The Northwestern Difference
Northwestern is a comprehensive research university that is deeply interdisciplinary across multiple schools and units. Our rigorous yet empathetic academic environment provides a robust mixture of theory and practice, with an emphasis on top-tier research, new knowledge, creative expression and practical application. If you are at Northwestern, you are part of an innovative, collaborative, and multidimensional community delivering an impact that is rare in higher education. View our fact sheet as a downloadable PDF.
Northwestern and International Recognition
Northwestern is one of only three top-10 US universities ranked in the top 20 in each of the five graduate education categories.
Rankings from U.S. News & World Report as of as of April 2023
Arts and Humanities
- 35 Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences programs across the humanities, fine arts, social sciences, natural sciences and mathematics
- Northwestern was placed among Playbill’s top 10 most represented universities on Broadway
- Bienen School of Music alumni and faculty have won 12 Grammy Awards since 2015, and 45 music students and alumni have earned top honors in 40 international performance competitions
- Block Museum of Art named a top US campus museum by The New York Times
Journalism and Integrated Marketing Communications
World renowned for Journalism and Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC):
- Undergraduates complete journalism residencies at over120+ media outlets and companies in the US and abroad
- Journalism graduate students choose to specialize in one of seven different topic areas or reporting formats
- The IMC program at Northwestern is a pioneer in blending creativity and data to build brands for the digital age
Schools and Colleges
Our schools are listed below, with year of founding.
Northwestern is a leading research university that is home to more than 90 school-based centers and more than 50 University research centers. With an interdisciplinary culture, our research spans a spectrum of areas including neuroscience, nanotechnology, biotechnology and drug discovery.
VISIT THE OFFICE FOR RESEARCH
$923M+ in annual sponsored research awards
$421M in NIH funding
107% increase over the past 10 years
#16 in total NIH awards for top AAU universities
Innovation and Entrepreneurship
- 100+ innovation-based courses taught each year
- $2.6 billion in revenue from patents and intellectual property licensing revenue
- 10 million+ patients impacted by Northwestern therapeutics
Visit the I&E website
- 73% of undergrads combine two or more areas of study.
- About 50% of students participate in a global learning experience.
- 96% of the Class of 2021 were employed or pursuing further education, service, or career development opportunities within six months of graduation.
6:1student to faculty ratio
Pell Grants and Financial Aid Percentages
21%of class of 2026 receives Pell Grants
64%of undergraduates receive financial aid
Northwestern awarded more than $200 million in scholarships to students in 2021–22.
Northwestern is one of a handful of universities to appear on every "top producing" Fulbright U.S. Student Program list published by the Chronicle of Higher Education since 2005.
Among faculty and alumni are recipients of the Pulitzer Prize, Nobel Prize, MacArthur Genius Grant, Tony Award, Grammy Award, Emmy Award, Academy Award, Guggenheim Fellowship, and membership in the National Academy and numerous other honorary and professional societies.
Learn about award-winning faculty on the Faculty Accolades website.
$16 billionin total endowment
Northwestern Medicine Hospital Affiliates
Hospital (Northwestern Memorial Hospital)
Rehabilitation Hospital (Shirley Ryan Ability Lab)
In Cardiology and Heart Surgery (Lurie Children's Hospital)
U.S. News & World Report (2023)
- Founding member of the Big Ten conference
- Football has won two Big Ten West titles since 2018, and four bowl games since 2016
- 2021 NCAA field hockey national champions
- Seven NCAA women's lacrosse titles since 2005
- Recent conference championships in basketball, soccer, softball, field hockey, golf, tennis, wrestling, fencing, swimming, and diving
- Northwestern’s 98% NCAA graduation success rate has ranked in the top 4 among Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) schools for 18 consecutive years
- One of five private AAU members/top research universities to compete in NCAA Power Five conferences
Visit Northwestern Athletics
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Notable Alumni Include:
- Stephen Colbert
- Gillian Flynn
- Claudia Lopez
- Julia Louis-Dreyfus
- Meghan Markle
- George R.R. Martin
- Seth Meyers
- J.B. Pritzker
- Patrick G. Ryan
- Roxana Saberi
- Gwynne Shotwell
- Rubén Castillo
- Michael Wilbon
- Andrew Youn