Holy Family University

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Holy Family University
Hfu logo vert RGB color.jpg
Former names
Holy Family College
Motto Teneor votis
Motto in English
I am bound by my responsibilities
Type Private liberal arts
Established 1954
Affiliation Roman Catholic
Endowment $14 Million (2014)
President Sr. Maureen McGarrity, CSFN
Students 1,985 (2016). [1]
Location Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
40°03′36″N 74°59′17″W / 40.060°N 74.988°W / 40.060; -74.988Coordinates: 40°03′36″N 74°59′17″W / 40.060°N 74.988°W / 40.060; -74.988
Campus Urban
Colors Blue and White
Athletics NCAA Division IICACC
Nickname Tigers
Affiliations ACCU
Website holyfamily.edu

Holy Family University is a Roman Catholic liberal arts university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States within the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.[2] It was chartered in 1954 by the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth.[3] In addition to the main Torresdale campus in the northeastern section of the city, there are satellite locations in Newtown, and on Bristol Pike in Bensalem.


Holy Family University is an accredited Catholic, private, co-educational university. The University is under the patronage of the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth, the model for all families. Through various activities and the curriculum, concerted efforts are made to deepen the students' awareness of the Holy Family and the modern family as an important social unit.

Chartered in 1954, Holy Family boasts a vital history among colleges in the Philadelphia area. The founding of Holy Family College in 1954 by the Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth marked the culmination of an evolutionary cycle begun in 1934 with the opening of the Holy Family Teacher Training School. During the early years, the college functioned as an affiliate of the Catholic University of America. The graduate programs in education were approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education in March 1990, followed by the Nursing and Counseling Psychology programs in 1997, and the Accelerated Business Administration program in 2003. The graduate program in Criminal Justice was approved in 2007. The graduate program in TESOL and Literacy was approved in 2008. The doctoral program in Educational Leadership and Professional Studies was approved in 2010.

Holy Family is the youngest of the four Catholic universities in the city of Philadelphia; the others are Saint Joseph's, La Salle, and Chestnut Hill College.

List of Presidents[edit]

  1. Sister Neomisia Rutkowska, CSFN, PhD (1954–1959)
  2. Sister Aloysius Sabacinska, CSFN, PhD (1959–1971)
  3. Sister Lillian Budny, CSFN, PhD (1971–1981)
  4. Sister Francesca Onley, CSFN, PhD (1981–2014)
  5. Sister Maureen McGarrity, CSFN, PhD (2014–present


Holy Family University is divided into four schools:

  • Arts and Sciences
  • Business Administration and Extended Learning
  • Education
  • Nursing and Allied Health Professions

The undergraduate student-faculty ratio for the average class is 12:1.

There are degree programs for undergraduate and graduate studies. Undergraduate studies include nursing, criminal justice, education, business, psychology, and communication. Graduate studies include counseling psychology, education, nursing, criminal justice, and an MBA program.

In January 2011, a doctoral program was introduced for those pursuing a Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership and Professional Studies.[4]

Residence life[edit]

There are three housing options: St. Joseph's Hall, Garden Residence, and the Stevenson Lane Residence. The Stevenson Lane Residence is the newest residence building, accommodates 148 students and offers suite-style living.[5] St. Joseph's Hall houses freshmen students and features a 24-hour computer lab, lounges, vending machines, and a recreation room designed by students. The Garden Residence, consisting of apartment-style dorms, is a short walk from campus. The Duplex Apartments are located just off-campus and house three students each.

Student clubs and organizations[edit]

Clubs and activities for students include Student Government Association, PRSSA, Students At Your Service (a community-service organization), Campus Ministry, Drama Club, and Tri-Lite (a student-run newspaper).


Official athletics logo.

Holy Family University has 14 varsity sports teams, nine women’s and five men’s teams. Their nickname is the Tigers and their colors are blue and white. Sandra Michael has been the Assistant Vice President of Athletics since 1985. She oversees the University's 14 NCAA Division II sports. The teams at HFU compete in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) which is composed of 14 colleges and universities located in Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. The CACC finished third nationally among Division II conferences.

The women’s teams are basketball, cross-country running, track and field, lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball. The women's basketball team are nine time CACC Champions, winning the crown in 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2012, 2013, and 2015. They've appeared in the NCAA Tournament 11 times, including from 2004-2013 and in 2015.

Holy Family University men’s teams consist of basketball, cross country, soccer, and track and field (indoor and outdoor). In the 2015-16 season, the men's basketball team finished with a 23-5 record, including a 17-2 conference record, to secure the number one seed in the CACC Tournament.


  1. ^ "Holy Family University | Overall Rankings | Best College | US News". Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved 2014-08-26. 
  2. ^ "Holy Family University | Overall Rankings | Best College | US News". Colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com. Retrieved 2014-08-26. 
  3. ^ "U-CAN: Holy Family University". Members.ucan-network.org. Retrieved 2014-08-26. 
  4. ^ [1][dead link]
  5. ^ "Conwell-Egan HS, Holy Family University Give Students Jump-Start On College Classes « CBS Philly". Philadelphia.cbslocal.com. 2014-04-08. Retrieved 2014-08-26. 

External links[edit]