Student Life

Students at Pitt have an energetic and diverse life beyond classes.  There are unlimited educational experiences in and out of the classroom—including experience-based learning opportunities, such as internships with local businesses, study abroad, and research with a faculty member.  Pitt has more than 450 student-run organizations.  These include groups focused on academics, the arts or sports, as well as student government, fraternities and sororities, and volunteer and community services opportunities.

As a larger university, Pitt has a sizeable roster of students representing the university in Division I sport.  Pitt competes in the Atlantic Coast Conference in 17 sports, such as men’s and women’s basketball, track and field, swimming and diving, men’s football, and women’s volleyball and tennis.  Pitt students love cheering for the university’s teams.

Your Pitt Home

Ninety percent of first-year undergraduate students live in one of six university residence halls.  In 2013, the university opened its newest residence hall, Nordenberg Hall.  Students living in Nordenberg Hall have access to wireless internet, basic cable television, a fitness center, two music practice rooms, and study lounges.

University Campus

The university’s 132-acre campus is located in Oakland, the academic and healthcare center of the city of Pittsburgh.  Oakland bustles with students, university faculty and staff, and community residents who love living in a diverse urban neighborhood.  Within easy walking distance are museums, parks, and an abundance of shops and restaurants.

The 42-story Cathedral of Learning dominates the Oakland skyline and the university grounds.  Pitt is the only university in the world with an academic building dedicated to the city’s ethnic immigrant communities.  The Cathedral of Learning is home to 29 nationality rooms, which serve as working classrooms and an inspiration for thousands of Pitt students. 

Life Beyond Campus

The city of Pittsburgh has a reputation as being one of the most livable cities in America.  There is an abundance of indoor activities, outdoor pursuits, and entertainment for students to enjoy throughout Pittsburgh and the Western Pennsylvania region.  All Pitt students can ride the city’s buses for free with a valid Pitt ID, which makes it easy to access everything that Pittsburgh has to offer from restaurants, music, arts, sports, architecture, and more.  The city is home to three professional sports teams:  football’s Pittsburgh Steelers, ice hockey’s Pittsburgh Penguins, and baseball’s Pittsburgh Pirates. The city also boasts an opera house, ballet company, symphony orchestra, and numerous theatres and museums. Expect to live in a city with four distinct seasons where temperatures range from -7°C in winter to 29°C in summer.

Office of International Services

The Office of International Services is responsible for all visa and immigration matters for international students.  Every newly arrived international student participates in orientation sessions that include culture shock and adjustment workshops, social events, and information and educational programs.  These orientation programs help students adjust to life as a Pitt student and life in America.

Many staff members in the Office of International Services speak languages other than English, and all staff members have studied, worked or lived internationally.  They know first-hand what it feels like to be a stranger in a foreign land.

Facts about Students

  • 17,483   

  • Full-time undergraduates
  • 7,586

  • Full-time graduate students
  • 2,812

  • Foreign students
  • 26%

  • Freshman minority enrollment
  • 14:1

  • Student / faculty ratio
  • 59%

  • Undergraduate classes with less than 30 students
  • 93%

  • Freshman retention rate

Chinese Students & Scholars Association

The Chinese Students and Scholars Association at University of Pittsburgh is a student-run organization and a great resource to help newly admitted Chinese students make friends and adapt to life in Pittsburgh.  Activities include a mid-autumn talent show, Halloween party, spring festival gala, and career forum.

Global Ties

The Office of Student Affairs encourages all new undergraduate international students to participate in the Global Ties program. Global Ties creates a more inclusive campus for international students and helps them adjust to the Pitt community.  Additionally, there are 49 cultural and nationality student groups on campus.


Homecoming is an annual tradition to welcome back alumni. The celebrations include a football game, activities and culture events for students and alumni, and a fireworks display.

The University of Pittsburgh China Team

China Liaison Officer
Undergraduate Internship Coordinator
Director of Constituent Relations
International Admissions Counselor