Savannah State University

Savannah State University appears in these rankings:

50 Best Value Colleges for a Criminal Justice Degree

The 100 Most Affordable Universities in America

Savannah State University was founded as the first college for the education of black students in 1890, and it has remained a historically black school for much of its existence. In 1932, the school changed its name from the Georgia State Industrial College for Colored Youths to Georgia State College. It wasn't until 1996 that the college became Savannah State University. During the evolution of the campuses, the focus shifted from being a primarily black college to one that welcomes students with diverse backgrounds. Students here enjoy a student-to-faculty ratio of 20:1.

Criminal justice, social work and business programs rank as the most popular among 2014 graduates according to U.S. News and World Report. One of the school's newest degree programs, a Master of Science in marine sciences, is the only one of its kind in Georgia. The school's proximity to the Atlantic Ocean and other natural water sources make it an ideal location for a marine sciences program. As of fall 2015, Savannah State enrolls nearly 4,900 students at the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Students at Savannah State have access to historic downtown Savannah, a culturally and historically significant city in the American South. The school also offers more than 75 student organizations, clubs, publications, Greek organizations and intramural sports opportunities, making student life more engaging for its residents. Students will appreciate the blend of old and new as the campus pays homage to its history while embracing new research and modern technology.

Savannah State University Accreditation Details

Savannah State University holds institutional accreditation from the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. In addition, several of the school's programs hold accreditation from their respective accrediting organizations. Savannah's science and engineering programs, for example, have been accredited by ABET while the College of Business Administration holds accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International.

Savannah State University Application Requirements

Depending on a student's enrollment status, the application process varies at Savannah State. Most students will use the school's online portal to fill out and submit a completed application. For incoming freshmen, the following application requirements apply:

  • A minimum SAT score of 430 in reading and 400 in math
  • A minimum ACT score of 17 each in math, English and composite
  • A college prep GPA of at least 2.3
  • A freshman index score of 1940
  • Required high school courses as outlined by the state

Applicants must submit their official transcripts and test scores to the school once they've completed the online application. Individual programs may also require additional documentation. Graduate students will submit different documentation based on their program of study. Students in the marine science program, for example, will need to send in their official transcripts and GRE score, three letters of recommendation, a personal essay and a resume. Graduate students also attend an in-person interview.

Different admissions and applications requirements apply to transfer students, military students and international applicants. In addition, students who want to enroll in online courses or an online degree will need to be admitted as Savannah State students before applying for an online program. Applicants who don't fall within the standard definition of undergraduate or graduate will need to visit the school's Office of Admissions website for more information on specific requirements.

Tuition and Financial Aid

For in-state students, tuition rates at Savannah State University are relatively affordable. Full-time undergraduate students pay $2,429 per semester in tuition alone. With associated fees, the total is about $3,308 for resident students. Non-resident or out-of-state students are charged a higher rate of about $9,718 per semester including tuition and fees. In-state graduate students pay about $3,222 per semester for tuition and fees while out-of-state graduate students pay $9,588. These rates are current as of the 2015-2016 academic year.

According to the school's website, more than 90 percent of the student body at Savannah State receives some form of financial assistance to help offset the cost of tuition and fees. Students can apply for grants, loans and work-study opportunities by submitting a completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid or FAFSA by the appropriate deadline.

The school also offers scholarship awards based on merit or need. These include the Georgia HOPE Scholarship, which is funded through the Georgia Lottery, and the Zell Miller Scholarship, which is also funded through the state's lottery and awarded to incoming freshmen who've achieved valedictorian or salutatorian status. Zell Miller recipients may also meet certain academic requirements to earn the award. Applicants who are interested in these and other awards should visit the school's financial aid website for more information.

Degrees in Focus: Business Administration and Marine Sciences

Savannah State is known for its business degrees, and students who pursue a degree under the university's College of Business Administration have several options for customizing their program. With a major in business, students can focus on one of several areas: computer information systems, marketing, management, and global logistics and international management. The school offers its Bachelor of Business Administration degree on campus or online, making it convenient for students who need greater flexibility. For the online program, students must complete at least 60 credit hours with a GPA of at least 2.0 at an accredited school before enrolling in the BBA program. The complete program requires 125 credit hours covering core business classes, general education courses and electives.

Relatively new to the university is the Master of Science degree in marine sciences. As mentioned above, the school's location makes studying marine sciences here ideal. Students can explore four unique aquatic environments: the beach, the ocean, estuaries and salt marshes. According to the department's website, the program partners with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Living Marine Resources Cooperative Science Center. It's also an associate member of the Consortium for Ocean Leadership.

Applicants to the program must have a bachelor's degree in a STEM-related field, which stands for science, technology, engineering or math. The program requires completion of 36 hours, divided as follows: 12 hours of core classes, 18 hours of electives and six hours of thesis work. Required courses for all tracks include general oceanography, coastal oceanography, technical writing and communication, and a seminar on marine science and research. Students who attend Savannah State University have access to a broad range of degree programs to meet different interests and career goals.