UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA – IRVINE

University of California–Irvine is a public institution that was founded in 1965. It has a total undergraduate enrollment of 22,226, its setting is suburban, and the campus size is 1,475 acres. It utilizes a quarter-based academic calendar. University of California–Irvine’s ranking in the 2011 edition of Best Colleges is National Universities, 41.

On the sunny campus of the University of California-Irvine, students don’t have far to go to decompress after class. The Pacific Ocean is a quick 5-mile trip away, attracting surfers, sailors, and sunbathers alike. Seated in Orange County, the bustling campus is home to more than 500 student organizations, including 20 fraternities and 23 sororities. The UC-Irvine Anteaters compete at the Division I level in the Big West Conference, cheered on by non-traditional mascot Peter the Anteater and a group of student fans called Eater Nation. While UC Irvine is known as a commuter school, university officials have tried to combat that status by offering more on-campus residence options. Freshmen are not required to live on campus, but more than three fourths of first-year students choose to do so. Getting around UC Irvine is easy with the school’s ZotWheels, a fleet of blue and gold bicycles that students can pick up and ride to four campus locations. Commuters looking to be more energy efficient can carpool to campus with other students through the university’s Zimride Rideshare Community.

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The research institution specializes in areas such as cancer and neuroscience studies in conjunction with the highly ranked UC Irvine Medical Center. Graduate programs are highly regarded at UC Irvine, too, with speciality offerings at the Paul Merage School of Business and the Henry Samueli School of Engineering. The university has also earned accolades for its eco-friendly measures, promoting green initiatives through student groups like the Anteaters for Recycling and Conservation. Famous UC-Irvine alumni include former Saturday Night Live actor Jon Lovitz, Greg Louganis, four-time Olympic gold medality in diving, and author Alice Seibold, who wrote “The Lovely Bones.”

The University of California, Irvine combines the strengths of a major research university with the bounty of an incomparable Southern California location. Over four remarkable decades, UCI has become internationally recognized for efforts that are improving lives through research and discovery, fostering excellence in scholarship and teaching, and engaging and enriching the community.

UCI is among the fastest-growing campuses in the UC system. Increasingly a first-choice campus for students, UCI attracts record numbers of undergraduate applications each year and admits freshmen with highly competitive academic profiles. In 2007-08, the UC Regents approved UCI’s new law school, and we enrolled our first undergraduates in public health and nursing science, expanding our educational role in fields critical to California’s health and prosperity.

UCI is a center for quality education and is consistently ranked among the nation’s best universities. Achievements in the sciences, arts, humanities, medicine, and management have garnered top 50 national rankings for more than 40 academic programs. Three UCI researchers have won Nobel Prizes – most recently Irwin A. Rose, in chemistry, in 2004.

UCI reaches beyond the classroom and laboratory to help solve societal issues and support human development. We are a hub for stem cell research, a trailblazer in understanding global warming, and a leader in the fight against breast cancer. Our nationally ranked medical center in the city of Orange serves as Orange County’s only Level I trauma center and UCI is currently building a new state-of-the-art university hospital that will further strengthen medical care for the region’s citizens.

A major intellectual and cultural center, UCI offers numerous public activities and events. The Chancellor’s Distinguished Fellows Series brings renowned speakers to campus, including E.L. Doctorow, author of the best-selling novel The March; William Julius Wilson, expert on race relations in America; and Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland and United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. The Claire Trevor School of the Arts and the School of Humanities produce engaging and entertaining cultural programs, while UCI’s Anteater athletes have won nearly two dozen national championships.

UCI is benefiting the community and the world in countless ways through its scholarly, scientific, creative, and economic contributions. Orange County’s second-largest employer, UCI generates an annual economic impact on the county of $3.7 billion. A recently completed strategic plan will ensure the campus continues to inspire excellence as it fulfills its research, teaching, and public service missions in the decades ahead.

At University of California–Irvine, 53.2 percent of full-time undergraduates receive some kind of need-based financial aid and the average need-based scholarship or grant award is $13,035.

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