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4 College Freshman

Diversity: RPI isn't the most diverse school in the world, but there are many people from many different backgrounds to engage with. The gender ratio has been getting better as well as diversity on campus, but there is still a lot more work to be done. People tend to be super accepting of their peers.

5 College Sophomore

Diversity: The student body is incredibly diverse. We embrace the fact that we come from different origins and have different beliefs. Campus is very friendly and very accepting.

1 person found this useful Report
2 College Sophomore

Diversity: In terms of ethnicity, there is not much diversity here. Most students are Caucasian, with a large number of international Asian students. African Americans, Indian, Hispanic, and Asian-Americans do not make up a huge presence on campus, but there are still an adequate number of minorities. Many of these ethnic groups have clubs (CASA, NSBE, SHPE, SASE, ISA) where students of the same ethnic groups can get to know one another. Religious diversity is not that noticeable and no one will judge you on what you believe in. As for the LGBTQ, it does not make any difference what your sexual orientation is, everyone is very accepting.

2 College Sophomore

Diversity: This school is not the most diverse even though they claim to be. There are few black and African American students. There are even LESS Hispanics. The school is predominantly white males, white females, and international Asian students who do NOT associate themselves with the American students AT ALL.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Sophomore

Diversity: Ethnic/Racial Diversity: There are many students from different countries, most people don't even pay attention.

Economic Background: Many people that attend the school are rich and just assume that everyone else is rich too even though that's definitely not the case. The people of Troy strongly dislike the students of RPI because they assume we are all very rich, spoiled, and entitled kids, while many of them are part of the struggling community. They leave you alone and will treat you with respect if you do the same for them.

Political Beliefs: People are very passionate about politics here and many people are stuck in their ways and blind to what other people have to say. Definitely better to avoid political conversations here if you aren't open to hearing what others have to say.

Religion: Religion is a very minor part of RPI. As it is a science-based school, many students are not interested in religion. For those that are, there are some worship options close to campus.

Sexual Orientation: The community of RPI is quite accepting of people that are not cis or straight. It's relatively common for people to not be cis/straight here and people seem to be accepting of this for the most part.

1 person found this useful Report

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Most students consider campus to be quite diverse. With students from all over the country, not to mention the world, there's a little bit of everything. Virtually every ethnic group on campus has multiple organizations that its members can get involved in and spread awareness of different cultures. There is also a great range of social and economic backgrounds among the students at RPI.

Because it is primarily an engineering school, however, most of the students at RPI have similar interests and hobbies. This can make it seem like the campus isn't as diverse-although there may be a broad range of people, the number of cliques is somewhat narrower. You see a lot of people hanging out with groups of similar backgrounds, and while the groups don't clash, there isn't a tremendous amount of intermingling between them.

Facts & Statistics

African American
Native American
Historically Black College/University?
Tribal College?
Out-of-State Students
Common States of Residence
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Foreign countries
  • Massachusetts
  • New Jersey
Student Age Breakdown
Under 18: 2%
18-19: 35%
20-21: 35%
22-24: 16%
25+: 11%
Female Faculty
Male Faculty
Faculty Diversity
African American: 2%
Asian American: 15%
Hispanic: 3%
International: 21%
Native American: 0%
White: 59%
Unknown: 0%
Gay Pride
There is a relatively small population of homosexual students on campus, but the community is accepting of them. The Rensselaer Pride Alliance (RPA) is one of the clubs on campus.
Political Activity
There is some political activity but much of the student body is apathetic of things outside of RPI and Troy. For those interested, there are political groups on campus: The Progressive Students Alliance (formerly the College Democrats), the College Republicans, and the College Libertarians.
Economic Status
There are students from all different economic backgrounds, although there are quite a few that come from very well-off families. Some people would argue that there is too much “old money” at RPI, and that the school should be more selective amongst the legacies, instead of allowing in anyone who has had a grandfather graduate that donates large sums of money. However, once here, family money doesn’t matter as much, and there is little reflection in day-to-day life of a person’s economic well being.
Most Common Religions
The major religions on campus are Christianity (primarily Catholic and Protestant), Judaism, and Islam. The school has a Chaplain’s Office to serve the needs of the campus religious community. It supports such groups as BASIC (Brothers and Sisters in Christ), Koinonia (a Protestant community service organization), Korean Christian Fellowship, Muslim Student Association, Newman Fellowship, Rensselaer Christian Association, and the RPI-Sage Hillel.
Minority Clubs on Campus
Virtually every minority present at RPI has a club associated with it. From the Chinese Student Association to the Iranian Student Association, from the Muslim Women’s Association to the National Society of Black Engineers, there is something for everyone, regardless of ethnicity and heritage. See the Clubs and Organizations section for more.
Did You Know?
RPI has more than 180 clubs, and there is a group for almost every background on campus.

Student Polls

How would you best describe your personal political beliefs?    Based on 41 responses

  • 5% Progressive/very liberal
  • 22% Liberal
  • 44% Moderate
  • 2% Conservative
  • 0% Very conservative
  • 2% Libertarian
  • 24% Not sure

How would you best describe the political beliefs of campus as a whole?    Based on 55 responses

  • 4% Progressive/very liberal
  • 18% Liberal
  • 36% Moderate
  • 0% Conservative
  • 2% Very conservative
  • 2% Libertarian
  • 38% Not sure

How diverse is the student body in the following areas?    Based on 56 responses

Totally homogenous
Extremely diverse
  • Economic status
  • Ethnic heritage
  • National origin (international students)
  • Political affiliation
  • Religious background
  • Sexual orientation

What political party do you associate yourself with?    Based on 27 responses

  • 15% Republican
  • 48% Democratic
  • 11% Independent
  • 4% Other party not mentioned
  • 22% I don't care about politics

How accepted is the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community on campus?    Based on 22 responses

  • 55% Very accepted. LGBT students are treated no differently than non-LGBT students.
  • 41% Accepted. LGBT students are treated fairly, but there are still some people who aren't accepting of them.
  • 5% Somewhat accepted. LGBT students aren't necessarily out and proud on campus, for fear of intolerance.
  • 0% Not accepted. LGBT students generally stay quiet.

How accepted is the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community on campus?    Based on 28 responses

  • 57% Very accepted. LGBT students are treated no differently than non-LGBT students.
  • 43% Accepted. LGBT students are treated fairly, but there are still some people who aren't accepting of them.
  • 0% Somewhat accepted. LGBT students aren't necessarily out and proud on campus, for fear of intolerance.
  • 0% Not accepted. LGBT students generally stay quiet.

How accepting is the campus community as a whole toward someone who falls into the minority (ethnic, sexual, or religious)?    Based on 40 responses

  • 68% Very accepting.
  • 28% Most students are accepting, except for a few rare cases of intolerance.
  • 0% The campus is split on its acceptance-not all minority groups are as accepted as others.
  • 5% It's hard to be a minority here.


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