Buena Vista University

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School Overview

Buena Vista University (BVU) is private four-year higher education institution located on a 60-acre campus in Storm Lake, Iowa–just a stones through a way from the shores of Storm Lake, a beautiful 3,000 plus acre natural lake. The university was established in 1891 and is affiliate with the Presbyterian Church, although students from all religious backgrounds and faiths are welcome to attend. BVU offers a rigorous undergraduate liberal arts education complemented by a hands-on learning philosophy, internships and study abroad programs. The university has a nationally recognized faculty that has been awarded one of the most prestigious teaching awards in the nation, the George Wythe Award for Teaching Excellence. The student-to-faculty ratio at BVU is roughly 13 to 1 and students recieve personalized instruction and attention from their professors.

Buena Vista University’s main campus has an average annual enrollment of roughly 1,200 students and offers bachelor degree programs in 42 fields of study and academic disciplines. In addition to its main campus in Storm Lake, BVU has 15 graduate and professional studies centers throughout Iowa and an online campus that together serve an additional 1,400 students. U.S. News & World Report has ranked Buena Vista University among the top 20 Midwestern Comprehensive Colleges and 11th for academic excellence in the Midwestern Baccalaureate category.

General Information

Admission Office

610 West Fourth Street

Storm Lake, IA 50588

(712) 749-2235

(800) 383-9600

Fax: (712) 749-2037

Contact: Alan Coheley

Vice President, Enrollment Management
Main Address

610 West Fourth Street

Storm Lake, IA 50588

(712) 749-2400


Total undergrads: 968

First-time degree-seeking freshmen: 274

Degree-seeking undergrads: 957

Graduate enrollment: 102


Rural setting

Large town (10,000 – 49,999)

Residential campus

Degrees offered:

Admissions Information

Application Fee

College has an application fee: No

Enrollment Rates

Percent applicants admitted: 75%

Percent of students who return for sophomore year: 72%

College Majors

Arts, Visual & Performing

Art – General B
Arts Management B
Commercial/Advertising Art B
Music – General B
Music – General Performance B
Theater Literature/History/Criticism B

Biological & Biomedical Sciences

Biology B

Business, Management, & Marketing

Accounting B
Banking/Financial Services B
Business/Managerial Economics B
Entrepreneurial Studies B
Human Resources Management B
International Business B
Management Information Systems B
Marketing Management B

Communications & Journalism

Communications/Rhetoric B
Mass Communications/Media Studies B
Organizational Communication B

Computer & Information Sciences

Computer Science B


Art Teacher Education B
Biology Teacher Education B
Business Teacher Education B
Chemistry Teacher Education B
Computer Teacher Education B
Elementary Education B
English Teacher Education B
History Teacher Education B
Mathematics Education B
Music Teacher Education B
Physical Education B
Physics Teacher Education B
Psychology Teacher Education B
Reading Teacher Education B
Science Teacher Education B
Social Science Teacher Education B
Spanish Language Teacher Education B
Special Education B
Speech Teacher Education B

English Language & Literature

English Language & Literature – General B

Foreign Language & Literature

Spanish B

Health Professions & Clinical Sciences

Athletic Training/Sports Medicine B


History – General B


Mathematics – General B

Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies

Biological/Physical Sciences B

Natural Resources & Conservation

Environmental Science B

Parks, Recreation & Fitness

Exercise Sciences B
Sport/Fitness Administration B

Philosophy & Religion

Philosophy B

Physical Sciences

Chemistry B
Physics B


Psychology – General B

Public Administration & Services

Public Administration B
Social Work B

Security & Protective Services

Criminal Justice Studies B

Social Sciences

Political Science/Government B
Social Sciences – General B
Sociology B

Degree levels for each major are designated by the following letters:

    A = Associate degree
    B = Bachelor’s degree
    C = Certificate or diploma

*We do not guarantee the accuracy of information on this page. All information is subject to change. You should confirm all information with a college admissions officer.

