7 SPECTACULAR | Local Universities and Why They’re Unique

The Chicagoland area is known for many award-winning universities. Some have historical significance, some have international involvement and recognition. Here, we highlight seven of them, along with something that makes each program unique in a specific field.

Lewis University

Founded in 1932 by the Archdiocese of Chicago, this Romeoville-based university has a student body of approximately 7,000 students and offers majors in over 80 areas of specialty. Something Unique: some exciting new fields to major in at Lewis include cyber security and unmanned aircraft systems (drones!).

Aurora University

AU sits atop 37 beautiful acres in Illinois’ second biggest city–Aurora. Something Unique: the institution’s John C. Dunham STEM Partnership School serves local 3rd – 8th graders and is staffed by teachers from partnering districts who are completing graduate work and have a desire to become leaders in mathematics and science education.

North Central College

This 150-year-old liberal arts college calls Naperville’s historic district home. Something Unique: For students looking for more than just a classroom experience, the “Distinctive Academic Opportunities” program is specifically geared towards preparing students for life after college. Experiences like spending a summer on campus as part of a research team or traveling abroad to influence public policy are just two examples.

Northern Illinois University

Located in DeKalb, NIU has approximately 25,000 students at any given time and is home to Division I NCAA athletics. Something Unique: The NIU School of Theater and Dance has a relationship with Moscow Art Theater, whereby undergraduate students can take part in a semester of training in Moscow.

Wheaton College

Founded in 1860, Wheaton College describes itself as “an interdenominational Christian liberal arts college.” Something Unique: Their Conservatory of Music is fully accredited by the National

Association of Schools of Music, offers two professional music degrees and boasts a rate of 100% of faculty members who hold doctorate degrees.

DeVry University

With Downers Grove and Naperville campuses, DeVry offers the ultimate in convenience by offering online as well as on-campus classes. Something Unique: Their Cisco Network Academy is a collaborative effort with Cisco to give students top-notch training in information-based careers, from designing to building to managing networks.

Northwestern University

Founded in 1851 by John Evans (fun fact: the village of Evanston is named after him) and eight other attorneys, to this day it is the only private institution within the Big Ten conference. Something Unique: For aspiring attorneys, Northwestern’s mock trial team is ranked consistently in the top 10 in the country out of 600 teams.

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