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Framingham State University (2014)

Brief Description:

Framingham State University

Framingham State University offers small, personalized classes to undergraduate and graduate students on a beautiful and traditional New England campus. As a public university, Framingham State prides itself on its quality academic programs, affordability, and commitment to access for all qualified students. Student success is central to the mission of the university. Many options are available for student support, including programs to help freshmen transition to the university. The university also has a well-developed honors program for exceptional students. When students are asked why they chose to attend Framingham State University, they mention its outstanding academic reputation, interesting course offerings, exciting location, sense of community spirit, and, of course, its affordable cost. The breadth of programs offered by Framingham State University reflects diverse faculty expertise. Its many undergraduate programs range from art to biology to communication arts, while graduate offerings include the MBA, MEd, and MS. The university also has undergraduate degree evening programs, along with online courses.


Mission Statement:

FSU logoFramingham State University prepares students for a productive life, enhanced by learning and leadership that will contribute to the culturally diverse world of the 21st century. Established by Horace Mann in 1839 as America’s first public teacher preparation school, Framingham State University today offers undergraduate and graduate programs encompassing the arts and sciences and professional studies. Committed to excellence, the Framingham State University learning community comprises teacher-scholars, librarians, students and staff who promote free inquiry, the respectful exchange of ideas, ethical conduct, and the belief that diversity in its many forms is essential to the educational experience. In an environment that supports active, collaborative learning, students work closely with faculty to engage significant bodies of knowledge and develop their ability to gather and evaluate information, communicate effectively, think critically and creatively, reason quantitatively, and apply information and emerging technologies. At Framingham State University teaching is the primary role of faculty, who engage in their disciplines through instruction, scholarship, and service on campus and in their professional communities. The university serves as an important educational and cultural center in the MetroWest region of Massachusetts. A Framingham State University education cultivates thoughtful, responsible local and global citizens, prepares students for a career, and positions them for success.

President's Quote:

“The opening of Framingham State on July 3rd, 1839 paved the way for higher education to be extended to large segments of the population without regard to race, gender or economic class. Over the past 175 years, the university has evolved into a comprehensive arts and sciences institution with about 6,500 undergraduate and graduate students studying in more than 50 fields. We’ve come a long way since our founding by noted education reformer Horace Mann, but we still strive to live up to his vision for the institution to be “good enough for the richest and available to the poorest,” citizens of Massachusetts.” -President F. Javier Cevallos

Major Accomplishments:

  • 1840: First class of 25 women graduate, including Mary Swift Lamson, teacher to Laura Bridgeman and a founder of the YMCA in Boston (1867); and Rebecca Pennell Dean, first woman professor in the U.S. (Antioch, 1853).
  • 1844: Normal School moves to West Newton.
  • 1853: Normal School moves to present site on Bare Hill in Framingham. The motto "Live to Truth" is inscribed in black and gold lettering in the new building.
  • 1869: First expansion of campus with construction of a boarding hall. Advanced course for high school teachers and principal authorized.
  • 1898: Boston Normal School of Cookery is transferred to the Framingham Normal School and the Household Arts Department is established.
  • 1922: First Bachelor of Science in Education degrees are awarded.
  • 1961: D. Justin McCarthy is appointed president. Authorization is granted to award the Master of Education degree.
  • 1964: Male students are enrolled for the first time. The 125th Anniversary is celebrated.
  • 1972: A new and expanded curriculum is adopted, offering a wide range of liberal arts and sciences programs.
  • 1986: The Christa Corrigan McAuliffe Center for Teaching Excellence is established in order to continue the educational mission of Christa McAuliffe.
  • 1998: The first technology classrooms, with distance-learning and state-of-the-art instructional technology capabilities, open.
  • 2002: Kiplinger Magazine ranks Framingham State College as one of the top 100 public colleges in the United States, and one of the top five public colleges in New England. Framingham State College becomes the first public college in New England to require wireless laptop computers of incoming students.
  • 2010: Framingham State College becomes Framingham State University.
  • 2013: Construction workers break ground on a new science wing behind Hemenway Hall, scheduled to open in 2015.


Fun Facts:

  • FSU is recognized as a Green College by the Princeton Review.
  • Ruth Graves Wakefield, class of 1930, was the inventor of the chocolate chip cookie.
  • The institution has gone through 11 name changes since its founding in 1839
  • Mary Swift Lampson, class of 1840, taught at the Perkins School for the Blind and helped inspire Helen Keller to speak orally.
  • There are solar panels on top of the Athletic Center and McCarthy Center.
  • FSU launched an Entrepreneur-Innovation Center earlier this year.
  • The university’s Christa McAuliffe Center houses a state-of-the-art planetarium.
  • In 2002, Framingham State become the first public college in New England to require wireless laptop computers of incoming students.


Notable Alumni:

  • Rebecca Pennell Dean, class of 1840, became first female professor in the U.S.
  • Lucretia Crocker, class of 1850, was the first female supervisor of Boston Public Schools.
  • Charlotte Champe Stearns, class of 1862, was a school teacher, poet, social worker and mother of T.S. Eliot.
  • Jennie Howard, class of 1866, traveled to Argentina to setup Normal School in the country.
  • Olivia A. Davidson, class of 1881, was co-founder of Tuskegee Institute and wife of Booker T. Washington.
  • Christa McAuliffe, class of 1970, was selected to be the first teacher in space.
  • Paul LeBlanc, class of 1980, is president of Southern New Hampshire University.
  • Brian J. Moran, class of 1982, is a former chair of the Democratic party of Virginia and current Secretary of Public Safety in Virginia.



“None of the institutions I went onto after Framingham State had the kind of mentoring and devotion I enjoyed from my faculty at FSU. My experience there helped frame the way I think about education and the transformative power it holds.” -Paul Leblanc, ‘80

“My time at Framingham State was unquestionably the most transformative four years of my life. I can trace my career path and academic success back to the university. It’s where I discovered my love for teaching and researching.” -Rob Deleo, ‘06

“Framingham State has a solid internship program, which helped me land a great job right out of college.” -Sara White, ‘13

“I didn’t come to Framingham State planning to get involved in so many groups on campus. But there are so many wonderful opportunities available to students that enrich the college experience.” -Yasmin Bilimoria, ‘11

“I enjoyed the many friendships I developed at Framingham State, as well as the opportunity to explore new directions and to open my mind to new possibilities.” -Laurie Boyer, ‘90

“Framingham State was such a great decision for me. It opened up a lot of doors for internships and job opportunities.” -Julie Horrigan, ’02 G‘11

“I enjoyed every minute of my time at Framingham State, just as I enjoyed every minute of time teaching.” -Kathleen Roberts, ‘37

“I received a first-class education at Framingham State. The campus is beautiful and the social opportunities are excellent being so close to Boston.” -Gary Bassell, ‘85


  • Kellee Edmonds
    Vice President of Communications and Public Relations
    (202) 478-4662