The University of Kansas (KU) was founded in 1866 by abolitionist settlers who had moved to the area. Today KU has five campuses and is a major, state-sponsored public research university.
In 1863 the state governor of Kansas told residents of the town of Lawrence that the Kansas University would be built there if the residents were able to raise a $15,000 endowment and donate 16 ha of land for the project. Donations from the abolitionist and philanthropist Amos Adams Lawrence and local residents covered the endowment and the land was donated by a former state governor and his wife.
KU is home to 13 schools offering a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications – there are over 370 different degree programs on offer. KU is home to over 2,000 international students representing over 100 countries with partner organisations across the globe providing a truly international learning environment.
Areas of special expertise include rural medicine, social welfare, nursing, city management, occupational therapy, clinical child psychology and speech-language pathology and the university has received national recognition for its urban policy and special education teaching.
The university is spread over five different campus areas with the main location in Lawrence and others in Wichita, Overland Park, Salina, and Kansas City. Academic and administration facilities are housed in grand red-roofed buildings and more modern buildings and campus grounds are green and spacious.
Notable alumni include two Nobel Laureates, 13 former state governors, astronomer Clyde Tombaugh who discovered Pluto and three former NASA astronauts.