Photo of McKendree University Campus Quad

First-Year Admission

As Illinois’ first college, McKendree continues its tradition of excellence through the ideals set forth in our mission: fostering a commitment to Responsible Citizenship, Engagement with community, pursuit of Academic Excellence, and dedication to Lifelong Learning (REAL). Our philosophy reflects concern for the individual development of our students and a commitment to personalized education.

Our 234 acre campus is home to 43 buildings and 5 residential communities. With an average class size of 14 and over $16 million awarded in institutional aid yearly, our 30 minute commute to St. Louis makes us the ideal university for any student. With 54 undergraduate degree programs, an abundance of internship opportunities, almost 30 athletic programs, and 86 student organizations, it’s no wonder our graduates boast a 95% post-graduation success rate.




Complete and submit the McKendree application or the Common Application or a paper copy. You are invited to apply as early as the completion of your junior year of high school.

You will also need to submit the following:

Official high school or GED transcript

2. Official ACT or SAT scores if not posted on your official high school transcript (ACT Code – 1076; SAT Code – 1456)

3. Official college transcripts for any dual credit coursework

4. Counselor recommendation form

Your information can be sent electronically through your high school or mailed to:

McKendree University

Office of Admission
701 College Road
Lebanon, IL 62254

Admission to McKendree is selective. Decisions are based on high school records, including rigor of curriculum, test scores, recommendations and evidence of student leadership. McKendree selects students who demonstrate potential and desire to succeed in a rigorous academic environment. Each application is reviewed holistically, and while not required for admission, we recommend that students meet the following criteria in order to be successful at McKendree:

Cumulative GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale

2. Composite ACT score of 20 or 1410 SAT or 1030 RSAT

3. Top ½ of your graduating class

4. Complete the suggested college preparatory curriculum.



Academic Excellence

McKendree students have opportunities for unmatched intellectual and personal growth because the University Experience is built upon an environment that encourages you to be an active member in a community of learners.

Celebrating Excellence

Students showcase their scholarly and creative accomplishments during the annual Academic Excellence Celebration.

Personalized Education

You will be highly engaged with the McKendree faculty. They serve as instructors, advisors, research collaborators, and life-long mentors.

Active Learning

Faculty use active teaching strategies in all courses. Your learning experience will include discussions, group projects, debates, presentations, case studies, simulations, and service learning.

Unlimited Opportunities

With 54 undergraduate degree programs to choose from and with 100% of our courses taught by faculty, no graduate or teaching assistants, you'll find your purpose here.




We believe that visiting campus is the most essential step in making your college decision so check out our visit opportunities!

From group Preview Days to personalized individual visits, we offer a variety of ways for you to experience McKendree.

Once you've visited, compare your choices, make a list of positives and negatives, and ask questions. Gather all the information you can and trust your gut feeling, usually you can feel if a school is right for you when you walk across campus.




Our Value

McKendree offers small classes, personal attention, caring faculty, and classmates who have always linked education with service and leadership.

U.S. News & World Report ranks McKendree in the top 5 of Midwest regional universities whose students graduate with the lowest amount of debt.

We’ve been recognized for over ten years as one of America’s 100 Best College Buys. McKendree is currently the only Illinois institution on that list.

McKendree University graduates boast a 95% post-graduation success rate.

Now that’s success and value, all in one package.


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