Students Say

The “three pillars” of a Deep Springs education—“labor, academics, and self-governance”—combine to produce “unparalleled challenges” that run the gamut “from fixing a hay baler in the middle of the night to puzzling over a particularly difficult passage of Hegel.” That’s what the twenty-eight men who attend Deep Springs tell us. These unique undergraduates basically run their own school, work the ranch where it is located, and complete a rigorous curriculum, an itinerary that “creates an environment of intense growth and responsibility.” Class work occurs in a seminar format in which “teachers participate similarly to students.”

Overview

Applicants
200
Acceptance Rate
10%

Test Scores

SAT Reading
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
740 - 800
SAT Math
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
670 - 740

Deadlines


Regular
November 7

Other Admission Factors

Academic

Application Essay
Non-Academic

Interview
Character / Personal Qualities
Level of applicant's interest

Selectivity Rating

Overall

Students Say

The “three pillars” of a Deep Springs education—“labor, academics, and self-governance”—combine to produce “unparalleled challenges” that run the gamut “from fixing a hay baler in the middle of the night to puzzling over a particularly difficult passage of Hegel.” That’s what the twenty-eight men who attend Deep Springs tell us. These unique undergraduates basically run their own school, work the ranch where it is located, and complete a rigorous curriculum, an itinerary that “creates an environment of intense growth and responsibility.” Class work occurs in a seminar format in which “teachers participate similarly to students.” Classes “aren’t so much a transfer of information from professor to student as they are a time for the entire class to push the boundaries of collective thought as far as possible.” Composition and public speaking are the only required courses; all others are chosen by the student body and taught by a faculty of three long-term professors (one each in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences) and three visiting scholars or artists. The system relies on a commitment to self-determination, which means “how successful Deep Springs is as an institution depends upon the manner in which its students are engaging with its project.” While the size of the school inevitably means that “lab and library facilities are not what they might be,” students tell us that the overall Deep Springs experience compensates for any shortcomings. A student explains: “Mistakes and flaws are seen as pedagogy in action. See a broken fence or heater? Fix it, or learn to fix it. The mechanical skills we pick up during the process of taking responsibility for our livelihood are surely valuable, but the self-confidence and that emerges from learning to do things one never could have thought possible is the essence of a Deep Springer’s education.”

Faculty and Class Information

Student/Faculty
4:1
Total Faculty
16
with Terminal Degree
13

11
Men
5
Women
2
International

Most frequent class size
2 - 9
Most frequent lab / sub section size
2 - 9


Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
Graduate in 5 years
Graduate in 6 years

Majors

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities, Other


Degrees

Associate

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
No

Prominent Alumni


Robert Sproull
Former President, University of Rochester

James Olin
Member of Congress, Virginia (ret.)

Julian Steward
Anthropologist (dec.)

Herb Reich
Physicist, Inventor of the Cathode Ray Tube (dec.)

William vanden Heuvel
U.S. Ambassador

Vernon Penner
U.S. Ambassador

David Hitz
Founder, Network Appliances

Academic Rating

Career overview

Students Say

The academic rigor and work ethic required to get into Deep Springs is well-known, and mandatory public speaking and composition studies only further set the intellectual foundation. As men learning to be citizens of the world, many eventually go on to “a life of service” following the completion of a degree. Since Deep Springs is a two-year school, most everyone transfers to a more typical four-year institution, and Deep Springers are generally successful in their transfers. Of 47 students transferring from the entering years 2007–2011, over half transferred to either Yale, Brown, or the University of Chicago.

Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
Graduate in 5 years
Graduate in 6 years

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
No

ROI & Outcomes

Dates

Application Deadlines

Bottom Line

Every single student accepted at Deep Springs receives a comprehensive scholarship that covers tuition and room and board in full, an estimated value of over $50,000. Students are only expected to pay for books, incidentals, and travel, which the school estimates run less than $2,800 per year.

Bang For Your Buck

Deep Springs is one of the best educations a student can receive after high school, and though you may not have heard of the school before, the nation’s top universities certainly have. Although percentages are somewhat moot for a school that has only twenty-five students over two class years, in the past five years, nearly 45 percent of students have gone on to Harvard, Yale, Brown, and the University of Chicago, as well as winning numerous prestigious scholarships and fellowships.

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Freshman Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$0

Average Undergraduate Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$0

Average Need-Based Loan
$0

Average amount of loan debt per graduate
$0

Undergraduates who have borrowed through any loan program
0%

Average amount of each freshman scholarship/grant package
$52,000

Financial aid provided to international students
Yes

Expenses per Academic Year

Tuition
$0
Required Fees
Average Cost for Books and Supplies
$1,200

Tuition / Fees Vary by Year of Study
No
Board for Commuters
Transportation for Commuters

Available Aid

Financial Aid Methodology

Scholarships and Grants

Need-Based
 


Non-Need-Based
Institutional non-need-based scholarship or grant aid is available

Federal Direct Student Loan Programs

Federal Family Education Loan Programs (FFEL)

Is Institutional Employment Available (other than Federal Work Study)
No

Direct Lender
No

Financial Aid Rating

Overall

Students Say

“It is impossible to characterize a ‘typical’ student, as there are only twenty-eight,” students understandably warn, but they add that “we all are hardworking and are committed to a life of service.” Undergrads are also predictably “outdoorsy,” “interested in the arts,” “motivated, and responsible,” as “it takes a unique type of person to even consider Deep Springs, much less succeed and thrive in such an environment.” As one student puts it, “The typical student at Deep Springs is committed to the life of the intellect and committed to finding education in our labor program. Most of the students here believe that a life of service, informed by discourse and labor, is a necessary notion to understand in today’s world.”

