Spalding University: Wikis


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Spalding University
Spalding university.jpg
Motto What do You want out of life?
Established 1814
Type Private, Catholic
President Jo Ann Rooney
Location Louisville, Kentucky, USA
Colors Blue and Yellow
Mascot Golden Eagles (Changed from Pelicans in 2006)
Affiliations Kentuckiana Metroversity

Spalding University is a private, non-profit, fully accredited, doctoral level university in Louisville, Kentucky. The school is a co-educational, independent, fully accredited doctoral level institution open to all qualified students regardless of race, religion, color, age, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, or disability. Spalding offers day classes, evening and weekend classes for the career-oriented student, graduate classes, and a 6-week intensive schedule that has been proven to allow students of all types to add education to their already full lives. The sessions allow traditional daytime students to begin any time throughout the academic year and focus on one or two classes each session instead of balancing five or six classes for a full semester.

Spalding University has a strong history of meeting the needs of the times, and has a tradition of offering extensive study programs for both the full-time and part-time student. Individuals who have been unable to attend college full-time due to career, family, or other commitments have earned degrees by attending the University's evening and Saturday classes. Spalding University opened the first Weekend College in the Louisville area in 1980. Spalding offers many degrees in the area of health sciences, natural sciences, social sciences, humanities, and education. The Masters of Fine Arts in writing degree program, with focus areas in fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, drama, and writing for children, publishes a biannual literary magazine, The Louisville Review. Spalding University offers 12 varsity sports to our student-athletes, and as an NCAA D-III institution, competes as a member of the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.



Located in downtown Louisville, Spalding University's urban campus is located between the main business/government district of the city and Old Louisville, a neighborhood of elegant Victorian mansions, which in the latter half of the 19th century was the center of gracious living. Only blocks from Fourth Street Live, the campus is also adjacent to the Louisville Free Public Library and is conveniently accessible to public transportation. Spalding offers hands-on, pre-professional internship and practicum experiences at renowned businesses, medical facilities, schools and corporate headquarters, which are in close proximity.


Spalding University is the oldest Catholic university west of the Alleghenies. It was established in 1814 and named after Catherine Spalding, founder of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth. The school was originally named Nazareth Academy and was located in Nelson County near Bardstown, KY. In 1829, the legislature of the commonwealth of Kentucky granted Nazareth College a charter allowing the institution to confer degree. In 1920, the Sisters of Charity opened Nazareth College in Louisville; Kentucky's first, four-year, Catholic college for Women. The Louisville and Nazareth campuses merged. In 1969, the school was renamed Spalding College and in 1971 all instructional activity was moved to the Louisville campus. In 1973, Spalding College became co-educational and an independent college in the Catholic tradition open to students of all faiths and backgrounds. In 1984, Spalding College became Spalding University.

School of Nursing

For more than seventy years Spalding University’s School of Nursing has earned an excellent reputation within our community. The BSN Program is the oldest collegiate-based nursing program in the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Our rich tradition and high educational standards has prepared over 2,300 registered nurses, who are serving the health care of the public throughout Kentucky, the U.S. and abroad. The School of Nursing also offers the Master of Science in Nursing (MSN). There are three tracks available: Leadership in Nursing and Health Care, Nursing Education, and Nurse Practitioner (Adult, Family, and Pediatrics). Through its program offerings, the School of Nursing remains committed to assuring excellence in nursing practice through innovation in nursing education.

Auerbach School of Occupational Therapy

The Auerbach School of Occupational Therapy offers an intellectually stimulating, experiential, and innovative educational program for the prospective occupational therapy student. The (30) month program brings together a cohort of students who become peers and colleagues. The multitude of learning experiences during the professional phase of the program involve s both practical experience in community settings as well as high levels of active learning in the classroom.

Graduates of the Auerbach School of Occupational Therapy are employed in a wide variety of practice settings locally, nationally, and internationally. The program graduates pass the National Certification Examination for Occupational Therapists in occupational therapy at a rate that exceeds the national average. Students in the occupational therapy program have close interaction with faculty throughout the entire program and continue to receive support as peers from faculty after graduation.

Master of Fine Arts in Writing

Spalding Unviersity offers a brief residency MFA in Writing accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and is a member of the Association of Writers & Writing Programs. Since the MFA program was founded in 2001, 422 students and alumni have published or produced more than 100 books, films and plays in more than 70 presses and publication companies. Faculty include Richard Goodman, Silas House, Philip F. Deaver, K. L. Cook and Susan Campbell Bartoletti.

