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McKendree University appears in these rankings:

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As Illinois' oldest college, McKendree University was first founded in 1828 as Lebanon Seminary under the United Methodist Church. Two years later, William McKendree, America's first native-born bishop, endowed the college. By 1835, McKendree earned one of the state legislature's first independent charters for higher education. Today, McKendree University stands as a premier private, non-profit Christian liberal arts institution. More than 2,300 undergraduates and 650 post-graduates enroll each year. McKendree University serves the Metro-East region with a beautiful 235-acre suburban campus in Lebanon just 24 miles from St. Louis. McKendree also offers classes in Radcliff, Shepherdsville, Scott Air Force Base, and online.

According to the U.S. News, McKendree University is the 68th top regional college and 52nd best school for veterans in the Midwest for 2016. In particular, McKendree has the country's 137th best online bachelor's, 115th top online MBA, and 86th best online MSN programs. McKendree is recognized for having the Midwest's fifth lowest student loan debt. It's the only Illinois university named among America's 100 Best College Buys. McKendree University was crowned a "College of Distinction" for personalized, balanced education. The Center of Racial Harmony gave McKendree its Elite Award. Washington Monthly also lauded McKendree as the Midwest's 76th best bang for the buck and nation's 325th top university for service.

McKendree University Accreditation Details

Continuously since 1970, McKendree University has been reaffirmed every 10 years by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (HLC-NCA). This regional accreditation is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for Title IV funding. McKendree is approved by the Illinois Board of Higher Education and Kentucky Council on Post-Secondary Education. Furthermore, nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). Business degrees meet the standards of the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE). Exercise science programs also align with the Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE).

McKendree University Application Requirements

With an acceptance rate of 61 percent, McKendree University is a selective, private school with a rolling admissions process. First-year applicants must be graduating high school seniors earning an accredited diploma or GED. Students should complete the suggest college-prep curriculum, which includes four years of English and four years of math. Rigor of coursework is considered with AP, IB, and Honors courses. Freshmen should have a minimum secondary GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. Preference is given to applicants ranking in the top 50 percent of their graduating class. To show ability to succeed, McKendree recommends scoring at least 20 on the ACT or 1410 on the SAT.

Undergraduate transfers can carry up to 70 credits from regionally accredited two-year and 96 credits from four-year colleges. Incoming transfers must have completed at least one full-time college semester and be in good standing. Maintaining a minimum post-secondary GPA of 2.0 is required for acceptance. Transfer agreements stand for many local institutions, including St. Louis Community College and Southwestern Illinois College. International students must score at least 520 on the paper-based TOEFL or 6.0 on the IELTS. Graduate programs require holding an accredited bachelor's degree. Unconditional admission mandates an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.

Interested tudents wishing to attend McKendree University should submit the following:

• McKendree or Common Application form
• Official high school, GED, or college transcripts
• Standardized testing score reports
• School counselor recommendation form
• At least two faculty or professional references
• Current curriculum vitae or resume
• $40 application fee (doctoral program only)

Tuition and Financial Aid

Undergraduates enrolling full-time with 12 to 18 hours per semester will pay flat-rate tuition at $26,930 annually. If studying part-time, undergraduates are charged $870 per credit. Mandatory student activity and health service fees cost $1,000 extra each year. Standard dorm housing costs $4,820 yearly. For meal plans, students must afford $4,200 each year. McKendree suggests budgeting $1,000 for textbooks, $1,200 for personal supplies, and $1,250 for transportation. Total cost of attendance is $40,500 annually. Graduate studies cost $455 per credit hour on average. Online programs will charge a $60 e-learning technology fee per credit.

The NCES reports that 100 percent of beginning, full-time students earn assistance. McKendree University awards financial aid packages averaging $20,233 apiece. Students can borrow Federal Direct, Federal Perkins, Direct Grad PLUS, or alternative loans. Free gift aid is available with the Federal Pell Grant, FSEOG Grant, TEACH Grant, and Iraq and Afghanistan Service Grant. In-state residents should apply for the Illinois Monetary Award Program (MAP) or Silas Purnell Illinois Incentive for Access Program. There's a need-based McKendree Grant offered for variable amounts. Federal Work-Study (FWS) provides paychecks for part-time campus jobs. Veterans qualify for tuition benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill. Institutional awards, such as the Honor's Scholarship, Leadership Award, Bearcat Support Scholarship, and Transfer Scholarship, are abundant.

Degree Programs Offered at McKendree

McKendree University is split into four academic divisions: College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business, School of Education, and School of Nursing and Health Professions. Students can select from 61 bachelor's degrees and five master's programs. There's one Doctor of Education program in Curriculum Design and Instruction. Eight degrees can be completed fully through McKendree Online for flexibility. With a student-faculty ratio of 14:1, over 70 percent of classes have fewer than 20 students for good interaction. Two example degrees are:

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

Since 1978, the popular Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program at McKendree has offered advancement to registered nurses with a diploma or associate degree. Fully accredited by the CCNE, the 120-credit curriculum allows up to 70 transfer hours from ADN. General education classes are online, but major courses in health assessment, pathophysiology, population-based care, nursing research, and practice leadership are on-campus. There's one clinical practicum at sites like Alton Memorial Hospital, Belleville Memorial Hospital, and Marion Veteran's Hospital.

Master of Arts in Criminal Justice

Starting in June 2016, the new Master of Arts in Criminal Justice (MACJ) program follows a scholar-practitioner model to prepare graduates for advancement in law enforcement careers, including corrections, homeland security, and victim advocacy. The 36-credit curriculum is available online or face-to-face with evening courses in Lebanon. Over two years full-time, students study criminological theory, criminal behavior, police administration, ethical decision-making, and research methods. Students can select a master's thesis or applied internship.

Other degrees at McKendree University include the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science, BBA in Human Resource Management, Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling, and Master of Arts in Education.

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