Seattle University

Seattle University

Infobox University
name = Seattle University

motto = "Connecting the mind to what matters."
established = 1891
type = Private, Jesuit
endowment =$215 Million [PDFlink| [ 2007 Market Value of Institution Endowment Assets] |2.8 MB]
president = Stephen V. Sundborg, S.J.
city = Seattle
state = Washington
country = United States
undergrad = 4,160
postgrad = 1,963
faculty = 609
campus = Urban, 48 acres
free_label = Conference
free = Independent
mascot = Redhawks
website =

Seattle University is a nonprofit Jesuit Catholic university in the United States. Located on Seattle, Washington's First Hill, it was founded in 1891 as the School of the Immaculate Conception by the Society of Jesus (Jesuits), and continues to operate as a Jesuit institution. Today, Seattle University is one of 28 member institutions of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities. U.S. News and World Report's "Best Colleges 2008" ranks Seattle University 6th out of schools in the West that offer a full range of masters and undergraduate programs. [ [ 1] ]


Seattle University was founded by Father Victor Garrand and Father Adrian Sweere in downtown Seattle, and has served as both a high school and college. In 1893, construction started on the First Hill campus. The school moved to First Hill in 1898 and changed its name to Seattle College, at which point the high school became a separate institution now known as Seattle Preparatory School. In 1909, the college awarded its first bachelor's degrees. In 1931, Seattle College became the first Jesuit university in the country to admit female students.

At one time, the Jesuits planned to move the college to the tract of land that is now the heart of Seattle's Wedgwood neighborhood, but by 1940 they decided against the move, and sold the land in 1940. [Valerie Bunn, "Wedgwood Echo", volume 20, issue IV, July 2005, p.4.] Seattle College changed its name to Seattle University in 1948.


Seattle University offers 44 bachelor's degree programs and 24 graduate degree programs, plus a law school and a doctoral program in education. The university consists of eight colleges: the College of Arts and Sciences, the Albers School of Business and Economics, the College of Education, the School of Law, Matteo Ricci College, the College of Nursing, the College of Science and Engineering, and the School of Theology and Ministry. A Seattle University education is estimated to cost $150,000, although much of this is covered by financial aid. [ [ King 5 News] , King 5 News] . Accessed online 11 June, 2007.]

Seattle University's Albers School of Business and Economics, started in 1945, was named after the Albers family. George and Eva Albers were generous donors to the university. Their daughter, Genevieve Albers, attended SU and continued the family's legacy of generosity to the school; she also sponsored a business forum, established an eponymous professorship, and donated funds to create scholarships. In 1967, the business school added an MBA program, which is now the largest nationally accredited, evening program for working professionals in the Pacific Northwest. The part-time MBA Program is recognized among the Top 25 by "U.S. News & World Report's 2007 America's Best Graduate Schools". US News also ranks the Albers School among the top 10% of undergraduate business schools nationwide. The Albers School is accredited with the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business AACSB.

The School of Law was founded in 1972 as part of the University of Puget Sound (UPS) in Tacoma, Wash. Twenty-one years later, UPS and SU agreed on a transfer of the law school to Seattle University; in August 1994 the transfer was completed, and the school physically moved to the SU campus in 1999. The 2008 "US News and World Report" Law School rankings list the School of Law in the top 100 Law Schools in the nation. Also, the School of Law is home to the number two Legal Writing program in the nation.

In the College of Arts and Sciences, Seattle University's graduate program in psychology is notable as one of the few schools in the country to focus on Existential Phenomenology as a therapeutic method. The College of Education also offers mainstream programs in community counseling and school counseling.

Service-learning and social justice are important components of the educational experience at Seattle University, which strives to "empower leaders for a just and humane world." Each year students, faculty and staff commit hundreds of hours to service projects and community outreach through the Center for Service and Community Engagement.

The university is increasingly attracting and retaining a diverse student population. Since 1995, the number of underrepresented minority students – Native American, Hispanic and black – has nearly doubled from 441 in 1995 to 856 at the start of the 2006-07 academic year. More than one-third of the overall student body represent diverse groups.

The campus includes numerous works by well-known artists (including the Centennial Fountain by Seattle artist George Tsutakawa [ [ Campus scene (Centennial Fountain)] , captioned image on the Seattle U. web site] . Accessed online 28 February, 2007.] —recipient of an honorary doctorate from Seattle U. [Mayumi Tsutakawa, [ Tsutakawa, George (1910-1997)] , Essay 3088, April 19, 2001. Accessed online 28 February, 2007.] —and a large glass sculpture in the PACCAR Atrium of Piggot Hall by Tacoma, Washington artist Dale Chihuly,Tina Potterf, [ Home Is Where the Art Is] , "Seattle University Magazine" article reproduced on the Seattle University web site. Accessed online 28 February, 2007.] as well as works by Chuck Close, Jacob Lawrence, Gwendolyn Knight, William Morris and David Mach) and several architecturally notable buildings. Of the latter, probably the most famous is the Chapel of St. Ignatius, designed by New York architect Steven Holl, born in Bremerton, Washington: the 1997 building won a national Honor Award from the American Institute of Architects in 1998. [John Pastier, [ Seattle University's Chapel of St. Ignatius] , Essay 2931, January 6, 2001. Accessed online 28 February, 2007.]


