It’s been an incredible year at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Take a look at some of the most memorable moments on campus this year.
We welcomed an extraordinary class of new Illini
Meet the record-breaking class of Illini.
With more than 50,000 total students for the first time in university history, the freshman class of 2023 is also the largest, most academically talented and most diverse in the history of the university.
We applauded the Illini family
Thanks to efforts from students, faculty, staff, alumni and the Champaign-Urbana community, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was ranked:
We celebrated a naming gift
Introducing The Grainger College of Engineering.
A $100 million gift and more than $300 million in total support from The Grainger Foundation is the largest amount ever given to a public university to name a college of engineering. William W. Grainger graduated from the university’s electrical engineering program in 1919 and founded the industrial supply company W. W. Grainger, Inc. in 1927.
We took pride in the success of Illinois graduates
Graduates from the university’s undergraduate programs continue to experience exceptional success. According to the latest Illini Success report:
- 91% of graduates secured a first destination—defined as a job, enrollment in graduate school or a volunteer position—within six months of graduation
- The average starting salary for full-time employed graduates is $60,885
- 66% of graduates who secured a first destination said they remained in the state for those opportunities
We broke ground on innovative projects
It has been a banner year for upgrades to campus.
Several campus labs, classrooms and athletics facilities finished or started projects, including: Campus Instructional Facility, the Henry Dale and Betty Smith Football Center, Feed Technology Center, Altgeld and Illini Halls, Main Library, Hydrosystems Lab and Newmark Civil Engineering Laboratory, Freer Hall and the Speech and Hearing Science Building.
We painted Chicago orange & blue
Chicago is home to more Illini than anywhere else in the world.
In July 2019, the university brought the Illinois experience to the more than 150,000 Fighting Illini alumni living in Chicagoland at its first-ever downtown festival in Millennium Park. The event featured more than 40 displays and interactive experiences from colleges and units on campus.
We celebrated the newly renovated Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center
The Bruce D. Nesbitt African American Cultural Center (BNAACC) held its grand re-opening celebration on the center’s 50th anniversary weekend.
Generations of students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members came together to recognize the impact of the newly completed project and state-of-the-art facility.
We cheered on a historic Homecoming win
It’s been called one of the greatest games in Illini history.
The Fighting Illini upset No. 6 Wisconsin on Homecoming weekend. The win was the Illini's first over a ranked opponent since 2011, and the Badgers were the highest-ranked team the Illini had defeated since 2007.
Experience the game through the lens of a university photographer.
We're grateful for you, Illini.
The Illinois family is the best family. Thanks for being part of our year.