Southern Methodist University (SMU)

Southern Methodist University is a private research university located in University Park, just five miles north of downtown Dallas. The beautiful campus is home to approximately 6,500 undergraduates. Though SMU was founded by what is now The United Methodist Church, the school is nonsectarian in it’s teaching, and the student body is made up of many different religious affiliations. The university enjoys a close relationship with the community of Dallas and all it has to offer. SMU is a social school with an abundance of school spirit, in a city blessed with an average of 232 days of sunshine a year.


Stay: The Lumen |  Breakfast: Bread Winners

Lunch: Dive  | Dinner: Mr. Mesero

Visitor Information: Daily Visits and Weekend Visits available year round! Tour SMU

Stay: Perfectly located; The Lumen is directly across from campus housed in a restored 1960’s motel. The hotel offers special rates to Mustang families and provides a complimentary car service to downtown Dallas. Another favorite, also close to campus is The Highland, part of Hilton’s boutique Curio Collection. Prefer to stay downtown? The Joules in a Neo-Gothic 1920’s landmark building offers stellar service and a boutique ambiance, a sister hotel to the Lumen. The Adolphus, another Dallas icon and part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection is one of the more luxurious hotels in Dallas.  For a full list of the area’s hotels and discounted rates for SMU visitors click here. 

Coffee: Need a quick fix before your tour, visit one of the three Starbucks right on campus. Union Coffee is a favorite student spot with comfortable seating and excellent coffee to help fuel study sessions. Cultivar Coffee is situated right next to Hypnotic Donuts – need we say more? Grab a pastry and coffee and your day is off to a good start. Enjoy locally roasted coffee in a house filled with curated books of fiction and poetry at The Wild Detective. Nekter is a healthy juice bar that is right by campus. If you are staying at The Joules, Weekend is a small coffee shop inside the hotel.

Breakfast: Perfect for a hearty morning meal, go to Smoke for the Smoked Brisket Cornbread Hash with poached eggs. German style deli Kuby’s potato pancakes or jumbo biscuits with eggs and sausage are just two of the tasty items on an extensive breakfast menu. At Bread Winners order the legendary jalapeño bacon and cheddar waffle!  If you happen to be in Dallas on the weekend, definitely go to Double Wide for a late brunch and a Bloody Mary!

Lunch: Close to campus, head to Dive Coastal CuisineEast Hampton Sandwich Shop has good sandwiches, soups, and salads. In Highland Village, Royal Blue Grocery is a great little cafe. Don’t miss the chicken fajitas at Mia’s. A little further from campus, it’s worth the drive to Cane Rosso serving the best pizza in Dallas.

BBQ Spots: In Dallas, it’s impossible to pick just one or two BBQ joints so here is a list of some favorites. Students and locals say you must try the sausage at Cattlerack. Expect a long line at Pecan Lodge, but it’s worth it, especially for the fried ribs! Sammy’s BBQ is famous for its brisket served on Fridays. Slow Bone offers specialty BBQ items like tacos and tamales stuffed with smoked brisket. Mac’s BBQ is a staple in Dallas. Probably on every pit master’s list is Lockhart serving some of the best all-around BBQ in town.



Casual: For the best Chicken Fried Steak and other American comfort food, go to Tillman’s. Be sure to save room for dessert, as they serve make your own smore’s at the table—so fun! A solid burger joint is Off Site Kitchen. Boulevardier showcases French-inspired fare such as crawfish beignets that are not to be missed. Order a frozen margarita and tacos at Ojeda's. For delicious Vietnamese food, go to La Me.



A Step Up: If you are in the mood for Tex-Mex, and after all, you’re in Texas, head to Mr. Mesero– probably the best in the city. Shrimp and grits are a slam-dunk at Hatties, an American bistro with southern influences. Cafe Pacific, Knife, and Al Biernats are good choices for a steak dinner. Italian restaurant, Lucia, gets booked quickly so don’t wait until the last minute to reserve.

Sweets: Milk and Cream are famous for their Panini style ice cream sandwiches.  You can even top your ice cream with some Cinnamon Toast Crunch! Is this insta-worthy? You betcha!

Local Attractions: Right on campus, visit the Meadows Museum. The George W. Bush Presidential Library is worth a visit too - a museum housing the presidential archives of the Bush Administration. Don't miss the 13-acre park behind the library while you’re there. There is a strong art presence in Dallas. Some favorites include Perot Museum, Crow Center and Nasher Sculpture Center. If you enjoy music, take in a concert at the Meyerson Symphony Center.  For a taste of local music, head to Sons of Hermann Hall.


SMU certainly lives up to its reputation as work hard, play hard. There is always something to do whether on campus or in the city. I’ve had great professors, classes are small and the campus is beautiful.
— Charlotte
I love being on a campus and having a city that has tons of things to do close-by. There are great restaurants nearby in Highland Park, Preston, Greenville, and Uptown.
— Tyler






School Colors

Blue & Red

Acceptance Rate


Common Application


Supplement Essays


Early Action/Decision









Medium - 6,300 Undergraduates




Admissions Office

PO Box 750181
Dallas, TX 75275-0181

(p) (214) 768-2058

Sports Divisions

NCAA Division I

Greek Life


Noteworthy Alumni

Payne Stewart
Laura Bush
John Culberson

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