Skip to main content

Introduction to the University

Brigham Young University

Established and sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, BYU is one of the largest private universities in the United States and is fully accredited by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges.

The University was founded in 1875 as Brigham Young Academy, the campus has grown from a single building to more than 500 buildings on 600 acres. Presently, more than 1,300 full-time faculty instruct 33,000+ students at BYU. From its modest beginnings, Brigham Young University has grown to become one of the nation's most distinguished private institutions of higher education. At BYU, teaching and scholarly research are valued as essential complements to each other. Faculty and students work side by side in collegial scholarship enhanced by mutual commitment to the highest ideals of professional ethics and spiritual values.

BYU has received the number-one rankings for being the best university to work for, school psychology faculty research production, and best-value private law school. The university has also received high marks as a top university for undergraduate entrepreneurship (#2), engaged learning (#2), graduates with the least debt (#4), best colleges (#5), graduates who go on to earn Ph.D.’s (#5), graduate entrepreneurship (#7), best-value school (#15), and best world university for employability (#30). Along with extensive undergraduate programs, BYU offers 80 masters and 33 doctoral degrees in a variety of disciplines through 57 graduate departments. The Law School and the Marriott School of Management offer professional graduate degrees. Graduate degrees are offered in Clinical Psychology (APA Accredited), Counseling Psychology (APA Accredited), Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy, and School Psychology.

Located in Provo, Utah, BYU is situated 4,560 feet above sea level at the foot of the beautifully rugged Wasatch Range of the Rocky Mountains. Provo lies at the base of 11,750-foot Mount Timpanogos and is bounded on the west by twenty-three-mile-long Utah Lake and the Great Salt Lake Desert. The BYU campus is the focal point of Provo, a city of 116,700+ and Utah County, with 636,00+ residents.

Surrounding Provo to the north, south, and east are spectacular scenic areas, including five national parks. Forty-five miles to the north is Salt Lake City, with a metropolitan area of about one million residents. Despite the urban and suburban quality of Salt Lake and Utah Counties, the mountains immediately adjoining both counties include four wilderness areas. Outdoor recreation, including snow and water skiing, golf, wind surfing, backpacking, fishing, hunting, mountain biking, and mountain climbing are available within a 15-to-30-minute drive from BYU. Many other recreational and cultural activities can be found in the BYU community, Provo, Utah County, and in the Salt Lake City area. These include theater, concerts, symphony, ballet, opera, and professional sports.