The proper name of the college commonly referred to as Georgia Tech. There's an amazing lack of nodespace devoted to talking about Tech. I'm going to attempt to correct that now, since I will probably be attending it for the next 47 years.

A Brief History

Georgia Tech was founded on October 5, 1888 as a mechanical engineering school. The idea was that the school would combine the theoretical elements of engineering with practical experience. Hence, the first two buildings on campus were the class building (Tech Tower, now an administrative building) and a commercial shop. There was no on-campus housing. The commercial shop burned down within only a few years, but was rebuilt as a non-commercial shop. At this time, only white men were allowed to attend.

Around the end of the nineteenth century, lots began to change around Tech. Later presidents attempted to turn Tech from merely a mechanical engineering trade school into a full-fledged university. They accomplished this by adding more engineering and scientific degree programs, building dormitories, and other campus additions. Those first dorm buildings now serve as classroom and laboratory buildings for several of the engineering programs.

Large donations allowed Tech to purchase additional land, build Grant Field (the football stadium), and the Carnegie Library. Tech continued its expansion by adding lots of dorms on east campus including the fabulous Brittain Dining Hall. More classroom facilities were built in the middle of campus, and further degree programs were added.

The first women were admitted to Tech under a full-time basis in 1952. Prior to this, women were able to attend evening classes. Even after allowing women into Tech, it would still be several years before all degree programs were open to women. This was completed by 1968.

And finally, the first black students were admitted to Tech on September 27, 1961. This followed several years of problems regarding integration. Tech had functioned without a president for several years, since nobody wanted to come into office with such an issue to deal with. However, the student body was very supportive of integration and the process went fairly smoothly.

There's a lot more to Tech history than I have written here. I invite other Tech students to fill in all the missing pieces with their own little chunks of knowledge. That's the beauty of Everything.

Tech Traditions

Current Degree Programs

Tech started off with only a mechanical engineering program. Things have changed a bit since 1885, though. Not only does Tech have a variety of scientific and engineering programs, there's even management degrees available. The following is a complete listing of degrees available from each college. It is taken from my 2001-2003 catalog:

College of Architecture - building construction, industrial design
College of Computing - computer science
DuPree College of Management - management
College of Engineering - aerospace engineering, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, industrial engineering, materials science, mechanical engineering, nuclear engineering, polymer and textile chemistry, textile enterprise management, textile and fiber engineering
Ivan Allen College - economics, history, technology, and science, international affairs, international affairs and modern languages, public policy, science, technology, and culture
College of Sciences - applied mathematics, applied physics, applied psychology, biology, chemistry, discrete mathematics, earth and atmospheric sciences, physics

Other Programs

Tech is not just a school. It also has very active research programs. I'll attempt to describe a few here. There's the Georgia Tech Research Institute, which does all sorts of engineering, scientific, and computing projects. It has a variety of facilities throughout the Atlanta area, and students are welcome to apply for employment.

The College of Computing has a variety of research groups - the High Performance Computing Center, the Graphics, Visualization, and Usability lab, and the Broadband Institute. In conjunction with other colleges, they offer programs in bioengineering, cognitive science, and combinatorics.

The engineering school runs lots of research programs, which I don't know about. I'm hoping that Ted will be able to fill this in for me.

There's city planning courses, a nuclear reactor research facility (which I ride by all the time going to class), microprocessor design facilities, an extensive ham radio shack at the EE building, a music minor program as well as loads of other opportunities to play, lots of sports programs, and so forth. In general, you can find just about anything you're looking for as long as it's not liberal arts at Georgia Tech.

Campus Life Stuffs

There are two major areas of campus housing which are further divided up into several smaller administrative units. I won't talk about those here. East campus housing sits right along I-75/I-85. It consists of thirteen traditional dorm buildings, one apartment complex (mostly foreign-student housing), and Brittain Dining Hall. In addition, the majority of the fraternity and sorority buildings are on east campus, though they spread into the center of campus a bit too.

