Reasons to
Choose Illinois

... in no particular order.

#1

470,000+ living alumni, one of the largest networks of its kind

#2

#1 Midwest food town (Midwest Living)

#3

Illinois MakerLab, the world's first business school 3D printing lab

#4

#14 public university in the U.S. (U.S. News & World Report)

#5

1,800+ academic, athletic, cultural, philanthropic, political, religious, and social student groups

#6

Big Ten, Division I sports teams

#7

#1 most students of color among top-ranked Midwest universities (NCES)

#8

380+ study abroad programs in 60+ countries

#9

#1 return on investment in the Big Ten (PayScale)

#10

Our beloved Alma Mater

#11

#2 college town in America (AIER)

#12

Co-ed, single-gender, and gender-inclusive residence halls

#13

11,300 unique employers recruiting Illini each year

#14

Incredible faculty like Mats Selen, a U.S. Professor of the Year

#15

#1 Information Sciences program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#16

The Illini 4000, who raise money for cancer research while biking across the U.S.

#17

Alumni who have created Mortal Kombat, JavaScript, Deadspin, and the Willis Tower

#18

Green Street, the heart of Campustown and center of student nightlife

#19

86 Fortune 100 companies recruiting Illini each year

#20

A top 20 sustainable school (Sierra Club)

#21

7 campus recreation facilities, including around 500,000 square feet of indoor space and 75 acres of outdoor space

#22

#10 Special Education program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#23

Changing seasons on a beautiful campus

#24

The tradition of homecoming since 1910

#25

Talented a cappella groups like No Comment

#26

Black Dog, some of the best BBQ in the U.S.

#27

40+ club sports, many of which are competitive traveling teams

#28

A top 10 university in producing venture-backed entrepreneurs (Pitchbook)

#29

A long tradition of leadership and excellence in wheelchair sports

#30

Spurlock Museum

#31

The Illini Union's Courtyard Café and study lounges

#32

Our Carle Illinois College of Medicine, the first in the nation to focus on the intersection of engineering and medicine

#33

Our Main, Engineering, and South Quads

#34

Campus food trucks like Cracked (yum!)

#35

Alumna Temple Grandin (1989), leader in animal welfare and the rights of people with autism

#36

27% of students participating in study abroad

#37

Campus Rec's group fitness classes, personal training sessions, instructional cooking classes, and rock climbing

#38

The Marching Illini, the nation's premier college marching band

#39

A Higher Education Excellence in Diversity Award recipient 7 years running

#40

Ice skating at the Ice Arena

#41

Our 4 cultural centers: Asian American Cultural Center, Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center, La Casa Cultural Latina, and Native American House

#42

Dance, improv, musical theater, and acting troupes

#43

89% of Illini participating in experiential learning opportunities (internships, assistantships, service learning, etc.)

#44

36% of Illini who participate in experiential learning opportunities receiving job offers as a result

#45

Lovie Smith

#46

#48 university in the U.S. (U.S. News & World Report)

#47

Outdoor Center Fields for basketball, football, soccer, rugby, tennis, and sand volleyball

#48

Moms and Dads Weekends

#49

7,500+ future classmates (i.e., lots of new friends)

#50

Gies College of Business ranked #19 in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#51

Jarling's frozen custard

#52

Illini awarded the most Churchill Scholarships and second-most Marshall Scholarships among public universities

#53

30+ intramural sports, including soccer, flag football, sand volleyball, basketball, softball, and dodgeball

#54

A nationally recognized Career Center, helping Illini prepare for both grad school and careers

#55

Alumnus Max Levchin (1997), one of PayPal's founders

#56

The Writers Workshop and various tutoring services

#57

#20 university in the world (Center for World University Rankings)

#58

Memorial Stadium

#59

The Eternal Flame, where "a lover's kiss will bring eternal bliss"

#60

Our create-your-own-major option

#61

A top green college (Princeton Review)

#62

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts

#63

Centrally located between Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis

#64

Vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, and kosher options available at dining halls

#65

Welcome Days

#66

Our Sustainable Student Farm, which supplies food to our residence halls

#67

Block I, football's student cheering section

#68

91% of Illini employed or continuing education within 6 months of graduation

#69

16 LEED-certified buildings, with several others in progress

#70

Special guests like Barack Obama, Jenna Marbles, Hasan Minaj, and David Dobrik

#71

Close collaboration with faculty through independent studies, research, and special projects

#72

Our Division of Disability Resources & Educational Services, among the nation's best in serving the needs of students with disabilities

#73

68% undergrad participation in research

#74

iVenture Accelerator, which supports student-led startups with knowledge, access, and funding

#75

7,000+ classes offered each year

#76

Squirrels!

