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Crescat scientia; Vita Excolatur

Facts for Journalists

William Rainey Harper

William Rainey Harper, first president of the University of Chicago, who served from 1891–1906.

General Facts

  • Motto: Crescat scientia; vita excolatur
    (Let knowledge grow from more to more; And so be human life enriched)
  • Year Incorporated: 1890
  • First Classes: 1892
  • Founder: John D. Rockefeller
  • President: Robert J. Zimmer
  • Color: Maroon
  • Nobel Laureates: 81 Nobel Prize winners have been faculty members, students, or researchers at the University


  • 2,168 faculty and other academic personnel
  • 4,901 undergraduates
  • 9,820 graduate, professional, and other students
  • 14,772 employees (including Medical Center)
Dr. Funmi Olopade

Dr. Olufunmilayo Olopade, who researches molecular genetics of breast cancer among African and African-American women, won a MacArthur Foundation "genius grant" in 2005.

Faculty & Student Honors

  • 15 recipients (current faculty) of the MacArthur Foundation "genius grants"
  • 14 recipients (current and former faculty) of the National Medal of Science
  • 3 recipients of the Mellon Distinguished Achievement Award
  • 11 Rhodes Scholarships since 2000
  • Find more information in our Accolades section


  • Consolidated operating revenue: $2.6 billion (2006-07)
  • Endowment: $6.2 billion (June 30, 2007)
  • Research funding: $423.7 million (June 30, 2008)
  • Undergraduate tutition (2007-08): $35,169
  • Graduate tutition (2007-08): Varies by unit; see more

Academic Units

Med Center aerial

The University of Chicago Medical Center was most recently named to the prestigious Honor Roll of America's Best Hospitals by U.S. & World Report in 2008.

Other Units

Campus, Architecture & Notable Buildings

Fermilab at dusk

In 2000, scientists from Fermilab announced the discovery of a quasar at a distance of 27 billion light years, the most distant object ever observed.

National Laboratories

Campus Museums & Arts Facilities

Professional Arts Organizations on Campus

eighth blackbird

Artists in residence eighth blackbird won two Grammy awards in 2008 for its album "strange imaginary animals."


Some Registered Student Organizations