College of Mount Saint Vincent

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College of Mount Saint Vincent
Mount St. Vincent Logo.jpg
Latin: Collegium ad Sancti Vincentii Montem
Motto Bonitatem et disciplinam et scientiam doce me.
Motto in English
"Teach me goodness and discipline and knowledge."
Type Private
Established 1847
Affiliation Roman Catholic
(Sisters of Charity of New York)
Endowment $17,181,154[1]
President Charles L. Flynn, Jr.
Undergraduates 1,527
Postgraduates 400
Address 6301 Riverdale Ave
Bronx, New York, 10471
, Riverdale (NYC), NY, United States
40°54′48″N 73°54′31″W / 40.913472°N 73.908498°W / 40.913472; -73.908498Coordinates: 40°54′48″N 73°54′31″W / 40.913472°N 73.908498°W / 40.913472; -73.908498
Campus Urban
Colors White, Gold[2]
Athletics NCAA Division IIISkyline
Nickname Dolphins
Affiliations ACCU
Mascot Dolphin

The College of Mount Saint Vincent (CMSV) is a Catholic liberal arts college located in the northwest[3] corner of the Riverdale section of The Bronx, New York, adjacent to the Yonkers border. It is the northernmost location in New York City. It was founded by the Sisters of Charity of New York.

The college serves over 1,800 students with professional undergraduate programs in nursing, business, communication, and education and graduate degree programs in nursing, business, TESOL and education. It is under the care of the Sisters of Charity of New York, one of several Sisters of Charity congregations of Catholic women that trace their lineage back to Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton.

College history

The College was founded in 1847 as the Academy of Mount Saint Vincent, a school for women. It took its name from Saint Vincent de Paul, the 17th-century French priest who worked with the poor and founded the original Sisters of Charity, and from the geographic high point along Fifth Avenue in Manhattan known as McGowan's Pass. When New York City began acquiring land for Central Park in 1855, the sister, under the leadership of Mother Angela Hughes, sister of Archbishop John Hughes, purchased the 70-acre (280,000 m2) "Fonthill," the estate of famed Shakespearean actor Edwin Forrest, in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx. On April 25, 1865, the funeral train carrying Abraham Lincoln back to Springfield, Illinois passed by the College.[4]

In 1911, the Academy became a degree-granting institution, and changed its name to the College of Mount Saint Vincent. The Campus Record, the original college newspaper (named the Alembic in 1970), published its first issue in 1922. Just five years later, the first issue of the College's literary magazine, the Fonthill Dial, was published. The end of the decade saw the first issue of the College yearbook, the Parapet. In 1943, the College began working in conjunction with St. Vincent's Hospital in New York City to provide a nursing education program for its students.

In 1964 the Mount joined forces with Manhattan College in a Cooperative Program that ran until 2006. Also in 1964, the Mount granted its first degrees in Fine Arts. In 1974, the College of Mount Saint Vincent became a co-educational institution, as it began admitting men. In 1976, the College Emeritus program was started to provide courses for mature students.

The Mount began offering a new baccalaureate nursing program in 1975. It integrated business as an independent major in 1983. In 1988, almost 80 years after the College first amended its charter to confer Master of Science degrees. At the end of the decade, in 1989, the Honors Program was established.

Collegium ad Sancti Vincentii Montem

Green initiatives

The College of Mount Saint Vincent completed the installation of solar panels in Villa Lot–the College's largest parking facility–making it one of the biggest solar arrays in New York City. The project, are coordinated in partnership with the nation's top solar provider SolarCity, will significantly reduce the College's carbon footprint and–along with other green initiatives–cut its electrical consumption by over $100,000 per year. The college has also started to install solar panels on top of the college gym, Peter Jay Sharp Athletic and Recreation Center. Officials at the college are hoping that all the buildings on the campus will have solar panels installed on the top of the buildings in the near future.

Campus buildings

Fonthill Castle

The Fonthill Castle, dramatically sited above the Hudson River, was the centerpiece of the estate of actor Edwin Forrest. Forrest built Fonthill in Riverdale, the Bronx, New York, from 1848 to 1852 for his wife, but before they could occupy it, they divorced and Forrest sold the estate to the Sisters of Charity. Fonthill was named after the castle of William Beckford (the younger) in England, Fonthill Abbey. The design of Mr. Forrest's Fonthill Castle has been attributed to Thomas C. Smith of New York City. The castle housed the college library from 1942 to 1968. Fonthill forms the architectural symbol of the college and houses the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.[5]

The Villa

One of the original buildings on site, the Villa (or gardener's cottage) was built of ashlar, sometime prior to 1856 in mid-19th century "bracketed" style.[6] From 1887 to 1911 the "Stone Cottage" (originally called "Lourdes Villa") housed the St. Aloysius Academy for Boys. Many of the boys attending had sisters who were students at Mt. St. Vincent Academy. Actor Lionel Barrymore enrolled at the age of 10. At the turn of the century, American playwright Eugene O'Neill was enrolled in 1895[7] and received his First Communion in the Chapel in 1900. In 1911 the Villa, which no longer educated boys, was used as a college residence for the ladies.

Founders Hall

Founders Hall was built between 1857 and 1859 and subsequently expanded in 1865, 1883, 1906–1908, and in 1951. The original building is a five-story red brick building on a fieldstone base. It features a six-story square tower topped by a copper lantern and spire. The tower is flanked by five story gabled sections.