#77

1st university to receive Barrier-Free America Award

#78

#24 among U.S. institutions for number of students studying abroad (Open Doors)

#79

"Out of Nowhere," a documentary film about the C-U music scene

#80

Alumnus Jeremy Stoppelman (1999), a founder of Yelp and its current CEO

#81

#6 Computer Science program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#82

Illini Pride and its 2,000+ members

#83

The Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology

#84

University Housing's Good2Go Food Truck, which serves dining hall food on the go

#85

#21 elite college for promoting upward social mobility (Washington Monthly)

#86

Our Counseling Center, which helps students with any academic, social, or emotional concerns

#87

Alumnus Nick Offerman (1993), best known as Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation

#88

11 Living-Learning Communities for students with common interests

#89

Orange Krush, basketball's student cheering section

#90

Women's Resources Center

#91

1st Architecture graduate in the U.S., Nathan C. Ricker

#92

Office of Minority Student Affairs, International Student and Scholar Services, and Veteran Student Support Services

#93

3 honors programs—college, campus, and departmental honors

#94

Academy Award-winning director and alumnus Ang Lee (1980)

#95

Urbana's Market at the Square and other farmers' markets

#96

#20 best value in U.S. higher education (Money)

#97

5th largest community of international students in the U.S. (Open Doors)

#98

Starting salaries $10,000 higher than the national average (NACE)

#99

The chance to do research as a freshman

#100

LGBT Resource Center

#101

European Union Center and International Coffee House

#102

Curtis Apple Orchard and its apple cider doughnuts

#103

Fewer than 50 students in 80% of classes

#104

Illinois Student Senate, Illini Union Board, and the Leadership Center

#105

Housing options for 33 fraternities and 20 sororities

#106

A top 20 university in producing female startup founders (Pitchbook)

#107

Alumnus Roger Ebert (1964) and Ebertfest, his annual film festival

#108

Japan House

#109

Engineering Open House's Tesla coil concert

#110

Siebel Center, home to one of the world's leading centers for computer science research

#111

The Illinois Marathon

#112

17-time Paralympic medalist and alumna Tatyana McFadden (2014)

#113

Summer classes and online winter courses

#114

26 Pulitzer and 23 Nobel Prize winners among faculty and alumni

#115

50 U.S. states and 116 countries represented on campus

#116

One of the most respected public research universities in the world

#117

Uggles the Undergraduate Library cat

#118

Performances by Bob Dylan, CHVRCHES, Kid Cudi, Miranda Lambert, The 1975, Drake, and Kelly Clarkson

#119

Handshake, our campus-wide recruiting platform

#120

#2 Accounting program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#121

Alumni Jawed Karim (2004) and Steve Chen (1999), two of YouTube's founders

#122

The first University yell: "Rah! Hoo-rah! Zip, boom, ah! Hip-zoo! Razoo! Jimmy, blow your bazoo! Ipzidyiki, U of I! Champaign!"

#123

Grand Challenge Learning courses tackling global issues you care about

#124

A micro-urban community, giving you all the perks of big-city living in a relaxed setting

#125

18 specialty and à la carte dining locations

#126

A top 25 college for veterans (U.S. News & World Report)

#127

Study abroad costs comparable to attending Illinois, with financial aid and scholarships available

#128

Urbana Sweetcorn Festival

#129

Morrow Plots, the longest-running experimental cornfield in the Western Hemisphere

#130

Complex Fields for football, softball, soccer, lacrosse, rugby, and ultimate

#131

7 all-you-care-to-eat campus dining halls

#132

Jane Addams Book Shop, where you'll find used, rare, and out-of-print books

#133

Dial-a-Carol, the longest-running tradition in University Housing

#134

Diagonal crosswalks at intersections and bike paths throughout campus

#135

#1 city in America for recent college grads (Livability)

#136

Our Vet Med Open House, which is free and open to the public

#137

Quin, our Quintessential Engineer

#138

4-year tuition guarantee for undergrads

#139

Movies on the Quad

#140

Lincoln's nose, which students rub for good luck on exams

#141

Classes right in your residence hall

#142

Amazing fall foliage

#143

Financial Aid's $437 million in funds to 69% of undergrads

#144

Research Park, where students can work with Fortune 100 companies and tech startups

#145

Alumnus Michael Hopkins (1991), NASA Astronaut

#146

Quad Day

#147

Boneyard Arts Festival

#148

The opportunity to study abroad and still graduate on time

#149

Business Instructional Facility (BIF), the 1st business facility at a public university to earn LEED platinum certification

#150

24 university residence halls and 11 private certified housing facilities

#151

Coffee, coffee everywhere!

