Bradley University creates a very customized educational journey for each and every student. “No two students are alike,” says former President Joanne Glasser. “No two students have the same dreams or aspirations. We customize and personalize their educational journey both inside and outside the classroom. We are able to do that because of our size.”
Bradley is a mid-sized comprehensive university, with 4,600 undergraduate and 1,300 graduate students. The school’s three pillars – academic excellence, experiential learning, leadership development – are evident everywhere on this campus. The overall student-to-faculty ratio is 12:1 and the average class size is 21; there are no teaching assistants.
Academics at Bradley University
Bradley has over a hundred academic programs in its five colleges: Business, Communication/Fine Arts, Education/Health Sciences, Engineering/Technology and Liberal Arts & Sciences. Interesting academic programs include entrepreneurship, game design/technology, user experience, animation, creative and professional writing, hospitality leadership, professional selling, social media marketing, software/computer security, sports communication and accounting with an internal auditing concentration. The academic exploration program is for students who are undecided on their major; each year about 130 students enter this program, where they take planning and skills seminars, participate in a job shadowing program, and have advisors work with them on interest and skills assessments.
Nursing students gain valuable skills in the interactive High-Fidelity Multi-Patient Simulation Lab. The program is direct-admit and typically has one of the nation’s highest pass rates on the NCLEX-RN exams.
The Hollywood Semester program allows students from any major to spend a semester in Los Angeles taking classes and interning in the entertainment industry – business majors as well as communications/arts majors are the ones who take the most advantage of this program. Bradley shares a facility in LA with the University of Texas and places students in internships in sports and entertainment. Bradley also has a relationship with NBC which gives students production internships during the Olympic Games. Bradley students have interned on-site at Sochi and worked at NBC Sports Headquarters in Camden, Conn assisting with NBCUniversal’s production of the Games.
Engineering and business students engage cross-disciplinary projects in the state of the art Business and Engineering Convergence Center. The facility is the equivalent of engineering and entrepreneurial playground with “toys” that include a five-story drop tower for experiments to measure impact conditions, a fluid mechanics lab, a sales lab for business role-playing, an analytics lab with a 5-by-31 foot high-definition monitor, and two electronic stock tickers, and other high-activity labs.
Ninety-three percent of graduates start a career, graduate school, or other postgraduate experience within six months of graduation.
SCHOOL SPIRIT IS VERY HIGH HERE! Students support their Division I Bradley Braves. Former LA Lakers announcer Chick Hearn played basketball here, and a number of stand-out sports broadcasters and athletes, including Clippers announcer Ralph Lawler, Dodgers announcer Charlie Steiner and former professional baseball player Kirby Puckett, are proud Bradley alumni.
The arts play an important role at Bradley and you don’t have to be a music or theatre major to be involved in the ensembles or shows. Bradley’s speech team has won the national championship 41 times. This video shows one of Bradley’s a cappella groups – chemistry majors performing with music majors!
Peoria is mid-way between Chicago and St. Louis – it is truly an all-American town. Home to Caterpillar’s world headquarters, Peoria also has a medical technology district with a sports medicine center, minor league sports, an international airport and NPR and PBS stations to complete the media market. The bustling Riverplex Gateway area downtown reminded me of San Francisco’s Fisherman’s Wharf.
Here’s a great way to remember Bradley. This video was written, performed and produced by communications major Josiah Williams:
Any student looking for a real “college experience,” complete with Division I sports, fraternities and sororities, a college town, and the added bonus of smaller class sizes should look at Bradley University.
Admission to Bradley University
Bradley is test-optional but the middle 50% SAT score is 1090-1260. The middle 50% ACT score is 23-28.
Apply by November 30th for priority scholarship consideration; the top scholarship is about $12k per year. Demonstrated interest helps at Bradley and overnight visits are strongly encouraged.