Nichols College

private college in Dudley, Massachusetts, United States

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Nichols College
Nichols College, Academy Hall, Dudley, MA.jpg
Academy Hall in 2016.
MottoLearn. Lead. Succeed.
TypePrivate college
Established1815; 207 years ago (1815)
Endowment$32.1 million (2021)
PresidentGlenn M. Sulmasy[1]
ProvostDaniel J. Borgia[2]
121 Center Road
, , ,
42°02′N 71°56′W / 42.04°N 71.93°W / 42.04; -71.93
CampusSuburban, 200 acres (0.81 km2)
Colors   Black and green
Sporting affiliations
NCAA Division III

Nichols College is a private business college in Dudley, Massachusetts. Founded in 1815 as Nichols Academy, Nichols College offers both bachelor's and master's degrees, as well as certificate programs.[3]


View of Conant Hall in circa 1883.
View of Conant Hall in circa 1883.

Nichols Academy

The institution was established in 1815 as Nichols Academy. Its founder was Amasa Nichols, a wealthy industrialist from Dudley, Massachusetts. Other early benefactors of the academy included textile manufacturers such as Samuel Slater.[4] A Universalist, Amasa Nichols intended for the school to be center for Universalist education. He resigned his position as an academy trustee in 1823, after non-Universalists were admitted to the board of directors. Nichols Academy subsequently became a private academy offering either a "classical" or "English" education to both male and female students ages 12 to 21.[5]

After free public schools opened in the surrounding area, enrollment dropped, and Nichols Academy trustees arranged with the town for the school to serve as the Dudley town high school beginning in 1871, an arrangement that lasted until 1909 when the academy closed its doors.[5][6] The campus buildings, designed by such architects as Elbridge Boyden and Charles F. Wilcox, were then used by the town and leased to other educational institutions over time.[4]

Nichols College

In 1931, James L. Conrad reorganized the school into Nichols Junior College of Business Administration and Executive Training, a two-year college, located on the Nichols Academy campus. The purpose of the school was to be a men-only, junior college for business education. In 1938, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts authorized Nichols Junior College to award an Associate Degree in Business Administration. Over time, the college purchased, constructed, and remodeled over forty-four buildings that would shape most of the current campus.[4]

In 1958, the school became known as Nichols College, a four-year college with the authority to grant a Bachelor of Business Administration degree. In 1965, Nichols became accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, and became a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in the following year. In 1971, the school became co-educational, and the state authorized the college to award the degrees of Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, and Bachelor of Science in Public Administration. In 1974, Nichols received the authority to grant the degree of Master of Business Administration. The college was accredited by the International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education in 2005. In 2007, the college was granted authority to offer the degree of Master of Science in Organizational Leadership, and in 2017, the degree of Master of Science in Counterterrorism.

Since 1961, Nichols College has run the Alpha Pi chapter of the Delta Mu Delta honor society for business programs. Since 1980, it has also run their local chapter of the Alpha Phi Sigma honor society for criminal justice programs.

In 1980, the school established the Institute for American Values, later renamed the Robert C. Fischer Policy and Cultural Institute in 1999, as a space for students to think critically about contemporary world issues.[7]

In 2013, the Institute for Women's Leadership was established with the goal of developing the leadership potential of female students.[8] In that same year, the school hosted the Coalition for the Advancement of Jewish Education Conference.


View of the Currier Center in 2016.
View of the Currier Center in 2016.
President Tenure
Amasa Nichols 1815–1823
James L. Conrad 1931–1966
Gordon B. Cross 1966–1973
Darcy C. Coyle 1973–1978
Lowell C. Smith 1978–1996
James J. Darazsdi 1996–1998
Debra M. Townsley 1998–2010
Gerald Fels (interim) 2010–2011
Susan W. Engelkemeyer 2011–2021
Glenn M. Sulmasy 2021–present


Nichols College offers two undergraduate degrees: a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) and a Bachelor of Arts (BA). The school also offers two graduate degrees: a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and a Master of Science (MS).[9] Certificates are also offered in similar disciplines.

