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Hamburger University

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Hamburger University
2018 New-HU-logo (44357292944).jpg
MottoLearning Today, Leading Tomorrow
TypeCorporate university
Established1961 (1961)
Location, ,
United States

41°50′18″N 87°56′51″W / 41.83833°N 87.94750°W / 41.83833; -87.94750Coordinates: 41°50′18″N 87°56′51″W / 41.83833°N 87.94750°W / 41.83833; -87.94750
CampusUrban, 80 acres (32 ha)
ColorsRed, white

Hamburger University is a 130,000-square-foot (12,000 m2) training facility of McDonald's, located in Chicago, Illinois. This corporate university was designed to instruct personnel employed by McDonald's in the various aspects of restaurant management. More than 80,000 restaurant managers, mid-managers and owner-operators have graduated from the university.[1]

John Paul DeJoria, the billionaire who co-founded John Paul Mitchell Systems, purchased the Illinois complex for an undisclosed amount in June 2019,[2] and 170 employees from New South Wales graduated from this university.[3]


Prior to 2018, Hamburger University was situated on an 80-acre (32 ha) campus in Oak Brook, Illinois. Restaurant employees receive approximately 32 hours of training in their first month with McDonald's and more than 5,000 students attend Hamburger University each year. Founder Ray Kroc oversaw lessons at its beginning. In 2011, about 275,000 people were recorded graduates from Hamburger University.[4]

In 2016, McDonald's Corporation announced it would move its U.S. and world headquarters including Hamburger University from its long-time home in Oak Brook to a newly built complex on property which formerly housed Oprah Winfrey's Harpo Studios in Chicago.[5][6][7] Starting in 2017, McDonald's put up for sale or sold most of its Oak Brook campus.[2]

Popular culture

Hamburger University was satirized in the 1986 comedy Hamburger... The Motion Picture.[8] It was also spoofed by McDonald's itself in a commercial with Ronald McDonald in which several animatronic hamburgers were shown graduating from school.


  1. ^ "Hamburger University". McDonald's. 2011. Retrieved July 23, 2011.
  2. ^ a b Lam, Katherine (June 6, 2019). "Billionaire John Paul DeJoria buys McDonald's campus in Illinois". FOXBusiness. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ "McDonald's moving headquarters to downtown Chicago by 2018". USA TODAY. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  6. ^ Byrne, Samantha Bomkamp, John. "McDonald's to move HQ to Chicago as soon as 2018, source says". Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  7. ^ Ori, Greg Trotter, Ryan. "McDonald's begins selling off Oak Brook property before headquarters move". Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  8. ^ Hamburger - The Motion Picture at the British Film Institute