From the School

Here, you don't just learn—you do. Everything about Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) is designed to stimulate your curiosity, challenge you, and support you so that you can imagine anything and innovate everything.

WPI is a nationally renowned, private research university focused on science, technology, engineering, and math. WPI's founding motto, "Theory and Practice," provides a distinctive approach to education by balancing rigorous academics with hands-on learning. At WPI, students go above and beyond traditional classroom education.

WPI's unique project-based education converts classroom concepts into real-world impact. The WPI Plan (wpi.edu/wpi-plan) will set you apart in the world first as a student, then as a sought-after young professional, and ultimately across your career and life. Fifty years after its implementation, the Plan continues to help WPI students succeed in college and in their careers.

All WPI students complete at least two projects that allow them to tackle issues they feel passionate about and make a lasting difference on the world around us—from improving access to clean water in rural communities, to developing robots for underwater research, to building human heart tissue scaffolding from spinach leaves. Through the Plan, you learn how to learn by applying your classroom experiences to projects that challenge you from a proficiency, social, and global perspective.

WPI consistently receives high rankings as one of America's Best Colleges, according to the U.S. News & World Report. The university has earned praise and attention for its project-based curriculum, small class sizes, robust career services, study abroad opportunities, return on investment, and ability to create futures. Find out more at wpi.edu/+formula.

Overall

From The School


Overview

Applicants
10,645
Acceptance Rate
49%
Average HS GPA
3.90

GPA Breakdown

17%
Over 3.75
13%
3.50 - 3.74
3%
3.25 - 3.49
1%
3.00 - 3.24

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SAT & ACT Test Scores

SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing
25th-75th percentile
(enrolled students)
630 - 710
SAT Math
25th-75th percentile
(enrolled students)
680 - 760
ACT Composite Scores
25th-75th percentile (enrolled students)
29 - 33

Testing Policies


ACT Writing Policy
ACT with or without Writing accepted

SAT Essay Policy
SAT with or without Writing accepted

Deadlines

Early Decision — November 1

Early Decision II — January 15

Early Action — November 1

Regular — February 15


Other Admission Factors

Academic

Rigor of Secondary School Record
Academic GPA

Selectivity Rating


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Overall

From The School



Faculty and Class Information

Student/Faculty
13.6:1
Total Faculty
502
with Terminal Degree
410

352
Men
150
Women
85
Minority
59
International

Most frequent class size
2 - 9
Most frequent lab / sub section size
20 - 29


Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
82%
Graduate in 5 years
87%
Graduate in 6 years
87%

Majors

  • BIOLOGICAL AND BIOMEDICAL SCIENCES.

  • Biochemistry.
  • Biology/Biological Sciences, General.
  • Biomathematics, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology, Other.

  • BUSINESS, MANAGEMENT, MARKETING, AND RELATED SUPPORT SERVICES.

  • Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, Other.
  • Business/Commerce, General.
  • Management Information Systems, General.

  • COMMUNICATION, JOURNALISM, AND RELATED PROGRAMS.

  • Technical and Scientific Communication.

  • COMPUTER AND INFORMATION SCIENCES AND SUPPORT SERVICES.

  • Computer Science.
  • Computer Software and Media Applications, Other.

  • ENGINEERING.

  • Aerospace, Aeronautical and Astronautical/Space Engineering.
  • Architectural Engineering.
  • Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering.
  • Chemical Engineering.
  • Civil Engineering, General.
  • Electrical and Electronics Engineering
  • Engineering Physics/Applied Physics.
  • Environmental/Environmental Health Engineering.
  • Industrial Engineering.
  • Mechanical Engineering.
  • Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automation Engineering.

  • LIBERAL ARTS AND SCIENCES, GENERAL STUDIES AND HUMANITIES.

  • Humanities/Humanistic Studies.
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities, Other.

  • MATHEMATICS AND STATISTICS.

  • Mathematics and Statistics, Other.
  • Mathematics, General.

  • MULTI/INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES.

  • Mathematics and Computer Science.
  • Science, Technology and Society.
  • Sustainability Studies.

  • PHYSICAL SCIENCES.

  • Chemistry, General.
  • Physics, General.

  • PSYCHOLOGY.

  • Psychology, General.

  • SOCIAL SCIENCES.

  • Economics, General.
  • International Relations and Affairs.

  • VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS.

  • Game and Interactive Media Design.


