The flagship of the Indiana University system, Indiana University Bloomington was founded by the state legislature in 1820. Like many colleges of the time, what was then called the State Seminary focused on the classics – Greek and Roman literature – and for the first decades the school was led by clergymen. By the late 19th century, though, Indiana University had reoriented itself along the lines of eastern colleges, with a liberal arts base, electives, and conventional majors. Indiana was also just the fourth public university to admit women alongside men. Over the course of the 20th century Indiana grew into one of the premier institutions in the nation, earning recognition as a Public Ivy (a public university with the quality of the Ivy League) and U.S. News & World Report ranking as one of the top 40 best public universities in the nation.
Academic ProgramsAs Indiana’s flagship public university, IU has been central to Indiana’s academic, research, and cultural life for nearly two centuries. IU remains one of the most important educators for Indiana’s professionals and leaders in all disciplines and fields, with top-ranked programs in science, business, education, and the humanities. The Kelley School of Business, in particular, has been ranked one of the top 10 undergraduate business schools, and top 25 MBA programs, in the nation by U.S. News. The Kelley School’s wide and deep connections to Indiana’s industry sector makes it one of the most productive and successful for graduates. The Maurer School of Law, the School of Education, and the School of Nursing has also all been recognized as regional and national leaders.
Indiana University is also known for its influential humanities programs. The Jacobs School of Music ranks alongside world-renowned institutions like Juilliard and the Berklee College of Music, and has welcomed some of the most respected names in classical and jazz music as faculty. IU also originated the academic study of Folklore and Ethnomusicology, founding the first university department in the field, and was the first college in the US to offer a doctorate in Gender Studies. From languages to economics, Indiana University is the first and best choice for many students in Indiana and the Midwest.
Student LifeWith more than 48,000 students, Indiana University is Indiana’s largest college, and one of the largest in the US. While more than half of IU’s students come from Indiana, all 50 states and more than 150 foreign nations are represented in IU’s diverse student body. One of the most loved college towns in America, Bloomington is part of Indiana University, and Indiana University is part of Bloomington, a cultural touchstone with dozens of theaters and music venues, art destinations, and events. More than 750 student-led organizations mean that every student can find their place – multiple places, most likely – and more than 70 fraternities and sororities make for one of the most exciting Greek Life environments in the nation.
The Hoosiers are also one of the nation’s most storied athletic programs. IU students may take part in more than 70 club and intramural sports, but the university’s NCAA Division I varsity athletics is one of the biggest draws in the Midwest. The Hoosiers have dominated the Big 10 conference since 1899, especially in basketball. The 5-time NCAA champions have been rated one of the most valuable collegiate athletic programs of all time. Indiana’s 8-time national championship men’s soccer team is also widely recognized as the best in American history. The bitter, historical rivalries with Purdue University and the Kentucky Wildcats are the stuff of sports legend, and prompted many of longtime basketball coach Bobby Knight’s infamous outbursts.