The University of Chicago (U of C, UChicago, or simply Chicago) is a private research university in Chicago, Illinois
Founded by the American Baptist Education Society with a donation from oil magnate and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller, the University of Chicago was incorporated in 1890; William Rainey Harper became the university’s first president in 1891, and the first classes were held in 1892. Both Harper and future president Robert Maynard Hutchins advocated for Chicago’s curriculum to be based upon theoretical and perennial issues rather than applied sciences and commercial utility.
The university consists of the College of the University of Chicago, various graduate programs and interdisciplinary committees organized into four divisions, six professional schools, and a school of continuing education. Chicago is particularly well known for its professional schools, which include the Pritzker School of Medicine, the Booth School of Business, the Law School, and the Divinity School. The university enrolls approximately 5,000 students in the College and about 15,000 students overall.
University of Chicago scholars have played a major role in the development of various academic disciplines, including: the Chicago school of economics, the Chicago school of sociology, the law and economics movement in legal analysis, the Chicago school of literary criticism, the Chicago school of religion, the school of political science known as behavioralism, and in the physics leading to the world’s first man-made, self-sustaining nuclear reaction. The university is also home to theUniversity of Chicago Press, the largest university press in the United States.
The University of Chicago is home to many prominent alumni. 89 Nobel laureates have been affiliated with the university as visiting professors, students, faculty, or staff, the fourth most of any institution in the world. In addition, Chicago’s alumni include 49 Rhodes Scholars, 9 Fields Medalists, 20 National Humanities Medalists and 13 billionaire graduates.