Colorado College has been called the “Harvard of the West," and whether or not it merits this prestigious nickname, there's no doubt that the school has created a healthy reputation for the quality of its professors and its student body.
One of CC’s most important characteristics is its size. It’s one of the few small liberal arts colleges in the region, and its maximum class size of 25 students per professor helps to foster an intimate atmosphere unheard of in larger universities. Professors at CC are quick to befriend students, inviting them to engage in conversation and debate, both in and out of the classroom. Many professors take a personal interest in their students, although just like at any other school, there is the occasional aloof professor. Despite being friendly, professors know their material and demand a lot from their students.
Many students spend six to eight hours per night on homework and may still go to class feeling unprepared. Part of this burden is a product of the Block Plan: one day of class at CC often covers the same as a whole week at a semester school. But there is not a competitive atmosphere around grades at CC, and the number of hours people spend studying really depends on their personal priorities. If nothing else, the Block Plan really forces students to prioritize and become better at managing their time.
Colorado College has strong programs in many departments, including the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities. Science majors sometimes complain that students in other areas get off easy with their lighter schedule, free of afternoon labs. But non-science students certainly don’t breeze through their studies. Most professors expect that their students prepare thoroughly, not only for tests, but also for strong participation in class every day. Overall, it can be said that CC has truly reached a level of academic excellence attained by few schools around the nation.