Illinois Wesleyan University

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Private not-for-profit, 4-year or above
Carnegie Classification
Baccalaureate Colleges: Arts & Sciences Focus
Religious Affiliation
Not applicable

Illinois Wesleyan University is a private, independent, residential liberal arts university located in Bloomington, Illinois on an 85 acre campus just a few blocks from downtown Bloomington and Uptown Normal, two of the best college towns in America. Established in 1850 by a group of civic and religious leaders for the purpose of creating an “Institution of learning of collegiate grade”, Illinois Wesleyan University is affiliated with the United Methodist Church, though it remains independent in its governance. Illinois Wesleyan University is a member of the Annapolis Group, a consortium of the nation’s leading liberal arts colleges, and has been named a best value college by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.

Academic Programs

Illinois Wesleyan University’s mission is to provide its students with a liberal arts education which “fosters creativity, critical thinking, effective communication, strength of character and a spirit of inquiry.” The University’s mission statement continues, “Our curriculum deepens the specialized knowledge of a discipline with a comprehensive world view. The Illinois Wesleyan experience affords the greatest possibilities for realizing individual potential while preparing students for democratic citizenship and life in a global society.” Made up of the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Fine Arts (which houses the Schools of Music, Arts and Theatre) and the School of Nursing, Illinois Wesleyan University offers more than 80 majors, minors and programs.

Illinois Wesleyan University is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and has been so since 1916. The University boasts several unique experiential-learning programs including the University’s Study Abroad Tuition Policy which allows students to apply their tuition, scholarship, or need-based assistance towards the cost of a semester abroad. Because of this policy, at least 50% of students are able to study abroad through one of the University’s 300-plus global study programs.

Student Life

Illinois Wesleyan University has a total enrollment figure of nearly 2,000 students, all of whom are undergraduates. The student body is split approximately 56% to 44% between female and male students, respectively, with students hailing from more than 30 states and at least 24 foreign countries. Illinois Wesleyan University requires that all students reside on campus for the first three years of their stay and offers a variety of living arrangement through its several residence halls, fraternity and sorority houses.

More than 190 student-led clubs and organizations are active on Illinois Wesleyan University’s campus. These cater to a wide range of interests including academics, hobby and recreational, social, religious groups, and more and offer students the opportunity to interact with one another outside of the classroom and develop valuable leadership skills. As an NCAA Division III school, Illinois Wesleyan University sponsors nearly two dozen varsity athletic teams which compete in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin.

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