851 Mansion

When Spalding University, originally called Nazareth College, opened in 1920, its sole building was the 1871 structure known as the Tompkins-Buchanan-Rankin House. This Italianate building was designed and built by architect Henry Whitestone for the family of Joseph T. Tompkins, a wealthy dry-goods merchant and importer. Later, the Buchanans and Rankins lived here. George C. Buchanan was a distiller who aspired to make the mansion one of the greatest in Louisville, and had it redecorated in 1880. Although the facade of this Italianate structure has disappeared, the north and south sides of the original building are visible; on the north are three deeply projecting bay windows, and on the south, a two story loggia. In 1918 the residence was vacant, so the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth purchased it for $75,000 as the site of the college they planned to open in Louisville. The fact that this house is one door north of Presentation Academy, also operated by the Sisters, was fortunate. Architect Whitestone introduced the Italianate style to Louisville, using Rome's Palazzo Farnese for his model.

As successive owners occupied the mansion, they added such treasures as a hand-tooled leather ceiling from Florence for one parlor, ebony mantels, and a large hand-carved hat-rack, which Mr. Buchanan purchased at the New Orleans Exposition. The stained glass which graces this mansion is one of its outstanding features. When Dr. John Coolidge, one-time Director of Harvard's Fogg Art Museum, visited Louisville, he said that Spalding University has the most marvelous display of nineteenth-century stained glass he had ever seen. Many other artifacts make this building a veritable museum. Its crystal and brass chandeliers, "petticoat mirrors," Viennese etched glass doors, and hand-painted tiles in the fireplaces are just a few examples of the elegance this structure contains.

Erected in 1942, the Administration Building, which was attached to the front wall of the 1871 building, fills not only the space of the two lots north of the original building but also that of the former terrace in front of the mansion. The old stained glass street number, 851, no longer faces the street, but it still gleams brightly in the passageway between the newer building and the old Whitestone mansion. Certainly, like many other buildings 132 years old, the Spalding Mansion has many needs. Its heating system leads this list, and administrators are actively seeking grants to remedy this problem.

In December 1973 the Mansion was designated a Kentucky Landmark. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in April 1977.[1]

Egan Leadership Center

The Egan Leadership Center is located at 901 South Fourth Street and is named after Spalding's former President, Sister Eileen Egan. Sister Eileen served the University for 25 years until her retirement in 1994. Containing over 33,000 square feet on three floors, the building houses a 125-seat lectorium and the University bookstore on the first level. The second and third floors contain classrooms and the offices of the School of Business and School of Communication.

Morrison Hall

Morrison Hall, located at the southern boundary of Spalding University's campus, provides on-campus housing for both undergraduate and graduate students. Morrison Hall features 165 dormitory-style rooms, with newly renovated restroom and shower facilities. All rooms are equipped with telephone lines including voicemail, wireless and cable access and individual heating/air-conditioning units. A kitchen, laundry facilities, and a computer lab are also available. Morrison Hall's reception desk is staffed 24 hours a day.

Spalding University Center

In 1963 Spalding University purchased the former Columbia Building and has used this structure for administrative, recreational, athletic, religious, and cultural events. Many of these programs, such as lectures by Buckminster Fuller, Helen Caldicott, M.D., and many others, have been open to the public.

This graceful and useful structure was designed by Louisville architect Thomas J. Nolan in 1925 in a classic style in accordance with Vignola. The external walls are of Bedford limestone with buff brick trim. Interior floors and staircases are marble. The Knights of Columbus commissioned this building to serve as a center for their many activities. Thus, the structure housed an auditorium, gymnasium, bowling alley, ballroom, cafeteria, and numerous meeting rooms.

After the economic depression of 1929, the Knights of Columbus could not maintain this elegant building, so it was used by other groups. During World War II it was a Service Club for military personnel. It was also used by the Louisville Orchestra in that group's early days. Perhaps the best-known use of the gymnasium in the building was its housing of Golden Gloves Boxing events during the 1950s. It was here that Louisville high-schooler Cassius Clay (now Mohammed Ali) began to practice. When Ali won the gold medal for boxing in the 1960 Olympics, Cassius Clay visited Spalding to show his prize to Librarian Sister James Ellen Huff, SCN, his former supervisor.

For the past forty years this structure has served Spalding University and the civic community well. Of particular significance is the auditorium, which seats about 1,000 people in its main floor and balcony. The Spalding Auditorium has splendid acoustics and is considered the best non-union theatre in the Louisville area. This theatre needs renovation, but its fine proscenium arch stage and raked auditorium floor, among other features, make it well worth refurbishing.


  1. ^ Jones, Elizabeth F. Tompkins-Buchanan House [Spalding University]. National Register of Historic Places designation report. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of the Interior/National Park Service, 1977. "The Beautiful House of Bankrupt Whiskey King Despoiled by Auctioneer--Best People Among Buyers." In Samuel W., and William Morgan. Old Louisville: The Victorian Era. Louisville, KY: Data Courier for the Courier-Journal, Louisville Times, 1975. Originally published in Courier-Journal. December 17, 1884. Louisville, KY.



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