Situated within a residential neighbourhood of Washington, DC, the American University (AU) is a private, coeducational, doctoral institution with a liberal arts curriculum.
Its origins date back to the late 19th century, when the Methodist bishop John Fletcher Hurst bought 90 acres of farmland in order to build a non-sectarian national university.
American University was chartered by Congress in 1983 and by 1914, the AU was open for business and admitted its first class of 28 students – four of which were women.
Today, the university retains many of its original characteristics, including a ‘global outlook’, ‘practical idealism’ and ‘passion for public service’. AU’s students are considered to be among the country’s most politically active.
The university is home to eight schools and colleges: the College of Arts & Sciences, Kogod School of Business, School of Education, School of International Service, School of Communication, School of Professional and Extended Studies, School of Public Affairs and the Washington College of Law.
It offers 79 bachelor’s degrees, 98 master’s degrees, 11 doctoral degrees, 13 law degrees and more than 90 certificate programmes for both graduates and undergraduates, as well as over 100 study abroad programmes.
AU boasts of having plenty to offer students outside of the lecture theatre, such as campus events, student organisations and clubs, residential learning communities and internships.