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Our Mission

As a Sinsinawa Dominican–sponsored institution, Dominican University prepares students to pursue truth, to give compassionate service, and to participate in the creation of a more just and humane world.

Our Vision

Dominican University will be an innovative leader in empowering graduates from diverse backgrounds to meet the challenges of an increasingly interdependent world.


Dominican University is a diverse, relationship-centered community rooted in a vibrant liberal arts and sciences education, offering rigorous, integrative and innovative undergraduate, graduate and professional programs.

At the heart of the University is its Catholic, Dominican tradition, grounded in the compatibility of faith and reason, that affirms the dignity of the human person and concern for the common good. The University's curricula, research and campus life demonstrate a commitment to ethics, community service, social justice and global citizenship. Dominican University educates one student at a time in the company of others, engaging a multiplicity of cultural, religious and secular worldviews, transforming students, faculty and staff into agents of positive change.

Our History

Founded in 1901 as St. Clara College in Sinsinawa, Wisconsin, home of the Sinsinawa Dominicans, Dominican University began as a women's college under the fundamental values that continue to guide us today—rigorous education, diversity of thought, a commitment to social justice, and close mentoring of students to enable them to make a positive difference in the world.

In 1922, under the leadership of Mother Samuel Coughlin, the institution relocated to its current location in River Forest, Illinois, where it was renamed Rosary College. The new college rapidly expanded its curriculum and reach over the next decades, establishing one of the nation’s first study-abroad programs, launching graduate programs and becoming coeducational. To reflect its stature as a respected, comprehensive and modern university, the school was renamed Dominican University in 1997.

Today, Dominican is a premier Catholic university that ranks among the top master’s-level universities in the Midwest. While maintaining its core Catholic identity, the University enrolls and mentors students of all faith backgrounds. Living out the ideals of our founding sisters and those of Father Samuel Mazzuchelli, founding father of the Sinsinawa Dominicans, the University is committed to giving compassionate service and to participating in the creation of a more just and humane world.