Student Body Profile

Total Undergraduate Enrollment
28
Out of State
82%

International
17%
Foreign Countries Represented
3

Demographics

16.67%
Asian
4.17%
Hispanic
75.00%
Caucasian
16.67%
International

82% are out of state
100% are full time
0% are part time

Overview

Students Say

At Deep Springs, where “the desert sun rises slowly,” everyday student life is totally unlike other colleges because “no one drinks, everyone helps run the ranch in some way, and no one can be totally self-absorbed (unless he’s out hiking in the desert).” Instead, students immerse themselves in the Deep Springs way. As one student explains, “Life is very intellectual but also in constant relationship to the natural beauty of the desert and the operation of the College’s farm and ranch.” Conversations tend to revolve around “what work needs to be done, what decisions need to be made, [and] which classes are most interesting,” or, as one student put its, “Sunsets. Hegel. Welding. Jane Austen.” Fun at Deep Springs, where days are “marked by an extreme busyness,” is “self generated”: “‘Fun’ is hard to come by, and one has to learn how to enjoy people, work, and engagement.” Students do occasionally take a break, however: “Fun just means something a little different...Half-naked dances to Miley Cyrus, fully naked soccer, or fully clothed conversations on anything from Kierkegaard to Kanye West ensure that there really isn’t a dull moment in the Valley.” Also, occasionally “there are ‘boojies’,” a kind of hectic dance party in the Rumpus Room of the dorm, “ or students will “go to the dunes a valley over for a bit of late-night naked surfing down the sand.” Undergrads concede that Deep Springs “life can be intense:” There is “a whirlwind of activity from labor to class to meals to labor again to meetings to a few precious hours of sleep. But where many students would find such a lifestyle stressful and unsustainable, we find it meaningful and valuable” and that keeps undergrads energized and motivated.”

Campus Life

Undergrads living on campus
100%
Help finding off-campus housing
No

First-Year Students living on campus
100%

Campus Environment
Rural

Housing Options

Cooperative
Disabled Student
Dorms Male
Theme Housing
Wellness Housing

Special Needs Admissions


College Entrance Tests Required
No

Interview Required
No

Special Need Services Offered


Student Activities

Registered Student Organizations
Number of Honor Societies
0

Number of Social Sororities
0
Number of Religious Organizations
0

Sports

Athletic Division
Other


Student Services


Sustainability


Other Information

Campus-wide Internet Network
Yes

Email and Web Access Available
Yes

% of Classrooms with Wireless Internet
0

Number of Computer Labs / Classrooms
5

Average Number of PC's per Lab
4

Network Access in Dorm Rooms
No

Network Access in Dorm Lounges
No

Fee for Network Use
No

Student Web Pages Permitted
Yes

Student Web Pages Provided
No

Partnerships with Technology Companies
No

Online Class Registration Available
No

Personal computer included in tuition for each student
No

Require Undergraduates to Own Computers
No

Undergraduates that Own Computers
80%

Discounts Available with Hardware Vendors
No

Webcasting, Digital Audio or Video-Streaming of Courses
No

Webcasting, Digital Audio or Video-Streaming of Campus Radio / TV Stations
No

Campus Visits Contact

Contact
Jack Davis
Chair, Applications Committee

Address
Applications Committee
HC 72 Box 45001
Dyer, NV 89010

Phone
7608722000

Email
apcom@deepsprings.edu

Experience College Life

Most Popular Places On Campus
Boarding House
Dairy Barn
Horse Stables
The Upper Reservoir
The Druid

Most Popular Places Off Campus
The Desert (including Death Valley National Park)
Sierra Nevada and White Mountains
Cottontail Ranch
Bishop, California
Loneliest Road in America
There are no other dwellings in or around Deep Springs Valley.

Campus Tours

Campus Tours
Appointment Required:
Dates:
Times:
Average Length:

On Campus Interview

Campus Interviews
Yes

Information Sessions
Not Available

Times

Faculty and Coach Visits

Dates/Times Available
Year-round

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Advance Notice
Other

Class Visits

Dates/Times Available
Year-round

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Overnight Dorm Stays

Overnight Dorm Stays
Not Available

Transportation

Types of Transportation Available to Campus
Airplane, bus, car. Closest airport is McCarren International Airport in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Driving Instructions to Campus
Las Vegas towards Reno, Nevada turn off towards Bishop, California. The only thing on Highway 168.

Local Accommodations
Hotels and motels in Bishop or Big Pine California.