Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College
|This article relies on references to primary sources. (November 2007)|
|Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College|
|Motto||Virtus cum Scientia (Virtue and Knowledge United)|
|Type||private liberal arts women's college|
|Religious affiliation||Catholic Church (Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods)|
|Endowment||$9.5 million (2013)|
|President||Dottie L. King, Phd.|
|Location||Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, IN, USA|
|Campus||suburban: 67 acres (0.27 km2)|
|Athletics||four USCAA and IHSA teams,
|Colors||Light Blue and White|
|Mascot||in honor of Sister Mary Joseph Pomeroy, SP (SMWC, B.A. 1921)|
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC), the nation's oldest Catholic liberal arts college for women, was founded in 1840 by Saint Mother Theodore Guerin and the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods. Today, the distance and graduate programs serve both women and men, while the undergraduate campus program maintains its historic commitment to women. The College continues to be sponsored by the Sisters of Providence.
Often referred to as "The Woods," SMWC is a Roman Catholic, four-year liberal arts women's college located in Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, in the U.S. state of Indiana, northwest of Terre Haute, between the Wabash River and the Illinois state line.
The College is known for the Mari Hulman George School of Equine Studies, which houses 50 horses on campus, as well as its pre-professional programs such as pre-veterinarian, pre-law, pre-medicine, pre-dentistry and several niche programs in leadership development, art therapy and music therapy.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is the nation's oldest Catholic liberal arts college for women and one of the oldest institutions of higher education for women in the United States. It was founded as an academy for young women by Saint Mother Theodore Guerin, who located at the site in October 1840. Saint Mother Theodore Guerin was canonized on October 15, 2006, by Pope Benedict XVI, and became Indiana's first saint.
Mother Theodore was not the first to step forward when the Bishop of Vincennes asked the Sisters of Providence to establish an academy for young women in Indiana. Although she had been decorated by the French Board of Education for being a highly gifted and efficient teacher, Mother Theodore felt unworthy of the task of founding an institution of learning, but her superiors convinced Mother Theodore to accept the assignment. Mother Theodore and five other nuns arrived on October 22, 1840, more than three months after leaving France.
In 1846, Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College was granted the first charter for the higher education of women in the state of Indiana. SMWC conferred its first bachelor of arts degree in 1899. It was the first women's college to offer journalism courses and the first to offer degree work in secondary education, home economic, and secretarial science. As the careers open to women have expanded, the College has moved ahead in areas such as business, computer information systems, equine studies, psychology and nursing. SMWC now offers associate and bachelor degrees in over 30 majors on campus and online.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is also recognized as a pioneer in the area of distance education. In 1973, the College introduced one of the first independent study programs in the nation, the Women's External Degree (WED) program. This program served adult women who needed flexible schedules to earn a degree while balancing important family and job responsibilities. In 2005, the College expanded access to its undergraduate distance and adult programs to men while maintaining its longstanding mission to the advancement of women's education and firm commitment to preserving its campus-based resident undergraduate degree program for women only. Today, through the renamed Woods Online program, women and men can earn a college degree in a wide variety of majors. In August 2012, the Indianapolis Business Journal recognized SMWC as having one of the largest online degree programs in the state. More than 800 are currently enrolled in the program from 33 states and all across the globe, including England, Greece, Hong Kong and Jamaica.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College also offers three master's degree programs, open to both women and men, in the hybrid format. In 2000, the College created the Master of Arts in Art Therapy (MAAT) program, designed for persons who utilize or plan to utilize art in therapy or art as therapy, and the Master of Arts in Music Therapy (MAMT) program, which welcomes qualified music therapists seeking an advanced understanding of the therapeutic uses of music. In 2007, the College introduced the Master of Leadership Development (MLD) program. This program explores culture and creativity, leadership identity, ethical decision-making and critical analysis of research. All three master's degree programs utilize distance learning and intensive campus-based residencies.
For six consecutive years, Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College has been ranked as one of the Best Regional Colleges in the Midwest according to the U.S. News & World Report's 2013 Best Colleges guidebook. Ranked 27 among the 72 top Midwest colleges, SMWC was recognized for having one of the highest percentages of classes under 20 students at 91 percent, an average graduation rate of 52 percent, and 40 percent of the freshmen were in the top 25 percent of their high school class.
The curriculum of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is based on a traditional liberal arts education; therefore, all campus students are required to complete an extensive curriculum of general studies in addition to their major(s) and/or minor(s). The required courses include but are not limited to: Theology, Philosophy, French or Spanish, History, Math, Biology or Chemistry, Psychology, Sociology, English, Physical Fitness, Statistics, Art and Music.
Majors include 3+1 Business, Leadership Development, Accounting, Art and Design, Biology, Business Administration, Computer Information Systems (CIS), Education majors (7), English, Equine Studies, Equine Business Management, Equine Training and Instruction, Equine Assisted Therapy, History/Political Science/Pre-Law, Human Resource Management, Human Services, Humanities, Journalism and Media Studies, Marketing, Mathematics, Medical Technology, Music, Music Therapy, Art Therapy, Pre-Professional Studies, and Psychology.
SMWC is a member of the College Consortium of Western Indiana. This membership allows students who are full-time at their home institution to take one class at the other member institutions of Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology and Indiana State University without additional tuition.
Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College is accredited through the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools and approved for teacher training by the Indiana Department of Education and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE). Additionally, many individual programs of various departments are certified by their professional associations.
Programs of various departments are certified by their professional associations, including American Art Therapy Association, American Bar Association, American Music Therapy Association, Institute for the Certification of Computer Professionals (ICCP), National Association of Schools of Music, and Society for Human Resource Management.
