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Nazareth College (New York)

Nazareth College
Nazareth College logo 2014.png
Type Private, Coeducational
Established 1924
Affiliation None (formerly Roman Catholic)
President Daan Braveman, J.D.
Academic staff
176 full-time
Students 2,823
Undergraduates 2,034
Postgraduates 789
Location Pittsford, NY, USA
Campus Suburban: 150 acres

Purple & Gold

Athletics NCAA Division III
Nickname Golden Flyers
Mascot Golden Flyer
Affiliations Empire 8

Purple & Gold

Nazareth College is a coeducational, private, religiously independent college in Pittsford, a suburb of Rochester, in the U.S. state of New York. This small, post-secondary institution offers more than 60 undergraduate majors, including education, health and human services, management, the fine arts, music, theater, math and science, foreign languages, and the liberal arts, plus 20 graduate programs and three post-baccaulaureate certificate programs. The College is an accredited member of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools.

At the request of Bishop Thomas Francis Hickey of Rochester, five Sisters of St. Joseph — with Ph.Ds that included graduate study at Oxford University and the Sorbonne — founded Nazareth College in 1924. The first class was composed of 25 young women who began their studies in a large mansion on Lake Avenue in Rochester, New York. The original mansion that housed the college was known as "the Glass House." At that time, the college offered Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees, each with a liberal arts core. In response to increasing enrollment, the college moved to a larger facility in 1928 at 402 Augustine Street.

Move to East Avenue
In January 1942, the college moved to its present campus on East Avenue in the suburb of Pittsford. In the 1950s, the college responded to the need for graduate study by adding majors and by the 1970s was renowned for quality teacher education and social work. Study abroad programs and intercollegiate sports were also added in the 1970s. During this time of monumental change — which included lectures from eminent figures such as John Ciardi, Robert Fitzgerald, Edward Said, Gabriel Marcel, Dorothy Day, Rudolph Nureyev, and Costa Rica President Oscar Arias — the college became co-educational and governmentally independent of the religious congregation. Nevertheless, it retained its focus on academic excellence and the charism of the Sisters of St. Joseph: “serving all without distinction.” (History of Nazareth College, Nazareth College Archives)

