University description (as per official university website)
(the very short version)
In September 1891, Pasadena philanthropist Amos Throop rented the Wooster Block building in Pasadena for the purpose of establishing Throop University, the forerunner of Caltech. In November of that year, Throop University opened its doors to 31 students and a six-member faculty. Early Cooking ClassThroop might have remained just a good local school had it not been for the arrival in Pasadena of astronomer George Ellery Hale. The first director of the Mount Wilson Observatory, Hale became a member of Throop’s board of trustees in 1907, and envisioned molding it into a first-class institution for engineering and scientific research and education. Under his leadership Throop’s transformation began.
By 1921, Hale had been joined by chemist Arthur A. Noyes and physicist Robert A. Millikan. These three men set the school, which by then had been renamed the California Institute of Technology, firmly on its new course.
For the next 85 years, Millikan and his successors—Lee DuBridge, Harold Brown, Marvin Goldberger, Thomas Everhart, and David Baltimore—led the Institute as it achieved preeminence in the scientific community. During this time programs were added in geology, biology, aeronautics, astronomy, astrophysics, the social sciences, computer science, and computation and neural systems.
Now serving as president is Jean-Lou Chameau, who took office in September 2006. Dr. Chameau came to Caltech from Georgia Tech, where he was provost and vice president for academic affairs, Hightower Professor, and a Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar. He previously served as dean of Georgia Tech's college of engineering, the largest in the nation. Dr. Chameau places strong emphasis on improving the educational experience of students, increasing diversity, and fostering research, entrepreneurial, and international opportunities for faculty and students. His research interests include sustainable technology; environmental geotechnology; soil dynamics; earthquake engineering; liquefaction of soils; and soil-structure interaction problems.
You may have run into the work of past Caltech scientists without even knowing it.Linus Pauling
If your mom ever told you to take Vitamin C to fend off a cold, you can thank Linus Pauling, the Caltech chemist who discovered the nature of the chemical bond in 1930 (his ideas about vitamins came later). His chemical-bond research won him the 1954 Nobel Prize for chemistry. (Pauling also won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1962.)
After an earthquake, news anchors can tell us how relatively shaken up we were, courtesy of the formula that geophysicist Charles Richter devised in the 1920s for measuring the size of Southern California earthquakes. (Later, Richter and fellow Caltech geophysicist Beno Gutenberg would apply the formula to earthquakes throughout the world.)
And if anyone's ever told you to stop acting so "left brain," it's because of the pioneering brain-hemisphere research done by Caltech psychobiologist Roger Sperry (another Nobelist).
Other luminaries in our past include Carl Anderson (discoverer of the positron); Clair Patterson (whose work on lead pollution spurred the federal government to impose pollution controls on the auto industry); Henry Borsook (who formulated the Recommended Daily Requirements for Human Nutrition); Theodore von Kármán (father of modern aviation, jet flight, and, indirectly, JPL); and Richard Feynman (the theoretical physicist/Renaissance man whose name was for years practically synonymous with Caltech's).
Welcome to Financial Aid
News & Announcements:
The first round of official aid decisions for 2010-11 went out Wednesday, March 17, 2010 to prospective students who were admitted through both the Early Action and Regular Decision admission processes. We expect to be current by Wednesday, March 31, 2010 with our processing of admitted applicants for whom we have complete financial aid applications. Admitted applicants with incomplete aid applications should receive notification of missing information/documents starting the week of March 22, 2010. Please note that all communication pertaining to financial aid decisions and incomplete applications is being sent via email. Admitted applicants should take steps to ensure that our email address – firstname.lastname@example.org – passes their email client junk-mail filter. We will continue to process applications for prospective students as they become complete.
Financial Aid Recipients and Health Insurance
Starting with the 2009-10 academic year, students will no longer be required to purchase the Institute's health insurance provided they have coverage through a comparable plan. If you are currently receiving need-based financial aid and have enrolled in the Caltech Student Health Insurance Plan, you are eligible to have that additional cost added to your Student Expense Budget and be considered for additional loan and/or scholarship assistance to cover the cost, but you must submit a written request for review using this form. Please do not hesitate to contact the Financial Aid Office if you (or your parents) should have any questions about this process.