Saint John’s University: The Insider’s Guide

So you’re thinking about going to Saint John’s University? Well get ready because you’re in for an adventure. With over 1,800 students coming from all over the country, SJU offers a vibrant community full of unique traditions and experiences. Located in the heart of Collegeville, Minnesota, the campus exudes a small-town feel while still providing big opportunities.

Get the insider’s scoop in this complete guide to life at SJU. From the famous Johnnie bread to skiing the on-campus trails, find out what makes this little liberal arts school so special. Get the answers to all your questions about academics, student life, athletics, and more. By the end, you’ll know if SJU is the right fit for you!

An Overview of Saint John’s University

Saint John’s University is a private Roman Catholic university located in Collegeville, Minnesota. Founded in 1857, it is a liberal arts college in the Benedictine tradition. Some key facts about Saint John’s:

  • Enrolls over 1,900 undergraduate students with over 50 majors and minors

  • Has a student-faculty ratio of 12:1, with most classes having fewer than 20 students

  • Offers Division III athletics, with over 20 varsity sports teams

  • Has a beautiful 2,700-acre campus on the shores of Lake Sagatagan, with historic stone buildings, lakeside trails and an arboretum


Saint John’s has a strong liberal arts curriculum rooted in the Benedictine values of community, faith, and learning. All students take a core set of courses in theology, philosophy, humanities, math, science, and social science. You’ll have small class sizes and opportunities to do research with professors. Some of the top majors are:

•Business •Biology •Psychology •Communication •History

Campus Life

There’s always something going on at Saint John’s. You can join one of over 80 clubs and organizations, from political groups to service clubs to recreational sports. The campus has hiking and biking trails, boating on Lake Sagatagan, and the Saint John’s Abbey Arboretum. The Residence Halls create close-knit communities, with shared meals, lounges, and events. The Dining Hall offers homemade meals with locally-sourced ingredients.

Saint John’s University provides an exceptional education in a peaceful setting that fosters learning and personal growth. Small class sizes, dedicated professors, and a welcoming community create an ideal environment for developing your mind, body and spirit.

Academic Programs at Saint John’s University

Saint John’s University offers over 30 undergraduate majors and pre-professional programs across three colleges: the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Education and Human Services, and the Donald P. and Katherine B. Learned School of Business. No matter your interests, there’s something for everyone at SJU.

The College of Arts and Sciences

The College of Arts and Sciences is the largest college at Saint John’s, with over 20 departments and programs. Whether you’re interested in biology, criminal justice, psychology, history, or languages, the College of Arts and Sciences has strong offerings with hands-on learning opportunities, like internships, study abroad, and undergraduate research. Some of the popular majors are:

  • Biology: Study organisms and life processes. Opportunities for field work and lab research.

  • English: Analyze literature and improve your writing. Study creative writing, literature, and rhetoric.

  • Political Science: Study politics, law, and government. Intern at the state capitol or local government.

  • Sociology: Explore human society and social behavior. Research topics like race, class, gender, environment, education, religion, etc.

The College of Education and Human Services

If you want to become a teacher, counselor, or pursue a career helping others, the College of Education and Human Services is for you. It offers programs in education, community counseling, addiction studies, and more. Majors include:

  • Elementary Education: Become a licensed teacher for grades K-6. Complete supervised field experiences in the classroom.

  • Physical Education and Health: Learn how to teach physical education and health. Intern in area schools.

  • Masters in Counseling: Become a licensed counselor. Specialize in areas like mental health counseling, addiction counseling, or school counseling.

  • Special Education: Train to teach students with disabilities. Dual major in elementary ed or secondary ed. Intern in special ed classrooms.

The Donald P. and Katherine B. Learned School of Business

The Learned School of Business offers programs for future business leaders and entrepreneurs. Majors focus on accounting, finance, management, marketing, and international business. Some options are:

  • Accounting: Prepare for a career as an accountant or CPA. Study auditing, taxation, and financial reporting.

  • Finance: Learn how to analyze investments, manage portfolios, and work in banking or financial advising.

  • Marketing: Develop skills for a career in digital marketing, brand management, media planning, or market research.

  • International Business: Gain knowledge of global trade, cross-cultural business practices, and foreign languages for a career with international companies.

With small class sizes, dedicated professors, and experiential learning, Saint John’s University provides a

Student Life at Saint John’s University

Saint John’s University has a vibrant student life with over 200 student organizations to choose from. There’s something for everyone, whether you’re into sports, arts, activism or gaming.