West campus is way on the other side of the school, along Northside Drive/Tech Parkway. While there are some freshman dorms on west campus, it's mostly apartment buildings that were constructed for the 1996 Olympics. Specifically, it consists of seven apartment complexes, eight dorm buildings, one suite building, and the Woodruff Dining Hall. The apartment buildings cover a whole lot of surface area, but none of them are very tall.

There's also married student housing and graduate student housing across Tenth Street from campus. And there's more foreign student housing in apartments on the south side of North Avenue. Also, there is plenty of off-campus, non-Tech housing if you choose not to deal with Housing (or, if Housing chooses not to deal with you).

Parking at Tech is a bad idea. We currently have three functional parking decks at a maximum of three levels high. There's a few paved lots and a few gravel lots. In addition, there's the new parking deck that is currently condemned. Finally, you can park on the street. Tech has recently (August 2001) taken to closing down lanes of streets and converting them to parking. In general, the school sells way more permits than spaces that exist. Good luck. Also, Tech is closing down lots of the interior roads presumably to make the school more pedestrian-friendly.

Geographic Information

Georgia Tech is located smack in downtown Atlanta, GA. Local residents would probably argue about what area it's really located in, but downtown is close enough. In general, Tech is bounded by the following roads: on the east, by I-75/I-85; on the south, by North Avenue; on the north, by Tenth Street; and on the west, by Tech Parkway and Northside Drive. Naturally, there are a few buildings outside these borders, but it's a good enough guide.

Tech is directly across North Avenue from the Coca-Cola world headquarters and directly across the interstate from The Varsity, a world-famous greasy spoon. Abandon hope all ye who enter here. Tech is also within walking distance of the North Avenue MARTA station, from which the intrepid student can reach the airport or the mall. Finally, Tech is within walking/biking distance of all the attractions of downtown Atlanta. Quite conveniently located. And yet, it's quite easy to forget you're in a major city when you are on campus.

Fun Things To Do In And Around Tech


There's much work to be done before this node is finished! If you've got something that needs to be added, you can either add your own writeup describing it, or you can /msg me and explain what I need to add. If you decide to add your own stuff, please attempt to follow my outline style.

This information was gathered from a Tech website outlining the history, from the course catalog, and my own experiences. Everything is in my own words, however.

man, fuck this school. fuck it right in the ass.
-- Jethro Bodine, jaded and pissed off 5th year ME student

Located in urban Atlanta, Georgia, Georgia Tech specializes in engineering curricula offering 13 undergraduate degrees in its College of Engineering. Other programs are also offered in architecture, computing, management, sciences, and the liberal arts. Graduate level programs are also offered in a wide variety of fields.

Vital Statistics

The following sections discussing majors were kept from my original writeup because of certain extra info, most importantly the acronyms and abbreviations for majors which make it much easier to converse with Tech students. The list is identical to the one in Iconoplast's writeup.

Engineering Programs

Georgia Tech traditionally is an engineering school, and as such, has a very reputable College of Engineering. With its undergraduate program ranked sixth by U.S. News and World Report, and graduate program ranked fourth, it is certainly one of the top engineering schools in the United States. There are thirteen undergraduate degree programs and over twenty graduate degree programs in the College of Engineering, accounting for fully 58% of Tech students. The undergraduate programs are:

Computer Science

Besides the engineering program, Georgia Tech has a strong if controversial College of Computing. With about 14% of undergraduates enrolled in the Computer Science (CS) program, it is one of the most popular majors at Tech.


The third major college at Georgia Tech is the DuPree College of Management. Enrolling 11% of undergraduates (some of whom changed majors from engineering, see M Train), this is the last of the popular majors at Tech.

