Friends University

Wichita, KS
Friends University

Brief Description

With the mission of providing high-quality undergraduate and graduate education that incorporates liberal arts instruction and professional studies within the context of the Christian faith, Friends University is a private co-educational non-denominational Christian institution in Kansas. Home to over 2,750 students of all ages and denominations, Friends University is based on a 40-acre urban campus in the heart of Wichita with satellite locations in Topeka, Kansas City, and online from anywhere with an Internet connection. Recently, Friends University was selected as one of only 12 four-year institutions nationwide to participate in the Foundations of Excellence initiative through the John N. Gardner Institute.

Originally founded as Garfield University in honor of President James Garfield in 1887, the school was the largest educational institution west of the Mississippi River at the time with 500 students in its inaugural year. However, as crop failures and deaths made it difficult for pledges to be paid, the university was forced to close its doors due to financial obstacles in 1893. Five years later, James Davis of St. Louis pursued the university and granted it as a gift to the Quakers at the Kansas Yearly Meeting of Friends. By 1898, Friends University officially opened its doors with classes offered in subjects ranging from mathematics and astronomy to Bible and music harmony.

Fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (NCA), Friends University grants a wide range of degrees through its College of Business, Arts and Sciences, Education, Adult and Professional Studies, and Graduate School. Friends University is well-known for offering a unique Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ballet and a Bachelor of Science in Zoo Science, which are rarely found at other higher learning institutions. At the graduate level, students can pursue a degree in business administration, business law, Christian ministry, environmental studies, family therapy, healthcare leadership, management, organization development, or teaching.

As more than 70 percent of Friends' undergraduate students participate in on and off-campus service projects, the university is well known for offering a wide range of student organizations. With a track record of producing professional contemporary artists in Wichita, Friends University is home to the renowned Epsilon Rho chapter of the Kappa Pi Art Fraternity and the Singing Quakers choir. Nicknamed the Falcons, Friends varsity athletic teams compete in the Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference of the NAIA. Some of the most notable former Falcons include Nobel Prize winner Vernon L. Smith, singer Rich Mullins, and politician Matt Lundy.

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At A Glance

Total undergraduate enrollment: 2240

Total institution enrollment: 2798

School type: 4-year private, not-for-profit

School classification: Master's Colleges and Universities I: These institutions typically offer a wide range of baccalaureate programs, and they are committed to graduate education through the master's degree. They award 40 or more master's degrees per year across three or more disciplines.

Campus Location

Main Address

Friends University
2100 W University Ave
Wichita, KS 67213


(316) 295-5000


Undergraduate Demographics

Male undergraduate population: 41%

Female undergraduate population: 59%

Undergrad visible minorities: No Data

Majors & Degrees

Degrees Offered: Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's

Accounting And Finance
Advertising And Marketing
Business General
Criminal Justice General
Education And Childcare
General Studies
Legal And Paralegal
Master Degree
Medical And Healthcare
Public Administration