Is the University of Connecticut a Good School?

The University of Connecticut (also UConn) is a flagship school with a massive rural campus and diverse student body. It’s known for its athletics and parties not only in all of Connecticut but also across the US.

Students who wish to attend parties and participate in sports while completing their programs will find the University of Connecticut a perfect fit. Offering more than a hundred majors, UConn, as of this writing, has won four men’s basketball championships and 11 women’s basketball championships.

Before anything else, let’s get one thing straight: the University of Connecticut has a main campus (Storrs) and four regional campuses — Avery Point, Hartford, Stamford and Waterbury. Throughout this article, we will talk about the Storrs campus, which is located in the heart of the northeast halfway between New York City and Boston.

To get the ball rolling, here are some quick facts about UConn every applicant needs to know about it:

  • Location: Storrs, Connecticut
  • Founding date: 1881
  • Campus size: 4,057 acres
  • Campus type: Rural
  • School type: Liberal flagship public land-grant university
  • Reputation: Party school
  • Selectivity level: Moderately selective
  • Number of majors: 121
  • Popular majors: Social Science, Business, Health Professions, Engineering, Psychology
  • Student body: 27,215 (as per Common Data Set 2020 to 2021)
  • Students per class: 10 to 19 in most classes
  • Student-to-faculty ratio: 16:1
  • Retention rate: 93%
  • Graduation rate: 83%
  • Athletic affiliation: NCAA Division I
  • Color: Navy blue, white and grey
  • Mascot: Jonathan the Husky
  • Number of varsity teams: 24
  • Sports: Basketball, baseball, cross country, field hockey, football, golf, ice hockey, lacrosse, rowing, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball
University of Connecticut
Entrance and sign to the University Connecticut

University of Connecticut Rankings

The University of Connecticut is #23 in Top Public Schools and #63 in National Universities by US News. It’s Connecticut’s #1 in Top Public Universities and #3 in Top Party Schools by Niche. UConn is #3 in Best Value Colleges in Connecticut and #11 in Best Public Colleges in the US by College Simply.

Being a flagship university, it isn’t surprising why the University of Connecticut is a high-ranking public institution. As a matter of fact, it tends to dominate the rankings of Connecticut schools by various college rankers.

Having a boring social life should be the least of your concerns if and when you become a UConn student.

The Storrs-based institution was #20 out of 385 top party schools in the US, according to a The Princeton Review ranking in 2019. What’s more, the University of Connecticut was the only institution for higher education located in the Constitution State that made it to the said college ranking.

Besides being a party school, UConn is also known for its superb athletics. It’s because of this why it is #1 in Best College Athletics in Connecticut and #7 in Best College Athletics in America, both rankings by Niche.

Here are some other rankings of the University of Connecticut by various well-known college rankers:

  • #3 in Colleges With the Best Student Life in Connecticut (Niche)
  • #4 in Best Colleges in Connecticut (College Simply)
  • #6 in Most Diverse Colleges in Connecticut (Niche)
  • #28 in Public Colleges (Forbes)
  • #32 in the Northeast (Forbes)
  • #33 in Best Colleges for Veterans (US News)
  • #50 in Best Big Colleges in America (Niche)
  • #50 in Research Universities (Forbes)
  • #82 in Best Colleges in the US (College Simply)
  • #138 in Best Value Schools (US News)
  • #139 in Most Diverse Colleges in America (Niche)

Related Article: Do Employers Care About College Rankings? Choosing College

What is the Acceptance Rate at the University of Connecticut?

Almost half of all students applying to the University of Connecticut receive an acceptance letter. The public institution is moderately selective, with an acceptance rate of 49%. UConn is one of the many Connecticut schools, private and public alike, with the lowest acceptance rates.

Many college-bound high schoolers assume that it’s trouble-free to gain admission into public schools.

It’s true that some public colleges and universities in the country have very high acceptance rates. As a matter of fact, some even have an open-admissions policy in which all applicants, provided that they have a high school diploma or an equivalent, get accepted. However, UConn is not one of them.

Needless to say, you will need to have a strong application — various parts of it should impress the admissions officers as the school has a holistic admissions policy — in order to get accepted into the University of Connecticut.

In a few, we will talk about the different admissions factors considered, so read on!