  • The College of Arts and Sciences
  • The School of Education
  • The School of Health and Human Services
  • The School of Management
  • Nazareth is ranked among the country's most prestigious colleges and universities for its number of Fulbright scholars. From 2011 to 2015, 20 Fulbrights were awarded to Nazareth students. The Chronicle of Higher Education placed Nazareth in the #1 spot (in the Master's Institutions category) of the Chronicle of Higher Education’s Top Producers of U.S. Fulbright Students, 2012–13 list. Since 1990, Nazareth graduates have been granted Fulbright awards for study in Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Colombia, Egypt, France, Finland, Germany, Honduras, Hungary, India, Israel, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Poland, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Venezuela, and Yemen. South Korea Fulbright ETA Liam Connolly '12 serves as the Executive Assistant for the Korean-American Educational Commission, also known as Fulbright Korea.
  • Established in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program’s objective is to build mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the rest of the world. Sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Fulbright Program is America’s flagship international education exchange.
  • Nazareth College offers an honors program to provide its most capable students with opportunities and challenges appropriate to their abilities and motivation. The goal of the program is to encourage academic excellence, intellectual curiosity, and independent scholarship.
  • Students admitted to the honors program complete two semesters of study in logic and two in rhetoric. These are followed by two three-credit graduate-level honors seminars, a one-credit course to conduct research for the honors thesis, and a three-credit honors thesis writing course in the senior year. Themes for the seminars may change from year to year, but all seminars are interdisciplinary in nature, exploring selected topics from many points of view. All topics involve in-depth study of important source materials selected for their diversity and historical scope.
  • 150 acres (0.61 km2)
  • 24 buildings, including 11 residence halls, a 2,200-seat stadium and all-weather track.
  • The Golisano Academic Center was built in 1927. It is the oldest and largest building on campus, once serving as the "motherhouse" for the Sisters of St. Joseph. It was purchased from the Sisters of St. Joseph in 2003 and is now used for academic and administrative purposes. Features of the Center include the ornate Linehan Chapel and Cafe Sorelle.
  • Nazareth's Integrated Center for Math and Science, Peckham Hall, opened in fall 2012. The center features multi-purpose research spaces (including state-of-the-art labs and classrooms), a range of support services, and a variety of student centers. It is also the first project on campus to achieve a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED)-certified green building rating.
  • The Nazareth College Arts Center, which houses the departments of Theatre Arts, Music, and Art, has entertained almost three million people at performances since it opened in 1967. The Arts Center was renovated in September 2009 to become a dance and performance venue. The 2010 Princeton Review names Nazareth College the 6th Best College Theater in the country (up from #9 in 2009.)
  • On-campus clinics for speech and hearing, reading and physical therapy allow students to gain practical experience, and are also open to the Rochester community.
  • Although Nazareth College has been independent since the 1970s, the legacy of the Sisters of St. Joseph is honored by the Meditation Garden located next to Golisano, which includes a labyrinth, benches, and a statue of Mary which once stood on the grounds of Smyth Hall.
  • The library was dedicated in 1957, and, after a major expansion in 1978, was renamed in honor of Lorette Wilmot (1927-1976), long time friend and benefactor of Nazareth College. The beautiful Saint Jerome Window was created by upstate New York artist John Menihan (1908-1992). To keep pace with changing technology and student needs, the library was expanded again in 1996 and partially renovated in 2010. The Thomas Merton Room houses the library's best known special collection.
  • A network of underground tunnels connects many of the buildings on campus, allowing students and employees to avoid the cold and snow of the winters in upstate New York.
  • Sands Family Pavilion, featuring a grand staircase leading to Callahan Theater;
  • Jayne Summers Hall, a space for gathering before performances and during intermission;
  • Fine Arts Gallery, a large space for Nazareth College, greater Rochester, and national exhibitions;
  • Lipson Patrons Lounge
  • Wegman Family Sculpture Garden, a four-season garden featuring three-dimensional artwork by Nazareth College faculty;
  • Master’s Family Community Theater, a smaller space for community performances and events;
  • Callahan Theater, a theater that seats approximately 800;
  • Performance Studio, a space for dance and theater rehearsals, instruction, and creation;
  • Margaret Colacino Gallery, a space for student and faculty art shows, as well as national art exhibitions.
  • Nazareth is among The Princeton Review's "The Best 380 Colleges" for 2016, which represents the top 15% of all colleges and universities in the US.
  • The U.S. News & World Report (2016 edition) ranked Nazareth in the top tier of colleges and universities in the "Universities-Masters, North" category.
  • Ranked a top college for veterans by G.I. Jobs Magazine, U.S. News & World Report, and Military Advanced Education (MAE) 2015 Guide to Colleges and Universities.
  • Nazareth College ranked number 27 on a list of the Top 100 Master's Universities by the 2013 Washington Monthly College Rankings.
  • Every April, Nazareth students celebrate the year with a festive event called Springfest.
  • While many first year students are told Medaille Hall is haunted by a nun, the ghost story is an urban legend, and likely has its origins in a local tragedy that did not occur at Nazareth (Source: College Archives Committee). Haunted houses are held in various campus buildings every Halloween, co-sponsored by campus clubs as fundraisers for service projects.
  • On the main roadway right before the circle in front of the Golisano Academic Center, there is an English Oak tree. This tree was brought to Nazareth by members of the Sisters of St. Joseph from Sherwood Forest in England. Legend has it that Robin Hood used to hide in the hollowed trunk of an English Oak in Sherwood Forest.
  • On the north campus, behind the Golisano Academic Center, a wooded hillside shelters a small cemetery dedicated to the departed pets of the Sisters of St. Joseph, who used to inhabit the building. More than a dozen small headstones mark the final resting places of cats, dogs, and even two horses, from Rusty in 1984 (“A good friend”) to Mickey in 2012 (“Loved by All”).
  • Above the entrance to Linehan Chapel sits the choir loft. And above that, on the building’s fourth floor, is a small window, now inaccessible to the public. Campus lore has it that the window was opened during Mass so ailing sisters could “attend” the services.


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