Why is Boston University ranked #39 in national universities by U.S. News & World Report for 2017? And what is the catalyst that prompts 33,106 students to call BU their home every semester? It's in our DNA: an inherent desire in each of our students, faculty, and staff to vigorously and dauntlessly pursue knowledge—and embrace the unlimited possibilities that come with it. Founded in 1839, Boston University is one of America's largest and most respected private research universities. It offers a unique combination of academic excellence and social relevance for its more than 33,000 students from 135 different countries.