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About Radford

Radford University is distinguished by a large selection of academic programs, a student-focused faculty, and a student body deeply engaged in university life. The student body of 9,410 studies in seven colleges: Business and Economics, Education and Human Development, Waldron College of Health and Human Services, Humanities and Behavioral Sciences, Science and Technology, Visual and Performing Arts, and the College of Graduate Studies and Research. Radford University is located on the New River in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Southwest Virginia.

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The People

  • Total enrollment: 9,355
  • Undergraduate enrollment: 7,926
  • Graduate enrollment: 1,409
  • 61 percent female, 39 percent male
  • 46 states (including Washington, D.C.), 66 foreign countries
  • 34 percent of new freshmen are first-generation college students
  • 36 percent of new freshmen are from ethnically diverse backgrounds
  • 84 percent of faculty hold doctorates or terminal degrees in their fields
  • Fewer than three percent of classes are taught by graduate assistants
  • Student to faculty ratio: 16:1
  • Average freshman class size: 29 students

The Place

"I visited RU and fell in love with the campus." This is a frequent comment from students asked what factors helped them choose RU.

Radford University is a coeducational, comprehensive public university offering 105 undergraduate and graduate programs. (See Academics.)

It is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Southwest Virginia in the City of Radford alongside the beautiful New River. (See Visit RUSteelers And Jersey Black White for map, directions, more.)

Radford University is also wherever faculty take it -- in person and through distance learning technology. Off-campus learning sites include the Roanoke Higher Education Center, the Southwest Virginia Higher Education Center in Abingdon, and other locations throughout Southwest and Southside Virginia.

The Radford University campus totals 204 acres in the City of Radford (see RU Map). The university atmosphere is residential. Most students live in one of the 15 university residence halls or in private accommodations within walking distance of the campus. The university grounds and facilities are conveniently arranged, beautifully maintained, and effectively designed to meet the academic, personal, and extracurricular needs and interests of the students.

Founded in 1910, Radford University has been granting graduate degrees since 1964. In 1972, after almost 60 years as an all-women's college, Radford became coeducational and in 1979 was granted university status by the General Assembly. On July 1, 2016, Dr. Brian O. Hemphill became the seventh president of Radford University. Learn more about Radford History.

Radford University Tidbits

Radford University anthropology professor Donna Boyd was named U.S. Professor of the Year for master's level universities and colleges by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) and the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching in 2006. Dr. Boyd is also one of 10 Radford University professors who have received Virginia's highest honor for faculty since inception of the state's Outstanding Faculty Award in 1986.

The latest recipient of the Virginia Outstanding Faculty Award is Radford University Associate Professor of Education Jennifer Jones. The award is given by the State Council of Higher Education (SCHEV) and is the Commonwealth's highest honor for educators in Virginia's public and private colleges and universities.

Since 1981, 11 university faculty members have been selected as Fulbright Scholars to teach or do research in other countries.

Radford University fields a Division I athletic program with students competing in 16 varsity sports – six for men and 10 for women. The Highlanders compete in the Big South Conference. (See Highlander Athletics.)

Costs and Financial Aid

For the 2017-2018 academic year, tuition and fees for a full-time, in-state, undergraduate student total $10,627 per year (two semesters); for a full-time, out-of-state undergraduate, tuition and fees are $22,709. Financial assistance includes loans, grants, work study and fellowships. Approximately 75 percent of Radford University undergraduate students who apply for financial aid receive it.