McKendree University

701 College Rd, Lebanon, IL 62254-1291

School Details

McKendree University is a four-year private school located in Lebanon, Illinois. The school was formed by pioneer Methodists and is still affiliated with the United Methodist Church. Established in 1828, McKendree University is the oldest college in Illinois.

The main campus is 100 acres and is located in a wooded area about 20 miles from downtown St. Louis, Missouri. Other campus locations are in the following areas: Louisville, Kentucky; Radcliff, Kentucky; Scott Air Force Base, and Southern Illinois.

McKendree University offers certificates of completion, associate’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, and doctor’s degrees. McKendree University is made up of the following academic schools: McKendree College of Arts and Science, a School of Business, a School of Health Professions and a School of Education. Classes are offered during the daytime, evening, and weekend.

McKendree University has 3,221 students (2,346 undergraduates) and 289 faculty members, giving the university a 14:1 student-to-faculty ratio. More than 50% of the classes have fewer than 15 students. Of all faculty members, 99 teach full-time and 190 teach part-time. About 75% of undergraduate students study full-time and 25% study part-time. Most graduate students (76%) study part-time and 24% study full-time. 

The student body contains 55% female students and 45% male students. About 71% of all students are white with the remaining students being black, Hispanic, and Asian. About 61% of students are ages 24 and under with 39% of students being ages 25 and above. About 86% of students are from Illinois, 12% are from out-of-state, and 2% are from a foreign country. The retention rate for first-time, full-time students is 76% and the overall graduation rate is 54%.

Students have access to services such as: remedial tutoring, academic counseling, career counseling, employment services for students, and placement services for completers. Special learning opportunities at McKendree University include: ROTC (Army, Air Force), teacher certification, distance education, and study abroad.

MU offers students study abroad opportunities at over 90 colleges and universities in 15 countries. The school works in partnership with the Institute for Study Abroad to prepare students of the changes and challenges that face them in the future. The study abroad program is open to any student who has earned a minimum of 45 credit hours and has achieved a 2.75 GPA.  Complete a study abroad application to begin the admission process.

Student life at McKendree University includes: student organizations, Greek Life, Student Government Association, Campus Ministries, athletics, intramural sports, and campus activities. Student organizations include academic fraternities and honor societies, departmental student organizations, religious organizations, service organizations, social Greek organizations, and special interest groups. Greek life includes three sororities (Kappa Lambda Iota, Kappa Sigma Tau, Sigma Sigma Sigma) and one fraternity (Alpha Delta Gamma).  Campus ministries welcome students of all faith traditions and offer many opportunities to get involved.

The McKendree “Bearcats” are in the process of transitioning athletics from the NAIA and member of the American Midwest Conference to NCAA division II and the Great Lakes Valley Conference. Men’s varsity sports include: baseball, basketball, bowling, cross country, football, golf, ice hockey, soccer, tennis, track and field, and wrestling. Women’s sports include: basketball, bowling, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, volleyball, and lacrosse.

On-campus housing is offered in the following types of residence halls: traditional dorm style, suite style, and apartment style. 

Financial aid is offered in the form of state grants, federal grants, scholarships, and loans. To qualify to receive financial aid, you must complete a FAFSA form and be evaluated to be in financial need. Approximately 95% of those attending McKendree University receive financial aid.

McKendree University receives over 1,300 applications per year and accepts about 66% of those students. Statistically, 65% of men and 68% of women who apply will be accepted. To apply, students must have a minimum 2.0 GPA from all previous college or high schools. To be considered for admission, students must complete the application and submit official transcript(s) or a GED. Students who are transferring to McKendree can transfer courses with a grade of "C" or higher from a regionally-accredited institution of higher learning.

McKendree University is accredited by The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, Kentucky State Approving Agency for Veterans Education, Kentucky Council on Post Secondary Education, The Council of Independent Colleges, The Association of American Colleges and Universities, and Servicemember’s Opportunity Colleges.


North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission


School Overview:

  • Sector Of Institution:
    4-year, Private not-for-profit
  • Religious Affiliation:

    United Methodist 

  • Highest Level Of Offering:
    Doctor's degree
  • Total Enrollments:
  • Adult Age Enrollments:
  • Percent Admitted:
  • Calendar System:



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