Other Majors

The College of Architecture offers three major programs, but the six-year Architecture program is the most feared on campus. Also offered are Building Construction (BC) and Industrial Design (ID). There are also students enrolled in the College of Sciences, home of the undergraduate degrees of:

Most other students fall under the Ivan Allen College, Tech's liberal arts school. Undergraduate majors offered in this school are all Bachelor of Science degrees, unlike in most liberal arts schools. They are:

Degree Options

Degree-seeking students have several options in addition to taking courses toward their major. Many students choose to minor or gain a certificate in another area. Also, approximately one-third of students participate in the cooperative education program, where the student alternates semesters of school and work, going to school an extra year and working as many as four terms. The average starting pay for the co-op program is $11/hr. It is the largest voluntary co-op program in the United States.

Student Organizations

There are a large number of student organizations on campus, from fraternities and sororities through the GT Cycling Team, and everything in between. Many of these organizations receive money through the Student Government Association.


Georgia Tech has a number of varsity intercollegiate sports. Men's sports include football, basketball, baseball, cross country, golf, swimming and diving, tennis, and track and field. Women's sports are basketball, cross country, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. There is also a prodigious number of club teams, many of which compete on the collegiate level.

Georgia Tech's football team is best known both for its 1990 National Championship and its October 7, 1916 222-0 victory over Cumberland University. It is also the main target of the Georgia/Georgia Tech rivalry. In fact, the annual UGA/GT football game is preceded with a special issue of the Technique, the campus newspaper. This honor is given only to one other Tech football game, Homecoming.

Georgia Tech 2001 Factbook Quick Facts:
Georgia Tech 2001-2003 General Catalog

These are my personal thoughts on Georgia Tech, where I got a MS degree in Electrical Engineering. Perhaps they will be useful to prospective engineering students.

Research at Georgia Tech was like working in industry but with crappy pay. Sometimes the "research" seemed more like product development for the companies funding us. Research projects at Georgia Tech tended to be geared toward near-term applications. For these reasons industry recruiters love Georgia Tech. In recent US News & World Report graduate program rankings, recruiters rank Georgia Tech as the second best American graduate school for engineers behind MIT. Georgia Tech is less esteemed in academic circles. It is the polar opposite of Caltech, whose researchers are highly respected in academia for their contributions to fundamental science and deeply-mathematical engineering theory.

Classes at Georgia Tech tended to be difficult and poorly-instructed. I often felt that nobody in the class understood the lectures of some professors, and that some professors didn't understand the material they taught. Industry recruiters don't care so much about these things. More important to them is research output. They only need a handful of dreamers and doers from MIT and Caltech.

Atlanta is surely one of the best places in the US for a student to live. It is a large city (over 4 million people) with lots to do, but it's extremely affordable. For about $800/month I lived in a brand new beautiful apartment in one of the best locations in Atlanta. In Berkeley I paid the same amount to live in someone's basement. Boston and Palo Alto are also extremely expensive.

The lack of liberal arts programs and females make the Tech campus quite dull. While the football and basketball teams have been noteworthy in the past, the student body are largely indifferent toward them. There's basically nothing to do except research on campus. Prospective students should consider that competing schools like the University of Michigan, UC Berkeley, and Cornell are actually pleasant. And while Atlanta is a nice city, it doesn't have the culture and atmosphere of a college town.

The Alma Mater
Music by Frank Roman
Words by I.H. Granath
Oh, sons of Tech, arise, behold!
The banner as it reigns supreme, 
For from on high the White and Gold
Waves in its triumphant gleam.
The spirit of the cheering throng
Resounds with joy revealing
A brotherhood in praise and song,
In memory of the days gone by.
Oh Scion of the Southland!
In our hearts you shall forever fly.
We cherish thoughts so dear for thee,
Oh, Alma Mater in our prayer.
We plead for you in victory,
And in the the victory we share!
But when the battle seems in vain
Our spirits never falter,
We're ever one in joy or pain
And our union is a lasting bond.
Oh! May we be united
Till the victory of life is won.

You can also find the Ramblin' Wreck the official Georgia Tech fight song.

Info from Georgia Tech Commencement Ceremony Summer 2003 program

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