Springfield College is a private university in Springfield, Massachusetts, United States. The institution's mission, called the Humanics philosophy, calls for educating students in spirit, mind, and body for leadership in service to others[4] It is also notable for its historical significance as the birthplace of basketball, which was invented on campus in 1891 by Canadian-American instructor and graduate student James Naismith.[5][6]

Springfield College
Former names
YMCA of School for Christian Workers in Springfield (1885–1891)
International Young Men's Christian Association Training School (1891–1912)
International YMCA College (1912–1954)
MottoSpirit, Mind, Body
TypePrivate university
Established1885; 139 years ago (1885)
Academic affiliations
Endowment$79.6 million (2020)[1]
PresidentMary-Beth A. Cooper
CampusMain campus size: 100 acres (40 ha) East campus size: 81 acres (33 ha)
Colors    Maroon and white[2]
Sporting affiliations
MascotSpirit the Majestic Lion
Springfield College is located in Massachusetts
Springfield College
Location in Massachusetts
Historic postcard: Springfield College
Historic postcard: Aerial view of Springfield College



Founded in 1885, as the Young Men's Christian Association department of the School for Christian Workers in Springfield, the school originally specialized in preparing young men to become General Secretaries of YMCA organizations in a two-year program. In 1887, it added a Physical Education department. In 1890, it separated from the School for Christian Workers and became the YMCA Training School and in 1891, the International Young Men's Christian Association Training School.

In 1905, the school became a degree-granting institution.[7] In 1912, it took the name International YMCA College and in 1954, Springfield College.[8]



Since 1999, the institutional archives have included archival material from the Society of Health and Physical Educators and some of its affiliates, including the papers of their leaders.[9]



Springfield College has had 13 leaders:[10]

Years Name
1885–1891 David Allen Reed
1891–1893 Henry S. Lee
1893–1896 Charles S. Barrows
1896–1936 Laurence L. Doggett
1937–1946 Ernest M. Best
1946–1952 Paul M. Limbert
1953–1957 Donald C. Stone
1958–1965 Glenn A. Olds
1965–1985 Wilbert E. Locklin
1985–1992 Frank S. Falcone
1992–1998 Randolph W. Bromery
1999–2013 Richard B. Flynn
2013– Mary-Beth A. Cooper



Springfield College offers bachelor's degrees in more than 40 majors, 25-plus master's degrees, and doctoral programs in counseling psychology, educational leadership, medical science, physical therapy, physical education and more. The institution is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).[11]

The institution comprises three schools:[12]

  • School of Arts and Sciences[13]
  • School of Physical Education, Performance, and Sport Leadership:[14] This school incorporates the Springfield College East Campus Outdoor Learning Center.
  • School of Health Sciences:[15] The school is a member of the College of Health Deans.[16]

Springfield College also offers bachelor's degree completion programs and master's degrees in business, education, counseling and more, that are geared toward working adult students at its main campus, and online.[17]



The campus of Springfield College is located in Springfield, Massachusetts, The main campus spans 100 acres (40 ha) and contains ten residence halls, recreational and fitness facilities, science and academic facilities, a performing arts center, and the Flynn Campus Union, which includes a food court, activity and lounge space, and bookstore.[18]

In fall 2023, Springfield College opened a new Health Sciences Center, which facilitates, expands on, and celebrates interprofessional education. Inside the four floors of the 86,000-square-foot building, simulation, anatomy, pediatrics lab, and makerspace environments enhance interdisciplinary collaboration as does expanded meeting space. [19]

Springfield College's East Campus, which encompasses 82 acres (33 ha) of forest ecosystem, is located about one mile from the main campus.[20] This location provides rustic facilities for conferences and meetings, and space for outdoor research and recreation. East Campus is also home to the Springfield College Child Development Center, which provides early education services for children of members of the faculty and staff, students, and families in the community.



Springfield College's athletic teams have been known since 1995 as the Pride;[21] the teams were nicknamed the Chiefs from 1968 through 1994, and prior to that were known as the Gymnasts or Maroons. The institution is a member of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III and most teams compete in the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference (NEWMAC). Springfield's football team joined the NEWMAC when it began sponsoring football in 2017. The men's soccer, men's golf, cross country and gymnastics teams are affiliate members of the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC). The men's volleyball team competes as an independent.

