There are currently two institutions called the University of Notre Dame, one located in the United States, and one in Australia. I shall cover the American one first.

The University of Notre Dame is a private, national Catholic university located at Notre Dame, Indiana, adjacent to the city of South Bend, approximately 90 miles southeast of Chicago. It was founded in 1842 by Father Edward Sorin, a priest of the Congregation of the Holy Cross. He sought to establish a great Catholic university in America. The school Sorin founded has still stuck to its religious roots, with one of the best programs for Religious and Theological Studies in America. Over the years, Notre Dame has often been a place where the Catholic Church has gone to for many scholastic endeavours.

Today the University of Notre Dame is consistently ranked annually among the nation's top 25 institutions of higher learning in surveys conducted by U.S. News and World Report, the Princeton Review, Time magazine, Kiplinger's and the Templeton Foundation. Their liberal arts program is quite good, and the Mendoza College of Business is one of the best in the country.

Notre Dame ranks as one of the nation's most selective universities, joining Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Stanford, Dartmouth, Brown, MIT and Rice as the only schools that admit fewer than half of their freshman applicants and enroll more than half of those who are admitted.

However, the University is likely best known for its Athletics program. In everything from Football and Basketball to Fencing and Lacrosse, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish are considered one of the best college teams in the country. They also have the facilities to back it up. In 1999, Sports Illustrated proclaimed the Notre Dame football stadium as one of the top 20 sporting facilities in the world. The Fighting Irish football team has won 13 of the 22 bowls they have played in, a record of 0.590. The last bowl won was the 1994 Cotton bowl, versus Texas A&M.

Studies at Notre Dame are organized into five different Colleges and three Schools. There is the College of First Year of Studies, which not shockingly is the department all freshmen must spend a year in before being admitted into their major. The largest of the Colleges is the College of Arts and Letters, which hosts the arts, humanities, and social sciences. It is designed to give students a contemporary version of a traditional liberal arts education, in line with Catholic teachings of unity of knowledge with life. There is the Mendoza College of Business, which offers courses in Accountancy, Finance and Business Economics, Management, Marketing, and Management of Information Systems, as well as MBAs. It seeks not only scholarship, but to instill proper business ethics in its students. The College of Engineering is organized into the departments of aerospace and mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering and geological sciences, computer science and engineering, and electrical engineering. The College of Science offers curricula leading to the degree of bachelor of science in biological sciences, chemistry and biochemistry, mathematics, physics and preprofessional studies.

The School of Architecture offeres a five-year program leading to the degree of bachelor of architecture. The program is accredited by the National Architecture Accrediting Board and the curriculum conforms to NAAB requirements for the professional degree in architecture. The Notre Dame Law School is the oldest Roman Catholic law school in the United States. Its national program is designed to equip students to practice law in any jurisdiction. The Graduate School offers masters and/or Ph.D. degrees in engineering, humanities, science, and social sciences

The University of Notre Dame Australia is a much smaller institution. Inspired by its American namesake, and founded 10 years ago, it currently has 1800 students. It has a campus located in Fremantle, and one in Broome. They pride themselves on being able to offer a more personal approach to teaching, because of the small size, and are committed to remaining a small private university. They offer courses in Education, Health, Law, Theology, and Business.

Much like their American namesake, they are committed to the advancement of education within a Christian context.

The Fremantle campus is housed mostly in a number of restored heritage buildings in Fremantle, the main port on the Australian west coast, 18 km from Perth.

The Broome campus was opened in 1994 to cater to a perceived lack of educational opportunities in NW Australia, especially among aboriginal students.

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