ic S/general/checkmark circled Thanks for subscribing! Be on the lookout for our next newsletter.
ic S/general/checkmark circled Saved to Favorites.
Colleges / University of California, Santa Cruz

University of California, Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz, CA 4-Year Public
Acceptance Rate59%
Acceptance Rate59%

About UC Santa Cruz

University of California, Santa Cruz Overview

University of California, Santa Cruz is a public, state school in the small town setting of Santa Cruz, California. UC Santa Cruz was founded in 1965 and the school enrolls around 19,841 students a year, including 17,864 undergraduates. UC Santa Cruz offers on-campus housing for students. Most students live in off campus housing.

📆 Mark your calendar! November 30, 2023 is the final deadline to submit an application for the Fall 2023 semester. Regular decision applicants for Fall 2023 should receive admissions decisions by March 31.

There are many ways for students to get involved at UC Santa Cruz!

Interested in music or performing? At UC Santa Cruz you can join a campus band, sing in a chorus, or perform with one of the school's theater groups.

Are you interested in journalism and communications? UC Santa Cruz students can write for the campus newspaper, host a radio show or be a producer for the student-run television channel.

Interested in Greek life? UC Santa Cruz has both fraternities and sororities.

Planning to play sports? UC Santa Cruz has many options for athletes. See them all and learn more about life at UC Santa Cruz on the Student Life page.

2022 UC Santa Cruz Facts At-A-Glance
Academic Calendar Quarter
Overall Acceptance Rate 59%
Early Decision Acceptance Rate ED not offered
Early Action Acceptance Rate EA not offered
Average GPA 3.6
In-State Tuition $11,442
Out-of-State $41,196
Percent of Need Met 82.9%
Average First-Year Financial Aid Package $25,867

Is UC Santa Cruz a Good School?

There is no one way to define a "good" college or university. Admissions difficulty, admitted student statistics, tuition, and financial aid can all provide a sense of how competitive a university is.

Let's take a look at these factors to get a clearer view of what UC Santa Cruz offers and if the school could be a good choice for you.

UC Santa Cruz Acceptance Rate 2022

It is very difficult to get into UC Santa Cruz. UC Santa Cruz admitted 59% of all applicants in 2022. Out of 60,061 applications received in 2022, 35,349 students were offered admission.

Retention and Graduation Rates at UC Santa Cruz

Retention refers to the number of students that stay enrolled at a school over time. Retention measures how satisfied students are with their school experience, and if they have the support necessary to succeed in college.

Approximately 89% of students who start at UC Santa Cruz come back for their second year of college. 78% of UC Santa Cruz undergrads graduate within six years. The average six-year graduation rate for U.S. colleges and universities is 61% for public schools, and 67% for private, non-profit schools.

Job Outlook UC Santa Cruz Graduates

Job placement stats are a good resource for understanding the value of a degree from UC Santa Cruz by providing a look on how job placement has gone for other grads.

Check with UC Santa Cruz directly, for information on any information on starting salaries for recent grads.

UC Santa Cruz's Endowment

An endowment is the total value of a school's investments, donations, and assets. Endowment is not necessarily an indicator of the quality of a school, but it can give you a sense of how much money a college can afford to invest in expanding programs, improving facilities, and support students.

UC Santa Cruz's endowment was valued at $294.1 million in 2022, compared to a national average of $905 million. For each full-time student, UC Santa Cruz spends about $10,857 a year.

Tuition and Financial Aid at UC Santa Cruz

Tuition is another important factor when choose a college. Some colleges may have high tuition, but do a better job at meeting students' financial need.

UC Santa Cruz meets 82.9% of the demonstrated financial need for undergraduates. First-year students that attend UC Santa Cruz full-time are awarded $25,867 a year in financial aid, on average.

Graduates in the class of 2022 had an average of $20,191 in student loans per borrower. For context, compare this number with the average national debt, which is around $36,000 per borrower.

The 2023-2024 FAFSA Opened on October 1st, 2022

Some aid is available on a first-come, first-served basis, so fill out the FAFSA as soon as you can. Visit the FAFSA website to apply for student aid. Remember, the first F in FAFSA stands for FREE! You should never have to pay to submit the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), so don't give your money (or info!) to any website that claim you do.

Learn more about Tuition and Financial Aid at UC Santa Cruz.

Based on this information, does UC Santa Cruz seem like a good fit? Remember, the best school for one person may not be the right school for someone else! So ask yourself: Is UC Santa Cruz a good school for you?

If University of California, Santa Cruz seems like a school you want to apply to, click the heart button to save it to your college list.

Still Searching for Colleges?

Choose one of the options below to learn more about UC Santa Cruz:


Student Life


Tuition & Aid

UC Santa Cruz Community Forums

Then use the college admissions predictor to take a data science look at your chances of getting accepted at some of the best schools in the U.S.

Where is University of California, Santa Cruz Located?

UC Santa Cruz is located in the small town setting of Santa Cruz, California, less than an hour from San Francisco and San Jose.

If you would like to see UC Santa Cruz for yourself, plan a visit. The best way to reach campus is to take U.S. Highway 101 to Santa Cruz, or book a flight to the nearest airport, San Jose International.

You can also take a virtual campus tour to get a sense of what UC Santa Cruz and Santa Cruz are like without leaving home.

Considering Colleges in California?

See a full list of colleges in California and save your favorites to your college list.

College Info

1156 High Street Santa Cruz, CA 95064

Campus Setting: Small Town

UC Santa Cruz Application Deadline

First-Year Applications are Due

Nov 30

Transfer Applications are Due

Nov 30

The deadline for Fall first-year applications to UC Santa Cruz is Nov 30.

The deadline for Fall transfer applications to UC Santa Cruz is Nov 30.

Check the school website for more information about deadlines for specific programs or special admissions programs

UC Santa Cruz ACT Scores


ACT Range

Not available

Stand out on your college application

  • • Qualify for scholarships
  • • Most students who retest improve their score
Sponsored by ACT
Take the Next ACT Test

UC Santa Cruz SAT Scores


Composite SAT Range

Not available


Math SAT Range

Not available


Reading SAT Range

Not available

UC Santa Cruz Tuition & Fees

Tuition & Fees


In State


Cost Breakdown
In State
State Tuition

Student Life

Wondering what life at UC Santa Cruz is like? There are approximately 19,841 students enrolled at UC Santa Cruz, including 17,864 undergraduate students and 1,977 graduate students. 96% percent of students attend school full-time, 96% percent are from CA and 4% percent of students are from other states.


Full Time


Part Time


In State



Data Source: IPEDs and Peterson's Databases © 2022 Peterson's LLC All rights reserved

Quick Facts

Total Enrollment


Campus Setting

Small Town

Acceptance Rate


Tuition and Fees

In State




Fall Freshmen
Application Deadline

Nov 30
Do You Work at a University?

Claim your page to customize your profile and connect with students!

Claim Free Account
Scholarship Tips

Want to find money for school that doesn’t need to be paid back? Access insights and advice on how to search and apply for scholarships!

Find Scholarships
Need Advice or Have a Question About UC Santa Cruz?

Connect with the world's largest college forum for candid, authentic discussion.

Join the Conversation