NWC at a glance
Northwestern College is a Christian academic community engaging students in courageous and faithful learning and living that empowers them to follow Christ and pursue God’s redeeming work in the world.
Northwestern College had its start in 1882 when residents of northwest Iowa founded Northwestern Classical Academy to prepare students for college and ultimately the ministry. In 1928 a junior college was established, and in 1960 Northwestern became a four-year college. A year later, the academy closed.
Today Northwestern offers a Christian liberal arts education in the Reformed tradition to more than 1,200 students through undergraduate, online and graduate programs.
|Denominational affiliation||Reformed Church in America (RCA)|
|Location||Orange City, Iowa|
|Degrees awarded||B.A., B.S.N., B.A.A.T., M.Ed.|
|Percentage of students graduating in 5 years||69%|
Northwestern is fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. NWC also holds accreditations for these program areas: athletic training, business, education, nursing and social work.
- 600+ students placed in 89 countries through Northwestern’s Summer of Service program since its start in 1981
- 170+ students at 14 national and international Spring Service Partnership sites every year
- 120+ academic programs, including majors, minors, pre-professional programs, career concentrations, graduate degrees, and graduate certificates
- 85% of students live on campus
- 84% of graduates earn their degree in 4 years or less
- 63 athletic conference championships (regular-season and post-season)
- 32 semester-long study abroad and off-campus learning programs, in addition to summer study abroad courses
- 30+ clubs and student-led organizations
- 19 intercollegiate athletic teams
- 17 intramural sports
- 12 ministry and service opportunities
- 11 music performance groups
- 7 team NAIA national championships since 2001
- 6 theatrical shows each year
- 2 faculty named the Iowa Professor of the Year
- U.S. News & World Report ranks Northwestern College 10th among 80 regional Midwestern colleges.
- College Consensus ranks Northwestern as the second best college or university in Iowa.
- Best College Reviews rates Northwestern 5th among the Top 50 Small Colleges.
- Northwestern College is one of only two Iowa institutions to be named Christian Colleges of Distinction and one of nine selected as Iowa Colleges of Distinction.
- GreatValueColleges.net includes Northwestern in its list of “50 Great Affordable Colleges in the Midwest.”
- Forbes.com includes Northwestern among the top 14% of the nation’s colleges and universities.
- Princeton Review lists Northwestern among 156 institutions selected for its “Best in the Midwest” designation.
- The President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll cites Northwestern for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement. This is the 9th consecutive year NWC has received the award.
- Rugg’s Recommendations on the Colleges touts 25 Northwestern academic programs as “quality departments at a quality college.”
- The Groundwater Foundation named Northwestern a Groundwater Guardian Green Site in recognition of the college’s care for the environment. NWC is one of only 4 colleges nationwide to receive the designation.
Northwestern’s DeWitt Library is part of the DeWitt Learning Commons and houses more than 100,000 print and media resources, provides access to more than 70 online databases, and offers a place where students can study, collaborate, conduct research, receive assistance from librarians, or socialize with other members of Northwestern's learning community.
Northwestern professors are committed Christians devoted to high-quality teaching, scholarship, mentoring and service.
|Percent of full-time faculty with doctorate or terminal degree||89%|
|Classes with fewer than 20 students||74%|
|Total students enrolled||1,260|
|Ethnic minority citizens||112|
|Top 6 states|
|Top 9 countries|
|Top 6 denominations|
Northwestern has established its own study abroad programs in two countries:
- Oman Semester
- Romania Semester
Students also have their choice of 23 semester-long programs offered through the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities and cooperative arrangements with other colleges, as well as annual summer study abroad courses offered by NWC.
- 51% of Northwestern students participate in 19 intercollegiate sports:
Men: baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, soccer, tennis, track & field, wrestling
Women: basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis, track & field, volleyball
- An intramural program for all students offers a choice of 17 sports.
- Northwestern holds 9 national NAIA team titles—7 since 2001.
- 345 Northwestern athletes have been named All-Americans.
- 471 Northwestern students have been named NAIA Scholar-Athletes.
- 35 Raider teams have been named NAIA Scholar Teams.
|Percentage of students receiving financial aid||100%|
*Individual financial aid packages, which include $5,500 in federal loans, depend on a family's FAFSA results and resources. The average financial aid package of $24,700 is based on an average NWC student—one with a 24.3 ACT, 3.60 GPA and expected family contribution of $14,100.
|Budget (2016-17)||$26.9 million|
|Endowment (as of 6/30/16)||$44.2 million|
|2017-18 Northwestern Fund goal||$1.2 million|
|2016-17 Northwestern Fund contributions||$1,070,030|
|2015-16 Northwestern Fund contributions||$1,187,794|
|2016-17 Total donations||$9.1 million|
|2016-17 Percentage of alumni giving to NWC||20%|
|2016-17 Number of new student scholarships established||25|
- Northwestern’s alumni magazine, the Classic, is available online at classic.nwciowa.edu.
- Follow the Raiders by listening to live audio or video webcasts of select Northwestern football, volleyball, soccer and basketball games.
- Become a fan of Northwestern College on Facebook and connect with former classmates while getting the latest scoop on your alma mater.
- Want to know—now—what’s happening at Northwestern? Subscribe to nwciowa on Twitter to receive the latest news and events. To sign up, visit twitter.com/nwciowa.
- We share snapshots of life at Northwestern on Instagram.
- Connect and network with fellow Red Raider alums by following Northwestern on LinkedIn.