Dominican University


Founded in 1901, Dominican University is a coed, comprehensive, Catholic school in River Forest, Illinois. The university is affiliated with the Sinsinawa Dominican Sisters and accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools as a baccalaureate and master’s degree granting institution. It has programs that are accredited by the American Library Association, the Association of Collegiate Business Schools and Programs, and the Commission on Accreditation of the Council on Social Work Education.

Dominican offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees, as well as numerous certificate programs. Students can choose from more than 50 academic majors, including 9 pre-professional programs. The University is divided into 6 schools: the Brennan School of Business, the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Continuing Studies, the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, the Graduate School of Social Work, and the School of Education. The university offers 18 degrees in four graduate programs: Business, Library and Information Science, Education, and Social Work. The university also offers dual graduate degree programs in conjunction with McCormick Theological Seminary (MDiv); Loyola University Chicago; and Northwestern University’s School of Music.

Classes at the university are small; the average class size is 15 and the student-to-faculty ratio is 12 to 1. All of the classes at the university are taught by professors rather than teaching assistants. US News and World Report ranks Dominican in the top 20 Midwest regional universities. The news magazine also recognized the school as one of three “Best Value” universities in Illinois.

Most Popular Fields of Study

Information Summary

Ranks 23rd in Illinois and 566th overall. See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list
Overall Score (about) 85.8
Total Cost On-Campus Attendance $46,175
Admission Success rate N/A
ACT / SAT 75%ile scores 24 / 1130
Student Ratio Students-to-Faculty 15 : 1
Retention (full-time / part-time) 83% / N/A
Enrollment Total (all students) 2,990


Students who wish to apply to Dominican must complete the (online or paper) application form and submit an essay, an official high school transcript, and an official SAT or ACT score report. Recommendations and a personal interview are required for certain applicants and are recommended for all applicants. There is a nonrefundable application fee. The deadline for submitting an application is rolling.

Graduate students, transfer students, home-schooled students, and international students may need to use different procedures, so they should refer to the university’s website or contact the Office of Admissions for more information about the admissions process and application requirements.


Campus Building :: Dominican University Centennial Hall :: Dominican University Campus - Aerial view :: Dominican University
Campus :: Dominican University Campus Building :: Dominican University

Financial Aid

The university offers a wide variety of financial aid programs. More than 90 percent of the university’s first-year students who apply for financial aid receive some form of state, federal, private, or institutional financial assistance. Forms of aid that are available for students include grants, scholarships, loans, and work-study. The university also has its own substantial grant and employment programs for students with demonstrated financial need. All students who wish to be considered for financial aid must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which should be completed as early as possible to ensure quick processing. If selected for verification, students will also need to complete a Federal Verification Worksheet and/or additional documents. Students are encouraged to contact the Financial Aid Office for more information and assistance with completing the financial aid application process.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 4954th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Illinois.


Dominican has more than 50 clubs and student organizations that students can choose to participate in. These programs include cultural or ethnic groups, department clubs, honor societies, volunteer organizations, and special interest groups. Some organizations include the Academic Club, the Black Student Union, the Campus Activities Board, Campus Crusade for Christ, Law Club, the Resident Student Association, and the Video Game Club. The university’s different organizations also frequently organize special events on campus.

One of the university’s popular events is the annual Emerging Leaders retreat, when first year students spend a fun weekend together, learning about leadership, service, and themselves. This retreat takes place at beautiful Lake Geneva, and allows freshman students to develop leadership skills through workshops, team competitions, and outdoor group activities. The retreat is also a great chance to get to know other first year students and make new friends.

Thirty-five percent of students live in on-campus housing. There are five residence halls, in addition to the Bon Villa apartments, which are reserved for graduate students and students with special needs. Separate apartments for international students are also available. Housing applications for new students may be completed online or obtained through the Admissions Office. Students are required to submit a deposit with their housing application. Students may apply for housing at any time during the semester; however, space is limited, so students are encouraged to apply early. Housing placement for new students is assigned in the order in which applications are received. All new freshmen are assigned to double rooms. Laundry facilities are available in most of the residence halls.

Campus facilities include the huge Rebecca Crown Library, which has a vast collection of print and electronic resources, as well as a fully equipped learning resource center. Other campus facilities include a computer technology center, a language learning center, a chapel, the Lund Auditorium, an art gallery, a student center, the Eloise Martin Recital Hall, and the Stepan Bookstore.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


Known as the Stars, the university’s athletic teams compete at NCAA Division III in the Northern Athletics Conference. Sports include baseball, soccer, basketball, cross country, tennis, and softball. In 2010-2011, the Department of Athletics had their most successful athletic campaign since joining NCAA Division III in 2000. The Stars won the NAC South Division Championship and two Northern Athletics Conference (NAC) championships and sent 7 of the 9 teams to their respective conference tournaments. Club sports teams offered include a dance team, the men’s soccer club, a racquetball club, Dominican Ultimate Frisbee Federation (DUFF), and the women’s volleyball club. The school’s colors are blue and white.


  • Alice Calabrese-Berry, former member of the White House Conference Advisory Committee
  • Margaret Farrow, former lieutenant governor of Wisconsin
  • Lydia Wawrzyniak, award-winning fashion designer

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