Colorado School of Mines was first opened in 1870 as the Jarvis Hall Collegiate School by Episcopal Bishop George M. Randall along with the Matthews Hall Divinity School. Originally tuition-free, the school was acquired by the Colorado General Assembly in 1876 after joining the Union. As a public, co-educational RU/H research institution, CSM grew devoted to engineering and applied sciences. Endowed for $273 million, Mines now educates approximately 4,500 undergrad and 1,250 post-grad Orediggers in STEM specialties, including robotics engineering. Its 373-acre suburban campus lies at the Rocky Mountains’ Front Range in Golden. With retention at 92 percent, Mines has produced alumni like Wendell Fertig, Arden L. Bement, and Antonio Ermírio de Moraes.

According to the U.S. News, Colorado School of Mines is the 82nd best national university and 33rd top public school. In particular, CSM is lauded for America’s 44th best undergrad engineering programs and 56th top graduate engineering school. Forbes picked CSM as the 66th best research university and 170th best value nationally. On PayScale, Mines is ranked fifth nationally for a massive 20-year net ROI of $883,000. Colorado School of Mines was applauded for the highest average starting salary countrywide at $66,400 on USA Today. Graded A+ overall, CSM stands as the 15th “Best College for Engineering” with the 112nd “Best Professors” on Niche. The Center for World University Rankings even placed CSM 365th globally.

Colorado School of Mines Accreditation Details

Reaffirmed through 2023, Colorado School of Mines holds institutional accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (HLC-NCA). This regional accrediting agency certifies CSM’s 17 bachelor’s, 37 master’s, and 28 doctoral programs for Federal Title IV eligibility by the U.S. Department of Education. The College of Engineering and Computational Sciences has also maintained several programmatic approvals from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology’s (ABET) Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) since 1936.

Colorado School of Mines Application Requirements

With a Fall 2015 acceptance rate, Colorado School of Mines is classified as “most selective” for one of the Midwest’s hardest admission processes. First-year applicants are judged based on high school rigor after completing a state-approved diploma. Submitting transcripts with four units of English, four units of math, and three units of lab science is expected. Advanced Credit for courses like AP Physics or AP Computer Science could be attained for 4s and 5s. Admitted freshmen have an average secondary GPA of 3.74. New bachelor’s students also typically score above 1370 on the SAT E+M or 29 on the ACT.

Undergrads intrigued by CSM’s robotics education could transfer from regionally accredited colleges with a minimum GPA of 2.75 overall. Incoming transfers should have completed at least Calculus I, Chemistry I, and Physics I with labs. Around 750 international students on I-20 visas enroll annually with an Internet TOEFL score over 79 or Paper TOEFL score above 550. Graduates entering the M.S. in Mechanical Engineering need to finish bachelor’s degrees in engineering and physical sciences with a “B” average or better. Engineering graduates should submit GRE reports from the last five years with a minimum quantitative reasoning score of 160.

Colorado School of Mines has rolling undergrad admission processing with a priority deadline of November 15th. The Graduate School posted deadlines of January 5th for Fall, October 1st for Spring, and April 15th for Summer enrollment. Instead of the Common Application, prospective applicants submit an online admission form via ApplyYourself.com with the following materials:

  • $45 non-refundable fee (or waiver request)
  • Electronic copies of high school or college transcripts
  • Official college entrance exam results
  • Verification of English fluency if applicable
  • Typed, one-page statement of goals
  • Three letters of recommendation (M.S. only)
  • Comprehensive resume of school/work experiences

Tuition and Financial Aid

Undergrads from Colorado are billed $15,690 for full-time tuition. Non-resident bachelor’s majors studying full-time are charged $34,020 annually. Mandatory fees add $2,152 each year. Residential students afford $11,477 for yearly room and board. CSM suggests budgeting $1,500 for books, $1,215 for personal expenses, and $650 for transport. Total annual cost of attendance is $32,684 (in-state) and $51,014 (out-of-state) before aid. Master’s students in Colorado will pay $871 per credit or $7,845 per full-time semester. Non-resident graduates spend $1,892 each credit or $17,010 each semester. Unless waived, Colorado School of Mines offers health insurance premiums of $1,740 annually.

The NCES reports that 89 percent of starting, full-time CSM students earn financial aid for a mean amount of $9,741. Future robotics engineers could earn institutional awards like the E-Days Scholarship, Harvey Scholarship, Boettcher Scholarship, Phi Theta Kappa Scholarship, ROTC Scholarship, and Colorado Resident Merit Scholarship. Bachelor’s students may obtain the Federal Pell Grant or FSEOG Grant. The FAFSA form also unlocks low-interest borrowing pathways like the Direct Stafford, Perkins, and PLUS loans. Federal Work-Study jobs are offered for 10-15 hours weekly. Calling the “Centennial State” home qualifies you for the Colorado State Grant, Colorado Graduate Grant, and Colorado National Guard Tuition Assistance Program. Military benefits are also awarded through the Post-9/11 and Montgomery GI Bills.

Robotics Engineering Degree(s) Available

Colorado School of Mines builds students’ interest in robotics with two on-campus programs in the College of Engineering and Computational Sciences. First, the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (BSME) is a 134-credit, ABET-accredited degree offering a scientific background for machine design and construction. There are 22 Areas of Special Interest (ASIs) to choose from, including Robotics, Engineering Physics, and Computer Sciences. Courses have a 16:1 student-faculty ratio for close engagement with tenured professors on topics like feedback control and fluid mechanics. Seniors complete a two-semester design project with partnering clients like Lockheed Martin, Chevron, and Stolle Machinery. Undergrads can also join the Robotics Club, Engineers Without Borders, and the ASME Chapter.

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Post-bachelor’s students could also expand their technical skills for robotics in the Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering program. Available with a thesis or non-thesis track, the 30-unit curriculum offers four specializations, including Robotics, Automation, and Design (RAD). Courses like mechantronics, robot control, engineering design optimization, and kinematics are taken in Golden either full-time or part-time. Active experiments occur in state-of-the-art facilities like the Biomechantronics Research Lab and Human-Centered Robotics Lab in Brown Hall. Each year, students working on Blasterbotica compete at the NASA Robotic Mining Competition in Florida. Colorado School of Mines also engages grads in the Robot Pentathlon, which won the 2017 ASME E-Fest West Student Design Competition.