Universities in Chicago, the USA

Cloud Gate sculpture in Chicago

Cloud Gate is a sculpture by Anish Kapoor that is located in Millennium Park in Chicago.

Chicago is an excellent city for international students who want to study abroad in the United States. The city has a diverse population of over 2.7 million people, including many international students from all over the world. There are plenty of top universities in Chicago, making it an ideal location for students who want to pursue higher education.

Chicago is a bustling city with an excellent public transportation system, including buses and trains, which make it easy for international students to get around. The city has two major airports, O’Hare International Airport and Midway International Airport, making it easy for students to travel to and from Chicago. The city has won several awards, including the ‘Best Large City in America’ award which was given by Condé Nast Traveler magazine.

The city is also known for its architecture, museums, and cultural attractions. There are many world-renowned museums in Chicago such as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Field Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of Science and Industry.

Chicago is also home to several large businesses, including Boeing, McDonald’s, and Walgreens, which can offer post-graduation job opportunities for students. These companies often recruit graduates from universities in Chicago, making it an ideal location for international students who want to start their careers in the United States.

With its highly ranked universities, excellent public transportation, cultural attractions, and post-graduation job opportunities, Chicago is an ideal location for students who want to pursue higher education and start their careers in the United States.

Top Universities in Chicago

Chicago is a city known for its rich academic environment, with many universities that regularly collaborate with one another. International students looking to study in the United States will find a home in Chicago, a city that welcomes students from all over the world.

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) is one of the top universities in Chicago. UIUC is one of the largest universities in the state of Illinois, with a campus that spans over 6,000 acres. 

The university has a large international student population, with over 11,000 international students from more than 100 countries. UIUC is known for its strong programs in engineering, computer science, and business. Tuition fees for international students at UIUC average around $34,000 per year. One of the university’s most prominent research laboratories is the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA).

Northwestern University

Northwestern University is another great university in Chicago. The university is located in the suburb of Evanston, and has a second campus in downtown Chicago. Northwestern has a large international student population, with students from over 100 countries. The university is known for its strong programs in journalism, medicine, and law. 

Tuition fees for international students at Northwestern average around $55,000 per year. One of the university’s most prominent research laboratories is the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics (CIERA).

The University of Chicago

The University of Chicago is a private research university located in the Hyde Park neighbourhood of Chicago. The university has a large international student population, with students from over 100 countries. The university is known for its strong programs in economics, law, and business. 

Tuition fees for international students at the University of Chicago average around $60,000 per year. One of the university’s most prominent research laboratories is the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.

Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT)

The Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) is a private research university located in the Bronzeville neighbourhood of Chicago. The university has a smaller campus, with a strong focus on science, engineering, and technology. IIT has a large international student population, with students from over 90 countries. 

Tuition fees for international students at IIT average around $39,000 per year. One of the university’s most prominent research laboratories is the Institute for Food Safety and Health.

Loyola University Chicago

Loyola University Chicago is a private Jesuit university located in the Rogers Park neighbourhood of Chicago. The university has a large international student population, with students from over 70 countries. The university is known for its strong programs in nursing, education, and business. 

Tuition fees for international students at Loyola average around $45,000 per year. One of the university’s most prominent research laboratories is the Center for Urban Research and Learning. 

The university’s Lake Shore Campus is located near the shores of Lake Michigan, offering stunning views and easy access to the lakefront trail, while its downtown Water Tower Campus is situated in the heart of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. With a commitment to social justice and a diverse student body, Loyola provides a welcoming environment for international students to thrive academically and personally.

Chicago Universities World Ranking 2023

Below are the top-ranked Chicago universities for international students, with their ranks in two of the world’s most well-respected international university rankings, the QS 2023 University World rankings and the Times Higher Education 2023 Rankings.

UniversityQS World Rank 2023Times Higher Education Rank 2023QS Rank in the USATHE Rank in the USA
University of Chicago101359
Northwestern University32=2614=17
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign85482422
University of Illinois at Chicago=317251-300=5967
Illinois Institute of Technology=443401-5007597
Loyola University Chicago801-1,000132

Tuition Fees and Living Costs

If you’re an international student looking to study at one of Chicago’s universities, it’s important to consider the cost of tuition and living expenses. Tuition fees at these universities can be quite high for international students, ranging from around $35,000 to $60,000 per year, depending on the university and program.

In addition to tuition, international students also need to factor in the cost of living in Chicago, which can vary depending on factors such as housing, transportation, and food. According to a recent study, the average cost of living in Chicago for international students is around $20,000 per year. 

It’s important to note that many universities offer financial aid and scholarships to international students, which can help to offset the cost of tuition and living expenses. Additionally, some universities may offer on-campus employment opportunities, such as work-study programs or part-time jobs, which can provide international students with additional income.

It’s important to do your research and carefully consider the costs and financial aid options available at each university before making a decision. Planning ahead and budgeting wisely can help to make studying abroad in Chicago a more affordable and manageable experience for international students.

Life in Chicago for International Students

Chicago is not only a hub for highly ranked universities, but also a vibrant city with plenty of attractions that are popular among international students. One of the must-visit places in Chicago is the famous Navy Pier, which is a top tourist destination for people from all over the world. It is a 3,300-foot-long pier on the shoreline of Lake Michigan and features various attractions such as the Ferris Wheel, which offers a breath-taking view of the city, the Chicago Children’s Museum, and an IMAX theatre.

The city is also famous for its world-renowned museums such as the Field Museum, which features exhibits on natural history, and the Art Institute of Chicago, which houses a massive collection of art and artefacts from around the world.

For those who love science, the Museum of Science and Industry is a must-visit place, which features interactive exhibits on various scientific topics. Another popular attraction in Chicago is the Skydeck, located on the 103rd floor of the Willis Tower, which is one of the tallest buildings in the Western Hemisphere. It offers a bird’s eye view of the city and is a great place to take pictures and enjoy the breath-taking view.

In addition to the various museums and attractions, the city has several parks that offer a relaxing escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Grant Park is one of the largest parks in the city, and it is a perfect place for a picnic or a relaxing walk. It is also home to several notable landmarks such as the Buckingham Fountain and the Cloud Gate sculpture, popularly known as ‘The Bean’.

Finally, for international students looking to explore the nightlife of Chicago, the city has plenty of options to offer. The River North neighbourhood is one of the best places to go for trendy bars, clubs, and restaurants. Similarly, the Wrigleyville neighbourhood is the go-to spot for sports fans, with its various bars and restaurants located near Wrigley Field, the home of the Chicago Cubs.

Chicago is an excellent place for international students looking to explore a vibrant city with numerous attractions and things to do. Whether it is exploring the museums, parks, or nightlife, there is always something for everyone in Chicago.

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