To have a much better idea of the school’s selectivity level, the following are the colleges and universities in Connecticut with the lowest acceptance rates:

Yale UniversityNew Haven6%
Wesleyan UniversityMiddletown16%
United States Coast Guard AcademyNew London21%
Trinity CollegeHartford33%
Connecticut CollegeNew London37%
University of ConnecticutStorrs49%
University of BridgeportBridgeport55%
Fairfield UniversityFairfield57%
Lyme Academy College of Fine ArtsOld Lyme63%
Eastern Connecticut State UniversityWillimantic64%
Sacred Heart UniversityFairfield64%
Central Connecticut State UniversityNew Britain66%
Southern Connecticut State UniversityNew Haven69%
Quinnipiac UniversityHamden70%
University of HartfordWest Hartford76%
Western Connecticut State UniversityDanbury76%
University of Saint JosephWest Hartford77%
Mitchell CollegeNew London78%
Albertus Magnus CollegeNew Haven83%
University of New HavenWest Haven83%
University of Connecticut – StamfordStamford91%
University of Connecticut – Avery PointGroton94%
Post UniversityWaterbury97%

The rest of the academic institutions in Connecticut have acceptance rates of 100%.

The university is massive and very diverse. There are a lot of things to get involved with to develop your skills. Even though it feels like UConn is an academic-driven university, there is a lot of fun on the weekends. It is very self-driven similar to other colleges. You can spend time exercising/playing in the student recreational facility, relax and study in the Student Union lounges, get academic help from the tutoring centers, research in the library, or have food in one of the dining halls.

Does the University of Connecticut Offer Early Decision?

Like many public US colleges and universities, the University of Connecticut does not have Early Decision. However, it has a Priority Application for first-year students, whose deadline is on December 1. The deadline for Regular Decision applicants is on January 15, like at most institutions.

When applying to UConn, you can submit your application either ahead of or together with everyone.

It’s true that it doesn’t have Early Decision. But worry not because, if it’s your top-choice school, you can always apply Priority Application. What’s so great about this is that it’s not binding, which means that you can choose to apply to another school after receiving an offer from the University of Connecticut.

This also allows you to enjoy a couple of benefits.

First, priority consideration for admission to the Honors Program.

Second, priority consideration for more competitive merit scholarships. Unfortunately, you will hear from the school’s admissions officers regarding their decision at the same time as Regular Decision applicants.

If UConn is on your college list, make sure that you don’t forget these important dates:

Priority Application1-Dec1-Mar
Regular Decision15-Jan1-Mar

What GPA Do You Need to Get Into the University of Connecticut?

The University of Connecticut doesn’t require applicants to meet a minimum GPA requirement. However, some restricted programs the public institution offers require applicants to meet minimum criteria for consideration, including a certain GPA. The minimum GPA requirement ranges from 2.7 to 3.5.

Although the University of Connecticut only accepts a little less than half of all applicants, it does not require those who wish to attend the school to have a certain GPA. Well, in most instances.

Part of this is the fact that the institution has a holistic admissions policy.

Needless to say, its admissions officers evaluate applicants not only by taking into account their GPAs and test scores but also by considering various other parts of their applications. For instance, the following are the academic factors considered and their relative importance in the admissions process:

  • Academic rigor – very important
  • Class rank – very important
  • GPA – very important
  • Standardized test scores – very important
  • Admissions essay – important
  • Recommendation letter – important

Meanwhile, here are the non-academic admissions factors considered and the relative importance of each one:

  • Extracurricular activities – important
  • Talent or ability – important
  • Personal qualities – important
  • First-generation – important
  • Volunteer work – important
  • Alumni member relation – considered
  • Geographical residence – considered
  • State residency – considered
  • Race or ethnicity – considered
  • Work experience – considered
  • Demonstrated interest – considered

UConn’s admissions officers do not care about both interview and religious affiliation.

Earlier, we mentioned that some programs at the University of Connecticut are restricted and thus require applicants to meet a minimum GPA to be considered. To give you an idea, check out the following table:

Health Care Management3.3
Management Information Systems3.3
Real Estate and Urban Economic Studies3.3
Biomedical Engineering3
Chemical Engineering3
Computer Science3
Diagnostic Genetic Sciences3
Exercise Science3
Materials Science and Engineering3
Mechanical Engineering3
Medical Laboratory Sciences3
Sport Management3

Please note that not all of UConn’s restricted programs can be found in the table above.

How Much Does It Cost to Attend the University of Connecticut?

For the academic year 2021 to 2022, the in-state tuition at the University of Connecticut amounts to $15,030. On the other hand, the out-of-state tuition costs $37,698. Students from another New England state and wish to attend UConn can enjoy a discounted tuition rate that amounts to $24,048.

Attending the University of Connecticut for one academic year can cost anywhere from $37,446 to $60,526.

How much you will have to pay as a full-time undergraduate student at the flagship school depends on whether or not you are a resident of the state of Connecticut. That’s because, like other public colleges and universities in the US, the tuition is so much cheaper for local residents than those residing elsewhere.

In the case of UConn, the out-of-state tuition is two and a half times higher than the in-state tuition. But the good news is that those who live outside Connecticut but in one of the other five New England states will have to pay less tuition than out-of-state students. However, the amount is still considerably higher than the in-state tuition.

