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Northwest Missouri State University

Northwest Facts

Last updated on Aug. 10, 2015

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The Location

  • Northwest Missouri State University is a state-assisted, four-year university located in Maryville, Mo. (population: 11,972)
  • Founded in 1905
  • President: Dr. John Jasinski
  • Northwest’s main campus: 370 acres
  • Northwest’s campus is designated the Missouri Arboretum
  • University Farm: 448 acres
  • Rural lakefront: 315 acres
  • Northwest-Kansas City at the MCC-Maple Woods campus offers graduate degrees in education and business
  • Northwest-St. Joseph at the Historic Green Acres Building offers graduate degrees in education, business and science

Enrollment Statistics

  • 6,720 students
  • 5,491 undergraduate, 37% out-of-state
  • 10.5% international enrollment
  • 11.8% minority enrollment
  • Students represent 46 states and 31 countries
  • Average ACT Score: 22.8
  • Average High School GPA: 3.35
  • Average Admissions Index: 129.72

Academic Information

  • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools
  • Northwest offers: 126 undergraduate majors, 73 minors, 18 pre-professional programs, 40 graduate programs, five graduate certificate programs, three certificate programs, three specialist programs and a cooperative doctorate in educational leadership with the University of Missouri-Columbia.
  • Operates on trimester academic calendar
  • 71% freshman retention rate, considerably higher than national and regional averages
  • 96% of undergraduates and 99% of graduates find employment or continue their education within six months of graduation, based on 2013-14 data
  • Northwest's student loan default rate is 9.5%, compared to Missouri average of 12.6% and national average of 13.7%
  • 58% graduation rate, which is about 20% higher than the national average
  • Average class size of 27
  • 72% of Northwest classes have fewer than 30 students
  • 253 full-time faculty members
  • 95% of tenure and tenure-track faculty have the highest degree in their field
  • 100% of classes taught by professionals, not graduate assistants
  • 50% of Northwest’s regular courses are web enhanced
  • 22-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio
  • Laptops and textbooks are included in tuition at Northwest, ensuring that all students have access to the tools they need to be successful in the classroom. The textbook and laptop rental programs save students nearly $7,200 over four years.

Student Life

  • 90% of first-year students at Northwest rate their experience as “good” or “excellent,” and 87% of seniors said they would choose Northwest again if they could start over their college career, according to findings in the 2012 National Survey of Student Engagement
  • 41% of students are living on campus
  • More than 70% of students actively participate in one or more of Northwest’s 150-plus student organizations
  • 14% of students participate in Greek Life
  • Students have about 1,200 opportunities to build their resumes right on campus through student employment
  • Northwest named to 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for its commitment to service-learning and civic engagement. Northwest has been named to the honor roll six times since its inception in 2006.


  • Division: NCAA Division II
  • Conference: Mid‑America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) 
  • Mascot: Bobby Bearcat
  • Colors: Green and White
  • Men’s varsity sports: football, basketball, baseball, track and field, cross country and tennis
  • Women’s varsity sports: basketball, volleyball, softball, soccer, track and field, cross country, tennis and golf
  • 74% Student-Athlete Academic Success Rate
  • 59% Student-Athlete Graduation Rate
  • 97 student-athletes earned a 3.50 GPA or higher during 2013-2014, ranking Northwest fourth among all Division II schools for academic excellence
  • 2013 Bearcat football starting quarterback Trevor Adams named Division II's male student athlete of the year.
  • Women's basketball team advanced to the 2011 NCAA Division II Final Four
  • Wrestling club won the 2011 National Collegiate Wrestling Association Division II National Championship and was runner-up in 2012
  • 2010, 2012 and 2013 Universal Cheerleaders Association national champions
  • 1998, 1999, 2009 and 2013 NCAA Division II football national champions, four-time national runner-up 


  • More than 70,000 alumni and friends
  • 20 Alumni Chapters throughout the United States and one in Japan
  • In FY15, The Northwest Foundation raised $5.7 million and awarded a record $741,000 in scholarship to 1,159 students.


  • Winner of 19 national championships since 2009 across all academic and athletic teams: forensics (9), cheerleading (3), football (2), radio broadcasting (2), agricultural sciences (1), business education (1) and wrestling (1)
  • Ranked as the top moderately selective regional university in Missouri on U.S. News and World Report’s list of “2015 Best Colleges.”
  • Achieved all five benchmarks within the state of Missouri’s performance-based funding model for three consecutive years, FY14, FY15 and FY16.
  • Ranked among top 10 energy-reducing schools by Campus Conservation Nationals in 2013 and 2015.
  • Winner of the 2011, 2013 and 2014 Annual Recycling Awards from the Missouri State Recycling Program, which recognizes outstanding contributions in a series of recycling collection, waste or recycled content procurement
  • The Dean L. Hubbard Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, a mixed use academic and business incubator, is internationally-ranked and was a recipient of the Southern Growth Policies 2010 Innovator Award, marking Northwest’s second-straight year to win the award
  • Named Military Friendly School by Victory Media for three consecutive years, representing the top 20 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the country for delivering the best experience for military students
  • In 1987, Northwest became known as "The Electronic Campus" by implementing the first comprehensive networked campus in the nation at a public university
  • Since 1982, Northwest has been on the cutting edge of alternative fuels. Approximately 75-85% of the University’s thermal energy needs are provided through alternative fuels, saving taxpayers more than $13 million since the program’s inception.
  • The Horace Mann Laboratory School and the Phyllis and Richard Leet Center for Children and Families provide a clinical experience for pre-service teachers and a diverse and interactive learning environment for children ages three through sixth grade.
  • The Department of Agricultural Sciences offers students hands-on experience at its 448-acre R.T. Wright Farm, which is home to beef, swine, dairy, poultry and sheep herds, as well as row, silage and hay crops. Students also gain experience at the campus orchard, Horticulture Complex, a composting facility and on the campus grounds as the Missouri State Arboretum.
  • The Department of Communication and Mass Media offers students hands-on experience through two campus radio stations, a campus TV station, a semi-independent broadcast production company, and award-winning student publications including a newspaper, yearbook and online magazine.