Challenging coursework + original research at the most beautiful lab on earth
At Sierra Nevada University College of Entrepreneurial Leadership, located in Incline Village, Nevada, there’s nothing passive or conventional about your education. Our status as Nevada’s only accredited private four-year institution—and our location high in the Sierra on the shores of legendary Lake Tahoe and less than a mile to the nearest ski resort—all but guarantee that. Action is in our DNA. Everything we do is dedicated to changing lives, learning forward, and engaging students to help them become confident, collaborative critical thinkers who are uniquely prepared to thrive in the real world.
Four core themes that define us
• Entrepreneurial thinking
• Professional preparedness
• Liberal Arts
We bring these themes to life for every student through active learning processes that foster problem-solving, teamwork, and innovation. It’s a culture of competition where students learn to think on their feet, communicate persuasively, and become active participants in their education.
Science and technology
Dive into inquiry and research from your first classes. In small classes, labs, and field courses and through doing your own research, you’ll be challenged to find evidence, evaluate its reliability, and use it to draw conclusions and make sound decisions. Students explore a spectacular variety of “neighborhood” environments: the high desert Great Basin, the alpine peaks of the Sierra Nevada range, 1,600-feet-deep Lake Tahoe, and the southern Cascade volcano. Learn statistics analyzing messy real-life data from available online data sets and original surveys. Practice professional techniques using our impressive collection of field and lab equipment. Develop effective scientific communication and collaboration skills—science is a team effort. Bring it all together by completing an original senior research project or professional internship tailored to your scientific interests and professional goals.
Affordable private education
Sierra Nevada provides a comprehensive program of need- and merit- based financial aid through federal, state, and SNU resources. Sierra Nevada works for you—100% of accepted students receive some form of financial aid. Our donor network understands how important financial support is for all our students. You may even qualify for a merit scholarship worth up to $18,000 a year for all four years.
The SNU Job Guarantee
We believe in our graduates. In fact, we know that if you follow the guidance of your mentors and instructors and meet the criteria of the Job Guarantee Program, at commencement you’ll throw your cap in the air ready to start your career. If by some quirk of fate you find yourself with no prospect waiting upon graduation, don’t despair. We’ll take you back—for free—for a full semester of coursework to add to your skill set in a job-ready way.
Few things are more important in your college journey than meaningful mentor relationships; it’s the key to your future. These vital connections will help you navigate the complexities of your college experience all the way through the uncertainty and promise of your post-college career. There is a fortune beyond the beauty and challenge of the Tahoe basin: a community of entrepreneurs and leaders that choose to live on these shores. Our community is like no other on the planet, and it’s here for you.
The SNO experience
At SNU, you’ll start with an adventure that shows how exciting learning can be. Sierra Nevada Orientation is an innovative, two-phase program. The first phase is a special four-day camping adventure for you to meet your fellow students and explore your new home, all while learning skills that will serve you well during college and after graduation. Best of all, you get to choose the adventure that best suits your interests.
The second phase brings students back on campus. There are plenty of activities for you to meet more friends and explore the opportunities close to campus. There’s the usual introduction to the mechanics of college—academic policies, financial aid, dorm rules, and library facilities. But the main focus of the week is a group of hands-on workshops that introduce you to the University’s core themes and immersive learning style.
Sierra Nevada has agreements for internship placement with businesses, schools, resorts, and public service agencies. The internship experience reinforces our classroom-based curriculum by allowing SNU students to put their creative and problem-solving skills to work in professional situations.
“Lake Tahoe is what brought me to SNU, but I would say the people here are probably the most noteworthy. Everyone is willing to help you. The professors at SNU have really shown me how much I can accomplish. Through their support, I have become a better student than I ever thought I could be.”
— Deidre Wolff, Biology & Psychology Alumni