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Uncovering UIUC: A Big Ten School with a Lot to Offer


An aerial shot of UIUC's campus at sunset

Founded as one of the original public land-grant universities in 1867, The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) prides itself on its pioneering research and all-encompassing educational opportunities. With an undergraduate enrollment of more than 35,000 students, UIUC stands as one of the largest public universities in the country while providing each student with plentiful opportunities both in and out of the classroom. The school’s 15 colleges and instructional units, over 150 undergraduate programs, and 5,000+ courses, ensure that UIUC stands out—especially for its top-ranked business, engineering, and computer science programs.


Prioritizing Research

UIUC’s Office of Undergraduate Research notes its dedication to scholarship, discovery, and innovation, allowing students to uphold the university’s commitment to research. In 2021, UIUC noted that it contributed $731,000,000 in research and development expenditures, demonstrating the school’s dedication to academic exploration. UIUC supplies a recommended ten step program to getting started in research and notes the ideas and priorities students should consider along the way. There are also plentiful on-campus research opportunities, summer research programs, and the opportunity for students to present their own original work at the annual Undergraduate Research Symposium during Undergraduate Research Week


Interdisciplinary Computer Science

UIUC is perhaps most well-known for its #5 ranked Computer Science program. However, beyond its BS degree, it also provides opportunities for interdisciplinary majors within the program. UIUC offers 14 options for integrative CS programs under the name CS + X, including Computer Science and Anthropology, Computer Science and Music, and Computer Science and Advertising. This versatile model allows students to pursue applications of CS in other fields and employ their skills in a range of industries. Specializing and finding a niche while in college can prove to be very useful when seeking entry to graduate programs or when entering the job market.


Sports and The Arts

UIUC students wear orange and cheer on the Fighting Illini Men's Basketball team at the State Farm Arena

UIUC is well known for its position as a top-ranked school in the Big Ten Conference. This designation inspires plenty of school spirit for the Fighting Illini school teams! Many UIUC students frequently attend basketball and football games, which are just two of the 21 Division I sports represented at UIUC, ensuring every student has the chance to attend a game for whatever sport most excites them.


The campus is also home to multiple museums, galleries, and a performing arts center, providing additional cultural opportunities for the student body. The Krannert Center is part of the College of Fine & Applied Arts and serves as a hub for music, dance, and theater. It also assures that no UIUC student will ever have to pay more than $10 for a ticket to any performance at the center. If a student is looking to get more involved, the Krannert Center Student Association invites students to volunteer by leading tours, ushering, and assisting with backstage technical projects. For students further interested in music, consider checking out the Sousa Archives and Center For American Music, which houses 75% of John Sousa’s original music manuscripts.


Learn with Students from Across the Country and the World!

UIUC currently enrolls students from 48 states and over 5,000 international students from 87 countries! The university embraces its commitment to diversity and inclusion, believing that the intersections of multiple cultures and viewpoints will foster the creativity it is so proud of. UIUC has an Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, as well as an Office of Minority Student Affairs.


Beyond Urbana-Champaign, UIUC offers 300 programs each year in 50 countries across the globe through its Education Abroad program. The program prioritizes contributing to the possibility for new perspectives and memorable experiences for its students. These opportunities are made further accessible through the $600k in scholarships that are distributed each year for students studying abroad.


If you are looking for a large university experience that comes along with plenty of individualized opportunities, you should consider adding UIUC to your college list. With research as a priority and an all-inclusive aura of school pride, it might be easy to call UIUC your home for the next four years.


Set yourself up for success when applying to UIUC. Berkeley2 Academy has the resources and professionals you need to help you succeed in your college application process. Reach out for information about our Steps Program for 9-11th graders that will help you prepare for college admissions as early as possible through resume building and hands-on advising.  


Additionally, our Gateway Program for rising seniors offers a ten-week individualized plan to help you throughout the entire application process, including resume drafting, numerous rounds of essay editing, and guidance on choosing your best fit schools and majors. Contact us today to see how Berkeley2 Academy can help you achieve your goals!

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