Take Flight at Illinois State University

Take Flight at Illinois State University

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Outside the Children's Discovery Museum in Normal, Illinois


It might be located in the city of Normal, Illinois, but Illinois State University is far from being a “normal” university. Founded in 1857, Illinois State University is the oldest public university in the state and currently enrolls approximately 20,000 students. Today, the university is known for its exciting campus atmosphere, successful athletic teams and renowned academic programs. Here’s a closer look into Illinois State University.


Braden Auditorium in Bone Student Center at ISU


Get Involved on Campus: Students at Illinois State have plenty of opportunities to learn and grow by getting involved in clubs and organizations on campus. In fact, there are more than 400 groups that students can choose from to explore their interests, develop academics and network with their peers. Whether you’re interested in student government, community service, political science or another subject, there’s something for everyone at Illinois State.


At a Redbirds basketball game


Cheer on the Redbirds: Illinois State University has 17 athletics teams, known as the Illinois State “Redbirds.” The name “Redbird” is a reference to the cardinal, which is the state bird of Illinois. Many Redbird teams have been very successful in recent years, including the men’s basketball team, which won a conference championship in 2017. Whether it’s soccer, American football, basketball, baseball or another sport, students have opportunities to cheer on their favorite team throughout the year.


Students at Illinois Sate University 


Earn Your Degree: While campus life is a very significant part of the college experience, the education you’ll receive is the most important. Illinois State University is known for its stellar degree programs in more than 160 fields of study, including information technology, computer science, communication, mathematics, teacher education, biology and perhaps its most renowned program, business administration. In fact, U.S. News & World Report ranked Illinois State University as the 83rd best public university in the nation for 2018.


Fell Hall, one of ISU's oldest and most unique buildings


The university also provides the Office of International Studies and Programs (OISP) as a resource for international students on campus. The OISP’s mission is to educate, support and serve these students, providing guidance and assistance as needed for students as they adjust to the challenges of studying abroad.

Moving In: Before making the move to the United States, students will need to decide what living environment will be the best fit for them. With the option to live either on-campus or off-campus, incoming students have a lot of options. Students planning to live in an off-campus apartment will need to find a location in close proximity to the university. ApartmentSearch.com is a great resource for students moving to a new area, allowing you to search for an apartment based on distance from the campus location, while also showing the cost of living, local restaurants, the length of your commute and more.

If your apartment is unfurnished, furniture rental is an economical and convenient way to furnish your home away from home. CORT, the leading provider of furniture rental in the U.S., furnishes thousands of student apartments with everything from beds and sofas to housewares and electronics – all with affordable rental package options.

Before moving to the United States to study abroad, you’ll need to spend some time thinking about what you would like to get out of your educational experience. How would you like to get involved on campus? What degree programs interest you? If Illinois State University meets your needs and you’re interested in learning more about one of the best public universities in the Midwest, explore their website here.


Margaret Schwartz is an experienced international traveler and Director of Marketing at CORT Furniture Rental, where she works directly with students and higher education institutions.