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Carnegie Mellon University: Home of the Curious and Passionate

Since  1900, Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) has evolved into a global leader in education. A private research university with 14,000 students (including around 7,500 undergraduates), CMU is based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. True to its founder’s mission, practical problem solving has been the central tenet of CMU’s educational philosophy. CMU is unique in that it’s an educational leader in both the arts and sciences. The university's reputation is built on a foundation of rigorous programs across various disciplines, including computer science, engineering, business, humanities, and the arts. It’s a hub for both future award-winning artists and cutting-edge scientists.

Academic Rigor & Interdisciplinarity

An unwavering commitment to academic excellence is at the core of the undergraduate experience at CMU. The student-faculty ratio is 6:1, and 70% of classes have fewer than 20 students, which allows for deep intellectual investigation. 

CMU’s specialty lies in the belief that breakthroughs happen at the intersection of fields. Vibrant cross-campus collaboration is the natural extension of that belief. Carnegie Mellon is proud of its culture of discipline crossers and boundary jumpers. In addition to a dizzying number of traditional majors, CMU boasts dozens of unique interdisciplinary programs, including a Bachelor of Computer Science and Arts, Human Computer Interaction, and the Health Professions Program. 

CMU’s BXA Intercollege Degree Programs represent the ultimate commitment to interdisciplinary learning. The X in BXA is the intersection of disciplines, innovation, and curiosity. These programs are designed to allow students to seamlessly meld academic rigor and creative training. Can’t decide between engineering and the arts? Lucky for you, CMU offers the Engineering and Arts (EA) major! Students graduate with engineering licensure and are also prepared to work in collaborative environments or become entrepreneurial inventors. BXA graduates develop skills that span the creative, the technical, the academic and the practical.

Undergraduate Research Opportunities

The thrill of creating new knowledge is the driving force behind everything at CMU. Students can begin conducting research as early as their first year. The Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholar Development (OURSD) supports and encourages any student who’s curious about undertaking a research project. Besides advising and proposal writing workshops, OURSD provides research grants, Summer Fellowships for full-time summer research, as well as Presentation Awards to support students presenting at academic conferences. CMU students also have access to the Summer Undergraduate Research Apprenticeships program (SURA), which provides tuition-free elective credits to enrolled first-year students and sophomores to work with faculty on existing projects.

Arts and Culture

Carnegie Mellon’s College of Fine Arts (CFA) is one of the first comprehensive arts training institutions in the country. It’s renowned for producing world-class, award-winning artists like Andy Warhol, Zachary Quinto, and Leslie Odom Jr. To date, CMU School of Drama graduates have collectively won 122 Emmy and 58 Tony Awards. Research, creative practice, and innovation are vital parts of CFA’s educational efforts. These span the depth and breadth of societal concerns aimed to make a difference in a wide variety of subject areas—from sustainability & design ecologies to mixed reality & emerging tech.

Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Carnegie Mellon is the place to be for any budding entrepreneur. CMU encourages students to bring their startup ideas to life. The Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship supports aspiring entrepreneurs by offering resources, mentorship, and funding to turn innovative ideas into viable ventures. Additionally, the new Innovation and Entrepreneurship minor brings together STEM disciplines with the arts, humanities and business to prepare students to compete in the 21st century innovation ecosystem.

“My Heart Is In The Work” 

Ultimately, what makes CMU such a special place is the fact that every Tartan is deeply passionate about what they study. It’s no surprise that Andrew Carnegie’s statement “My heart is in the work” has become part of the school’s official motto. This passion is what transformed CMU into a place that is known for defining what’s next.

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