Here’s the estimated breakdown of the cost of going to the school for the academic year 2021 to 2022 for Connecticut residents, non-Connecticut residents and New England state residents:

Room and board$14,940$14,940$14,940
Books and supplies$950$950$950
UConn Cost of attendance

As per Common Data Set 2020 to 2021, UConn is able to meet 61% of demonstrated financial need.

According to the University of Connecticut itself, students must complete the FAFSA form for each year they wish to be considered for aid. The institution adds that they should do so as soon as possible starting October 1. There is no need for applicants to wait for their acceptance notification to apply for financial aid.

UConn Hartford Campus
UConn Hartford Campus

How Much Do the University of Connecticut Graduates Make?

Right after graduation, University of Connecticut alumni members make an average salary of $46,800 per year. The average salary they make after 10 years climbs up to $62,000 annually. The amount of money the school’s graduates make per year depends on the major, location, industry and other factors.

While one can still have a job and reap success without a college diploma, someone who has it tends to have a higher job market value and thus better chances of getting employed and receiving higher salaries.

The national median salary per year amounts to $34,300 after 10 years from the time of enrollment.

Fine place to get a degree, but not much else. A lot of big egos and unhappy people. UConn police do an incredible job of making sure nothing fun ever happens. When you’re 21 you can go to the bars.

Employed individuals who graduated from UConn generate more after the said time frame — $62,000 per year. That’s more than 80% higher than the average annual salaries of most others. Individuals with graduate degrees from the University of Connecticut, as expected, tend to make more than those with undergraduate degrees.

Let’s check out the average starting salaries of UConn bachelor’s degree holders by major:

Computer Science$74,500
Computer Engineering$69,600
Registered Nursing$69,400
Nursing Administration$69,400
Electrical Engineering$69,300
Communications Engineering$69,300
Mechanical Engineering$66,800
Chemical Engineering$66,700
Civil Engineering$63,600
Biomedical Engineering$54,300
Business Administration$46,800
Political Science$38,100
Nutrition Sciences$26,900
Teacher Education$22,400

Please note that not all majors the University of Connecticut offers can be found in the table above.

Which Famous People Went to the University of Connecticut?

Many political figures from the state of Connecticut once attended the University of Connecticut. There are also inventors, environmentalists, founders and CEOs who used to go to UConn. Some of them went on to become award-winning authors, professional athletes, and film, TV and theater actors.

Having the University of Connecticut experience could open doors to opportunities and success, just like what it did to a lot of its former students, some of whom many are familiar with.

The following are just a few of the most notable alumni members of UConn:

  • Thomas Joseph Meskill Jr. – Served as the 82nd Governor of Connecticut
  • Chris Murphy – Junior US Senator for Connecticut since 2013
  • Bernard Grabowski – Served as a two-term US Representative from Connecticut
  • Robert Giaimo – Former US Representative from Connecticut who served for 11 terms
  • Paul Alexander Yost Jr. – Served as the 18th commandant of the US Coast Guard (1986 to 1990)
  • Kenneth North – Former commander of the 24th North American Aerospace Defense Command Region
  • Timothy Shriver – Chairman of Special Olympics since 1996 and current CEO of UNITE
  • Kartik Chandran – Environmental engineer at Columbia University
  • Franklin Chang-Diaz – First Hispanic astronaut and founder and CEO of Ad Astra Rocket Company
  • Amy Errett – Founder and CEO of Madison Reed
  • T. Scott Case – Founding CTO of, an internet travel service
  • Bob Kaufman – Founder of the Connecticut-based chain Bob’s Discount Furniture
  • William Simon – Former president and CEO of Walmart
  • Ann Beattie – Recipient of the PEN/Malamud Award for excellence in the short story form
  • Wally Lamb – Author of novels She’s Come Undone and I Know This Much is True
  • Ned Kahn – Environmental artist and sculptor
  • Ray Allen – Basketball player who played in the NBA for 18 seasons
  • Sue Bird – The only WNBA player to win titles in three different decades (as of 2021)
  • Jackie Burns – Theater actress who holds the title of Broadway’s longest running Elphaba in Wicked
  • Bobby Moynihan – Actor, comedian and writer who was a Saturday Night Live cast member (2008 to 2017)

Just Before You Apply to the University of Connecticut

With over 100 majors, each of which is respected by employers as it’s from a flagship school, great athletics and superb social life, attending the University of Connecticut will make you a well-rounded college student.

But because of its 49% acceptance rate, your application will have to be impressive for you to get accepted.

Above, we talked about an assortment of important stuff about this public institution located in Storrs, Connecticut — from its rankings to the average annual earnings of alumni members. Before adding UConn to your college list, make sure that you take your academic profile, family’s budget and career goal into account.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of the College Reality Check.

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