Simmons University

  (Redirected from Simmons College (Massachusetts))

Simmons University (Simmons College until 2018) is a private women focused undergraduate university and private co-educational graduate school in Boston, Massachusetts. It was established in 1899.

Simmons University
Simmons University Logo.png
TypePrivate women's-centered undergraduate, co-educational graduate
Established1899; 122 years ago (1899)
Endowment$190.4 million (2020)[1]
PresidentLynn Wooten
Academic staff
251 full-time/327 part-time
Location, ,
United States
AffiliationsColleges of the Fenway


Simmons University tree logo

Simmons was founded in 1899 with a bequest by John Simmons, a wealthy clothing manufacturer in Boston. Simmons founded the college based on the belief that women ought to live independently by offering a liberal arts education for undergraduate women to integrate into professional work experience.[2] Simmons is a member of the Colleges of the Fenway consortium, which also includes Emmanuel College, Wentworth Institute of Technology, Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and Massachusetts College of Art and Design. Simmons absorbed Garland Junior College in 1976.[3] Wheelock College, a former member, merged with Boston University to become the Boston University Wheelock College of Education & Human Development.

Simmons graduated its first African American student in 1914. Furthermore, Simmons was one of the few private colleges not to impose admission quotas on Jewish students for the first half of the 1900s.[2]

The undergraduate program is women-centered, with approximately 1800 students enrolled in the 2012–2013 academic year. The graduate schools (Library and Information Science, Social Work, Health Sciences, Business Management, and an Arts and Sciences program that provides degrees in Education, Communications Management, Gender and Cultural Studies, Public Policy and Liberal Arts) are coed, and have about 3,000 students. The school's MBA program is the first in the world designed specifically for women. The co-ed online MBA program, MBA@Simmons, was founded in 2016.[4]

In November 2014, the institution released an explicit policy on the acceptance of transgender students, claiming a strong tradition of empowering women and challenging traditional gender roles and a "rich history of inclusion." Its undergraduate program accepts applicants who are assigned female at birth as well as those who self-identify as women, making Simmons the third women-centered college in the United States to accept transgender women.[5] Government documentation of gender is not required. Graduate programs are co-educational, so gender identity is not of concern.[6]

The original site of the Simmons College Graduate School of Social Work is featured on the Boston Women's Heritage Trail.[7]

In 2018 Simmons College decided to change their name to Simmons University after reorganizing the structure of the school.[8]


Simmons University currently consists of two separate campuses located near the Back Bay Fens in Boston:

Academic CampusEdit

The Academic Campus is located at 300 The Fenway in the Longwood Medical Area. It is immediately adjacent to the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum and the Boston Latin School. This campus currently consists of five buildings:

Simmons College Main College Building
  • One Palace Road
  • Main College Building
  • Beatley Library/Lefavour Hall
  • Park Science Center
  • School of Management Building (a recent green construction[9])

Residential CampusEdit

The Residence Campus is located one block from the main campus. It is near the Landmark Center and the Fenway and Longwood MBTA stations. The residence campus consists of 13 buildings centered on a grassy quad:

  • Simmons Hall (Freshman and Sophomore housing)
  • Dix Hall (Sophomore housing)
  • Smith Hall (Senior housing, also houses Quadside lounge and mail-room)
  • Arnold Hall (Junior housing)
  • North Hall (Upperclassman and Graduate housing)
  • Health Center and Residence Life Offices
  • Holmes Sports Center
  • South Hall (Wellness housing)
  • Alumnae Hall (Multipurpose room)
  • Bartol Dining Hall (also houses late-night dining service Bartol Late Night)
  • Evans Hall (Senior housing)
  • Mesick Hall (Freshman and Sophomore housing, renovated in 2010)
  • Morse Hall (Freshman and Sophomore housing)

Most of the buildings on the residence campus serve as dormitories, but the campus also includes a large dining hall, a health center, a large fitness center, a public safety office, an auditorium, and several other facilities.

The residence campus is separated from the main campus by Emmanuel College and Merck Research Laboratories Boston.