Clubs and Activities

With so many clubs, you’ll have no trouble finding your people and pursuits. Some of the popular clubs include:

• Intramural Sports – Compete in sports like soccer, basketball, volleyball, and even dodgeball. A great way to stay active, build teamwork skills and meet new friends.

• Theater and Improv – Unleash your creative side by participating in theater productions or improv comedy shows.

• Student Government – Help shape student life on campus by joining the Student Senate or one of the committees. Develop leadership abilities and have a say in important decisions.

• Faith-Based Groups – Connect with others who share your faith or religious beliefs. Saint John’s has groups for Christians, Muslims, Jews, Buddhists and more.

• Special Interest Clubs – Choose from clubs centered around topics like entrepreneurship, sustainability, gaming, volunteering, and many more.

Residence Life

Most first-year students live in dorms on campus. Saint John’s has several residence halls with single, double and quad rooms available. Living on campus allows you to easily get involved in student life and make new friends right away. Don’t miss out on late-night chats, movie nights, study groups and all the spontaneous fun times. The residence halls also have resident assistants (RAs) who organize social events and help build community.

With over 200 student organizations, residence life, sports teams and a beautiful campus, student life at Saint John’s University is engaging and fulfilling. You’ll find your place and your people in no time. The memories and friendships you’ll make will stay with you long after graduation.

Athletics at Saint John’s University

Saint John’s University has a proud athletic tradition and currently sponsors 19 NCAA Division III sports. Whether you prefer to participate in sports recreationally or at a competitive level, there are plenty of options for you at SJU.

Sports Teams

SJU has 19 varsity sports teams that compete in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC). Some of the sports offered include:

  • Football

  • Basketball (men’s and women’s)

  • Hockey

  • Baseball

  • Softball

  • Soccer (men’s and women’s)

  • Swimming and Diving

  • Track and Field

  • Tennis

  • Volleyball

The school mascot is the Johnnie and the sports teams are known as the Johnnies. Home games are played on campus at Clemens Stadium, Sexton Arena, and the Warner Palaestra.

Club Sports

In addition to varsity sports, SJU offers over 30 club sports ranging from badminton to lacrosse to ultimate Frisbee. Club sports are student-run and compete against other schools’ club teams. They provide another opportunity to participate in your favorite sport at a competitive level.


For those looking to participate in sports recreationally, SJU has an extensive intramural sports program. Sports offered include basketball, volleyball, softball, flag football, broomball, dodgeball, and more. Intramural sports are a great way to stay active, have fun, and bond with friends.

No matter your athletic interests, Saint John’s University has opportunities for you to get involved. Their dedicated coaches and athletic staff are there to support student athletes and help you achieve your goals. Go Johnnies!

Frequently Asked Questions About Saint John’s University

So you’re interested in attending Saint John’s University? Great choice! Here are some of the most common questions prospective students have about life at SJU.

What’s the campus like?

Saint John’s has a gorgeous campus, with historic red brick buildings surrounded by over 2,700 acres of lakes, woodlands, and prairies. Some of the must-see spots are the Abbey Church, the Quad, and Lake Sagatagan. The natural setting provides plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation like hiking, canoeing, and cross country skiing.

What about the dorms?

Most first-year students live in one of the residence halls on campus. The dorms foster community and make it easy to get involved in campus life. Room styles include singles, doubles, triples, and quads. Upperclassmen often move into apartments, townhouses, or smaller residence halls.

How’s the food?

Dining at SJU is all about community. Students eat at Sexton Commons, with meal options including a salad bar, global cuisine, vegan and gluten-free choices, and cook-to-order stations. Meal plans offer flexibility whether you’re an occasional snacker or big eater. Lots of late-night dining options are available for those long study sessions too!

What activities are offered?

With over 100 student clubs and organizations, there’s something for everyone at SJU. Popular options include intramural sports, student government, campus ministry groups, volunteering, Greek life, and cultural organizations. The Outdoor Leadership Center offers recreational activities, adventure trips, and outdoor gear rentals. You’ll never run out of ways to get involved and pursue your interests.

Saint John’s University has so much to offer. If you have any other questions, be sure to contact the Admissions Office. They would be happy to tell you more about why SJU might be the perfect place for you!


At the end of the day, you just gotta follow your gut and choose the school that checks all your boxes. St. John’s has a lot going for it – solid academics, D1 sports, and a vibrant social scene – but it’s not for everyone. If you’re looking for a tight-knit community and a balance of faith and reason, SJU could be a perfect fit. But you know yourself and what you need better than anyone. Trust your instincts and go where your heart pulls you. Wherever you land, own your choice with confidence and make the most of it. College is what you make of it, after all. Now get out there and find your place in the world, tiger!

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