Welcome to a world-class university
in the heart of a magical city.
It may surprise you to learn that both UAB and Birmingham are young in comparison to cities and peer universities in Alabama and across the Southeast. But our graduate programs are some of the most established and well-regarded in the nation. Recent U.S. News & World Report graduate school rankings showcase the strength of UAB’s graduate and professional programs, as they have for many years. We know you’ll choose UAB for the opportunity to work with top-notch researchers and scholars, but we also know you’ll come to love Birmingham and will find a home on our campus and in our community.
There is perhaps no other part of the state that is as diverse as UAB. Like you, people from all over the nation and world come to our campus to advance their education and their careers. Our supportive and inclusive community opens a new website empowers the unique perspectives that we all bring to our shared mission, and that makes our campus a better place. It’s no surprise that we’ve been named a Diversity Champion opens a new website by INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine five years in a row.
There’s no better way to spend a fall Saturday than to head Uptown opens a new website to watch a UAB Football game at Protective Stadium opens a new website. Or to head over to PNC Field to watch UAB Men’s Soccer in action. Winter brings Men’s and Women’s Basketball to Bartow Arena, and spring means Volleyball, Track & Field, Softball, Baseball, and Women’s Soccer. As a new member of the American Athletics Conference, UAB Athletics opens a new website is on track for more championships. Get your gear at the UAB Bookstore opens a new website in the Hill Student Center opens a new website and be ready to cheer on our Blazers!
Why do we race hospital gurneys in the street? Where can you watch the best step routines in the country? What’s the best food in this food town? How can you serve others? What happens when you hit your friend with a water balloon? How many countries are represented in the UAB student body? And who’s got talent? Find out why our traditions are different opens a new website.
Choosing UAB for graduate school means access to all of the amazing visual and performing arts opens a new website on campus—and access to big-city concerts, Broadway shows, small theatre productions, galleries, renowned museums and jam-packed festivals around the metro area. You’ll never be bored, and you’ll definitely be inspired, in our artsy community.
Health & Safety
UAB students have access to the eighth-largest hospital in the country opens a new website and an entire police force trained to serve our campus. We offer safety resources opens a new website and state-of-the art student health care opens a new website to keep you safe and put your mind at ease. Because when you become a Blazer, you become part of the UAB family. And we want to keep our family healthy and safe.
Nestled in the heart of Jones Valley, Birmingham was not much more than a few small farms 150 years ago. But when iron ore was discovered in Red Mountain, this quiet crossroads exploded into an industrial powerhouse and railroad hub that grew so quickly it became known as “The Magic City.” As workers flocked to the valley to find jobs, immigrants followed with produce stands and food stalls.
Today, Birmingham’s industrial history can be found in everything from the giant shed and smokestacks of the Sloss Furnaces National Historic Landmark, the sweeping views from Vulcan Park and Museum, and the old mine entrances within the sprawling trails of Red Mountain Park—to the historic brick warehouses (now trendy lofts, restaurants and bars) and nicknames that show up on so many business and brands: Iron, Steel, Vulcan, Mountain, Valley, Railroad, Magic. And those 19th-century produce stands and food stalls evolved into an award-winning 21st-century restaurant scene that has put Birmingham on the culinary map.
Where the World Changed
But Birmingham’s history also has an ugly and shameful side. In the segregated Jim Crow South, Black people were abused and kept from the educational, financial and social benefits that Whites had. In the middle of the 20th century, Birmingham was controlled by police commissioner Bull Connor, who led a campaign of terror against Birmingham’s Black citizens, their communities, and their places of worship.
The responding protests, inspired by Martin Luther King, Jr., organized by local activists, and led by the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, Jr., were anchored in Kelly Ingram Park, just across the street from the 16th Ave. Baptist Church, where four little girls were killed in a September 1963 bombing. The horrific violence led to a national reckoning and propelled President Lyndon B. Johnson to sign the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. Today, Birmingham is a progressive city led by Mayor Randall Woodfin that’s at the heart of a metropolitan area of more than 1 million citizens. At UAB you can learn more about Birmingham’s Civil Rights history and how our people are committed to learning from the past.
If America is a melting pot, then Birmingham is the nation’s well-seasoned cast iron pan. Our original recipe for culinary fame, known broadly as “soul food” and locally as a “meat-and-three,” is a mixture of traditions brought from Ireland, Scotland and Great Britain via hardscrabble Appalachian pioneers; coastal seafood and rice; Native American corn, squash and beans; and African okra, peas and sweet potatoes brought by enslaved people.
As the city grew, Jewish, Lebanese, Greek, and Italian immigrants poured in, and Birmingham’s meat-and-threes took on a distinctly Mediterranean flavor. Later Asian and Latino immigrants added their cuisine to a place that was already primed to appreciate fresh vegetables and a dash of spice. Today, the best food in the U.S. is in Birmingham. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the choices, start with one of our renowned festivals and learn what the buzz is all about.
Parkside and Beyond
On those gorgeous afternoons when the light is just right, the long green ribbon that connects Regions Field and Railroad Park to the Rotary Trail, Sloss Furnaces and Avondale/Crestwood is the corridor you want to explore. You can do it all—from catching a baseball game to working out (or just sprawling out) on Birmingham’s front lawn—or shopping, eating or hanging out with friends. And there are more than a dozen breweries (and one distillery) along the way.
In the heart of the City of Birmingham there are dozens of parks to explore, from the Birmingham Botanical Gardens to Avondale Park to the string of green gems along Highland Avenue, designed by Frederick Law Olmstead of Central Park fame.
Just outside of the city, there are countless more suburban parks like Veteran’s Park, Heardmont Park, the Five Mile Creek Greenway, Jemison Trail, Shades Creek Greenway and Overton Park. And take in the natural beauty by hiking, mountain biking, camping, canoeing, or kayaking at Ruffner Mountain, Red Mountain Park, the Cahaba River, the Locust and Mulberry Forks of the Black Warrior River, and Oak Mountain State Park.
And beyond that you’ll find all the rich biodiversity and natural beauty of Alabama and the Southeast region. From Birmingham, you can reach the Gulf Coast and the Smoky Mountains in less than five hours and along the way, you can paddle some of the country’s most beautiful and important rivers, including the Mobile-Tensaw Delta, and hike to the top Cheaha Mountain and to the bottom Little River Canyon.
The point is, get out there—and let University Recreation opens a new website help you with your gear and plans.