Simmons University reorganized its academic structure in 2018 to foster interdisciplinary learning and cross-departmental collaboration. Students now explore new inter-professional opportunities and create their own pathways to meaningful work.

  • College of Natural, Behavioral, and Health Sciences
    • School of Nursing
  • College of Organizational, Computational, and Information Sciences
    • School of Library and Information Science (SLIS), est. 1902[10][11]
    • School of Business
  • College of Social Sciences, Policy, and Practice
    • School of Social Work
  • The Gwen Ifill College of Media, Arts, and Humanities

COVID pandemicEdit

Simmons extended its Spring 2020 break to March 23 and then resumed instruction on a remote online only basis. The campus and residence halls closed. Simmons cancelled all summer instructions and programs, and the Fall 2020 semester is online only.[12]


Simmons University sponsors athletics teams in a variety of sports including crew, cross country, field hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming & diving, tennis, and volleyball. The mascot is the Sharks and the colors are blue and yellow. They compete as members of the NCAA Division III in the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC), the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC) and the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC).


Simmons has made several significant sustainability efforts. Former President Susan Scrimshaw signed the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) as a formal commitment to eliminate campus greenhouse gas emissions over time. Furthermore, the School of Management is addressing sustainability in its curriculum as well as in building and resource-management programs. [13]

Simmons' environmental efforts earned the school a "C" on the College Sustainability Report Card 2010, published in Fall 2009 by the Sustainable Endowments Institute.[14]

Notable alumniEdit

Simmons alumni include

Notable facultyEdit

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ As of June 30, 2020. U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2020 Endowment Market Value and Change in Endowment Market Value from FY19 to FY20 (Report). National Association of College and University Business Officers and TIAA. February 19, 2021. Retrieved February 20, 2021.
  2. ^ a b "History: About Simmons College". Simmons College.
  3. ^ Massachusetts Colleges that have Closed, Merged, or Changed Names, Brown, Ray C., retrieved January 8, 2015
  4. ^ "Online Master of Business Administration | Simmons College". Retrieved June 20, 2018.
  5. ^ "Simmons College Opens Its Doors to Trans Students". The Advocate.
  6. ^ "Admission Policy for Transgender Students FAQ". Retrieved December 1, 2017.
  7. ^ "Back Bay East". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  8. ^ "Simmons Announces University Designation". Retrieved October 5, 2018.
  9. ^ "Simmons College School of Management - LEED Gold". Lee Kennedy Co Inc. Retrieved December 4, 2017.
  10. ^ "Library Schools and Short Courses: Simmons College School of Library Science", American Library Annual 1917/1918, New York: R.R. Bowker, hdl:2027/nyp.33433069135071
  11. ^ Donnelly, June Richardson (1918). "Views of Library School Directors: Simmons College". Public Libraries. Chicago: Library Bureau. 23 (1). hdl:2027/hvd.hxdkbs – via HathiTrust.
  12. ^ "Novel Coronavirus Information". Retrieved July 29, 2020.
  13. ^ "Environmental Commitments". Simmons College. Retrieved June 7, 2010.
  14. ^ "Simmons College – Green Report Card 2010". June 30, 2008. Retrieved August 26, 2014.
  15. ^ Fox, Margalit. "Barbara Margolis, Prisoners’ Advocate, Dies at 79", The New York Times, July 12, 2009. Accessed July 21, 2009.
  16. ^ "In Memoriam: Catherine (Norris) Norton". Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Retrieved September 7, 2015.
  17. ^ "Roseanne Perkins". Kutztown University.
  18. ^ "College Corner", The Item of Millburn and Short Hills, September 1, 1966. Accessed May 6, 2021, via "Three Millburn High School alumnae have been named to the dean's list of scholars at Simmons College in Boston for the year..... Sondra A. Perl, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Herman Perl of South Orange Avenue, will be a sophomore in the department of education."
  19. ^ "William Mark Bellamy". Center for Strategic and International Studies. Retrieved July 13, 2020.

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 42°20′23″N 71°06′01″W / 42.339800°N 71.100200°W / 42.339800; -71.100200