The Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) is a research, policy, and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
With a membership of 238 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems, and affiliated organizations, APLU's agenda is built on the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement. The association's work is furthered by an active and effective advocacy arm that works with Congress and the administration as well as the media to advance federal policies that strengthen public universities and benefit the students they serve.
APLU undertakes a wide array of projects and initiatives along with its members and provides a forum for public higher education leaders to work collaboratively and better meet the challenges and opportunities facing public universities. Rallying the talents, knowledge and expertise among its member institutions is critical to the association's mission. The APLU council structure enables university leaders with comparable titles, working in similar positions, to come together to address critical issues and expand their knowledge base within their professional area of expertise. The association's commission structure enables individuals, regardless of position and from multiple disciplines across the universities, to come together to address critical issues and expand their knowledge base in areas of common interest regardless of position.
Founded in 1887, APLU is North America's oldest higher education association with member institutions in all 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, four U.S. territories, as well as Canada, and Mexico. In 1963, the American Association of Land-Grant Colleges and Universities merged with the National Association of State Universities to form the National Association of State Universities and Land-Grant Colleges (NASULGC). On March 30, 2009, the association adopted the name, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, or APLU. In 2014, APLU welcomed a select group of public universities from Canada and Mexico as its first international members.
Annually, APLU member campuses enroll 4.8 million undergraduates and 1.3 million graduate students, award 1.3 million degrees, employ 1.3 million faculty and staff, and conduct $44.9 billion in university-based research.
APLU's membership includes 210 campuses and 23 university systems, including 74 U.S. land-grant institutions.
The association’s membership includes 23 historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), of which 21 are land-grant institutions (19 under the 1890 Morrill Act, two under the 1862 Morrill Act).
Nine Canadian and five Mexican public research universities are members of APLU.