From 2010 to 2013, SMWC has been named a Military Friendly School by Victory Media, a media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life. The 2013 Military Friendly Schools list  honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are embracing America's military service members, veterans and spouses, ensuring their success in higher education. The 1,739 institutions on the list exhibit leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience.
SMWC provides scholarships for up to 50 percent of the cost of tuition and fees that exceed the standard education benefit. The United States Department of Veterans Affairs will match the amount of the scholarship - completely covering tuition for qualified veterans.
Saint Mary-of-the- Woods College is a member of the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) and the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA). SMWC athletes make up nearly 30 percent of all campus students. The College currently offers seven sports: basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, hunt seat and western equestrian teams. With the hiring of a new coach in January 2014, SMWC will reinstate it's volleyball program beginning Fall 2015. Recruiting is actively underway.
The athletic teams of SMWC bear the title of "Pomeroys." The name was chosen in memory of Mary Joseph Pomeroy, SP, an alumna and faculty member at SMWC who advocated athletics and physical fitness.
In addition to the reference to general school spirit, Pomeroy Pride is the name of the College's capital campaign, launched in 2012, to build a new sports and recreation center on campus. On Dec. 3, 2013, the decade-long vision of the College came to tuition at the groundbreaking ceremony for the Jeanne Knoerle Sports and Recreation Center. The building site is located at the west edge of campus, behind the Mary and Andy Rooney Library. The estimated 45,000 square foot facility will include a NCAA regulation-sized gym seating approximately 1,000 spectators, a practice gym for auxiliary revenue and intramural sports, a 2,000 square foot lobby, locker rooms, a training room, a fitness room, offices and storage space.
Clabber Girl Classic
The Clabber Girl Classic, named for the famed Clabber Girl trophy presented by the Clabber Girl of Hulman and Company, is a hometown rivalry winter basketball game between SMWC and Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology. This annual competition has resulted in a 13-7 record favoring the Pomeroys.
USCAA National Championships
The SMWC softball team won four consecutive USCAA National Softball Championships (2002–2005). The SMWC Equestrian Team competes throughout the year in both Western and English, traveling to about 20 shows per season. SMWC has been the site for regional horse shows, managed by the SMWC equestrian team members. In 2007, the SMWC Western Team was named IHSA Reserve National Champions.
In 2009, the Pomeroy soccer team experienced a "Cinderella" season, in which they entered the USCAA National Championship Tournament as the 8th seed (the lowest seed) and advanced all the way to the national championship before being defeated by Marygrove College. Just days before the soccer team brought home the silver cup from Burlington, Vermont, the first-year cross-country squad won the USCAA National Championship in New Hampshire. Also in fall 2010, the cross-country team won a second USCAA National Championship.
Softball (8) - 1997, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008
Cross Country (2) - 2009, 2010
Softball (3) - 2010, 2011, 2012
Soccer (1) - 2009
Cross Country (1) - 2012
Basketball (1) - 2000
Virtus cum Scientia
These words, translated as “Virtue with Knowledge United,” appear on the SMWC seal and is the College motto.
College coat of arms
The College's coat of arms is a shield divided vertically in halves. The left field is blue, showing in the center a poplar tree on a hill or terrace in natural colors, with the first letter of the name of Mary; these latter devices are in gold. The right field is gold, and shows three eaglets with open wings in blue and beak and talons in red. The right half of the shield shows the arms of Madame du Roscoat, the foundress of the Sisters of Providence at Ruille-sur-Loire, France. The three eaglets are emblematic of the Holy Trinity, the motto of the du Roscoat family being “Trino Soli sit honor et gloria” (“To the Triune God alone honor and glory”).
The left field is charged with devices symbolic or significant of some fact connected with the history of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods. The rayed star, charged with the letter “M” in blue, is an emblem of Mary, Mother of God, the Stella Matutina, under whose protection Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, represented by a tree, places all its hopes for growth and life. The Latin crosses are emblems of Redemption and Catholicity. The crest is the count’s coronet of the du Roscoat family and the motto, “Virtus cum Scientia,” is the one chosen by Mother Theodore Guerin, foundress of the Sisters of Providence in America.
Worn by SMWC graduates, the Ring was designed in 1922 by students Margaret Williams Mead ’22 and Dorothy Helm Geisel ’23 and was first given in 1922 to seniors. The oak leaves are symbolic of knowledge gained at SMWC, and the insignia is carved in black onyx.
- Amalia Küssner Coudert, painter and miniaturist
- Mari Hulman George, chair of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
- Sister Jeanne Knoerle, author and educator, president of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College 1968-1983
- Marta Linares, First Lady of Panama (2009- )
- Caroline Myss, mystic and medical intuitive
- Sister Alexa Suelzer, theologian, author and educator known for Old Testament criticism
||This article has an unclear citation style. (September 2009)|
- "U.S. and Canadian Institutions Listed by Fiscal Year 2013 Endowment Market Value and Percentage Change in Endowment Market Value from FY 2012 to FY 2013" (PDF). National Association of College and University Business Officers. January 23, 2014. Retrieved February 5, 2014.
- Patron Saints Index: Saint Mother Theodore Guerin
- History of the Sisters of Providence
- Sisters of Providence - Leaving France
- Sisters of Providence - Landing on U.S. soil
- US News & World Report Best Colleges Guidebook
- Military Friendly Schools List
- New President "Saint Mary of the Woods names Behrs as 15th President". Saint Mary of the Woods College News and Events. Retrieved 2007-01-23.
- endowment "2005 NACUBO endowment study" (PDF). National Association of College and University Business Officers. Retrieved 2006-02-25.
- History of the Sisters of Providence History of the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods by Sister Eugenia Logan, S.P. Moore-Langan Printing Company.
- IHSA "Intercollegiate Horse Show Association". Retrieved 2007-11-09.