University of Illinois at Chicago
The University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) was created in September
1982 by the merger of the Medical Center and Chicago Circle campuses
of the University of Illinois. The Medical Center’s Chicago
roots go back to the 1890s when the Chicago College of Pharmacy and
the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Chicago became part of
the University of Illinois. Chicago Circle’s history began
in 1946 at Chicago’s Navy Pier; more than 100,000 students
attended classes there before the present campus opened in 1965.
UIC’s current metropolitan setting includes two historical
landmark neighborhoods. Hull-House,
founded in 1889 by Jane Addams, remains part of UIC, and the two
original buildings, restored and preserved by the university, were
designated national landmarks in 1967. The historic Illinois Medical
District, created by the state legislature in 1944, is the current
home to the colleges of the health sciences.
Through awards, grants, prizes, honors, and leadership roles, UIC
faculty win recognition nationally and internationally. With research
expenditures at $261 million a year (based on 2005-2006 data), it
ranks among the 50 foremost universities in the United States for
federal research support. It confers degrees from
the baccalaureate and professional to the doctorate and includes
the only public academic medical
center in Illinois, making it the principal educator of health-care
professionals for the state.
A hallmark of the campus is the Great
Cities Commitment, through which the almost 12,500 UIC faculty,
students and staff engage with community, corporate, foundation,
and government partners in hundreds of programs to improve the
quality of life in metropolitan areas around the world. The
commitment is manifest across the campus, from engaged social-science
research to partnerships in the arts and humanities, contributions
to economic development, innovation in emerging technologies, and
collaboration between UIC's professional schools and the professions
At the same time UIC has an urban mission.
Many of its 25,000 students come from families of limited financial
means, recent immigrants or their children, and racial and ethnic
minority groups. Many are the first generation in their families
to attend college. They are ambitious for academic attainment: they
seek education engaged with urban life, they are attracted by the
excellence of specific academic programs, and they are excited by
an unprecedented mix of races, ethnicities, religions, languages,
and national origins.
That is why UIC is distinct. By bringing an elite research faculty
to an urban mission, UIC forges an identity that aligns it with the
other leading universities but making it different. In the heart
of the city, UIC offers extraordinary opportunity to all who seek
learning in an intense research environment. It is urban and elite;
it is elite but not exclusionary; it joins access with excellence.
Other universities conduct research as UIC does, or serve its range
of students, or are deeply involved with their communities - but
they do not do all three at the level UIC has reached and continues
to raise. The campus experiences every day the tensions between access
and excellence, but if the achievement were easy it would be common.
UIC affirms the social and moral value of access to excellence and
its direct and positive impact on all aspects of the campus. The
diverse students at UIC are taught by distinguished faculty who set
uncompromising standards. UIC focuses on healthcare for underserved
areas along with the advancement of biomedical knowledge and practice.
It combines its Great Cities Commitment with traditional strength
in the core arts and science disciplines. It values both connections
to its local and regional communities and affiliations in research
and education across the globe.
By emphasizing world-class research along with a commitment to students
who reflect the diversity of the United States and to the pervasive
relationships beyond its boundaries that arise from its embrace of
the city, UIC defines the dynamic and vibrant new urban university.
Updated: November 10, 2006, January 11,
2007, February 2, 2007, February 2008, February 2009, March 2011