Northwestern students canoe during Portage.

Portage: The Journey Begins

Dive into friendships, thinking and experiential learning—all of which will be part of your Northwestern experience—by participating in Portage. Portage is a wilderness experience designed for incoming freshmen and transfer students. In August, prior to Orientation, Portage takes students on an outdoor adventure in Minnesota's Boundary Waters Canoe Area (BWCA). While camping, canoeing and portaging (carrying your canoe overland), you'll have a chance to explore your faith and character as you prepare to get as much as you can—learning with your head and heart—from your college experience.

Christian community—it's wild!

Portage leaders are experienced wilderness instructors who have participated in Coldwater Foundation's Wilderness Leadership Expedition, have completed the full wilderness instructor training, and are certified in first aid and as a first responder. They'll guide your exploration of what it means to be a Christian in community while you work together to navigate the BWCA, talk around the campfire each night, and spend time journaling and reflecting.

Participation costs $450 and is limited to the first 24 students who register. Scholarships are available; email Coldwater Foundation for information.

A Coldwater Foundation program, Portage is endorsed by Northwestern College's Franken Leadership Center to promote and foster a lifestyle of leadership on NWC's campus.

walking on campus


Your success starts here
Students choose NWC for standout academics,
strong faith and a sense of belonging.

Learn More

walking on campus


We want you to be a Raider.
Our investment in you starts with scholarships
that reward your hard work and recognize the
ways you’ll enrich our campus community.

Explore scholarships

walking on campus


Better than the rest
Survey says … Northwestern students are
supremely satisfied with life in Raider Nation.
We bested our competitors in personal
attention, school spirit and more.

Check it out

students sitting near the college coffee shop


Inside Raider Nation
Get to know the faculty, staff and students who will
influence you, and alumni who are leading lives
of significance.

Meet standout Raiders

Smart and Strong
Want a standout college that’s strong academically, spiritually, relationally and athletically? Choose Northwestern.

Learn more

We our studentsand our students love us

“I’m learning, being equipped professionally, and growing in my faith. I’m not only absorbing theory, but practicing what is being taught by professors, staff and other students.”

Celina Corrales Celina Corrales Christian Education/Youth Ministry and Worship Arts major from Choluteca, Honduras

Celina's story

“Not only has Northwestern prepared me for my career, but my education has prepared me to live a meaningful life. ”

Jenee Eden Jenee Eden Accounting major from Wesley, Iowa

Jenee's story

“At Northwestern I’ve gained spiritual growth, great friends and some incredible mentors. People are so willing to pour into you here, and that allows for much growth in and out of the classroom.”

Teagen Vander Waal Teagen Vander Waal Business Administration/Management major from Pella, Iowa

Teagen's story

“I really love the idea of interdisciplinary study that the Honors Program offers. This really interests me because my majors are so different, and because I love to learn as much as I can. In fact, I wanted to major in four or five disciplines, but that’s not feasible, so instead I enrolled in the Honors Program because it promises experience in fields outside of your own, which is really cool.”

Landon Van Berkum Landon Van Berkum Computer Science and History major from Everson, Washington

Landon's story

“Students get very personal care in Northwestern’s agribusiness program. We get extensive hands-on experience and take many field trips to prepare us for the growing, innovative field of agribusiness.”

Kaylynn Ridgely Kaylynn Ridgely Agricultural Business major from Rockwell City, Iowa

Kaylynn's story

“I love helping people. It’s fun to watch people grow and mature throughout the school year in the classes I tutor. ”

Kaytlyn Harms Kaytlyn Harms Biology-Health Professions major from Farson, Wyoming

Kaytlyn's story

“One of the things I most appreciate about the Northwestern business department is its commitment to excellence and student understanding.”

Brian VandenBerg Brian VandenBerg’23 Business-Finance major from Mason City, Iowa

Brian's story

“I love helping people. It’s fun to watch people grow and mature throughout the school year in the classes I tutor. ”

Kaytlyn Harms Kaytlyn Harms Biology-Health Professions major from Farson, Wyoming

Kaytlyn's story

“Besides an education, Northwestern has given me great friends and connected me to a variety of different people”

Linsy Gonzalez Linsy Gonzalez Spanish-English Translation and Interpretation major from Boyden, Iowa

Linsy's story

“The hands-on experience you receive at Northwestern prepares you for your future in many ways. It helps you decide the route you want to take, and it gives you insight into what some jobs are really like before you enter the workforce. ”

Karlveon Ford Karlveon Ford Business Administration major from Pueblo, Colorado

Karlveon's story

“The thing I appreciate the most about Northwestern is the people.”

Emma Wilson Emma Wilson Math major from McCallsburg, Iowa

Emma's story

“The best things about the physics department at Northwestern are the challenging courses and the professors’ you-can-do-it attitude. Together, they produce high student achievement.”

Steven Van Meeteren Steven Van Meeteren’22 Biophysics, chemistry and mathematics major from Sheldon, Iowa

Steven's story

“It's a blessing that God led me to Northwestern.”

Sonu Gupta Sonu Gupta Computer Science major from Birgunj, Nepal

Sonu's story

“Northwestern pushed me out of my comfort zone and enabled me to develop relationships with great people. The memories I have made with these lifelong friends is the biggest thing I am thankful for at Northwestern.”

Emily Strasser Emily Strasser Physical Education major from Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Emily's story

“Northwestern’s faculty are amazing. Every professor cares about his or her students and strives to make their college experience special.”

Kip Cullinan Kip Cullinan Chemistry major from Urbandale, Iowa

Kip's story

loading
LOADING …