2019 Fall Trimester

University History

More Than Seven Decades of Excellence

Northwestern Health Sciences University was established in 1999, bringing together several natural health care programs into one academic institution. However, the roots of educational excellence at Northwestern trace back to 1941 with the founding of Northwestern College of Chiropractic. The College was founded in response to a need in the Midwestern states for an educational institution offering a broad program in clinical and chiropractic sciences. Our founder and first president was John B. Wolfe, DC. Starting with three students on the first day, a postwar influx of veterans raised the total enrollment to 280 by 1949. Rigorous academic goals, excellent faculty and quality students all helped Northwestern to grow and prosper. Northwestern reorganized as a non-profit organization in June of 1949.

Northwestern was established in a Minneapolis store-front space with three rooms. Growing enrollment led to a move to a new campus on Park Avenue in Minneapolis in 1964, then in 1974 to a larger campus on Mississippi River Boulevard in St. Paul. In 1983 Northwestern moved to its current location on a beautiful 25-acre campus in Bloomington, Minnesota. In addition to classrooms, lecture halls and labs, our campus includes a library, auditorium, cafeteria, gymnasium, fitness center, indoor swimming pool, the Foot Levelers Bookstore, and the Center for Diagnostic Imaging digital radiology lab/classroom. The beautiful grounds include a pond, a labyrinth, and a serene outdoor gathering space, the Standard Process Healing Garden.

The College became a University in 1999 when it merged with the Minnesota Institute of Acupuncture and Herbal Studies. The following year the School of Massage Therapy was established, making Northwestern the first academic institution to offer multiple natural health care programs.

In 1965 Northwestern introduced a new two-year pre-professional requirement for all incoming students, and adopted objectives that would ensure the development of a quality education program designed to meet the needs of the profession. Northwestern pioneered and is a leader in community-based clinical education, and established the final trimester preceptorship for chiropractic interns, partnering with practitioners and clinics across the United States and in several other countries. Presently Northwestern owns and operates a public clinic on the Bloomington campus.

The University is poised for growth in new programs and clinical services. The seventh President took office in November 2018. Faculty and Staff are dedicated to providing an engaging and supportive learning environment. Enrollment has grown to nearly 1,000 students. We offer certificate programs, an Associate of Applied Sciences degree, a Bachelor of Science degree, three Master’s degrees, and a doctor of chiropractic degree. Starting with our initial three student class to today’s alumni community of more than 8,000, Northwestern has a rich history and exciting future.