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La Roche College

The seal of La Roche College
Motto "Ad lucem per amorem"
To light through love
Established 1963
Type Private
Religious affiliation Roman Catholic Church
President Sister Candace Introcaso
Undergraduates 1,707
Postgraduates 250
Location Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Campus Suburban, 80+ acres
Colors Red and White
Mascot Red Hawks

La Roche College is a private college in McCandless, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Pittsburgh. It was founded in 1963 by the Sisters of Divine Providence as a Roman Catholic college and now sits on an 80-acre (320,000 m2) campus in McCandless. The current president, Sister Candace Introcaso, CDP, Ph.D., was installed in 2005 and replaced the previous president, Monsignor William Kerr. Recent additions to the school include the Kerr Fitness and Sports Center in 1993 and new residence halls, Bold I and II, in 1997 and 2003, respectively.

Its total enrollment of 1,800 and residence population of 600 makes La Roche a small school, with a community atmosphere.



La Roche College was founded in 1963 by the Sisters of Divine Providence as a private college for religious sisters. It was named in honor of Marie de la Roche, the first superior of the Congregation of the Sisters of Divine Providence. The first president of the college was Sister Annunciata Sohl, and served until 1968. The College had begun to admit its first lay students by 1965. The College continued to grow, and two years later, La Roche expanded beyond its leased space to construct the first College building, the John J. Wright Library.[1]

La Roche encountered financial difficulties soon after its founding. Although closing the College was considered, Sister de la Salle Mahler, president from 1969-1975, carried on. The Board amended its charter in 1970 to establish La Roche as an independent, coeducational Catholic institution, while also diversifying course offerings through an affiliation with the Art Institute of Pittsburgh. This partnership made available several new areas of study, including graphic and interior design, which count among the College's strongest programs today.[1]

An enrollment boom made the construction of two new residence halls necessary in the mid-1970s. Under College President Sister Mary Joan Coultas (1975-80), the College launched its first capital campaign in 1979, garnering enough to construct the Palumbo Science Center, which opened in 1980. During Sister Margaret Huber's eleven-year tenure as president beginning in 1981, the College continued to grow, marking its 25th anniversary in 1987 with the dedication of the $2.5 million Zappala College Center. The Magdalen Chapel was added in 1990, and 1993 the college opened the Kerr Fitness and Sports Center.[1]

La Roche's sixth president, Monsignor William A. Kerr, was appointed in 1992 and focused his leadership on raising the College's visibility, while broadening academic, cultural and athletic programs. In 2004, the La Roche College Board of Trustees elected the College's seventh president, Sister Candace Introcaso, Ph.D.[1]


Residence halls were added and expanded upon in 1997 and 2003 with the dedication of Bold Hall and Bold Hall II. Current athletic facilities include a baseball field, soccer field, softball field, outdoor tennis/basketball courts, aerobics room, dance studio, gymnasium, indoor track and a weight room.[1]

Pacem In Terris Institute

Beginning in 1993, the Pacem In Terris Institute has brought students from conflict, post-conflict and developing regions of the world to study at La Roche. The program provides scholarships and assistance, to students from 21 different countries. The students are chosen by their countries on the basis of academic and personal potential, and promise to return to their homelands upon completion of their studies to work for peace and prosperity in their regions.[1]

Notable members on the Board of the Institute are Kim Dae-jung, past president of the Republic of Korea; Queen Rania Al-Abdullah, first lady of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan; and Janet Museveni, first lady of the Republic of Uganda.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "History of the College". La Roche College. Retrieved 2007-10-10.  

External links

Coordinates: 40°34′12″N 80°00′47″W / 40.570°N 80.013°W / 40.570; -80.013



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