In Community

A Critical Balance

Great Northern University staff and faculty are convinced that the classroom is not the destination in your journey; at best, your academic work is the roadmap that will guide you. The pursuit of scholarship will certainly expand your mind, but it is inadequate to transform your character. For that kind of transformation, a person must be in right relationship with God, and with others. To that end, Great Northern University is dedicated to helping you cultivate meaningful community with your fellow students, with our staff and faculty, and in the neighborhoods and churches where you will do life.

The primary way that this happens is through our purposeful involvement in our student’s lives. Our professors do more than just teach a few hours of class a week; they hang out with students on campus, they serve and worship with them in local churches, and they regularly invite students into their homes for social gatherings. Through this process, we create a context of community and Christian learning that is enriching and encouraging for every student.

Take a Break

One of the other necessary components to maintaining a healthy balance at college is taking time to rest your mind and rejuvenate your spirit. This can be easily accomplished at Great Northern University, considering the many opportunities for rest and play to be found here. Surrounded by lakes, mountains, and rivers, GNU boasts a world-class setting, where the Pacific Northwest meets the western ranges of the Rocky Mountains. No matter what activities interest you, you’ll find them close by.

If you live for the outdoors, you’ll find myriad opportunities for hiking, camping, backpacking, and fishing just a few miles away. Most of our region is covered with mountains, forests, lakes, and rivers. In fact, Great Northern University is less than a 5-hour drive from Glacier National Park. You could spend a lifetime exploring out here and barely scratch the surface!

If you love the arts, Spokane boasts several museums, such as the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture and the Jundt Art Museum, as well as several art districts, performing arts centers, and theaters that host a variety of plays. For live music, we’ve got the Spokane Symphony, Spokane Jazz Orchestra, and lots of concerts at the Spokane Arena, and other local venues.

If sports and fitness are more your thing, you can take in a Spokane Indians Baseball game, go 3-on-3 at Hoopfest, or join your classmates and professors for the Bloomsday 12k run! There are also many triathlons in the region, as well as skiing and snowboarding at nearby resorts. The 37-mile long paved Centennial Trail is perfect for hiking and biking along the Spokane River and can be accessed just a few blocks from campus.

In the Neighborhood

Great Northern University is located at the campus of Fourth Memorial Church, a vibrant congregation where several of our faculty also worship and serve. GNU is really a part of Fourth Memorial's legacy, since Fourth Memorial Church has hosted Christian Higher education in its facility for nearly 50 years! 

Great Northern University is currently a non-residential campus, which means we do not provide housing or food service for students. However, because of our location in the University District, there are lots of rental opportunities available within walking distance of campus. GNU students have the freedom and responsibility to choose their own living arrangements, which prepares them for real life. 

Not to Be Served, But to Serve

Spokane is a city filled with opportunities to serve and minister to others; and at Great Northern University, we view service as paramount. It is integrated into our academics through internships and field education. Really though, service is so much more than just an academic requirement; we extol and exhort volunteerism as a key opportunity for gospel-centered engagement with others. This might be lived out by serving in the kitchen at Union Gospel Mission, or tutoring refugees through World Relief. It might take place at The City Gate by helping in the clothing bank, or it could be participating in neighborhood cleanup projects. Our students often creatively come up with their own service opportunities!

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