Blackburn College

Blackburn College has a strong tradition of academic excellence and is nationally recognized as having the only student-managed Work Program in the U.S., begun in 1913.

The combination of quality education, valuable work experience, and a pledge to meet 100% of students’ financial need allows Blackburn to make a quality liberal arts college education affordable for thousands of first generation and under-served students.

Fast Facts: 

  • Blackburn was founded in 1837 by Gideon Blackburn.
  • Located in Carlinville, Illinois — 1 hour north of St. Louis, Missouri and 45 minutes south of Springfield, Illinois in west-central Illinois.
  • The student-managed Work Program was established in 1913.
  • Situated on an 80 acre residential campus including a new state-of-the-art fitness facility.
  • U.S. News & World Report 2018 Rankings—one of the Midwest regions “Best Regional Colleges.”
  • Dual degree program in Nursing with St. John’s College of Nursing.
  • Pre-professional programs in Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science, Law, Theology, and Nursing.
  • Blackburn is one of the most affordable, private, four-year residential institutions in the state of Illinois.
  • Work Program jobs are primarily on campus and are essential to the day-to-day operation of the campus and its services and facilities.
  • The student newspaper, The ‘Burnian, is the longest continually published student newspaper in Illinois.

By the numbers

10
The number of major campus buildings have been built by student labor through the Work Program.nt labor through the Work Program.
550
Approximately the number of full-time students
18
The number of states represented at Blackburn
15
Average class size is 15 students
26%
percentage of ethnic and minority students (entering fall 2017 class)
92%
percentage of the full-time faculty hold the highest degree available in their eld
$5,000
amount of annual tuition credit awarded to students in exchange for work program participation.
160
minimum number of hours all resident students work per semester (average of 10 hours per week) during the fall and spring semesters

Founded in 1837, Blackburn College launched its student work program in 1913 as a way to make a quality liberal arts college education affordable for thousands of first generation students. With the only student-managed work program in the country, it’s no surprise that Blackburn was ranked by U.S. News and World Report as the #2 Best Value College in the Midwest. Over the years, students have built Blackburn—literally brick by brick. Ten campus buildings including residence halls, the library, athletic facilities, academic buildings and the administration building were constructed with the help of student workers. The Washing Monthly ranked the college as the best baccalaureate college in Illinois and among the top 50 in the U.S. In addition, Blackburn now extends the Blackburn Promise--a commitment to meeting 100% of a student's financial need; a student's EFC is all they will pay to attend!

#5
on U.S. News & World Report’s 2018 “Great Schools/Great Prices” in the Midwest region.

Student Makeup

31%
of students who are rst generation students (based on Fall 2017 enrollment of degree- seeking students).
44%
of the students have an Expected Family Contribution of less than $1,000 (based on Fall 2017 enrollment of degree-seeking students).
99%
of the alumni are either employed or enrolled in graduate school.
60%
of students who received Pell grants (based on Fall 2017 enrollment of degree-seeking students).