University of Minnesota

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Updated August 6, 2020

Initially founded in 1851 as a preparatory school before the Civil War, the University of Minnesota is the oldest public higher learning institution in the "North Star State." Given land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant status, this flagship research university has the sixth largest enrollment in the United States. UMN educates more than 30,500 undergraduates and 19,800 post-graduates across its 19 colleges. Divided on the East and West Bank of the Mississippi River, UMN has a main 2,730-acre urban campus in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. With over $870 in annual expenditures, the University of Minnesota operates several leading research centers, including the Hormel Institute in Austin.

According to the U.S. News, UMN is the 69th best national university, 25th top public school, and 57th best college for veterans. The University of Minnesota is acclaimed for having America's 40th best medical research school and 34th top biological sciences program. Forbes has ranked UMN as the 59th best research university nationally and 22nd top school in the Midwest. Named a "Public Ivy," UMN placed in the country's top 20 by the U.S. National Research Council. Princeton Review included the University of Minnesota in its "Colleges That Pay You Back" and "Green Colleges." UMN was also honored by the Times Higher Education as the 65th top global university.

University of Minnesota Accreditation Details

Continuously since 1913, the University of Minnesota has been institutionally reviewed by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (HLC-NCA). This regional accrediting agency is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. In particular, the Medical School is approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME). Public health degrees meet the standards of the Council on Education for Public Health (CEPH). The MLS program is aligned with the National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (NAACLS). The College of Biological Sciences also has approval from the Accreditation Council for Genetic Counseling (ACGC).

University of Minnesota Application Requirements

Getting into the University of Minnesota is challenging with the more selective acceptance rate of 45 percent. To compete, freshmen applicants must be graduating from a licensed secondary school with a state-approved diploma or GED equivalent. UMN mandates having at least four years English, four years math, three years science, three years social studies, two years foreign language, and one year visual/performing arts. On average, admitted students have a cumulative GPA of 3.77. Biological sciences students typically rank in the top 10th percentile of their class. Freshmen also achieve a mean SAT score of 1920 and ACT score of 28.

Undergraduates attending other regionally accredited colleges could qualify for transfer with at least 26 semester credits. If less, the above freshman criteria will be required. Incoming transfers must hold a minimum GPA of 2.75, but the average transfer GPA is 3.32. Certain prerequisites, such as one semester of calculus or chemistry, may be mandated. International learners from non-English speaking countries must score at least 79 on the iBT TOEFL, 6.5 on the IELTS, or 80 on the MELAB. Graduate applicants must have or be obtaining a four-year bachelor's degree from an accredited university. Master's and PhD programs prefer students with a GPA of 3.0 or higher. Scoring at least 300 on the GRE (Verbal/Quantitative) is advised.

Before the priority deadline on December 15th, interested students should apply to the University of Minnesota by sending the following:

  • Completed application for admission
  • Official high school or college transcripts
  • Standardized testing scores (SAT, ACT, or GRE)
  • Proof of English language proficiency
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Online payment for the $55 non-refundable fee

Tuition and Financial Aid

Full-time undergraduates from Minnesota pay a flat rate tuition of $6,120 per semester. Non-resident undergrad learners enrolling full-time are charged $10,330 each semester. Part-time undergraduates will pay $470 (in-state) or $794 (out-of-state) per credit taken. In general, full-time graduate students living in Minnesota are billed $7,922 each semester. Non-residents engaging in full-time graduate studies must afford $12,254 per semester. Part-time graduates can pay $1,320 (in-state) or $2,042 (out-of-state) for every credit. Attending the Medical School will cost $12,624 for Minnesota residents and $17,170 for non-residents. Room and board is estimated to add $2,994 and $2,035 respectively each semester.

Around 78 percent of beginning full-time UMN students earn financial aid. Low-income students could qualify for the Federal Pell Grant or FSEOG Grant. In-state residents could receive the Minnesota State Grant or the University of Minnesota Promise Scholarship. There's also the Blind and Deaf Student Tuition Waiver, Child Care Grant, and Public Safety Officer's Survivor Grant. Veterans benefits are granted via the GI Bill and Yellow Ribbon Program. If needed, students can borrow funding with Federal Stafford, Federal Perkins, or Grad PLUS loans. Federal Work-Study (FWS) and research assistantships are available, including at the Hormel Institute. Several scholarships are awarded, such as the Regents Scholarship, ROTC Scholarship, and Johnson Brothers Scholarship.

The Hormel Institute

Founded by corporate CEO Jay Catherwood Hormel in 1942, the University of Minnesota's Hormel Institute has made significant medical discoveries to improve public health for seven decades. Over the past 20 years, the Hormel Institute has honed its cutting-edge research to finding ways to prevent, detect, treat, and cure cancer. In partnership with the Mayo Clinic and M.D. Anderson, the Institute studies the basic biological mechanisms of cancer development. In 2014, the Hormel Institute added 20 more state-of-the-art labs to triple its research space.

UMN students can benefit from working along the Hormel Institute's 130 world-class clinicians and researchers to accelerate cancer treatment therapies. Medical research presentations are often delivered in the 250-seat Live Learning Center. Faculty's work has been published in the world's leading scientific journals, including the "Journal of Clinical Oncology" and "American Journal of Public Health." The Hormel Institute features a supercomputer and Linux cluster CAL42 to calculate simulating protein molecules.

Every summer from June to August, the UMN Hormel Institute hosts the Scientific Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) program for juniors and seniors. The paid, 10-week internship gets students involved in research projects with experienced faculty mentors. Topics researched are cellular dynamics, membrane biochemistry, stem cells, structural biology, tumorigenesis, and cancer epigenetics. This program is ideal for undergraduate pursuing biological and medical professions. Students in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MD/PhD) program can also conduct their dissertation at the University of Minnesota Hormel Institute.

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