John Cabot University

Coordinates: 41°53′16″N 12°28′02″E / 41.88778°N 12.46722°E / 41.88778; 12.46722
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John Cabot University
Seal of John Cabot University
MottoExplorando Excello
TypePrivate university
PresidentFranco Pavoncello
Academic staff
Students1800 undergrad and grad[2]
41°53′16″N 12°28′02″E / 41.88778°N 12.46722°E / 41.88778; 12.46722
ColorsBlue and White

John Cabot University (JCU) is a private American university[3] in Rome, Italy. It was founded in 1972 and it offers undergraduate degrees, graduate degrees, and study abroad programs to English-speaking students. The university has more than 700 degree-seeking students and more than 1000 visiting students every year, representing over 75 nationalities. The average class size is 15 students. The university consists of three campuses and three residence halls centrally located in Trastevere, Rome. The language of instruction is English.[4]


The college was founded in 1972 and it was originally located within a religious school called Pro Deo University.[5] It was named after 15th century Italian explorer Giovanni Caboto, also known as John Cabot, who opened the channels for further exploration of North America.[6]

As of 1978, most students at John Cabot were business majors, though some were getting an Associate of Arts degree. From 1985 to 1991, the university expanded and created programs in Art History, International Affairs and English Literature.[5] It was formerly academically associated with Hiram College in Hiram, Ohio.[7] In 1991, the school became an independent university under the name John Cabot University and became accredited in 2003, thus endings its affiliation program with Hiram.[5][8] The library moved, expanded, and was dedicated to benefactors Paul and Maxine Frohring in 1999.[9]


John Cabot University is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.[10] It "follows the American system of education with a distinctive European character."[11] The university offers associate and BA degrees in humanities subjects and in business administration.[12]: 55  [12]: 55  Classes are taught in English.[1] In Fall 2017, John Cabot University launched a Master of Arts in Art History.[13] The Guarini Institute for Public Affairs provides lectures and events on world political and human rights themes.[14]

The Frank J. Guarini School of Business is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).[15]

Undergraduate programs[edit]

Street in Trastevere, Rome
Street in Trastevere, Rome

The university has 11 academic departments:[16]

  • Department of Art and Design
  • Department of Art History
  • Department of Business Administration
  • Department of Communication and Media Studies
  • Department of Economics
  • Department of English Language and Literature
  • Department of History and Humanities
  • Department of Mathematics, Natural, and Applied Sciences
  • Department of Modern Languages and Literature
  • Department of Political Science and International Affairs
  • Department of Psychological and Social Sciences

Graduate programs[edit]

John Cabot University's Master of Arts (MA) in Art History is based in Rome. There is an emphasis on first-hand research among the museums, monuments, and archeological sites of Rome.[17]

The Master of Arts in International Affairs will be inaugurated in Fall 2024.[18]


A view of the Guarini Campus

The university has three campuses located in the Trastevere neighborhood of central Rome: the Frank J. Guarini Campus, the Frohring Campus,[19] and the Caroline Critelli Guarini Campus on the banks of the Tiber River. The three locations are about five minutes from each other and near both the Vatican and the Roman Forum.[20][21][22] The Frank J. Guarini campus is a former convent with a main three-story building surrounded by terraces and courtyards.

The courtyard of the Guarini Campus

There is also a computer lab, a student lounge, and the Frohring library. The largest classroom on-campus is the Aula Magna Regina auditorium. Some classes are held at the Sacchetti Building on the other side of the Tiber River and many art classes are conducted at monuments or at other notable landmarks.[23]

A student dormitory, the Gianicolo Residence is located two minutes away from the main Guarini campus, but the university also offers off-campus dormitories on Viale di Trastevere and external apartments around the area.[24]


JCU Athletics offers varsity sports, including basketball, volleyball, men's 5v5 and 11v11 soccer, women's 5v5 soccer, cheerleading,[25] and tennis. Intramural activities are offered regularly to students, faculty, and staff, and include beach volleyball, 5v5 soccer, tennis, paddle, table tennis, volleyball and basketball. The JCU Fitness Center, located inside the Gianicolo Residence Hall,[26] is open for students, faculty, and staff with a full array of free weights, machines, and open workout space, along with weekly classes in abs & legs, running, yoga, and kickboxing.

