About Western

Sherman Hall

Our Past and Our Present

Established in 1899, Western Illinois Normal and Training School opened its doors September 23, 1902 to 229 students. Throughout the years, Western Illinois grew and its name changed from Western Illinois State College to Western Illinois University on July 5, 1957.

Today, Western Illinois University offers a variety of bachelor's and master's degree programs, pre-professional programs, two doctorate degrees, and certificate programs to more than 12,200 students.

Western Illinois University's residential campus is located in Macomb, Illinois. Our non-residential, metropolitan campus is located in the Quad Cities/Moline, IL.

Fast Facts

Points of Purple Pride

  • The Princeton Review: Western ranked a “Best Midwestern College" A Best in the Midwest College
  • U.S. News & World Report: WIU recognized as a top tier "Best Regional University"
  • G.I. Jobs Magazine: Western Illinois named a "Military Friendly School”
  • Military Times EDGE Magazine: WIU named "Best for College"
  • Forbes: Western listed among the best of 650 institutions in the country
  • Carnegie Community Engagement Classification
  • U.S. President's Honor Roll for Service

Academics & Extracurriculars

Forensic chemistry students in the lab

From offering a bachelor's degree in forensic chemistry to housing one of the largest law enforcement programs of its kind in the nation to providing the first Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre program at an Illinois public institution, Western offers a number of standout programs unique to Western - just a few examples from Western's broad spectrum of academic majors and programs.

Top Majors

Basketball player in action

Western Illinois University Intercollegiate Athletics is comprised of 18 NCAA Division I sports, while Campus Recreation at Western offers a variety of fitness opportunities, intramural sports programs and club sports.

WIU's Office of Student Activities provides students with practical, educational and leadership extracurricular opportunities.

Home Away From Home

The nine residence halls at Western provide students a place to create their own college experience by getting involved on campus. Each hall has small differences and features like locations, resources and primary community.

Students in a residence hall room

Paying for College

Contact Information

University Administration