The University of Iowa is a major national research university located on a 1,900-acre campus in Iowa City in southeast Iowa, on the Iowa River near the intersection of U.S. Interstate Highways 80 and 380. Iowa is composed of 11 colleges, the largest of which is the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, enrolling most of Iowa's undergraduates. The Henry B. Tippie College of Business, the Roy J. and Lucille A. Carver College of Medicine, and the Colleges of Education, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Pharmacy, enroll undergraduates, and with the Colleges of Dentistry and Public Health provide graduate education in conjunction with the Graduate College.
More than 30,500 students enroll at Iowa each year. Some 55 percent come from Iowa, 25 percent from adjoining states, and 9 percent from the remaining states. International students from 100 countries make up 10 percent of the University's enrollment. The faculty numbers about 1,700 and there are about 13,000 staff. The total annual operating budget is about $2.8 billion, and there are more than 120 major buildings, most of them within walking distance of one another. Adding to the population are more than a million visitors each year who come to enjoy cultural events and art exhibits, to attend Big Ten athletic events, and to participate in the many conferences and educational programs scheduled at the University year-round.
The Iowa City area community includes Coralville, North Liberty, Solon, and other small towns with a total population of about 100,000. The University both provides and attracts a wide variety of cultural opportunities, Big Ten athletic events, and a number of business endeavors resulting from scientific and educational research that originated at Iowa. In the summers, Iowa City sponsors weekly downtown jazz and pop concerts, and all through the year major poets, writers, artists, historians, scientists, and others speak or perform in University venues or to read at local bookstores. Excellent public schools, close, safe, and comfortable neighborhoods, and a highly educated population mean that Iowa City frequently appears high on “best-place-to-live” listings in national magazines. The nearby countryside, good state parks, and the Iowa River provide many opportunities for walking, biking, and boating. Twenty miles to the north is Cedar Rapids, Iowa’s second-largest city, home to the Eastern Iowa Airport and a population of about 120,000.
Established in 1847, Iowa has won international recognition for its wealth of achievements in the arts, sciences, and humanities. Iowa was the first U.S. public university to admit men and women on an equal basis and the first institution of higher education in the nation to accept creative work in theater, writing, music, and art as theses for advanced degrees. It established the first law school and the first educational radio station west of the Mississippi, broadcast the world's first educational television programs, and developed and continues to hold preeminence in educational testing.
The University has world renowned research programs in genetics, hydraulics, and speech and hearing, and has recorded major innovations in agricultural medicine, biocatalysis, biomedical engineering, biomedical sciences, and pharmacology education. Its graduate programs in audiology, printmaking, creative writing, speech-language pathology, and nursing service administration are first-ranked. Iowa scientists, including James Van Allen, have been pioneers in space research, designing and building research instruments for more than 50 successful U.S. satellites and space probes. The University of Iowa operates one of the nation's most advanced and comprehensive university-owned teaching hospitals. It also has developed the most technically advanced driving simulator in the world.
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