About the University of Miami

Since its inception nearly 90 years ago, the University of Miami has been marked by its relentless pursuit of a noble vision of greatness. Established in 1925, the University is one of the nation’s leading private research universities.

With nearly 17,000 students from all 50 states and 121 countries around the world, the University is a vibrant and diverse academic community of exceptionally talented individuals engaged in teaching and learning, the discovery of new knowledge, and service to the South Florida region and beyond.

The University comprises 11 schools and colleges, including professional schools of medicine and law, serving under- graduate and graduate students in more than 280 programs. In 2014 for the sixth year in a row, U.S. News & World Report ranked UM among the top 50 universities in the country in its “Best Colleges” listings. This rise in national recognition has been accompanied by rising student quality and admission standards—31,608 applicants competed for 2,077 spaces in the fall 2014 freshman class. The University has more than 3,000 faculty, with 98 percent of full-time faculty holding a doctorate or terminal degree.

The University of Miami has grown from its original 239-acre campus in historic Coral Gables to include the Miller School of Medicine campus near downtown Miami, the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science campus on Virginia Key, the Richmond facility in South Dade, and satellite facilities in other locations. Originally conceived as a Pan-American college with natural links to the Caribbean and Latin America, today the University of Miami has a strong international presence.

Inquiry and discovery are instilled throughout the entire institution, attracting significant funding for the research enterprise. In FY 2014 UM received more than $330 million in research and sponsored program expenditures. While the majority of this work is housed at the Miller School of Medicine, investigators in other schools, colleges, and specialized institutes also conduct hundreds of studies in key areas such as marine science, engineering, education, nursing, and psychology. The University of Miami is one of only 35 private research universities recognized in the Very High Research Activity category by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.

UM offers 115 bachelor’s, 104 master’s, and 63 doctoral (59 research/scholarship and 4 professional practice) degree programs. No other medium-sized private university in the nation offers such a wide range of curricular choices.

A 2012 independent study found the University has a total economic impact of $5.62 billion on Miami-Dade County and an impact of $6.1 billion on the tri-county (Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach) region. The University of Miami is one of the largest private employers in Miami-Dade County.

For more information and interesting facts on the University, please review the Points of Pride document

Schools and Colleges

The University of Miami offers a wide array of academic pursuits for undergraduate and graduate studies through its 11 schools and colleges. Review a short synopsis of each school and college here.


In 2003 the UM announced Momentum: The Campaign for the University of Miami, which surpassed its $1 billion goal in January 2006, a year and a half ahead of schedule, and ended December 31, 2007, having raised $1.4 billion—the first university in Florida to successfully mount a billion-dollar campaign.

In 2012 the University launched Momentum2: The Breakthrough Campaign for the University of Miami, a $1.6 billion effort, and to date the campaign has raised $1.4 billion with more than 132,000 donors contributing.

2014 President’s Report

Since its founding, the University of Miami has had an international orientation that touches endeavors carried out in other nations as well as on campus. The 2014 President’s Report, Global Horizons, looks at how this perspective impacts areas such as the student experience, environmental research, medical care, academic collaborations, and service to improve quality of life. The report also presents highlights from the schools and colleges as well as financial reports and statements.

University of Miami Presidents

Donna E. Shalala (2001-present)

The University entered its present phase in 2001 when Donna E. Shalala became its fifth president. Her presidency has been marked by accelerated progress in all key areas—teaching and learning, the discovery of new knowledge, the delivery of cutting-edge medical care, service to the region and beyond, and fundraising.

Edward T. Foote II (1981-2001)

Under the leadership of Edward T. Foote II, the University was elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa, the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honor society; three new schools were created; average SAT scores of incoming freshmen increased by nearly 100 points; and the University converted student dormitories into a system of residential colleges.

Henry King Stanford (1962-1981)

The University entered a new epoch, a time of reexamination and consolidation under its third president, Henry King Stanford. His presidency was marked by further emphasis on research activity, additions to physical facilities, reorganization of the University’s administrative structure, and the establishment of several research centers and institutes.

Jay F. W. Pearson (1953-1962)

Jay F. W. Pearson assumed the presidency in 1953. A marine biologist by training, charter faculty member, and assistant to President Ashe since 1929, he presided during a decade of unprecedented growth. Total enrollment increased from 10,000 to nearly 14,000 during his tenure. New facilities and resources were added to keep pace with student enrollment as well as to increase the research strength of the institution.

Bowman F. Ashe (1926-1952)

The University of Miami was chartered in 1925, and by fall 1926, when the first class of 560 students enrolled, the South Florida land boom had collapsed and hopes for a speedy recovery were dashed by a major hurricane and the Great Depression. In the next 15 years the University barely kept afloat, but it survived primarily due to the vision and persistence of founding president Bowman F. Ashe. Under his administration, the institution overcame bankruptcy, a reorganization, a world war, and then in the post-war years, experienced tremendous growth and expansion.