#152

93% of freshmen returning as sophomores

#153

One of 10 universities most likely to land you a job in Silicon Valley (HiringSolved)

#154

The ARC: 340,000 square feet devoted to campus recreation

#155

#25 most innovative university system in the world (Reuters)

#156

Our school colors (we bleed orange and blue!)

#157

Grainger Library, one of the largest Engineering libraries in the country

#158

The Undertow Music Collective, Exile on Main Street, and See You CD & Vinyl

#159

Krannert Art Museum

#160

Polyvinyl Record Co., Champaign's independent record label

#161

October Lovers, a club for students who love autumn

#162

A best Midwestern university (The Princeton Review)

#163

Hallene Gateway, the perfect entrance to campus

#164

Countless study locations both indoor and outdoor across campus

#165

Live music at The Canopy Club

#166

Head banging with the Harassing Illini at Illini hockey games

#167

4 meal plan options and flexible dining credits

#168

A top producer of Fulbright U.S. Student Awards

#169

24-hour computer centers

#170

Rated a best value in higher education (Forbes)

#171

Career drop-in advising services as well as resume and cover letter reviews

#172

Stress relief animals during finals week

#173

Art Coalition, Figure One, Link, and Illini Union Art Galleries

#174

Illinois Commitment, our four years, free tuition program for all qualified in-state students

#175

Alumnus Martin Eberhard (1982, 1983), a founder of Tesla Motors

#176

23% undergrad participation in fraternal organizations, with 90 fraternities and sororities

#177

Illini Media Company, which includes WPGU, our student radio station, and The Daily Illini, our student newspaper

#178

Foellinger Auditorium

#179

Transformative learning experiences both in and outside of the classroom

#180

Home to 28 culturally affiliated fraternities and sororities

#181

ELLNORA Guitar Festival

#182

Zipcars available for use on and off campus

#183

The Grainger College of Engineering ranked 6th in the country (U.S. News & World Report)

#184

Alumni who have created Mosaic, ILLIAC I, PLATO, DSL, the plasma display, and Netscape

#185

A 6-year graduation rate of 84% (26% higher than the national average)

#186

#2 in diversity among top-ranked Midwest universities (NCES)

#187

#3 Civil Engineering program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#188

Deep dish pizza at Papa Del's

#189

#9 Insurance program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#190

SafeRides and SafeWalks at night

#191

Our favorite chant: I-L-L ... I-N-I!

#192

The Illini Union's visiting lecturers, performances, and Illinites

#193

30+ support centers on campus

#194

Our annual Community and Campus Day of Service

#195

Common Ground Food Co-Op, Urbana's wholesome food grocery store

#196

HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey, who, according to the film, "became operational at the HAL Plant in Urbana, Illinois"

#197

Bowling at the Illini Union

#198

The classic college quad

#199

Academic advisors available to every student

#200

College and campus-wide career fairs

#201

One of the largest university libraries in the U.S. with over 14,000,000 volumes (American Library Association)

#202

Housing's helpful roommate matching system

#203

150+ majors to choose from

#204

State-of-the-art, loanable technology and support through Media Commons

#205

Authentic Mexican at Maize

#206

Beckwith Residential Support Services at Nugent Hall

#207

Stargazing at the Astronomical Observatory

#208

Our transfer student housing clusters in Scott and Bousfield halls

#209

Cool boutiques, vintage shops, and thrift stores

#210

Residence halls within walking distance to the center of campus

#211

18:1 student-to-faculty ratio

#212

A huge range of class sizes

#213

Faculty-led study abroad programs

#214

34% of grads continuing education to obtain advanced degrees

#215

Pygmalion Festival

#216

Our Orange Krush Club, the first student club space of its kind in college athletics

#217

CRCE, which has a pool, waterslide, hot tub, modern exercise equipment, multiple gyms, and racquetball courts

#218

#3 Materials Science program in the nation (U.S. News & World Report)

#219

State Farm Center

#220

Illini Hillel Cohen Center for Jewish Life, the nation's 1st Hillel

#221

Minors and pre-professional programs

#222

100+ research centers and programs on campus

#223

#2 highest average mid-career salaries in the Big Ten (PayScale)

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