The University of California, Riverside is one of 10 universities within the prestigious University of California system and the only public research UC located in Inland Southern California.
Founded in 1907 as the UC Citrus Experiment Station, Riverside pioneered research in biological pest control and the use of growth regulators responsible for extending the citrus growing season in California from four to nine months. Some of the world's most important research collections on citrus diversity and entomology, as well as science fiction and photography are located at Riverside.
Today, it is widely recognized as one of the most ethnically diverse research universities in the nation. UCR currently hosts about 22,000 students with 900 instructional faculty, including 660 ladder-rank faculty.
UCR is consistently ranked as one of the most ethnically and economically diverse universities in the United States. The 2016 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges rankings places UCR tied for the 58th among top public universities and for 121st nationwide.
Washington Monthly ranked UCR the 2nd in the United States in terms of social mobility, research and community service, while U.S. News ranks UCR as the fifth most ethnically diverse and, by the number of undergraduates receiving Pell Grants (42 percent), the 15th most economically diverse student body in the nation.
Nearly two-thirds of all UCR students graduate within six years without regard to economic disparity. UCR's extensive outreach and retention programs have contributed to its reputation as a "campus of choice" for minority students. In 2005, UCR became the first public university campus in the nation to offer a gender-neutral housing option.
Institutional rankings of UC Riverside vary widely, depending on the criteria of the publication. For instance, UC Riverside was ranked the #8 college in the United States by the Social Mobility Index college rankings. In the 2017 edition of U.S. News & World Report's "America's Best Colleges", UCR was ranked tied for the 118th among national universities; criteria include professor peer assessment, student selectivity and retention, as well as faculty resources, financial resources, and alumni giving.
UCR is the alma-mater of over 100,000 people, many of whom have become successful in their field. Some of the most prominent graduates and faculty members include the Noble Laureate in Chemistry Dr. Richard R. Schrock and the Pulitzer Prize Winner Steve Breen.
Currently one of the most diverse universities in the US, UCR prides itself on offering over 100 programs at undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral level through 3 colleges and 5 graduates schools: the Marlan and Rosemary Bourns College of Engineering; the College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences; the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences; the School of Business Administration; The School of Medicine, the Graduate School of Education, the School of Public Policy and the Anderson School of Management.
The UCR is located approximately 8 km east of downtown Los Angeles. UCR is also within easy driving distance of dozens of major cultural and recreational sites, as well as desert, mountain and coastal destinations.
The main campus sits on 769 ha in a suburban district of Riverside, California, United States, with a branch campus of 8 ha in Palm Desert.