Benedictine University was founded by the Benedictine monks of St. Procopious Abbey in the year 1887 in the city of Chicago. The institution was originally set up as a college to educate men of Czech and Slovak descent but over the years it broadened out both in terms of its students and the subjects taught there. In 1968 the university became co-educational, and newly introduced graduate and doctorate level courses meant that, in 1996, the college became Benedictine University.
Today the university has a relatively small number of students, both undergraduate and graduate, studying a wide variety of subjects There are around 56 undergraduate degrees and 16 graduate programmes on offer at the university across the fields of science, liberal arts, business and health and education. There are also PhDs in Organisation Development and Values-Driven Leadership available.
The university campus is in the western Chicago suburb of Lise and consists of 108 acres of tree-covered grassy lawns punctuated with academic buildings, halls of residence and sports facilities. There are 10 buildings dotted across the campus including a library/learning centre and advanced science facility, there is also a student centre with dining halls, shops and meeting rooms. The campus also includes a lake as well as a sports complex offering a wide variety of sports and leisure facilities. The university also has three branch campuses in Illinois and Arizona.
The student population is drawn from almost every US state and over a number of different countries. The university also fosters close links with institutions in China and Vietnam.