The college also offers a four-year Professional Development Seminar (PDS) program of single-credit academic courses. First-year students receive mentoring with the transition to college, and then focus on developing a professional brand in their second year. The third year explores refining interviewing and networking skills, and the final year focuses on career and life after college.[10]


View of the Fels Student Center in 2014.
View of the Fels Student Center in 2014.

The 200-acre Nichols College campus is separated into North and South Campus, which are divided by the Fels Student Center.

Opened in 2012, Fels is centrally located on the Nichols campus. At 30,000 square feet, the center houses the departments of student services, residential life, career services, club meetings spaces, food services, student lounges, a bookstore, and WNRC-LP, the campus radio station.

North Campus consists of ten college buildings, most of which are academic halls. The southernmost point is marked by Conrad Hall, while the westernmost is Conant Library. Along with Academy Hall, they are the oldest buildings on campus. South Campus consists of twelve buildings. The northernmost structure is the Currier Center, the southernmost is Kuppenheimer Hall, and the easternmost is the Athletic and Fitness Center.


Nichols College Athletics—known as the Bison—offers a variety of sports for men and women, as well as coeducational ones. The Athletic and Fitness Center within North Campus includes Levy Rink, Robinson Tennis Courts, and Michael Vendetti Field, a multipurpose turf field used for field hockey, football, and lacrosse.[11]

The Bison compete within the NCAA Division III, and since 1995, have been a member of the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC). The men's volleyball team plays within the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC). In terms of club sports, the club golf team competes in the National Collegiate Club Golf Association (NCCGA), the men's rugby team is part of the New England Rugby Football Union (NERFU). Former memberships include the Colonial Hockey Conference (CHC), Commonwealth Coast Football (CCF), Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC), the New England Hockey Conference (NEHC), and the Worcester Collegiate Hockey League (WCHL).

Currently, the school offers eleven men's sports: baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. There are also ten women's sports: basketball, cross country, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field, and volleyball. Coeducational athletics include cheerleading and esports, which competes within the National Association of Collegiate Esports.

Both men's and women's teams have won numerous CCC championships. The men's tennis squad won eight consecutive titles through the 2011–2012 to 2018–2019 seasons, and the women's team has won four titles in 2010-2011, 2016-2017, 2017–2018, and 2018-2019. The men's basketball team claimed three consecutive titles from 2016 to 2017 through 2018-2019, and the men's hockey team was victorious in 2017-2018. Men's soccer has won two titles in 2010 and 2014, and the women won three times, namely in 1996 and 2002. The women's field hockey team also lifted a trophy in 2009. Outside of the CCC, men's hockey has won three ECAC Northeast Championships in 2008-2009, 2013-2014, and 2014-2015, as well as the WCHL Tournament in 1971.

Notable head coaches of the men's football team include: Hal Chalmers (1947-1958), Harry Gaffney (1959-1961), Michael Vendetti (1962-1985), and Jim Crowley (1993-1995).

Notable people




See also


  1. ^ Veshi, Susan. "Introducing President Glenn M. Sulmasy". Nichols College. Retrieved 23 July 2021.
  2. ^ Veshi, Susan. "Dean at Bryant Zhuhai campus named provost at Nichols College". Nichols College. Retrieved 20 April 2022.
  3. ^[user-generated source]
  4. ^ a b c "History & Accreditation". Nichols College.
  5. ^ a b oleson, Ellie (7 Feb 2014). "Son of former Nichols College president pens second volume of school's history". Telegram & Gazette. Worcester, Massachusetts.
  6. ^ Patnaude, Ed (20 June 2008). "'Spring on Hill' traces academic developments". Telegram & Gazette. Worcester, Massachusetts.
  7. ^ "Fischer Institute". Nichols College.
  8. ^ "Institute for Women's Leadership". Nichols College.
  9. ^ "Degree Programs". Nichols College.
  10. ^ "Professional Development Seminar". Nichols College.
  11. ^ "Facilities". Nichols College Athletics website.
  12. ^ Melton, J. Gordon (1999). Religious Leaders of America. Detroit, MI: Gale Research. p. 86. ISBN 978-0-8103-8878-9.

External links

Original content from Wikipedia, shared with licence Creative Commons By-Sa - Nichols College