduate students. The more than 300 days of sun each year likely helps contribute to the 94% retention rate along with a desirable 11 to 1 ratio of students to instructors. A large percentage of students select Santa Clara for the balance of social consciousness and technology innovation in all coursework.

Overview of Santa Clara University

The goal of the university is to produce future leaders who think at a global scale with an entrepreneurial directive along with the encouragement of creativity, incorporation of technology, and engagement with various communities. Such accomplishments begin in the classroom in specialized degree programs including business analytics, psychology, sustainable engineering, theater, and more. SCU hosts several Coro and Fulbright award winners that help contribute to a challenging, diverse, and inclusive environment.

Community is another essential component to the success of Santa Clara graduates. As students, individuals will integrate with local, regional, and global community programs both in a collaborative and individual manner. A few examples of community involvement include enrichment programs, public events, performances, neighborhood ambassadors, and more. On-campus student organizations, NCAA Division I sports, and others also assist program participants to establish a greater sense of belonging, a multicultural learning environment, and lifelong friendships.

General Information

School Type Private not-for-profit
Campus Setting City: Midsize
Campus Housing Yes
Student Faculty Ratio 10:1
Graduation Rate 91%
Year Founded 1851

Student Enrollment

Total Students8,642


Undergraduate Student

Male 2,815
Female 2,705

Graduate Student

Male 1,592
Female 1,530

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Male 7,807
Female 8,435


Male 3,669
Female 4,386

Acceptance Rate50%

Male 47%
Female 52%

Enrollment 1,381

Male 276
Female 207
Application Fee $60
High School GPA Required
High School Rank Considered But Not Required
High School Transcripts Required
College Prep Courses Required
Recommendations Required
SAT/ACT Required
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) Required
Application Deadline January 7
Common Application Accepted Yes

Tuition Cost & Financial Aid

Because Santa Clara University is a private and not-for-profit university, the average net price of the university is more than many public schools at $42,114 annually. The higher tuition cost can be attributed to a number of factors including the small class sizes, exceptional teacher ratios, the California cost of living, and the restricted number of students. Without financial assistance, in-state and out-of-state tuition is $53,634. Financial aid is available to those who qualify in the form of scholarships, grants, and loans. However, only 68% of students accept financial aid as a way to lower the total cost of SCU. Students should budget for an additional $21,000 or more for miscellaneous class-related expenses, as well as moderate living costs.

These figures do not include the cost of extracurricular activities and social engagements. Whether a person is an undergraduate or graduate student, most individuals enjoy off-campus activities from time to time. This might include eating at restaurants, drinks with friends, exploring Napa Valley or San Francisco, and more. It’s critical that students ensure they account for these extra expenditures so that they can enjoy and participate in every aspect of the college experience.

Average net price 2017-2018
Net Price $41,545
Average Total Aid $27,605
Students Receiving Financial Aid 76%
Room & Board $15,507

Sticker Price

  • Tuition In-State - $53,634
  • Tuition Out-of-State - $53,634
  • Books and Supplies - $1,971
  • Room & Board - $15,507
  • Other - $3,717


The unique approach of SCU to academics breeds success, which incorporates a Jesuit foundation alongside technology, innovation, social consciousness, leadership, and inclusivity. As a result, the university has a 95% retention, an 87% four-year, and 91% six-year graduation rate. Students are able to complete bachelor’s degrees, graduate degrees, professional degrees, and PhDs including a BA, BS, law degrees, MBAs, EMBAs, MSISs, and more. Santa Clara is dedicated to all types of academic students including first-years, transfers, international students, study abroad program participants, undocumented students, and veterans.

It is possible to participate in various degree programs within several schools and colleges, such as engineering, business, theology, law, education, counseling psychology, arts, and sciences. Each program offers a distinct set of advantages. Some programs feature credentialing and certificate programs, whereas other programs provide hands-on work experience with Silicon Valley companies. It is possible to complete combined degrees as a way to enhance your skillset and know-how without adding too many more years to your education. The business school caters programs to professionals at varying stages of their career path and the Jesuit School of Theology offers ministries around the globe.

Student Population Total

Student Population 8,642

Evening Classes : Yes
Distance Learning` : Yes

Most Popular Programs & Majors

(# of Diplomas Awarded by Subject)

All Business Majors 362 Total Graduates / 28%
Finance, General 141 Graduates
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 92 Graduates
Accounting 53 Graduates
Management Information Systems, General 27 Graduates
Accounting and Business/Management 18 Graduates
Organizational Behavior Studies 18 Graduates
All Engineering Majors 199 Total Graduates / 15%
Computer Engineering, General 72 Graduates
Mechanical Engineering 52 Graduates
Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering 34 Graduates
Civil Engineering, General 19 Graduates
Electrical and Electronics Engineering 17 Graduates
All Social Science Majors 196 Total Graduates / 15%
Economics, General 109 Graduates
Political Science and Government, General 58 Graduates
Sociology 21 Graduates
Anthropology 8 Graduates
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs 117 Total Graduates / 9%
Speech Communication and Rhetoric 117 Graduates
All Biological & Biomedical Majors 78 Total Graduates / 6%
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 55 Graduates
Biochemistry 14 Graduates
Neuroscience 9 Graduates
All Other Diplomas 27%

Outcome & Salary

Graduates of Santa Clara University go on to accomplish greatness in a variety of industries including science, sports, public service, business, and the arts. The university is home to a number of notable graduates, including Notable and famous graduates: Shemar Moore, Richard DiBlasio, Rebecca Jacoby, Peter Oppenheimer, Feynman prize winner Robert Freitas J.D., Dee Dee Myers, Brandi Chastain, and Julie (Johnston) Ertz.

This elite higher learning institution has an 85% employment rate. Undergraduate students have an acceptance rate of 92% to graduate schools. The majority are employed in the service sector, followed by manufacturing and non-profit employment. Some of the best global employers seek out SCU graduates including Square, Cisco, Apple, Google, Amazon, Oracle, Facebook, Salesforce, Adobe, Microsoft, VM Software, and Workday.

Graduates Salary
College Grads Early Career Salary $70,400
College Grads Average Salary $87,000
College Grads Mid Career Salary $146,700
Return on Investment (ROI)
10 Year Salary Earnings Potential $870,000
20 Year Salary Earnings Potential $2,337,000
Cost of Education (Net Price) 4 Year $166,180
10 Year Projected ROI $703,820
20 Year Projected ROI $2,170,820
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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