Students Say

Sometimes it can be challenging to understand how to apply your college coursework to your future career. But for the 4,600 undergraduates at Massachusetts’ Worcester Polytechnic Institute, there’s no doubt that their global, project-based STEM education gives them “a lot of necessary tools” to succeed. From the very first day of class, many students say the “unique quarter system” and “projects that are related to the real world” are foundational to their success. This program, known as the WPI Plan, is split into seven-week terms, each of which has three classes. A two-term Great Problems Seminar serves to ease students into university level research, and subsequent classes continue to emphasize the "learn by doing" method. Once settled into the WPI academic structure, many students take advantage of the “excellent resources for academics and future aspirations” by actively pursuing “personal engineering projects” and “opportunities for study abroad, co-ops, [and] internships.” Of course, as an interdisciplinary and global institution with over fifty project centers around the world, most students rave about the “research opportunities. . . available for students who wish to have a larger role in the subject they enjoy.” At the end of their academic career with WPI, not only do all students end up completing the equivalent of a minor in Humanities & Arts, but they know that their “hands-on learning, group work, and cool projects where you actually get to make something” are exactly what “employers love best about [them].”

Project-based learning is central to the academic experience at WPI, which involves an “incredibly supportive and collaborative” environment between students and faculty. A project often incorporates real world problems and “allows [students] to actually utilize the theoretical knowledge [they] are learning” via “lots of hands-on learning [where] students steer most projects themselves.” There are “a plethora of projects…that reflect what can actually happen in the workplace.” These ventures range from managing an “independent software startup” to completing a software engineering class that is “run like an internship.” Many students say that for both their larger capstone projects and regular coursework, “professors are always available for office hours and meetings” to help. Instructors also “work hard to engage students in course material,” so expect them to support all types of learners with lectures “reinforced with some kind of lab, project, practice, or interactive activity.” Working closely with such “interested and engaged” educators has had a long-term impact on some undergrads. As one student notes, “My chemistry professor has inspired me to pursue a masters or PhD in renewable energy after I graduate from WPI.”


Degrees

Bachelor's
Doctoral/Research
Master's
Post-Bachelor's certificate

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
Yes

Career Services

Alumni Network
Alumni Services
Classes
Interest Inventory
Internships
Regional Alumni
Opportunities at School

Coop
Experiential
Internship

Notable Faculty


Prominent Alumni


Dean Kamen
Serial Entrepreneur; founded FIRST Robotics to inspire students in science and technology

Edward Cheung
NASA Robotics Refueling Mission team and former chief engineer on the Hubble Space Telescope

Nancy Pimental
Award-winning screenwriter for South Park, Shameless, and the movie The Sweetest Thing

Robert Goddard
Father of modern rocketry

Michael J. Dolan
Senior Vice President, ExxonMobil Chemical Company

Chartsiri Sophonpanich
President, Bangkok Bank Limited

Maria Elisa Carvajal
Vice President of Global Marketing, Colgate-Palmolive

Academic Rating

Graduation Rates

Graduate in 4 years
82%
Graduate in 5 years
87%
Graduate in 6 years
87%

Career Services

On-Campus Job Interviews Available
Yes

Career Services

Alumni Network
Alumni Services
Classes
Interest Inventory
Internships
Regional Alumni
Opportunities at School

Coop
Experiential
Internship

ROI & Outcomes

Information from PayScale:

Starting Median Salary (Up to Bachelor's degree completed, only)
$73,600

Mid-Career Median Salary (Up to Bachelor's degree completed, only)
$135,500

Starting Median Salary (At least Bachelor's degree)
$75,200

Mid-Career Median Salary (At least Bachelor's degree)
$142,100

Percent High Job Meaning
87%

Percent STEM
52%


Students Say

Due to WPI’s emphasis on real-world experience and applied science and technology, it’s not surprising that the students are a career-focused bunch. All students participate in three projects, some with external sponsors, before graduation. The Career Development Center is generally well regarded, offering career fairs and company presentations, services like résumé building and interview prep, and advice for students on how to use networking and social media to their advantage. A WPI education is “about preparing students for successful careers in their respective fields upon graduation through practical applications of the knowledge and skills that are taught,” and “a large percentage of the student body will leave WPI with a fairly good job when they graduate.” Evidence seems to bear out that observation, as WPI has been frequently cited for graduating their students into high-paying careers. Beyond the finances, 52 percent WPI alumni visiting PayScale.com report feeling as though their job has a high level of meaning.

