Dedicated exclusively to preparing students for the professions of architecture, art, and engineering, The Cooper Union has an enrollment of approximately 1,000 undergraduate students and was the first college to forbid discrimination. In that vein, Cooper Union continues to celebrate diversity, with 33% minorities enrolled. This includes 3% African American or Caribbean heritage, 10% Hispanic/Latino heritage, and 20% Asian/Filipino/Pacific Island heritage. In addition, approximately 19% of our undergraduate students are international.
Each year, approximately 225 innovative, passionate young students enter our school with the goal of becoming deeply involved with the study of architecture, fine arts, and engineering. At Cooper Union, we offer all students a gift—a half-tuition scholarship valued at approximately $22,275 per year—and expect in return that they will add to the uniqueness and intellectual community of our school.
Cooper Union’s location in Manhattan’s East Village has long been one of New York’s most culturally diverse neighborhoods. Peter Cooper, founder of The Cooper Union, chose this location because it was the heart of many immigrant communities. In addition, Cooper Union is surrounded by theater, music, art, and several large universities, meaning that tens of thousands of students and locals live, study, and work within a few blocks of campus.
The Cooper Union has always held a special place in the history of NewYork and the United States. What would become the NAACP and the American Red Cross had their first meetings at Cooper Union, and SusanB. Anthony had her offices located in our school. Before they were elected, Presidents Lincoln, Grant, Cleveland, Taft, Theodore Roosevelt, and most recently Barack Obama spoke in our celebrated auditorium, the Great Hall. Lincoln gave his “Right Makes Might” speech from the Great Hall podium, assuring him the presidential nomination. Sitting US Presidents Wilson, Clinton, and Obama have also spoken here. We continue to sponsor lectures that encourage open dialogue on current political, economic, and social issues such as human and civil rights, freedom of speech and press, alternative sourcesof energy, and other issues of emerging importance.
Peter Cooper purposely created an institution that, to this day, admits students based solely on merit. He literally opened the doors of the school to the downtown neighborhoods, welcoming immigrants who had demonstrated academic excellence but lacked the financial means to earn a higher education.
Who we are looking for
The Office of Admissions encourages students who are passionate about learning to apply to Cooper Union. Most admitted Engineering students earn A’s in high school, excelling in math, physics, and chemistry coursework. Art applicants are admitted based upon their talent ascertained through portfolio review and the Home Test, a take-home visual and written test. Architecture applicants are admitted based upon their work submitted in response to a take-home studio test. We seek exceptional, well-rounded applicants who have excellent writing and communication skills and a desire to use their professional education to better the world. More detailed information can be found at cooper.edu/admissions.
The Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences is the academic core that unifies the three schools into a tightly integrated whole, providing an education that is rooted in the ethical and humanistic framework of the liberal arts. An education in the liberal arts offers students the opportunity to become sensitive to the social and humanistic implications of their professional work and acquire the basis for a satisfying cultural and intellectual life.
The best of both worlds
We offer a world-renowned education in an intimate setting within a city of eight million people. You can feel at home at Cooper Union, where faculty and students really get to know each other. Want a break from your “new family”? Just walk outside our academic buildings—spend an hour or two at a jazz club, or discuss politics with a local at a coffeehouse.
To support the rigorous academic experiences and daily lives of our student body, the Office of Student Affairs oversees the following:
• First-year residence hall
• Intercollegiate athletics
• Career placement and graduate school advisement
• Student clubs, activities, and government
• First-year student orientation
• Mental health counseling
How much does it cost to attend Cooper Union?
Our Financial Aid staff administers additional funds for students eligible for aid. While all students areprovided with a half-tuition scholarship, many need additional helpto cover remaining tuition, books, supplies, housing, transportation, and personal expenses. Over 90%of our incoming students receive additional need-based and/or merit aid above the half-tuition scholarship. Our students may also receive additional help through grants, loans, and work-study. In order to apply for additional aid, all students must submit the FAFSA form. Please visit cooper.edu/admissions/financial-aid for more information.
Connecting with Cooper
The Cooper Union uses the Common Application for undergraduate admission. For information regarding the application, events, and more, go to cooper.edu/admissions/contact.