The first basketball court at Springfield college

Springfield College is known as the "Birthplace of Basketball"[22], a game created by alumnus and faculty member James Naismith under the founding head of the Physical Education department Luther Gulick Jr. in 1891. Gulick is in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame,[23] which is named for Naismith.[24][25]

Alumnus William G. Morgan invented the game of volleyball.[26]

Stagg Field serves as the institution's main athletic field; it was named after former coach, Amos Alonzo Stagg who briefly coached Springfield and went on to play a pivotal role in the development of modern football.

On October 19, 2017, Springfield College unveiled a one-of-a-kind intercollegiate and adaptive baseball field that resulted from a partnership between Springfield College and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. On that day, Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Cal Ripken, Jr. joined Springfield College President Mary-Beth Cooper for a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the new field. The name of the baseball field was changed from Berry-Allen Field to the Archie Allen Field. [27]

The Springfield softball team appeared in one Women's College World Series in 1977.[28]

The Springfield College women's gymnastics team won the first intercollegiate national championship in 1969 and three of the first four (1971 and 1972).

In 1940 Springfield was one of eight teams to make the 1940 NCAA basketball tournament, losing to eventual champion Indiana 48–24 in the regional semifinals held at Butler Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana.

In 2006 and 2007, the institution hosted the NCAA Division III Women's Basketball Final Four.

The men's volleyball team has six non-NCAA national titles in the now-defunct Molten Invitational championship, an event for NCAA Division III schools that ran from 1997 through 2011, and also won the first three NCAA Division III Men's Volleyball Championships in 2012 through 2014. All nine championships were won under Head Coach Charlie Sullivan. The Pride followed up with two more national championships in 2016 through 2018. Ten of the 11 championships were won under Head Coach Charlie Sullivan.

The Springfield College Women's Basketball team of 2004–2005, made the Elite Eight of the NCAA Division III basketball tournament. Springfield earned its second-ever at-large bid to the NCAA Division III Championship Tournament in February 2024 and made its eighth appearance in the national tournament to cap off the 2023-24 season. At the end of that season, Head Coach Naomi Graves and her staff were chosen as the New England Women’s and Men’s Athletic Conference Women's Basketball Coaching Staff of the Year.

Women's basketball has won several conference tournament championships, including the season of 2006. The 2023-24 team competed in the first round of the NCAA Division III championship.

Springfield College graduates Rusty Jones G '86 and Jon Torine '95 participated in Super Bowl XLI as the Head Strength and Conditioning coaches of the Chicago Bears and Indianapolis Colts, respectively.[29] Steve Spagnuolo ’82 has served as a defensive coordinator six times in the Super Bowl with the Kansas City Chiefs and New York Giants, and three of those games resulted in Super Bowl victories.

The Springfield College Women's Field Hockey Team has won the NEWMAC (New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference) title for five consecutive years (2004–2008), and competed in the NCAA Division III tournament in those five years as well.

The men's lacrosse team won six straight titles (2008–2013) in the now-defunct Pilgrim Lacrosse League, which has since been absorbed by the NEWMAC.

Springfield's Women's Swimming and Diving Team has won the NEWMAC Conference title for ten consecutive years (2001–2010) in the Division III Conference.

Springfield's Men's soccer team were voted National College Champions by the Intercollegiate Soccer Football Association in 1946, 1947 and 1957. This was before the NCAA championship soccer tournament in 1959.

Men's teams Women's teams
Baseball Basketball
Basketball Cross Country
Cross country Field hockey
Football Gymnastics
Golf Lacrosse
Gymnastics Soccer
Lacrosse Softball
Soccer Swimming & diving
Swimming & Diving Tennis
Tennis Track & field
Track & Field Volleyball



U.S. News & World Report ranked Springfield College #26 for Best Regional Universities—North Region for 2021,[30] the sixth consecutive year that it has been in the top 30.[31] U.S. News also ranked Springfield College #18 among Best Value Schools for Regional Universities—North, the school's fifth consecutive year on the list.[30]

Springfield College was the recipient of the 2016 Presidential Award in the education category of the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. This honor is the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.[32]

In 2015, the institution successfully for an optional community engagement classification in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.[33]

Springfield College was named a 2016–17 College of Distinction for providing an innovative, teacher-centered undergraduate education with a strong record of preparing its graduates for real-world success.[34]

