The California Institute of Technology, or Caltech, is the 5th university in the United States. Located in Pasadena, California, it is a private, not-for profit school that offers 4 years and above degrees (labeled as a Doctoral/Research university).

Caltech started off under the name Throop College in 1891, only receiving their current moniker in 1921 after branching off from the college eleven years prior. Founded by Amos G. Throop, the school originally opened as a vocational and preparatory with 31 students and six faculty members. Astronomer George Ellery Hale, chemist Arthur A. Noyes, and physicist Robert A. Millikan (nicknamed ‘Tinker, Thinker, and Stinker) had such an influence on Throop that the school began shifting to scientific research and education.

Although, of course, a majority of the school concentrates on technology and science, Caltech is also renowned for their pranks and jokes, including changing the Hollywood sign to read “Caltech,” changing the Rose Bowl sign board to Caltech vs MIT (instead of the actual UCLA vs Illinois), and even a very elaborate prank taking place on “The Other Institute of Technology’s” campus in Massachusetts, “because not everyone can go to Caltech.”

Jokes aside, today the school boasts 2,240 students, including undergraduates and graduates on a 124 acre campus. Some famous alumni include Donald Knuth (the author of The Art of Computer Programming), foreign leaders, 34 Nobel Prize Winners, 6 Turing Award winners, and more.

Campus Overview

  • Locale City: Midsize

  • Highest degree offered Doctor's degree

  • Academic calendar Quarter

  • Religious affiliation Not applicable

Student Enrollment

Total Students
979 (43.7%)
1,261 (56.3%)
Undergraduate Students
Male 579
Female 400
Graduate Students
Male 900
Female 361

  • Campus Location

    1200 E California Blvd Pasadena, CA 91125