The University of Nebraska Omaha

unoThe University of Nebraska Omaha (UNO) is a four-year state university located in Omaha, Nebraska. Founded in 1908 as Omaha University, the institution became the Municipal University of Omaha in 1931, and assumed its current name in 1968 following a merger into the University of Nebraska. UNO has a total enrollment of 15,000 students, just over 12,000 of whom are undergraduates.

UNO is situated on 158 acres surrounded by residential neighborhoods, shopping, and dining in a thriving metropolitan area. Omaha, the largest city in Nebraska, is one of America’s best-ranked cities for value and quality of life. Residents enjoy the benefit of four seasons and find outdoor activities plentiful year-round. Located on the eastern border of Nebraska, near the Missouri River, the city of Omaha is a center of creativity, business and philanthropy in the Midwest.

The main UNO campus has been at its present location since 1938. UNO has a long tradition of serving commuter students from the Omaha metropolitan area, but in recent years has developed apartment-style student housing. UNO offers one of the most competitive tuition rates in the region, making college accessible for residents and non-residents alike. UNO’s in-state tuition and fees are $6,510 (2012-13); out-of-state tuition and fees are $16,520 (2012-13).

Throughout its history UNO has worked on building strong ties with the community, and the school holds a Community Engagement classification by the Carnegie Foundation. Through its continuing partnership with business, education, government, arts, and civic organizations, UNO has enhanced the social and cultural life of the metropolitan area and state, and has worked with various organizations and individuals to address community problems and stimulate economic development.

UNO has been on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for seven consecutive years. UNO’s community partnership has also focused on providing affordable, accessible instructional programs of high quality that are designed to meet the diverse needs of both traditional and nontraditional students. UNO is also ranked sixth in military friendliness by “The Military Times,” with many options for military and veteran students online, on base, and on campus.


UNO’s core values place students at the center of all that the university does; call for the campus to strive for academic excellence; and promote community engagement that transforms and improves urban, regional, national and global life. UNO is committed to a high standard of excellence in its teaching, research, and public service activities, with the following broad priorities in fulfilling its mission:

1. Undergraduate instructional programs based on a strong liberal arts foundation;
2. Graduate programs, research, and creative activity;
3. Public service.

UNO offers more than 200 nationally ranked and accredited academic, research, internship, and service learning programs at the baccalaureate, master’s and doctoral level in all of the following colleges: Information Science and Technology, Engineering and Technology, Liberal Arts and Sciences, Education, Fine Arts, Public Affairs and Community Service, Continuing Studies, and Graduate College. The Bachelor of General Studies program, which can be completed online, is ranked #11 by U.S. News and World Report.

UNO exercises a statewide responsibility in the areas of criminal justice, social work, public administration, and gerontology. The campus also plays a key role in public affairs research and small business development in Nebraska. UNO’s College of Business Administration’s Masters in Business Administration students ranked in the top 5% nationally, while the undergraduate students ranked in the top 15% on a 2007 standardized exam on business topics conducted by the Educational Testing Service.

UNO is classified as a doctoral/research university by the Carnegie Foundation and is the home of the Peter Kiewit Institute, a $70 million state-of-the-art computer science and engineering facility. PKI includes the Holland Computing Center, one of the largest supercomputing facilities in the nation, boasting the powerful Firefly supercomputer. The College of Information Science and Technology offers some of the region’s premier programs in Computer Science, Management Information Systems, Bioinformatics, Information Assurance, and Information Technology Innovation.


UNO recently completed $200 million in facility improvements which include an updated recreation center, renovated library, the College of Business Administration (the only LEED gold-certified academic building in the state), a community engagement center (the first of its kind on a university campus), and a biomechanics research building. A new on-campus arena for athletics, campus events, and community functions is projected to be completed by the fall of 2015. The arena will not only enhance the visibility of the UNO campus, but it will also provide great benefit, both economically and socially, to the Omaha metropolitan area. Planned community use includes public skating, youth hockey, figure skating, club hockey, adult recreational hockey, hockey tournaments, campus recreation space, varsity practices, varsity games, school skate programs, religious services, commencement ceremonies and concerts.

Student Life

The motto of UNO is “Connect-Collaborate-Create,” and that’s exactly what students do on UNO’s vibrant student-centered campus. There are more than 100 student organizations, learning communities, service learning and internship programs that partner with local business leaders. UNO also maintains a widely regarded online film journal called the Journal of Religion and Film. UNO competes in Division I athletics. Men’s sports at UNO include baseball, basketball, golf, hockey, soccer, and tennis. Women’s sports include basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track, and volleyball. The university also offers numerous opportunities to study abroad or interact with international students from 131 countries. UNO is constantly adapting to serve student needs including newer degree programs in biomedical informatics, information assurance, and emergency management while providing an affordable, accessible education to all students.

