Albertus Magnus College (visited 10/12/16)
Albertus is a small school built on a hillside in a residential part of New Haven. This is a quiet, safe neighborhood (so much so that there are no blue lights; students are given an emergency tab for their keychains. No one was able to tell me a time that it was actually used for anything other than accidentally sitting on it when it was in a pocket). The admissions rep said, “If you’re looking to be a person instead of a number, this is the place to do it.” Students looking for a highly personalized, small environment would do well here, particularly if they’re looking to play sports. Over half the student body (55%) play on one of the 7 men’s and 8 women’s teams (right now, women’s swimming and golf are club level, not varsity. They’re looking to add Field Hockey next year, and hopefully these will be Varsity in the next couple years). Basketball and baseball draw a crowd, as will anything played on their turf field, particularly in the evenings.
There are only 500 day-population students (basically traditional-aged college students); there are 1000 in the evening population who have to be 22 years or older. This is still a regional school with many students coming from CT, NYC, NJ, and MA with a few random other states represented (often these students come for the sports). About 290 students live on campus with space available for another 100. It’s a historical campus, so most dorms look like old houses. Mostly it’s not a suitcase school because of the athletes.
Campus is close enough to downtown to take advantage of all that it offers. Students particularly enjoy the city-run events on the Downtown Green. From a stop on campus, students can take the Yale shuttle for free which takes them around town; this is well utilized. On-campus events are mostly organized by the Student Activity Board which runs weekly events, large annual events such as Spring Formal and Fall Fling, and off-campus trips to apple orchards in the fall, NYC, and Boston.
This is a religiously affiliated college in the Dominican heritage: the mission is about balanced education and to give students a safe space to grow, to discover who they are, and to be able to search for truth, whatever that means for them. As part of their core requirements, all students take a religion and a philosophy class; there isn’t any other religious requirement. Sisters live on campus, and the interim President is a Sister. There’s a deacon on campus, as well.
Like most small schools, faculty are involved, caring, and get high marks from students. “We have the best faculty! I’m a master’s student, and they are so supportive and that carries over into day population. They’ll email students if you aren’t in class to find out what’s going on.” Some of the academic programs that the admissions rep wanted to highlight included:
- Business Management: in addition to the Management concentration, they just added one in entrepreneurship and are talking about a ThinkTank lab.
- Digital Media is new
- Criminal Justice
- Psychology with concentrations in general psych, child development, counseling and mental health, and art therapy
- Art Therapy can be done either under art or psych. Students can continue on to complete a Masters in Art Therapy; this is 1 of only 30 institutions in the county to offer this Masters. It’s competitive and students have to apply; 15 students are accepted each year; maybe 5 of them come from Albertus. Students coming from the undergraduate program have no edge over those coming from outside; they have to have the art background to get in.
- Finance with concentrations in Corporate Finance or Personal Finance Management
Students are well prepared for the job market: during their time at Alburtus, they create an e-portfolio and add anything dealing their major, job preparation (including a resume), etc into it. Almost all students (90%) complete an internship as an undergrad. High numbers also participate in one of 22 study-abroad programs which is done in conjunction with Assumption College in Worcester, Mass. Service Learning trips are also popular; students will build homes in Jamaica, renovate buildings in Montreal, etc.