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13 Colleges That Have Produced the Most Astronauts

Darian Somers , Josh Moody

Before astronaut school, there was college.

On July 20, 1969, U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong took "one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind" when he became the first person to walk on the surface of the moon. That historic moment for Armstrong and the Apollo 11 crew marked the culmination of a national goal to put a man on the moon before the 1960s ended. Fifty years later, NASA continues to explore space, though humans have not walked on the moon since 1972. On the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, here's a look at where NASA astronauts -- current and former -- attended college. This list was compiled using data available on the NASA website and only includes undergraduate alma maters.

University of California--Berkeley

Number of astronauts: 5

U.S. News rank: 22 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 41,910

4-year graduation rate: 76%

Learn more about the University of California--Berkeley.

University of California--Los Angeles

Number of astronauts: 5

U.S. News rank: 19 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 45,428

4-year graduation rate: 75%

Learn more about the University of California--Los Angeles.

University of Washington

Number of astronauts: 5

U.S. News rank: 59 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 46,166

4-year graduation rate: 65%

Learn more about the University of Washington.

Auburn University (AL)

Number of astronauts: 6

U.S. News rank: 115 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 29,776

4-year graduation rate: 49%

Learn more about Auburn University.

University of Illinois--Urbana-Champaign

Number of astronauts: 6

U.S. News rank: 46 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 48,216

4-year graduation rate: 70%

Learn more about the University of Illinois--Urbana-Champaign.

University of Texas--Austin

Number of astronauts: 6

U.S. News rank: 49 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 51,525

4-year graduation rate: 58%

Learn more about the University of Texas--Austin.

Stanford University (CA)

Number of astronauts: 7

U.S. News rank: 7, National Universities

Total enrollment: 17,178

4-year graduation rate: 75%

Learn more about Stanford University.

University of Colorado--Boulder

Number of astronauts: 8

U.S. News rank: 96 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 35,230

4-year graduation rate: 45%

Learn more about the University of Colorado--Boulder.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Number of astronauts: 12

U.S. News rank: 3 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 11,466

4-year graduation rate: 85%

Learn more about Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Purdue University--West Lafayette (IN)

Number of astronauts: 15

U.S. News rank: 56 (tie), National Universities

Total enrollment: 41,573

4-year graduation rate: 51%

Learn more about Purdue University--West Lafayette.

United States Military Academy (NY)

Number of astronauts: 20

U.S. News rank: 18 (tie), National Liberal Arts Colleges

Total enrollment: 4,491

4-year graduation rate: 81%

Learn more about the United States Military Academy.

United States Air Force Academy (CO)

Number of astronauts: 40

U.S. News rank: 30 (tie), National Liberal Arts Colleges

Total enrollment: 4,276

4-year graduation rate: N/A

Learn more about the United States Air Force Academy.

United States Naval Academy (MD)

Number of astronauts: 53

U.S. News rank: 22 (tie), National Liberal Arts Colleges

Total enrollment: 4,495

4-year graduation rate: 90%

Learn more about the United States Naval Academy.

Find the school for you.

Get more information about how to choose a college, and check out the complete rankings of the Best Colleges to find the school that's best for you. For more advice and information on selecting a college, connect with U.S. News Education on Twitter and Facebook.

Colleges that have graduated the most astronauts

-- United States Naval Academy: 53

-- United States Air Force Academy: 40

-- United States Military Academy: 20

-- Purdue University--West Lafayette: 15

-- Massachusetts Institute of Technology: 12

-- University of Colorado--Boulder: 8

-- Stanford University: 7

-- Auburn University: 6

-- University of Illinois--Urbana-Champaign: 6

-- University of Texas--Austin: 6

-- University of California--Berkeley: 5

-- University of California--Los Angeles: 5

-- University of Washington: 5



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