Bradley University was founded in 1897 as Bradley Polytechnic Institute by a widow in honor of her late husband and children. Situated on 84 acres in the western bluff of Peoria, IL, Bradley is a private 4-year university that has seen many a successful athlete, businessman and government official receive degrees. Notable in the list of alumni is consumer advocate David Horowitz. Peoria is an old city, first established as a flour mill center. Over the years, it has grown and transitioned into the manufacturing hub with Caterpillar calling Peoria home. There are also several distilleries as well as sizable ethanol producer (this is the heart of corn country!). Bradley University’s urban environment provides a busy and exciting backdrop to student life and experience.
Accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission, Bradley University offers Bachelor’s degrees, post-baccalaureate certificates, Master’s degrees, post-masters certificates and Doctorates through the 6 colleges within the school (College of Education and Health Sciences; Caterpillar College of Engineering and Technology; College of Liberal Arts and Sciences; Foster College of Business; Slane College of Communications and Fine Arts; Turner College of Entrepreneurship and Innovation). While the largest programs include Business (Accounting and Finance), Engineering (Mechanical and Civil) and Healthcare (RN), Bradley has earned specific recognition for their Dietetic, Physical Therapy and Nursing programs, as well as Art & Design, Music, Theatre and Teacher Education programs. The Dietetic program offers Internships for students. Bradley University also offers an online Nursing degree program (launched in 2014). All of the colleges and programs are designed to fulfill the school’s Mission Statement: “Inspired by founder Lydia Moss Bradley’s commitment to useful learning and ethics, Bradley University educates leaders, innovators, and contributors to the well-being of all humanity.”
5,300 students attend Bradley, most in the local residence halls. There is no loss of activity, either. The Bradley Braves participate in 8 sports in the NCAA Division I-AAA and offers 3 levels of Intramural sports and club sports as well. One Homecoming tradition calls for the lighting of the “B” – a giant (8 feet tall) illuminated beacon that sits atop Bradley Hall (an original building). Students are well acquainted with the Core Values of Bradley: Excellence (a dynamic educational community that values excellence in teaching, research, creative production, applied scholarship, and service that transcends the classroom); Leadership (dedicated to the success of students and their development into tomorrow’s leaders); Innovation (development and implementation of new research directions, programs, and partnerships to enhance the educational experience); Globalization (committed to the common good of humankind); Collaborative Learning (sharing knowledge across traditional boundaries); Community (collective responsibility for the success of the University and all its constituents); Diversity (acknowledges the importance of respect and understanding of all individuals); Experiential Learning (commitment to useful learning and ethics; a variety of experiential learning opportunities); Entrepreneurship (emphasis on collaborative and interdisciplinary study); Service (individuals, families, and the surrounding community).