Notable alumni and faculty



  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 21, 2021.
  2. ^ Springfield College Brand Book (PDF). Springfield College. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 28, 2015. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  3. ^ Springfield College Athletics. "Springfield College Athletics". Springfieldcollegepride.com. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  4. ^ "Philosophy". Springfield College. Retrieved November 14, 2017.
  5. ^ "Academics". Springfield College. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  6. ^ "Springfield College: The Birthplace of Basketball". Springfield College. Retrieved February 2, 2017.
  7. ^ Glenn T. Miller, Piety and Profession: American Protestant Theological Education, 1870–1970, 2007. ISBN 0-8028-2946-5, p. 289
  8. ^ "Springfield College History". Springfield College. Retrieved November 14, 2017.
  9. ^ "Springfield College - SHAPE Archives". Springfield College.
  10. ^ Martel, Alli. "Library Services: College History: College History". library.springfield.edu. Retrieved April 26, 2021.
  11. ^ "New England Commission of Higher Education - Springfield College". New England Commission of Higher Education. 2020.
  12. ^ "Springfield College - Academics". Springfield College.
  13. ^ "Springfield College - School of Arts and Sciences". Springfield College - School of Arts and Sciences.
  14. ^ "Springfield College - School of Physical Education, Performance, and Sport Leadership". Springfield College.
  15. ^ "Springfield College School Of Health Sciences". Springfield College - School of Health Sciences.
  17. ^ "Academics". Springfield College Academics.
  18. ^ "Campus Union Student Activities". Springfield College. June 1, 2011. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  19. ^ "Health Sciences Center". Springfield College.
  20. ^ "East Campus". Springfield College. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  21. ^ "Freedom Conference". The Boston Globe. August 25, 1995. p. 43. Retrieved November 29, 2010 – via newspapers.com.
  22. ^ "Where Basketball was Invented: The History of Basketball". Springfield College.
  23. ^ "Luther H. Gulick". Basketball Hall of Fame profile. Archived from the original on August 31, 2009. Retrieved May 9, 2010.
  24. ^ "James Naismith". Basketball Hall of Fame profile. Archived from the original on March 19, 2013. Retrieved May 9, 2010.
  25. ^ see also History of Basketball
  26. ^ "William G. Morgan (1870-1942) inventor of the game of volleyball". Volleyball World Wide web site. Archived from the original on December 26, 2010. Retrieved May 9, 2010.
  27. ^ "Springfield College and Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation Partnership Results in One-of-a-kind Intercollegiate and Adaptive Baseball Field". Springfield College News.
  28. ^ Plummer, William; Floyd, Larry C. (2013). A Series Of Their Own: History Of The Women's College World Series. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States: Turnkey Communications Inc. ISBN 978-0-9893007-0-4.
  29. ^ "Three Springfield College Grads in Sunday's Super Bowl XLI" (Press release). Springfield College. January 30, 2007. Archived from the original on February 28, 2007.
  30. ^ a b "U.S. News & World Report - Regional Universities North". U.S. News & World Report. 2021.
  31. ^ "Springfield College Ranked in Top Tier of U.S.News Rankings in Best Regional Universities – North Region". Springfield College - News. September 14, 2020.
  32. ^ "Springfield College Award". springfield.edu. Retrieved September 19, 2016.
  33. ^ "Springfield College Receives Community Engagement Classification by Carnegie Foundation". Springfield College. Archived from the original on April 2, 2015. Retrieved September 27, 2015.
  34. ^ Colleges of Distinction (August 29, 2016). "All". Colleges of Distinction. Retrieved September 19, 2016.
  35. ^ "2015 HOF Profile - Jeff Blatnick". Retrieved November 14, 2017.
  36. ^ Byrnes, Bruce (April 11, 1947). "Athletic Director Leaving in June; Dewar Successor". UWO Gazette. London, Ontario. p. 1.; Byrnes, Bruce (April 11, 1947). "Athletic Director (Continued from Page 1)". UWO Gazette. London, Ontario. p. 3.
  37. ^ ""The Conversion of Dr. Peter Karpovich"" (PDF). starkcenter.org.
  38. ^ ""Springfield College Hosts 2019 Peter V. Karpovich Lecture"". springfield.edu/. October 16, 2019.
  39. ^ Torres, Ismael (June 27, 2017). "Puerto Rican historian Fernando Picó dies at 75". Caribbean Business. Retrieved July 17, 2017.
  40. ^ Rhim, Kristian (October 22, 2017). "Angela Salem: A professional mindset". The Springfield Student. Retrieved July 13, 2023.
  41. ^ "American Swimming Coaches Hall of Fame, Charles Silvia". SwimSwam. Retrieved June 18, 2023.
  42. ^ "SHAPE America - A Brief History of the Midwest District". shapeamerica.org.

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