Buena Vista University Highlights

School Information

Phone Number: (712) 749-2400
Website: https://www.bvu.edu
Type of School: 4-year, Private non-profit
Apply Online: https://www.bvu.edu/apply
Address: 610 W 4th St, Storm Lake, IA 50588
Setting: Town: Remote
Campus Housing: Yes

Students & Programs

Student Population: 1,815
6-yr Graduation Rate (Bachelor's): 60%
Student-to-faculty Ratio: 7 to 1
Distance Learning Programs: Yes
Distance Learning Students*: 818 (45% of total students)
Degree Levels Offered: Bachelor's, Master's

* Students taking at least 1 distance learning course

Tuition & Financial Aid*

In-state Tuition: $35,194
Out-of-state Tuition: $35,194
% of Students Receiving Financial Aid: 100%
Avg. Amount of Grant or Scholarship Aid Awarded: $27,981

* Full-time beginning undergraduate students. Financial aid is available to those who qualify.

Buena Vista University Programs

See the degree programs that are offered at Buena Vista University.

Degree Name Cert Assoc Bach Mast Doct
Biological and Biomedical Sciences 3
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services 131
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs 5
Communications Technologies/Technicians and Support Services 1
Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services 4
Education 217
English Language and Literature/Letters 1
Foreign Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics 1
Health Professions and Related Programs 1
History 1
Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting, and Related Protective Service 1
Legal Professions and Studies 1
Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 2
Mathematics and Statistics 2
Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies 2
Natural Resources and Conservation 1
Parks, Recreation, Leisure and Fitness Studies 2
Philosophy and Religious Studies 1
Physical Sciences 2
Psychology 21
Public Administration and Social Service Professions 2
Social Sciences 3
Visual and Performing Arts 10
Grand total 829

* Based on programs that produced 2019-2020 graduates

Tuition & Financial Aid

See what it costs to enroll at Buena Vista University and how many students are receiving scholarships, grants, or loans as financial aid to help cover the costs of tuition.

Undergraduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees 2019-2020
In-state $35,194
Out-of-state $35,194
Books and supplies $999

Graduate Student Tuition

Average tuition and fees for academic year:

Tuition and Fees 2019-2020
In-state $9,594
Out-of-state $9,594

Undergraduate Student Financial Aid, 2018-2019

Full-time Beginning Undergraduate Students

Type of Aid Number Receiving Aid % Receiving Aid Avg. Amt. of Aid
Any student financial aid 200 100%
Grant or scholarship aid 200 100% $27,981
Student loan aid 160 80% $7,556

All Undergraduate Students

Type of Aid Number Receiving Aid % Receiving Aid Avg. Amt. of Aid
Grant or scholarship aid 1,379 85% $15,711
Federal student loans 1,242 77% $7,474

Admissions & Enrollment

See the admission requirements for Buena Vista University. Find out how many students apply and how many are accepted. View a graphical breakdown of the gender, age, and ethnicity of currently enrolled Buena Vista University students.

Undergraduate Admissions, Fall 2020

Total Male Female
Number of applicants 2,101 1,006 1,095
Percent admitted 100% 55% 59%
Percent admitted who enrolled 11% 12% 10%

Admissions Considerations

Required Recommended Optional
Secondary school GPA
Secondary school rank
Secondary school record
Completion of college-preparatory program
Formal demonstration of competencies
Admission test scores
Other Test (Wonderlic, WISC-III, etc.)
TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language

Buena Vista University Enrollment, Fall 2020

Total Enrollment 1,815
Undergraduate enrollment 1,478
Graduate enrollment 337

Undergraduate Attendance

Undergraduate Gender

Undergraduate Age

Undergraduate Race/Ethnicity

Undergraduate Distance Education

Undergraduates taking 100%, Some, or No Distance Education

Graduate Distance Education

Graduate students taking 100%, Some, or No Distance Education

Buena Vista University Accreditation

This institution is accredited by Higher Learning Commission

Specialized institution accreditations:

*General information for this school has been gathered from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) database, a service provided by the U.S. Department of Education. CollegeAtlas.org does not guarantee the accuracy of information on this page. All information is subject to change. You should confirm all information with a college admissions officer.

If you work for a school and would like to update your data please contact us.

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