Top reasons students choose to attend CSUMB

Photo: Students sitting on a bench on campus

November 30, 2021

CSUMB’s deadline for applications for the 2022-23 academic year is Dec. 15. Now is a good time for prospective college students to think about what qualities they are looking for in a school. Here are a few that elevate CSUMB into a special and meaningful higher education experience.

Diversity and inclusion

Diversity and inclusion help every student feel like they belong at a university, and that the university belongs to them. These qualities have been successfully realized on campus through the mission and strategic plan, the Office of Inclusive Excellence and Sustainability, Otter Cross Cultural Center, and affinity groups. In the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College 2022 rankings of U.S. colleges and universities, CSUMB ranked #20 among nearly 800 institutions in diversity and inclusion.

Close to nature and fun attractions

CSUMB is one mile from the beautiful Monterey Bay, making it the closest CSU campus to a beach and ocean. It is nestled among the coastal oak and chaparral forest of the Fort Ord National Monument, criss-crossed with hiking and mountain biking trails. The campus is a short drive to famous neighbors Monterey, Salinas, Santa Cruz and Big Sur, to golf courses, Laguna Seca Raceway, and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, an hour to Silicon Valley and two hours to San Francisco.

Mission and strategic plan

From its beginnings more than 25 years ago, the purpose of the university has been guided by the principles of student success, service to our region’s needs, creating responsible citizens for California and the world, and fostering innovation and leadership. Our nine core values also focus campus resources and attention to where it most matters.

Committed faculty and staff

Our faculty and staff go above and beyond to provide students the best educational experiences possible. They are highly educated, skilled and recognized as authorities in their fields. And because of the average 25:1 student-to-faculty ratio, students receive personal attention and guidance.

Campus life and activities

Thousands of students live in university housing, either in residence halls on campus or in nearby student apartments. A busy recreation department provides adventures on bikes, hikes, kayaking, intramural sports; speaking os which, there are 13 men’s and women’s NCAA Division II sports teams. A slate of Raft Up programs engage CSUMB Otters in fun group bonding events. There are student clubs and organizations for everything from sports to business, gardening to worship, identity to gaming, science to dance. It all adds up to create a feeling of community. 

Unique programs and majors

CSUMB offers 25 undergraduate degrees, more than 30 minors, nine graduate degrees, and several teacher certifications. We also host degrees and programs unique to our campus. That includes Responsible Business and the quintuple bottom line in the College of Business, an agricultural plant and soil science degree program focused on our region, and streamlined degree pathways between nearby community colleges, UC Santa Cruz, and CSUMB. We’re one of the few universities that requires service learning to graduate, so you’ll join fellow Otters who perform community service with our 250+ non-profit partners each year.

Affordable and transformative

CSUMB is one of the most affordable universities in California, with Pell Grants paying 100% of tuition for half our students. We’re ranked 8th for public universities and 5th for social mobility in the U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Best Colleges in the Western United States. We also ranked in the Top 20 of Money Magazine’s Most Transformative Colleges 2019, a measure of how much more students progressed in academics and economics. That all translates to less debt after graduation and more opportunity.

Prospective students can read up on some fast facts about the campus, take a virtual or schedule an in-person tour, and apply until Dec. 15.