About the University
Nestled in the Green Mountains of central Vermont, Norwich University is located less than 30 minutes from the state capital of Montpelier and a few hours drive from Boston, New York and Montreal. Rural but not remote, the Northfield campus is small and community oriented, and is home to students from 40 states and 29 countries. The natural environs of the campus offer a wide range of outdoor activities throughout the year.
Founded in 1819 by Capt. Alden Partridge, Norwich is deeply steeped in traditions of service to country and to others before self and of valuing innovation and leading change to reflect the evolving needs of our society. The University’s objective is to encourage students to become stronger and more determined leaders. Norwich has a number of “firsts” to its credit including being the first private college to teach engineering—reflecting the University’s commitment to applied or “practical” learning. Also, in 1974, Norwich was one of the first military schools to admit women to the Corps of Cadets. There are only a few schools that have a legacy as long or as influential as Norwich’s.
Partridge’s founding vision for rigorous academics combined with the structured military lifestyle was the foundation for the creation of ROTC. As the birthplace of ROTC, Norwich houses all four branches of the US Department of Defense military services, Army, Navy, Marines and Air Force. Cadets seeking commissions in the United States Coast Guard can pursue a commission through a special program called the Direct Commission School (DCSS) or by attending Officer Candidate School after graduation.
During the 26+ year tenure of President Richard W. Schneider, RADM, USCGR (Ret.), Norwich University has seen major improvements on multiple fronts, including the near complete $100 million Forging the Future bicentennial campaign. Academically, four colleges now offer 39 undergraduate majors, six of which are degree completion programs offered online. Other accomplishments include: an increase in total undergraduate enrollment by over 25%, from 1730 to approximately 2400, and in the Corps of Cadets by 50% from 941 to over 1600; increased undergraduate student selectivity with an increase in average SAT scores and the percentage of applicants accepted decreasing from 93% to 68.7%; establishment of the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies, which currently has more than 1600 online students enrolled in 20 programs including master’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees and professional certificates, and the introduction of the Honors Program and the online Continuing Professional Education Program. Like other private higher education institutions in New England, Norwich faces challenges to affordability for students and to providing new opportunities for faculty and students in a tuition driven environment, but with full enrollment and a balanced budget, Norwich University is positioned to advance its distinctive mission as it strives to makes this exceptional educational experience affordable to students.