UNO students in 1971 voted for “Mavericks” as the university’s nickname. For years, UNO students have dreamed of having a mascot statue as a rallying point on campus. In its 100th year, the Alumni Association is making that dream a reality, bringing to campus the “Maverick Monument” — an 8-foot-high, 1,500-pound bronze bull symbolizing the determination, pride and success of UNO students and alumni. Created by nationally renowned artist Jocelyn Russell, the monument is being installed amid a new plaza on the UNO campus. It will be “unleashed” with a public dedication and BBQ on Sunday, August 24, at 3:00 pm in front of the Health, Physical Education and Recreation (HPER) Building.


Freshman applicants must meet the same admission requirements whether they are graduates of a regionally accredited high school, graduates of a homeschool program, or have completed the equivalent training (General Education Diploma – GED). All students are expected to have met the following 16 core course requirements in high school or a combination of high school and college coursework:

  1. English – 4 units* All units must include intensive reading and writing experience. Innovative interdisciplinary courses and courses in speech and journalism may be substituted if they include substantial amounts of reading and writing. Dual language or ELL English classes completed in high school do not satisfy the English core course requirement.
  2. Mathematics – 3 units* Must include Algebra I, II and Geometry.
  3. Social sciences – 3 units* At least one unit of American and/or world history and one additional unit of history, American government and/or geography; and a third unit of any social science discipline or subject.
  4. Natural sciences – 3 units* At least two of the three units selected from biology, chemistry, physics and earth sciences. One of the units must include laboratory instruction.
  5. Foreign languages – 2 units (same language)* Students who are unable to take two years of one foreign language in high school may still qualify for admission. Such students will be required to take two semesters of a foreign language at the University of Nebraska or other accredited postsecondary institution.
  6. Additional requirement – 1 unit* One unit chosen from any of the above academic disciplines.

*a unit is equivalent to one school year in a class, grades 9-12.

In addition to meeting the above core course requirements, students applying for admission should be:

  1. Ranked in the upper one-half of their high school class OR
  2. Have received an ACT composite score of 20 or higher (writing section not included) OR
  3. Have received an SAT total score of 950 or higher.

Students who do not qualify for Assured Admission by meeting all entrance criteria may be considered for Admission by Review on the basis of special merit. Each of these applicants will be reviewed and considered for admission on an individual basis.

The student’s cumulative high school grade point average, class rank, ACT/SAT scores and the grades received in the core course requirements are all considered a primary factor in the admission evaluation and decision. The student may be asked to provide letters of recommendation from a high school counselor or principal, as well as an educational purpose statement.

Students who do not meet the 16 core course requirements and/or whose high school cumulative grade point average is below a 2.5, will be encouraged to attend a community college to strengthen their academic record before attending UNO. UNO works closely with the local community colleges to determine courses that transfer and satisfy the admission requirements.

Students with academic course deficiencies will be required to make up any core course deficiencies by successfully completing an approved college-level course in each area of deficiency within the first 30 hours attempted at UNO.

Students with Homeschool Education and/or General Education Diploma (GED)

Students with General Education Diploma (GED) and students who are homeschooled will be reviewed for Assured Admission requirements. Students who earned a GED in place of high school graduation are required to provide ACT or SAT scores and an official high school transcript for grades 9-12 from any secondary school where coursework was completed.

Homeschooled students must provide a copy of the letter from the state that confirms that the parent has filed with the Department of Education regarding the home schooling of the student. They must also submit official GED scores, official ACT or SAT scores, and official transcripts for grades 9-12 from any high schools or post-secondary schools attended. (An ACT composite score of 20 or above, or a combined score of 950 in the Critical Reading and Math section of the SAT, may be presented in lieu of GED scores.)

High school course work completed through home-study curriculum should be presented on a record showing the scope and sequence of the instructional program designed to lead to basic skills for grades 9-12 as denoted in State Statute 79-1701. The following documentation regarding the home-study curriculum must be provided for admission consideration by the primary teacher/administrator of the home school:

  • A typed transcript (semester format) of the courses the student completed in the homeschool environment. Grades or averages earned in each course must be included on the transcript. A grade scale and cumulative or term based GPA is also recommended. The courses should be listed with a time frame of completion; ex: 2012-13, 2013-14…or 9th, 10th…along with the unit of credit earned; ex: semester, .5 or half a year verses a two semester or year long course, 1.0.
  • A “senior year” or in-progress class schedule.
  • A curriculum synopsis of the courses which parallel the University of Nebraska core course requirements. The synopsis should include a brief descriptive paragraph of each of these courses.
  • Textbook information including titles and authors listed by course. Students who have taken courses in foreign language must include a description of how they learned the verbal component of the language (i.e. tutor, tapes). A placement exam will be required to show proficiency. The homeschool administrator should also provide a detailed description of how the applicant fulfilled the natural science laboratory requirement.
  • The transcript should include an anticipated/final completion date as well as a signature of the administrator of grades.
  • Additional supporting documents may be requested by the University to assist officials in making an admission decision.

To assist homeschool students and administrators with compiling the necessary documentation, the University of Nebraska at Omaha has created a Requirement Checklist. Contact information is also provided on this form. For more information, see:

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