The university's sports teams are the Redhawks. They are currently transitioning from Division II back to Division I. The athletics program at SU has produced top-notch athletes both on and off the field. The men's soccer program won the 2004 NCAA Division II Championship, and the university's swim program has produced many All-American swimmers. Seattle University was also a member of the Division 1 West Coast Conference (WCC), at that time the West Coast Athletic Conference, from 1971-1980.

On January 21, 1952, the Seattle University basketball team, then known as the Chieftains, beat the Harlem Globetrotters in a stunning 84-81 upset, led by Johnny O'Brien's 43 points. [ [ Fifty years ago tonight, Seattle U. upset the mighty Globetrotters] , accessed January 24, 2008] Between 1953 and 1969, they reached the NCAA Division I Tournament 11 times. The 1958 team, led by Elgin Baylor, advanced to the NCAA championship game, where they lost to Kentucky 84-72.

On March 7, 2007, President Father Steven V. Sundborg sent a campus-wide e-mail explaining that the West Coast Conference of the NCAA Division I would not be expanding now or in the foreseeable future. Father Sundborg left the door open to more campus discussion, but Seattle University remains a Division II team in the GNAC.

On May 11, 2007, despite the West Coast Conference recent decision to not expand, the Seattle University board of trustees gave its approval anyway to apply for Division I status. Seattle University is transitioning to a mixed Division I and II schedule in 2008-09 and could be Division I in all sports as early as 2009-10.

Notable alumni and attendees

*Mohamed Ali Alabbar (1981) - Chairman of Emaar Properties; one of the world's largest real estate development firms with $25 billion in assets.
*Elgin Baylor - NBA Hall of Famer; general manager, Los Angeles Clippers, 2006 NBA Executive of the Year.
*John Juanda (1996, M.B.A.) - Professional Poker Player.
*Major General (Ret.) Patrick Henry Brady - recipient of the Medal of Honor
*Gary Brinson (1966) - founder and retired chair of Brinson Partners; GP Brinson Investments; The Brinson Foundation. The January 2003 issue of CFA Magazine named Brinson as one of seven living legends in the investment profession.
*Major General Peter W. Chiarelli (1972) - Director of Operations, U.S. Army, commander of forces in Iraq
*Jeffrey Flowers (1965) - President, Marco Polo Hotel Group
*William P. Foley, II (1970, M.B.A.) - Chairman and CEO, Fidelity National Financial
*Mary Kay Fualaau (formerly Mary Kay Letourneau) (1989) - A former schoolteacher convicted for having a sexual relationship with her underage student.
*Micheal Gilleran (1971; J.D. 1975) - Commissioner of the West Coast Conference
*Ray Heacox (1976) - President and General Manager of KING-TV, KONG-TV and NorthWest Cable News
*John E. Hopcroft (1961)- renowned theoretical computer scientist; co-winner 1986 Turing Award
*Richard Jones (1972) - Judge; King County Superior Court that sentenced Gary Ridgeway, "The Green River Killer"
*Carolyn Kelly (M.B.A.) - President and COO, "The Seattle Times"
*Michael L. Kelly (1975) - Trial Lawyer and Lecturer - Los Angeles, California
*Robert Kruse (1995, M.B.A.) - Founder & President of VenLogic LLC
*Steve McConnell (1991, M.S. Software Engineering) - Chair of the IEEE Computer Society's Professional Practices Committee
*Duff McKagan - Bassist of Velvet Revolver, ex-bassist of Guns N' Roses
*Stan W. McNaughton (1974) - CEO, PEMCO Insurance
*Charles Mitchell (1974) - Chancellor, Seattle Community Colleges; was president of Seattle Central Community College in 2001 when "Time" magazine named it “College of the Year.” Former professional football player with the Denver Broncos and Buffalo Bills.
*Frank Murkowski (1955) - Former Governor of Alaska and former U.S. Senator from Alaska
*Carol Nelson (1974; 1984, MBA) - President, CEO, Cascade Bank
*Eddie O'Brien - Baseball player for Pittsburgh Pirates
*Johnny O'Brien - Baseball player for Pittsburgh Pirates, St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Braves
*Dino Rossi (1982) - Former Washington State Senator and Republican nominee for Governor of Washington
*John D. Spellman (1949) - Former Governor of Washington state.
* Lieutenant Commander Charles Swift (J.D.; 1994) - served as legal counsel for Salim Ahmed Hamdan. Listed as 100 most influential lawyers in the US.
*Jim Whittaker (1952) - First American to summit Mount Everest in 1963.
*Will Espero (1982) - Hawaii State Senator


External links

* [ Seattle University's home page]
* [ Seattle University's Albers School of Business and Economics home page]
* [ Seattle University's School of Law home page]
* [ Seattle University Athletics]

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