Belmont Abbey College

Belmont Abbey College

Infobox University

name = Belmont Abbey College
motto = That in all things God may be glorified.
established = 1876
type = Private, Catholic/Benedictine liberal-arts college
president = Dr. William K. Thierfelder
location = Belmont, North Carolina
state = North Carolina
country = USA
enrollment = 1320
campus = 650 acres (2.6 km²)
colors = Crimson and cream
nickname = Crusaders
website = []

Belmont Abbey College is a private liberal-arts Benedictine/Catholic college located in Belmont, North Carolina, 15 miles west of Charlotte. It was founded in 1876 by the Benedictine monks of Belmont Abbey. The school is affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church and the Order of Saint Benedict.


to the 1977 NCAA Men's title, coached the Crusaders from 1957 to 1964 prior to becoming the head coach at Marquette. He led the Crusaders to 5 post-season tournament appearances,

Men's sports

Cross Country
JV Baseball
JV Basketball



The majority of Belmont Abbey undergraduates (approximately 53%) receive their degrees in business; the other top two majors are Biology and Education.



Applied Psychology

Business Management

Computer Studies CIS

Criminal Justice and Security Studies


Elementary Education

Educational Studies


Environmental Science


International Business

Liberal Studies



Political Science



Sports Management


Core curriculum

Belmont Abbey employs quite an intense core curriculum program in order to achieve its goal of producing well-rounded, liberally-educated students. As part of the program, all first-year students are required to take the college's introductory First Year Symposium course. This course, taught by professors of various topics, introduces and explains the theories of a liberal education through readings and lectures. The course is also meant to inform students about the Rule of St. Benedict and the Benedictine Tradition. As part of the course, students are required to be proficient in the use of computers; each student takes a computer literacy test during orientation to ensure this goal has been met. Additionally, each student acquires the information necessary in the First Year Symposium to successfully navigate and utilize the college's Abbot Vincent Taylor Library.

Progress past freshman year, students are required to take one writing intensive course, one social sciences course, one global perspectives course, one math course, one fine arts course, two theology courses, as well as courses in logic, philosophy, and other topics. []

Notable Alumni

Patrick McHenry - ('99) U.S Representative from North Carolina

Joseph Cryan - ('83) New Jersey General Assembly
Tony Suarez - ('??) Soccer player
Winder R. Harris - (St. Mary's College) - U.S. Representative from Virginia
Robert G. Marshall - ('??) Virginia House of Delegates

Notable events


Faculty health care coverage

In early December 2007 it was discovered that the Belmont Abbey College healthcare policy covered "abortion, contraception and voluntary sterilization", these were removed immediately after they were discovered. On January 18 Abbot Placid Solari spoke to faculty and staff explaining the change in policy. Abbot Placid stated that "it is the clear, consistent, incontrovertible, public, official and authoritative teaching of the Roman Catholic Church that abortion, contraception and voluntary sterilization are actions which are intrinsically wrong and should not be undertaken because of their very nature" and so coverage of these procedures by the school's health care plan would be inconsistent. No member of the faculty or staff was consulted before this change took place. Following the change in policy eight faculty members filed formal complaints to the North Carolina Department of Insurance, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the National Women's Law Center, the latter most threatening a lawsuit on behalf of the eight faculty members. The Abbot and the administration have stated that they have no intention of reinstating those portions of the health care plan. Aggie Catholics. [ "Belmont Abbey College"] , Aggie Catholics, May 7, 2008.]

The school's administration has received numerous statements of support from catholic news sources and other organizations, citing the school's "brave leaders" and some stating that the school is a "good role model" [ [ "Belmont Abbey College Removes Employee Benefits for Abortion, Sterilization and Contraception"] ,, May 7, 2008.]

On the other hand some objections have been raised internally by the school newspaper, the Belmont Abbey Crusader. In May 2008 a Crusader article written by student Ray Wentowski cited the fact that "Although Belmont Abbey College no longer subsidizes aborition, voluntary sterilization, and artificial contraception for its faculty and staff, the Abbey profits from two retail stores on Abbey land that sell contraceptives."Wentowski, Ray. [ "Belmont Abbey Removes Contraception Coverage from Employee Healthcare, Benefits from Contraceptive Sales on Abbey Land"] ,, May 7, 2008.] The article explains by detailing how rental payments Belmont Abbey receives from the Wal-mart pharmacy in Montcross and the Rite Aid pharmacy in the Abbey Plaza are partially generated through the sales of contraceptives drugs and devices, including condoms, birth-control pills, and emergency contraception.

The article states that, Dr. Jim Giermanski, one of the faculty members who filed formal complaints "believes that the alterations to the health care policy constitute sexual discrimination." He continues to criticize the administration by saying, "Is it possible that the interpretation of morality by this president and abbot is contingent upon who benefits?".

Dr. David Williams (theologian), a professor of theology at Belmont Abbey College, is quoted as stating that the larger issue "is about the responsibility of the College as a Catholic and Benedictine institution neither to sponsor nor promote activities that the authoritative teaching of the Church considers seriously immoral."

Abbot Placid Solari defended the existence of Wal-Mart and Rite Aid on Belmont Abbey land, stating that " [They] are preponderantly good operations, i.e. 99 percent or more of their business is not problematic, and the employment generation and economic stimulation they provide for the community of Belmont are worth tolerating a small amount of evil. The abbey is not willing to lease to them because they sell contraceptives, but despite it."


External links

* Official website of the college
* Belmont Abbey Crusaders Athletics
* The Abbey Crusader student newspaper
* Official website of the Belmont Abbey monastery

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