Northwest Nazarene University - Colleges of Distinction - Colleges of Distinction
Northwest Nazarene University
Centered in Jesus Christ, the NNU education instills habits of heart, soul, mind, and...

Northwest Nazarene University

Nampa, Idaho

Northwest Nazarene University believes that education should be about the transformation of the whole person—intellectual, social, physical, and spiritual. A Christian liberal arts university, NNU offers over 60 areas of study, 18 master’s degrees, and 2 doctoral degrees. In addition to its 90-acre campus in Nampa, Idaho, the University also offers programs online as well as in Boise, Idaho Falls, and in cooperation with programs in 35 countries.



Student Profile

Fall 2015 Enrollment
1,524 undergraduate students
77% of undergrad students are full time
43% male — 57% female
49% of students are from out of state

Faculty Profile

2015-2016 Academic Year
104 full-time faculty
1 part-time faculty
15 to 1 student/faculty ratio

Residence Life

Fall 2015
76% of first year students live on campus
70% of all students live on campus

School Location

Nampa, Idaho

Retention Fall 2015

74% of students began in Fall 2014 and returned in Fall 2015 (full time, first time freshmen)

6 Year Graduation Rate 2015

49% of students graduated in 6 years


Nonresident aliens 3%
Hispanic/Latino 7%
Black or African American 2%
White 76%
American Indian or Alaska Native 1%
Asian 2%
Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander 0%
Two or more races 4%
Race and/or ethnicity unknown 6%


NNU is a member of the NCAA Division II and the Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC).

Fifteen varsity sports are available
Men’s sports: baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, and indoor and outdoor track & field
Women’s sports: basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, indoor and outdoor track & field, and volleyball.

NNU has approximately 50 indoor and 85 outdoor intercollegiate events hosted by athletics throughout the school year. The beautiful Johnson Sports Center (JSC) is home to the Orrin Hills Center Court (basketball and volleyball); a 25,000 square-foot multi-purpose field house; athletic training facilities; an indoor soccer field; racquetball courts; two fitness centers; a kinesiology wellness lab; the NNU Military Science department; two classrooms; coaches and staff offices; two hardwood balcony practice areas; and more. NNU faculty, staff, students, and local community members utilize the Johnson Sports Center on a year-round basis. NNU classes are held at the JSC and the many outdoor facilities, including three tennis courts.

Other Information

Northwest Nazarene University, founded in 1913, is a private, four-year, Christian liberal arts university, accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Earning a college degree is hard work, and NNU makes students work hard to earn a degree. NNU  students are committed to intellectual inquiry. Whether they’re interested in business or computer science, NNU graduates leave prepared to embark on any career path or pursue advanced degrees.

Internships and cross-cultural experiences are graduation requirements for many students. Experiential learning is built into the degree programs and campus life at NNU—from clubs where students invest money on behalf of the university to service learning trips to Peru, the university is dedicated to giving students opportunities for meaningful learning opportunities through which they can develop their worldview and gain a professional edge.

Study Abroad

A longstanding partnership with the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) allows students to see the world. Students have access to programs in Australia, China, Costa Rica, Jordan, Oxford, Uganda, and more. NNU also offers connections to domestic programs in Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and Nashville.

Research Opportunities

Recent research projects that students have conducted include: NASA RockSat and CubeSat Engineering projects; agricultural drones; hyperbaric oxygen treatment of breast cancer cells; Alzheimer ’s disease; and Lake Titicacan frogs and native cat species in Costa Rica. Mentoring faculty work alongside students to enrich the research experience. Many students have also gone on to present their research at such national conferences as the Murdock College Science Research Program Conference.

Activities Offered

Campus Ministries x
Choral groups x
Concert band x
Drama/theater x
International Student Organization x
Jazz band x
Literary magazine  
Marching band  
Model UN  
Music ensembles x
Musical theater x
Opera x
Pep band x
Radio station  
Student government x
Student newspaper x
Student-run film society x
Symphony orchestra x
Television station  
Yearbook x

Student-Faculty Interaction

Students have direct access to talented faculty members in all disciplines who become their research partners, mentors, tablemates in the cafeteria, and spiritual sounding boards. Undergraduates at NNU are able to build relationships with their professors, the luxuries of which are usually only afforded to graduate students. These relationships allow professors and students to work side-by-side.

Freshman and Senior Experiences

Students begin their freshman year at NNU in Freshman Seminar, a class designed to build a foundation of skills and habits that encourage success all throughout college. After three years, students are prepared to take on the challenge of their senior capstone class, internship, or research project. NNU seniors are discovering exciting methods and places to put their education into practice, producing professional, Hollywood-style films, crafting franchise-winning business plans, designing Idaho’s first satellite, testing new computer software with million-dollar companies, and so much more!

