Cal Poly College of Engineering Rises to 6th Best in Nation in 2023 U.S. News & World Report Rankings

Students working on robot

The Cal Poly College of Engineering continues to make a national impression with its Learn by Doing approach, moving up to sixth on the list of best undergraduate engineering programs in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges guidebook. In the guidebook, Cal Poly was named the best public, master’s-level university in the West for the 30th straight year in U.S. News & World Report’s annual Best Colleges guidebook.

Among specialty programs, Cal Poly’s Civil Engineering and Computer Engineering improved one spot to the top of public and private institutions. The Mechanical Engineering, and Electrical Engineering programs were again ranked No. 2 overall and No. 1 among public universities.

The magazine’s annual America’s Best Colleges Guidebook is intended to help prospective college students and their parents choose the best fit for their college destination.

“Our College of Engineering continues to pursue excellence as it educates engineers who will make a positive impact on our world,” said Dean Amy S. Fleischer. “Recognition from a respected and independent source such as U.S. News & World Report shines a spotlight on our success in providing our rapidly diversifying student population with unique, inclusive, educational and applied research experiences.”

The top-ranked computer program will be a key component of The Noyce School of Applied Computing — the first of its kind at Cal Poly — that combines three departments under one umbrella: electrical engineering, computer science and software engineering and computer engineering. The new school will create interdisciplinary collaboration opportunities for departments and faculty doing applied computing across the university.

Recruitment of diverse engineering students remains a top goal for the college as it seeks to bolster its growing number of female and underrepresented students, with such programs as Cal Poly WISH (Women Involved in Software & Hardware), a support group for female computing majors, recently named a 2022 Inspiring Program in STEM by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine.

The civil engineering program continues to put Cal Poly on the map as students excel on a national level, including at the recent 2022 American Society of Civil Engineers Concrete Canoe Competition. Cal Poly’s concrete canoe team made history this year with a sixth national title over the span of the 35-year-old contest. The eight-student team paddled their way to victory with their space-themed canoe Europa against 19 other universities.

The U.S. News rankings methodology focuses on academic excellence, with schools evaluated on hundreds of data points and measures of academic quality, such as graduation and freshman retention rates. The first edition of the rankings was released in 1983.

The Western regional rankings include public and private institutions in 15 states that provide “a full range of undergraduate and master’s-level programs but few doctoral programs.”

The College of Engineering includes over 6,000 students and more than 80 state-of-the-art laboratories. Graduates continue to be recruited by some of the best-known companies in the world that include Lockheed Martin, Google, Boeing, Cisco, Apple, Tesla Motors and many state and federal agencies.

For more details about the College of Engineering, visit For more information on Cal Poly’s 2023 U.S. News rankings, visit