The Chapel of the Immaculate Conception was enlarged to its present size in 1874. The crucifixion scene over the altar was painted by Constantino Brumidi, who also worked on the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. The stained glass windows were created by Meyer of Munich. The organ was built by Hilborne L. Roosevelt of New York City in 1873.[8]

In 1877, Thomas Edison came to campus to demonstrate inventions for the Academy students in South Hall.[4] In 1978 a former locker room in the Administration Building was converted into Cahill Lounge. The Administration Building was listed on National Registrar of Historic Places in 1980.

Today, The Administration Building has been renamed to "Founders Hall" in honor of all those who founded the college.

A fire started in half of Founders Hall in the summer of 2014 and the damage was restored later during the school year.


Maryvale was constructed in 1859; it originally served as a laundry. In 1906 the laundry moved to the newly constructed Rosary Hall and Maryvale housed science classes. In 1954, Science classes moved to the new science building and Maryvale became the Library Annex and Studio Annex. Today, it mainly houses the communications and fine arts departments. Maryvale features a radio studio and a TV studio. The radio shows stream on livestream. The TV studio is where students film the school's news program, Mount Saint Vincent News.

Lourdes Grotto

In 1873 the Lourdes Grotto was built. It is now considered the oldest outdoor grotto still in existence in the United States. The grotto is situated on a little island in a small lake in an area at one time known as "Lourdes Park".[4]

Le Gras Hall

In 1875, Le Gras Hall, named after Louise le Gras de Marillac, was built as St. Vincent Free School for the Catholic Children of Riverdale. This brought more young children onto the campus which at that time was filled with orchards and vegetable gardens. In 1911, with the opening of a parochial school in Riverdale, Le Gras was remodeled to house the college gymnasium with an auditorium on the second floor.[4] It also housed the commuter students' cafeteria. In 1931 the library moved from the Administration building to Le Gras, before relocating in 1942 to Fonthill Castle. In 1951, the commuter students' cafeteria moved from Le Gras Hall to the first floor of the Administration Building.

Rosary Hall

In 1906 Rosary Hall was constructed to house the boiler and laundry. The Sisters made room for the new building by using land in the lower orchard.

Grace Center

In 1930 Hayes Auditorium and Gym were built on the site of the vegetable field. This building was renovated in the early 1990s and is now known as the Grace Center.

Science Hall

In 1954 science classes moved from Maryvale to the new Science Hall on the hill, which had been built on the former sports field.

Elizabeth Seton Library

In 1968, the new Elizabeth Seton Library, or Seton Library, was opened. The College's community spirit was evident as many books were moved from the Castle to Seton Library via a human chain stretching up the hill.[citation needed]The library is named after Saint Elizabeth Seton, the first native-born American to be canonized. Elizabeth Seton founded the Sisters of Charity.

Residence halls

  • The corner stone of the Italian Renaissance-style Seton Hall was set by John Cardinal Farley in November 1911.[4]
  • In 1920 the Sisters purchased the adjacent Randolf estate and renamed the house Marillac Hall after Louise le Gras de Marillac who was declared a saint that year and had been instrumental in the foundation of the Daughters of Charity. In 1922 the north wing was added to the residence hall, and in 1924 the south wing.
  • In 1962, the cornerstone was laid for Spellman Hall.
  • The cornerstone was laid for the Alumnae Hall in 1965.


CMSV is registered by the New York State Education Department, Office of Higher Education, in Albany, NY. and is independently chartered to grant degrees by the Regents of the State of New York.

The student-faculty ratio at CMSV is 13:1. The most popular majors at College of Mount St. Vincent include: Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse; Business/Commerce, General; Speech Communication and Rhetoric; and Psychology, General.[9]


Mount Saint Vincent teams participate as a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division III. The Dolphins are a member of the Skyline Conference. Men's sports include baseball, basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, volleyball and wrestling, while women's sports include basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, softball, and volleyball.

Notable alumni

Notable faculty and staff


  1. ^ "U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges College of Mount Saint Vincent" (web page). U.S. News & World Report Higher Education. U.S. News & World Report. 2015. Retrieved September 20, 2016. 
  2. ^ "College of Mount Saint Vincent". Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  3. ^ "Google Maps". Google Maps. Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c d e Brown, Mary Josephine. College of Mount Saint Vincent: A Famous Convent School, P.J. Kenedy & Sons, New York, 1917
  5. ^ National Park Service (2009-03-13). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  6. ^ "Lehman College Art Gallery: Architecture/College of Mount Saint Vincent". Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  7. ^ "Eugene O'Neill". Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  8. ^ "Hilborne L. Roosevelt", The New York City Organ Project Archived 2014-07-03 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ "College of Mount St. Vincent – Mount St. Vincent College – Academic Life – Best College – US News". Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  10. ^ "The Countess of Romanones Commands a Dazzling Cast in Her Second Memoir of Espionage, the Spy Went Dancing". Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  11. ^ "How Desus & Kid Mero Went From Twitter Cranks to Comedy's Hottest Duo – Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 24 April 2016. 
  12. ^ "Balasole Founder and Fine Arts Instructor Roberto Villanueva Receives Distinguished Alumni Award - College of Mount Saint Vincent". College of Mount Saint Vincent. 2013-11-21. Retrieved 2017-09-15. 

External links

  • College of Mount Saint Vincent
  • Sisters of Charity of New York
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