Private Universities in Michigan: A Complete List

Considering private colleges in Michigan? Learn about the most popular colleges, average costs, and the acceptance rate for every school.
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Michigan is home to over 40 private universities. But which is the largest? Which is the hardest to get into? And do any private universities in Michigan offer online degrees?

It's easy to see why so many college students choose Michigan. From snowy winters to warm summers on Michigan beaches, the Great Lakes State has something for everyone. Plus, Michigan has dozens of picturesque college towns.

If you're considering private colleges in Michigan, continue reading to find the best fit for you.

3 Popular Private Universities in Michigan

Here, we highlight three popular private universities in Michigan. We selected these schools based on factors like number of applicants, academic rigor, and general reputation.

1. Albion College

  • Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $54,930
  • Acceptance Rate: 67%
  • Total Student Enrollment: 1,523

For a rural, small college experience, consider Albion College. The liberal arts school enrolls around 1,500 students in a town of 8,600 people.

Known for its academics, Albion also encourages outdoor life. The sprawling campus features a nature center, an equestrian center, and 140 acres of trails, forest, and farmland.

Here, you can choose from among 78 majors and 58 minors. And plan to hang out on campus — 90% of students live on campus, giving it a strong residential feel.

2. Hillsdale College

  • Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $30,902
  • Acceptance Rate: 21%
  • Total Student Enrollment: 1,602

Southern Michigan's Hillsdale College dates back to 1844. The Christian liberal arts college is the most selective private college in the state. Hillsdale welcomes students to its 400-acre campus.

Outside the classroom, undergrads can participate in Greek life, community service, and intramural sports.

Hillsdale does not accept state or federal funding, so you can't use FAFSA grants or loans to cover costs. But the private college does offer institutional aid packages.

3. University of Detroit Mercy

  • Avg. Undergraduate Tuition & Fees: $31,058
  • Acceptance Rate: 91%
  • Total Student Enrollment: 5,227

Founded in 1877, University of Detroit Mercy is one of the largest private universities in Michigan, with over 5,000 students. It's also a Catholic institution.

From its campus in Detroit, the school offers more than 100 bachelor's programs. You can also earn a joint bachelor's and master's degree in five years or gain hands-on experience with one of the country's oldest cooperative education programs.

When it comes to financial aid, Detroit Mercy awards more than $50 million each year.

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List of All Private Universities in Michigan

We've created a complete list of all four-year nonprofit private universities in Michigan. You can use the table below to compare data on student population, average net cost, acceptance rate, and number of applicants.

The following school data comes from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). All enrollment data is from 2021, whereas net price, acceptance rate, and number of applicants data is from 2022-2023. Schools with fewer than 500 undergraduates were excluded from this list.

All Private Colleges in Michigan
School Total Student Enrollment Avg. Annual Net Price Acceptance Rate Number of Applicants
Adrian College 1,871 $24,870 69% 3,329
Albion College 1,523 $19,351 67% 6,827
Alma College 1,353 $23,995 65% 3,372
Andrews University 2,927 $24,194 91% 1,226
Aquinas College 1,362 $18,605 91% 2,116
Baker College 4,969 $13,719 37% 2,082
Calvin University 3,257 $25,775 74% 4,079
Cleary University 751 $27,209 68% 810
College for Creative Studies 1,620 $34,906 49% 1,622
Concordia University Ann Arbor 1,135 $26,353 70% 1,962
Cornerstone University 1,930 $20,935 82% 1,926
Davenport University 5,384 $18,350 99% 3,379
Grace Christian University 1,104 $12,988 100% 293
Hillsdale College 1,602 $24,196 21% 3,017
Hope College 3,132 $25,800 80% 5,152
Kalamazoo College 1,241 $26,981 79% 3,702
Kettering University 1,858 $34,486 81% 1,823
Lawrence Technological University 2,955 $32,641 82% 2,537
Madonna University 2,444 $18,344 65% 1,988
Northwood University 2,422 $24,616 80% 1,368
Olivet College 885 $21,394 85% 1,439
Rochester University 1,114 $18,665 71% 929
Siena Heights University 1,966 $20,074 65% 1,545
Spring Arbor University 2,685 $22,375 47% 2,312
University of Detroit Mercy 5,227 $18,197 91% 5,163
Source: NCES

What Is the Cost of College in Michigan?

Cost of College in Michigan 2021
Institution Type Average Tuition & Required Fees
Public 4-Year (In-State) $13,716
Public 4-Year (Out-of-State) $39,427
Private 4-Year $31,055
Public 2-Year (In-State) $3,756
Public 2-Year (Out-of-State) $7,707
Source: NCES

Cost of Living in Michigan

Michigan has a below-average cost of living, which can balance out the cost of tuition and fees. The Great Lakes State is the fourth most affordable state in the country, according to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

On top of its low cost of living, Michigan has several private universities with affordable prices. Albion College, the University of Detroit Mercy, Baker College, and Davenport University all have an average net price of under $20,000 per year.

Most private universities in Michigan offer financial aid to make the cost of college more affordable.

Frequently Asked Questions About Private Universities in Michigan

How many private universities are there in Michigan?

Michigan has 25 four-year nonprofit private universities.

The state's largest private universities are Davenport University, the University of Detroit Mercy, and Baker College, all of which enroll around 5,000 students. The state's most affordable private universities are Baker College and Grace Christian University, both with an average annual net price of around $13,000.

What is the hardest private college to get into in Michigan?

Out of Michigan's private colleges, the most selective is Hillsdale College. Only 21% of applicants in fall 2022 received an admission letter, according to NCES. Baker College ranks as the second-hardest to get into, with a 37% acceptance rate.

As for the college that receives the most applications, that's Albion College. The liberal arts college received nearly 7,000 applications in fall 2022.

What private universities in Michigan are online?

Several private universities in Michigan offer online classes. You can earn an online graduate degree in business or healthcare from the University of Detroit Mercy. Choose from nearly a dozen undergraduate majors offered online at Siena Heights University. Or take classes online through Andrews University.

When researching Michigan colleges, make sure to check whether they offer online classes or programs if you prefer a flexible format. is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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