College review by Lisa Bleich
Chapman University has grown tremendously over the past 10 years from 1,500 to 6,000 undergraduate students. During the initial stages of the growth, selectivity was not very high. However, over the past several years, as the UC system experienced cutbacks and overcrowding, Chapman and the other private California colleges have seen a huge increase in applications and become more select.
Chapman is a beautiful, modern campus and very well appointed. The students looked very SoCal, dressed in long shorts, Vans, jeans, and t-shirts. Bicycles and longboards serve as popular transportation for many of the students. 85% of the students hail from California.
Our tour guide, Garrett, was a senior majoring in English and Education with a long-term goal of teaching English. He was articulate and personable with a California laid-back charm. Garrett was in a fraternity and for fun decorated Payless type Vans (shoes) and went to Disneyland between 2 to 4 times per week! He pointed out that if you sat on the lap of one of the many statues that dotted the campus, you had a perfect view of the Disneyland fireworks!
POPULAR PROGRAMS Chapman’s stand out programs include film (located 2 blocks from main campus), Performing Arts (theater arts, dance and music), business, and science. They have a separate music conservatory and all of the talent programs require an audition or a creative resume. For the film school, students must provide a 2-minute video piece that highlights their narrative ability.
A student’s storytelling ability is at the heart of the film school’s admissions process. Business is the largest program at Chapman and students benefit from the strong connection to SoCal businesses.
ADMISSIONS AND MERIT AID Chapman accepted approximately 44% of its application pool. Chapman gives a lot of merit aid, but they do not provide full demonstrated need. Merit aid ranges from $15K-$25K; the average amount is $20K. Students must have a minimum unweighted GPA of 3.5 to qualify and 1800 SATs or 27 ACTs.
The geographic breakdown of the students in 2012 included 21% Orange County, 24% So Cal, 18% West, 11% Midwest/East, 3 % Hawaii, 18% No. Cal, and 4% International
Future initiatives include growing their study abroad and global thinking programs, focusing on natural resources, building more housing to reduce the number of upper class commuters (92% of freshmen live on campus), developing a graduate science center, and completing a Performing Arts Center by 2014.
Chapman is a good option for students who want a true SoCal experience for college or for students who are interested in the Performing Arts or film.
One University Drive
Orange, CA 92866