Thomas More College of Liberal Arts

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Thomas More College of Liberal Arts
Thomas More College of Liberal Arts seal.png
Seal of Thomas More College of Liberal Arts
Latin: Thomae Morae Societas Artium Liberalium
MottoCaritas congaudet veritati
Motto in English
Charity rejoices in the truth
TypePrivate liberal arts college
Religious affiliation
Catholic Church
PresidentWilliam Fahey
Location, ,
United States

Coordinates: 42°48′30″N 71°29′00″W / 42.80833°N 71.48333°W / 42.80833; -71.48333
CampusHistoric Colonial
AffiliationsThe Center for the Restoration of Christian Culture

The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts is a private Catholic liberal arts college in Merrimack, New Hampshire. The college emphasizes classical education in the Catholic intellectual tradition and is named after Saint Thomas More. The school has approximately 100 students. It is endorsed by The Newman Guide to Choosing a Catholic College.



Thomas More College was founded in 1978, with political science professor Peter Sampo as its first president. Sampo had been a co-founder and president of both Cardinal Newman College in St. Louis[1] and Magdalen College, also in New Hampshire.[2] The curriculum, designed by educators Donald and Louise Cowan, associated with the University of Dallas, centered on the direct reading of foundational works of Western culture.[3]

Since 2009[edit]

In 2009, the curriculum was revised under president William Fahey in an effort to improve its chronological approach to topics and strengthen the presentation of Catholic themes.[4] Distinct majors in literature, political science, and philosophy were phased out in favor of a non-major liberal arts program.[5]

In the same year regional accrediting body the New England Association of Schools and Colleges placed the college on probation for two years on the ground that it was not meeting NEASC's standards for financial resources. The college improved its financial position, and the period of probation ended in 2011.[6][7][8]

In 2011, the college announced its intention to move to a larger tract of land in Groton, Massachusetts, keeping the campus in Merrimack as a site for future graduate programs.[9][8]

In late 2013, the college bought a 1908 mansion in the Nashville Historic District of Nashua. College president William Fahey indicated plans to use the historic house, originally built by shoe manufacturer Frank Anderson and later the home of Mount Saint Mary Seminary, a girls' high school, as an educational site and eventually also a dormitory.[10][11] The relocation plan to Groton was consequently abandoned in August 2015, after the college acquired the Anderson House, due to concerns about the time and fundraising needed in order to develop the property in Groton.[12]


The campus in winter
  1. Peter V. Sampo, 1978-2006
  2. Jeffrey Nelson, 2006-2009
  3. William Fahey, 2009-current


The academic program at Thomas More College leads to a B.A. degree in Liberal Arts without a major concentration. The core curriculum is a Great Books program.[13] Students read great works of Western literature, philosophy, and political science in their entirety rather than as a collection of excerpts.[14] Students are also required to study a semester in Rome; this is done in the second semester of sophomore year.[15]

In 2010, the college started a program of teaching students practical skills in art and music, using the medieval guild system as a model.[16]

The college is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.[17]

For admissions to the college, Thomas More College accepts the Classic Learning Test (CLT) as alternatives to the SAT and ACT.



The college has sponsored the Centre for Faith and Culture at Oxford, England, publisher of Second Spring, a journal on faith and culture, since 2007.

In April 2011, Thomas More College, together with Holy Spirit College in Atlanta, reached an agreement with the non-profit publisher Sophia Institute Press, which became the publishing division of the two colleges. The two colleges, in turn, appoint representatives to the board of directors of Sophia Institute.[21][22]

Notable faculty[edit]

Former faculty[edit]


  1. ^ Donald Berns (December 11, 1977). "College Enrollment Easily Fits Into Pizza Parlor". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Retrieved July 7, 2011.
  2. ^ John Whitson (September 19, 2006). "Thomas More College head has big plans". New Hampshire Union Leader. Retrieved August 29, 2010.
  3. ^ "The Newman Guide to Catholic Colleges". Cardinal Newman Society.
  4. ^ John Zmirak (December 6, 2011). "Where Theology Keeps Her Crown: Thomas More College". Retrieved December 10, 2018. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  5. ^ "Thomas More College's new president inspired by Pope Benedict". Catholic News Agency (ACI Prensa). March 31, 2010.
  6. ^ "Public Statement on Thomas More College of Liberal Arts" (PDF). New England Association of Schools and Colleges. December 10, 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 20, 2011.
  7. ^ Michael Brindley (February 26, 2010). "Rivier gets top rating". Nashua Telegraph.
  8. ^ a b Art Campbell (February 15, 2011). "More College, More or Less, for Groton". The Groton Line.
  9. ^ Michael Brindley (March 9, 2011). "Merrimack's Thomas More College planning to relocate undergraduate program to Mass". Nashua Telegraph.
  10. ^ Kimberly Houghton (February 12, 2014). "Thomas More College buys Nashua property". New Hampshire Union Leader. Archived from the original on 10 Aug 2016. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  11. ^ Sheryl Rich-Kern (December 12, 2013). "Nashua's Historic Mansion Sold". New Hampshire Public Radio. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  12. ^ Pierre Comtois (August 31, 2015). "Thomas More College will not relocate to Groton". The Lowell Sun. Retrieved June 10, 2016.
  13. ^ "The 25 Best Great Books Programs - Best College Reviews". Retrieved 2019-08-08.
  14. ^ Thomas More's curriculum page
  15. ^ David Kerr (2011-10-07). "U.S. College Students Celebrate Our Lady of the Rosary in Rome". National Catholic Register. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  16. ^ "Catholic college resurrects 'guilds' to teach craftsmanship, artistry and charity". EWTN News. July 27, 2010.
  17. ^ "Thomas More College of Liberal Arts". New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
  18. ^ "Thomas More College of Liberal Arts - What Will They Learn?". Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  19. ^ "Thomas More College of Liberal Arts". Students. Retrieved 2018-12-06.
  20. ^ "The Thomas More College of Liberal Arts". Cardinal Newman Society. Retrieved 2018-12-10.
  21. ^ "Sophia Institute Press names new President". Catholic News Agency. November 14, 2012.
  22. ^ "After acquisition, Crisis Magazine re-launches website". Catholic News Agency. February 10, 2012. Retrieved June 10, 2016.

External links[edit]