For their senior year, WPI students work on the equivalent of a senior capstone project known as the Major Qualifying Project (MQP). These are high-level design or research-based projects that students complete in their chosen field of study. Many students work in small teams to complete their MQP, under the advisement of a faculty member. One industrial engineering major notes that working in teams "encourages cooperation among students rather than cut-throat competition." In keeping with WPI's emphasis on hands-on learning and the fact that MQPs are focused on design and research, students often get the opportunity to work alongside faculty members in state-of-the-art research labs. It's not uncommon for students to complete their MQP at one of WPI's many centers away from the main Massachusetts campus and, because of WPI's reputation for exemplary performance on-the-job, a good number of these projects are completed with corporate sponsorship. An associate professor of mechanical engineering tells us, "We hear from so many employers that our graduates are self-starters." She explains, "During four years at WPI they not only become highly knowledgeable in a discipline, they develop skills and competencies related to teamwork (they work in a variety of teams and most learn to identify and manage conflict in teams); problem solving (they're able to ask the right questions, scope problems, manage complex projects and get things done); and ‘learning to learn'—figuring out what they need to learn and jumping right in." The schools says that it consistently has a 90 percent job and/or graduate school placement rate upon graduation with students receiving job offers from Amazon, Microsoft, Bose, Dow Chemical, Google, Pfizer, Sikorsky, EMC Corporation, and ExxonMobil, to name a few.

Overview

From The School



Dates

Application Deadlines
Notification Date
Dec 16

Required Forms

FAFSA
Forms CSSProfile
Forms Divorced Parent

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Freshman Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$28,153

Average Undergraduate Total Need-Based Gift Aid
$25,304

Average Need-Based Loan
$2,274

Average amount of each freshman scholarship/grant package
$28,153

Financial aid provided to international students
Yes

Expenses per Academic Year

Tuition
$51,604
Required Fees
$716
Average Cost for Books and Supplies
$1,000

Tuition / Fees Vary by Year of Study
No
Board for Commuters
$6,334
Transportation for Commuters
$1,500

On-Campus Room and Board
$15,292
Comprehensive Fee

Available Aid

Financial Aid Methodology
Federal and Institutional

Scholarships and Grants

Need-Based
 

Need-Based College/University Scholarship or Grant Aid from Institutional Funds
Need-Based Federal Pell
Need-Based Private Scholarships
Need-Based SEOG
Need-Based State Scholarships

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

Federal Direct Student Loan Programs
Direct PLUS Loans
Direct Subsidized Stafford Loans
Direct Unsubsidized Stafford Loans

Federal Family Education Loan Programs (FFEL)
College/university loans from institutional funds
State Loans

Is Institutional Employment Available (other than Federal Work Study)
Yes

Direct Lender
No

Financial Aid Rating

Overall

From The School


Student Body Profile

Total Undergraduate Enrollment
4,761
Foreign Countries Represented
62

Demographics

6.27%
Asian
3.01%
African-American
8.85%
Hispanic
62.58%
Caucasian
7.71%
Unknown
8.66%
International

40% female
60% male
55% are out of state
98% are full time
2% are part time

Students Say

WPI undergrads are “well-rounded students” who “are very involved on campus and live the campus life to the fullest.” Many enrollees note that people are “extremely interested in their respective STEM fields but also have incredibly diverse extracurricular interests,” which contributes to the “specific vibe” at WPI. That is, when you get on the WPI wavelength, “you feel as if you finally belong somewhere.” Everyone “is so warm and inviting to anyone new” and “the sense of community is extremely strong, and students are very supportive and welcoming.” And if you find yourself struggling, fellow students “are super willing to help you if you have a tough class.” One student captures the spirit of the institution, saying, “The student body at WPI feels like a community of like-minded peers. It is exciting to see what other people achieve, both inside and outside the classroom. Even if you don't know someone, it feels like they're your friend because you know how much hard work they put in to reach their achievements.”