The JCU Athletic department also organizes trips and activities to locations such as Cinque Terre, Mount Circeo, or Sapri. JCU's athletics teams are known as the Gladiators[27] and are represented by their mascot Maximus the Gladiator.

Trastevere stadium is the home field of the JCU Gladiators
Trastevere stadium - home field of the JCU Gladiators

Student demographics[edit]

About 66% of students are female.[1] Students come from more than 75 countries,[28] often in study abroad programs.[29]

The student to teacher ratio is 15:1.[30]


  1. ^ a b c John Cabot University. Peterson's. Accessed July 2016.
  2. ^ "John Cabot University News". John Cabot University. Retrieved 1 September 2023.
  3. ^ "Members by Location - Association of American College and University Programs in Italy". Retrieved 1 September 2023.
  4. ^ "About John Cabot University". John Cabot University. Retrieved 11 February 2021.
  5. ^ a b c Williams, Brian (Spring 2000). "A Fragile Bark Launched on a Most Tempestuous Sea". John Cabot University AlumNews. John Cabot University. 1 (2).
  6. ^ "Study Abroad Rome Italy - An American University Rome - About JCU". Who Was John Cabot?. Archived from the original on 1 February 2016. Retrieved 28 January 2016.
  7. ^ Karen Donley-Hayes (17 April 2015). [1]. Hiram Magazine. Hiram, Ohio: Hiram College. Retrieved 26 August 2022.
  8. ^ "Middle States Commission on Higher Education". Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Retrieved 23 February 2016.
  9. ^ John Cabot University - The First 50 Years. Rome, Italy: John Cabot University. 2023. p. 115.
  10. ^ "John Cabot University". Middle States Commission on Higher Education. Retrieved 6 May 2022.
  11. ^ Cool Colleges 101 National Edition. Peterson's. 2011. p. 1086. ISBN 978-0-7689-3398-7. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  12. ^ a b Derek Bingham (2009). CIS Higher Education Directory 2010. Woodbridge: John Catt Educational Ltd. ISBN 9781904724698.
  13. ^ "MA in Art History - John Cabot University". Society for Classical Studies. 2 December 2016.
  14. ^ "The Guarini Institute for Public Affairs". John Cabot University. Retrieved 14 October 2019.
  15. ^ "Delivering on Excellence and the Highest of Standards in Business Education". AACSB. 10 May 2022.
  16. ^ "Academic Departments | John Cabot University in Rome, Italy".
  17. ^ "JCU Art History Master's Degree 2019/20 | SAI". Retrieved 17 February 2022.
  18. ^ "International Affairs, M.A. | John Cabot University | Roma, Italy". Retrieved 1 September 2023.
  19. ^ "John Cabot University Renames Tiber Campus to Frohring Campus". Retrieved 1 September 2023.
  20. ^ Cool Colleges 101 National Edition. Peterson's. 2011. p. 1086. ISBN 978-0-7689-3398-7. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  21. ^ Four-Year Colleges 2012. Peterson's. 2011. p. 6018. ISBN 978-0-7689-3573-8. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  22. ^ "John Cabot University Campuses, Facilities and Opening Hours".
  23. ^ Balaban, M.; Shields, J. (2007). Study Away: The Unauthorized Guide to College Abroad. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. p. 171. ISBN 978-0-307-42798-4. Retrieved 17 January 2016.
  24. ^ "Gianicolo Residence".
  25. ^ "Team Sports for Students | Recreational Activities at JCU". Retrieved 17 February 2022.
  26. ^ "Athletics and Recreational Sports Programs at JCU". Retrieved 17 February 2022.
  27. ^ "John Cabot University Gladiators – The Official Blog of the athletics department". Retrieved 17 February 2022.
  28. ^ "John Cabot University". The College Board. Retrieved 28 July 2017.
  29. ^ Bingham, D.; Schools, T.C.I. (2009). CIS Higher Education Directory 2010. John Catt Educational, Limited. p. 1-PA55. ISBN 978-1-904724-69-8. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  30. ^ "Study Abroad Rome Italy - Facts at a Glance". An American University Rome. Archived from the original on 1 February 2016. Retrieved 28 January 2016.