University of California, Santa Cruz
UC Santa Cruz was founded in 1965 as the movement away from the conservative '50s was in full swing and America was experiencing a transformation. The founding faculty, administrators, and students embraced and embodied this change. They were open and revolutionary in their thinking—more than mere radicals, they dared to imagine a living and learning environment that would foster a community whose passion came from a deep sense of social justice. And it shows. UC Santa Cruz’s many accomplishments include: • The first to map the human genome and make it publicly available—for free, forever • Key contributors to the discovery of the Higgs Boson • The birthplace of organic farming • The center of the Dickens Universe • A graduate gaming program that is one of the top 10 in the country • Ranked second in the world for its research impact This university is not to be underestimated. The campus's unique character is reflected in its students' bold choice to elect the fabled Banana Slug as its mascot—with their determined bearing and bright personality, it's hard to ignore Banana Slugs wherever they may roam. And Banana Slug alumni are everywhere—a network 100,000-plus-strong, comprised of respected scientists, journalists, social activists, political and business leaders, artists, teachers, entrepreneurs, change-makers, and much more. Banana Slugs are changing the world.