Overview

From The School



Campus Life

Undergrads living on campus
60%
Help finding off-campus housing
Yes

First-Year Students living on campus
94%

Campus Environment
Small Urban

Housing Options

Apartment Single
Disabled Student
Dorms Coed
Frat Sorority
Other

Students Say

Academics are time-consuming, and everyone runs on a “very intense schedule,” but students enjoy taking breaks with “school-sponsored events such as karaoke, Just Dance, and trivia” and there’s “always time for socializing on the quad when it is nice out. Schedules “are filled to the brim with club involvements [and] sports.” Activities range from “a lot of. . . intramural sports” to “theater and performance groups,” and even an active “Greek life [that] is run very well and makes a large impact on the community.” As one undergrad puts it, “We live by our Outlook calendars, and they fill up quickly with club meetings and sports.” And if students are looking to get off campus, the hopping town of Worcester is just down the hill, filled with “so many good places to eat.” Even with all the exciting activities on and off campus, “students manage their time extremely well and remain positive about their school life.”

Special Needs Admissions


Type of Program
For all students with disabilities

Director
Amy Curran

College Entrance Tests Required
No

Interview Required
No

Documentation Required for LD

See published documentation guidelines on website: https://www.wpi.edu/student-experience/resources/disability-services/documentation

Documentation Required for ADHD

See published documentation guidelines on website: https://www.wpi.edu/student-experience/resources/disability-services/documentation

Special Need Services Offered

Calculator allowed in exams
Yes

Dictionary allowed in exams
2

Computer allowed in exams
Yes

Spellchecker allowed in exams
Yes

Extended test time
Yes

Scribes
Yes

Proctors
Yes

Oral exams
Yes

Notetakers
Yes

Distraction-free environment
Yes

Accommodation for students with ADHD
2

Reading machine
Yes

Other assistive technology
Yes

Student Activities

Registered Student Organizations
235
Number of Honor Societies
19

Number of Social Sororities
6
Number of Religious Organizations
10

27% join a fraternity
37% join a sorority

Sports

Athletic Division
Division III

54% participate in intramural sports
12% participate in intercollegiate sports

Men's Sports (Engineers)
11 Sports

Baseball
Basketball
Crew Rowing
Cross Country
Diving
Football
Soccer
Swimming
Track Field Indoor
Track Field Outdoor
Wrestling
Women's Sports (Engineers)
11 Sports

Basketball
Crew Rowing
Cross Country
Diving
Field Hockey
Soccer
Softball
Swimming
Track Field Indoor
Track Field Outdoor
Volleyball

Student Services

Health
Womens Center
LGBT Support Groups
Minority Support Groups
Army ROTC Offered on-campus
Navy ROTC Offered at cooperating institutions: College of the Holy Cross
Air Force ROTC Offered on-campus

Sustainability

Worcester Polytechnic Institute plays a prominent role in the sustainability leadership on campus and in the local and global communities. The university has established the WPI Task Force on Sustainability and has developed a new Campus Sustainability Plan. Sustainability is woven throughout the university’s project-based curriculum. First year students engage in university-level research and project work focusing on themes of global importance, including food sustainability, the world’s water, and powering the world. One of WPI’s most distinctive offerings is its interactive qualifying project, undertaken during the junior year. The majority of these projects are immersed in creating sustainable solutions to social issues through science or technology in one of more than 40 project centers around the globe. Outside of the classroom, students actively engage in activities ranging from hosting fuel efficient vehicle shows and e-waste drives to leading Engineers without Borders projects. The students have formed a “Green Team” and Eco-Reps educate their peers about waste minimization and energy savings. Student Ambassadors engage middle-school aged students in the excitement of STEM fields.Among WPI's most important environmental decisions was its decree that all new construction meet LEED certification standards. Thus far, WPI has four buildings that meet these standards There are ongoing energy efficiency programs which include LED lighting, motion sensors for climate control and lighting, and solar panels heating the Recreation Center’s swimming pool. The campus offers Zip Car memberships, a ride-sharing website, shuttles to areas around campus and beyond, and a WPI student bicycling club. Chartwells, the university’s dining service, promotes sustainable practices, and features locally produced foods, cage-free eggs, grass-fed beef, hormone- and antibiotic-free meat, and sustainability seafood.

91/99
AASHE STARS® rating
GOLD
School Has Formal Sustainability Committee
Yes

Sustainability-focused degree available
Yes

School employs a sustainability officer
Yes

Public GHG inventory plan
Yes

Available Transportation Alternatives

Bike Share
Yes

Car Sharing Program
Yes

Carpool/Vanpool Matching Program
Yes

Free Or Reduced Price Transit Passes And/Or Free Campus Shuttle
Yes

Indoor And Secure Bike Storage, Shower Facilities, And Lockers For Bicycle Commuters
Yes

Reduced Parking Fees For Car And Van Poolers
Yes

School Adopted A Policy Prohibiting Idling
Yes

School Developed Bicycle Plan
Yes
Data provided by Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), STARS®, as of March, 2019.