Common Core

Arts/fine arts x
Computer literacy x
English (including composition) x
Foreign languages  
History x
Humanities x
Mathematics x
Philosophy x
Sciences (biological or physical) x
Social science x

Class Size Breakdown

Size 2-9 10-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50-99 100+ Total
Number of Classes 105 119 68 23 10 12 0 337

NNU takes care of every aspect of the student experience—from where students live to what they do on Thursday nights.

Spiritual Life

Through Spiritual Life, students find new ways to grow in their faith. The community is rooted in love for one another and for God. But NNU is not a Christian hideout from the world; students and faculty alike challenge one another to examine, articulate, and own their faith. Attending Timeout (a weekly student-led worship service), serving locally, and joining a D-group (discipleship group) are just a few of the ways that students can grow.

Student Government Association

Staple campus traditions would not be possible without the Student Government Association (SGA) and other student leadership positions. SGA gives students opportunities to get involved both on-campus and in the surrounding community. NNU has standard clubs and organizations (more than 40!) as well as a handful of traditions and campus characters that are unique to the university.


16 percent of NNU students come from a culturally diverse background. The Office of Multicultural Affairs works to increase awareness, cooperation, and understanding concerning ethnic, religious, and cultural diversity both on campus and in the local community.

Residence Life

NNU students and alumni rave about how their best college memories were made while living on campus. Whether they go on a late-night run to Merrit’s for a world-famous scone, compete in intramurals with a wing in their dorm, or have deep conversations with their roommates, students find that living in a caring community is an integral part of the NNU experience.

The benefits of a residential campus, however, are not just about fun. Living on campus contributes significantly to the success of students, both socially and academically. Studies show that students who live on campus achieve a higher GPA and have a higher graduation rate than those who live off campus.

Freshman Retreat

Building relationships to last a lifetime takes time, so NNU actively helps freshmen get the ball rolling as they transition to their new home away from home. The entire freshman class gets to bond with one another on a trip to Trinity Pines Camp & Conference Center over Labor Day weekend for a Freshman Retreat. There, students are able to come together as a class, forming new friendships without the distraction of classes and homework.

Coed dorms  
Men’s dorms x
Women’s dorms x
Apartments for married students x
Apartments for single students x
Special housing for disabled students x
Special housing for international students  
Fraternity/sorority housing  
Cooperative housing  
Theme housing  
Wellness housing  
Other housing options  

Successful Graduates

Doctors? Yes. Lawyers? Of course. Professors, ministers, and teachers? Plenty. NNU graduates leave prepared to embark on any and every career path and to pursue advanced degrees at some of the best graduate schools in the country. Most importantly, NNU graduates leave prepared to make the world a better place. They are creative, socially responsive adults who are ready to represent Christ in a changing world.

NNU graduates have been accepted into prestigious graduate schools, including: American Film Institute Conservatory, Azusa Pacific University, Georgia Institute of Technology, Loma Linda University, Nazarene Theological Seminary, Purdue University, Syracuse University, University of Arizona, University of Colorado, University of Glasgow, University of Idaho, University of Michigan, University of Notre Dame, University of Oklahoma, and Vanderbilt University.

Employers of recent graduates: Agri Beef Co., Campbell Soup Company, Drake Cooper, DreamWorks, Ernst & Young, Hewlett Packard, Micron, Idaho Power, John Templeton Foundation, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, KTVB, National Science Foundation, NetApp, Northwestern Mutual, Pepsi, TSA, U.S. Bank, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and University of Georgia.


Students dive into research and internship opportunities both throughout the country and around the world. NNU’s strong connections and industry relationships have opened doors for students to explore their disciplines in a professional arena.

NNU students have interned at ESPN, Fox Sports, Unilever, Campbell’s, Centennial Job Corps, St. Luke’s, Wal-Mart Headquarters, U.S. Embassy in Belgium, Micron, Hewlett Packard, Scentsy Headquarters, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, Simplot, and Disney.


Admissions Fall 2015

1,589 Total Applicants
870 Total Admissions
258 Total Freshmen Enrollment

54.75% of applicants admitted

Admissions Deadlines for 2016-17 Admission

Rolling Admission? No

Closing Date: August 15 
Priority Date: March 1

Admissions Factors

Very Important
Academic GPA

Class rank
Standardized test scores

Rigor of secondary school record
Application Essay
Religious affiliation/commitment

Freshmen Profile Fall 2015

  25th Percentile 75th Percentile
SAT Critical Reading 460 580
SAT Math 460 570
SAT Writing 440 560
SAT Essay    
ACT Composite 21 25
ACT Math 22 25
ACT English 21 25
ACT Writing 21 27


Net Price Calculator


Tuition $27,750
Fees $400
Total $28,150
Room and Board (on campus) $7,000
Room Only $3,000
Board Only $4,000
Estimated Total On Campus $7,400


Average Financial Aid Packages 2014-2015

$28,538 First year students
$26,604 All undergrads

Financial Aid Breakdown 2014-2015

73% on average, the percentage of need that was met
22% of financial need students that had need fully met

$14,234 Average need-based scholarship or grant award
$9,241 Average need-based loan