Campus Security Report

Campus Security Report

The Jeanne Clery Act requires colleges and universities to disclose their security policies, keep a public crime log, publish an annual crime report and provide timely warnings to students and campus employees about a crime posing an immediate or ongoing threat to students and campus employees.

Please visit The Princeton Review’s page on campus safety for additional resources: http://www.princetonreview.com/safety

The Princeton Review publishes links directly to each school's Campus Security Reports where available. Applicants can also access all school-specific campus safety information using the Campus Safety and Security Data Analysis Cutting Tool provided by the Office of Postsecondary Education of the U.S. Department of Education: http://ope.ed.gov/security


Other Information

Campus-wide Internet Network
Yes

% of Classrooms with Wireless Internet
100

Fee for Network Use
No

Partnerships with Technology Companies
Yes

Personal computer included in tuition for each student
No

Discounts Available with Hardware Vendors
Yes

Description
Apple, Dell, Lenovo

Campus Visits Contact

Contact
Barbara Hassett
Campus Visit Coordinator

Address
Office of Admissions, Bartlett Center
100 Institute Rd
Worcester, MA 01609

Phone
508-831-5286

Email
admissions@wpi.edu

Experience College Life

Most Popular Places On Campus
Foisie Innovation Studio
Rubin Campus Center
The Goat's Head Restaurant
Quadrangle
Sports & Recreation Center

Most Popular Places Off Campus
Worcester Art Museum
Hanover Theater
DCU Center
Worcester Consortium Colleges
Worcester Ecotarium
Students can catch a train or bus into Boston which is about 1 hour away. The evening and weekend shuttle goes between the consortium colleges and shops and movie theaters.

Campus Tours

Campus Visiting Center
Monday-Friday and selected Saturdays

508-831-5286

Campus Tours
Appointment Required: Yes
Dates: Year-round
Times: Varies
Average Length: 2 hours

On Campus Interview

Campus Interviews
Yes

Information Sessions
Available

Times

Faculty and Coach Visits

Dates/Times Available
Academic Year

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Advance Notice
2 weeks

Contact Email Address for Visit
admissions@wpi.edu

Class Visits

Dates/Times Available
Varies

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Overnight Dorm Stays

Overnight Dorm Stays
Available

Arrangements
Contact Admissions Office

Limitations
Admitted students only

Transportation

Types of Transportation Available to Campus
Worcester Regional Airport (a 10 minute ride to campus) offers daily roundtrip service through JetBlue, Delta & American Airlines and the city is also within an easy drive of Logan International Airport (Boston, MA), T. F. Green Airport (Providence, RI), Bradley International Airport (Hartford, CT), and Manchester (NH) Airport. Several local limousine companies offer transportation to and from area airports and often have special WPI rates. Amtrak trains (800-872-7245) and Greyhound (508-754-3247) and Peter Pan (508-754-4600) buses provide regular service to Worcester. Train and bus stations are 5-minute taxi rides from campus.

Driving Instructions to Campus
From the North: Take I-495 south to I-290. Follow directions from east. From the East: Take Mass. Turnpike (I-90) to Exit 11A (I-495). Proceed north to exit 25B (I-290), then west into Worcester. Take Exit 18 (Lincoln Sq., Rte. 9), turn right at end of ramp, then an immediate right before next traffic light. At next light, proceed straight through, bearing to the right on Salisbury St. At the WPI sign, turn left onto Boynton St., then right onto Institute Rd. Take your first right (Private Way). From the South and West: Take Mass. Turnpike (I-90) to Exit 10 (Auburn). Proceed east on I-290 into Worcester. Take Exit 17 (Lincoln Sq., Rte. 9), turn left at end of ramp, follow Rte. 9 west through Lincoln Sq., straight onto Highland St., then right at light onto West St. Travel one block and cross Institute Road (onto Private Way).

Local Accommodations
The Beechwood Hotel (800-344-2589), Holiday Inn Express (508-757-0400), Courtyard by Marriott (508-363-0300), AC Hotel by Marriott (774-420-7555), Hampton Inn & Suites (508-886-9005), and Homewood Suites by Hilton (508-755-1234) are all located within 10 minutes from campus.


Articles & Advice