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Private university in West Long Branch, New Jersey, US
Monmouth Junior College (1933-1956) Monmouth College (1956-1995)
There are about 4,400 full-time and 260 part-time undergraduate and 1,750 graduate students, as well as 302 full-time faculty members. About 80% of faculty members hold Ph.D.s or other terminal degrees in their field of study. The university's student-to-faculty ratio is about 14:1. Forty-four percent of students live on-campus. Most of Monmouth's student body is drawn from the northeastern United States, although student body is composed of students from 29 states and 28 countries.
The school that would become Monmouth University was founded in 1933 as Monmouth Junior College, a two-year junior college under Dean Edward G. Schlaefer. Created in New Jersey during the Great Depression, Monmouth Junior College was intended by Schlaefer to provide an opportunity for higher education to high school graduates in Monmouth County who could not afford to go away to college. The junior college did not have its own campus at the time of its founding and was housed at Long Branch High School in Long Branch. Due to sharing a building with a high school, classes were taught during evening hours after the high school students had departed.
Monmouth Junior College opened to students on November 21, 1933. The junior college's first student enrollment was reported at 325, all graduates from Monmouth County high schools, with a faculty of 12 instructors. Federal reemployment funds financed the junior college, with approximately $18,000 approved by New Jersey Director of Emergency Relief John Colt.
In 1947, the school received full college accreditation from the New Jersey Board of Education to award associate degrees to students. 100 students became the first recipients of associate degrees from Monmouth Junior College the following year. Support from students and the community are credited with helping the school continue to teach classes and become a privately funded institution.
New location and four-year status
Monmouth Junior College acquired its own campus in 1955 when it relocated from Long Branch to the estate of Shadow Lawn in West Long Branch. The estate was purchased from Eugene H. Lehman for $350,000. In addition to the monetary cost, Lehman signed over the estate under the provision that he serve as the school's president for one year.
A year later, the school was renamed Monmouth College when it was accredited by the state to offer four-year programs that would award bachelor degrees to students. Through the agreement that granted Shadow Lawn to the school, Lehman became the first president of Monmouth College from 1956 to 1957. Schlaefer resumed leadership after Lehman's tenure, serving as president from 1957 to 1962. Monmouth's first commencement was held at Shadow Lawn the same year that Schlaefer assumed the presidency and the first bachelor's degrees were awarded the year after, in 1958.
The 1960s saw further growth for Monmouth in campus size, athletics, student life, and academics. At the start of the decade, the Murry and Leonie Foundation transferred ownership of the Murry Guggenheim House to Monmouth, which became the school's library. The transfer also included a stable and carriage house that would be converted into the Lauren K. Woods Theatre. Elmwood and Pinewood, Monmouth's first campus residence halls, opened in 1963, while the William T. Boylan Gymnasium was built in 1965 as a new home for the basketball team. Additional property was acquired by the college in 1969 when Monmouth was granted ownership of Maurice Pollak's home, the site of what would become Pollak Theatre. Amid the campus expansion, Monmouth College received authorization from the state to offer graduate programs and award master degrees in 1967.
A significant development occurred for Monmouth in 1995 when it was granted university status by the New Jersey Commission on Higher Education, resulting in the school being renamed Monmouth University. The university status was obtained under the leadership of Rebecca Stafford, the school's first female president, who described Monmouth as being "on the move". The College Center, constructed in the 1970s, would be renamed the Rebecca Stafford Student Center in her honor.
The 21st century saw the completion of a pedestrian underpass on campus in 2001. By the end of the decade, the Multipurpose Activity Center replaced the William T. Boylan Gymnasium as the home of the men's and women's basketball teams in 2009. The new facility, which cost $57 million, was described by then-Senior Associate Athletic Director Jeff Stapleton as "probably the biggest undertaking that the institution has done". The facility was renamed OceanFirst Bank Center in 2016 after Monmouth University and OceanFirst Bank reached a $4 million agreement through 2036 that included the naming rights of the facility.
The centerpiece of the Monmouth University campus is Shadow Lawn. Originally, it was the site of the Shadow Lawn mansion, constructed in 1903 and housed 52 rooms.
After the original Shadow Lawn was destroyed by a fire in 1927, the current building that would become was built as a residence for Mr. and Mrs. Hubert Templeton Parson. Mr. Parson was the former head of F.W. Woolworth Company. The building was designed by Horace Trumbauer and Julian Abele. Abele is regarded as the first professional African American architect.
Shadow Lawn has also been a host of the film version of Annie, starring Aileen Quinn. Some of the scenes in this movie were filmed inside and outside of the building along with the rest of the Monmouth University campus. Shadow Lawn was used as Daddy Warbucks' mansion.
Following Monmouth's acquisition of the estate, Shadow Lawn was renamed Woodrow Wilson Hall after United States President Woodrow Wilson, who stayed in the original mansion during his campaign in summer of 1916. The current mansion was renamed to Great Hall in 2020, with the university citing racist policies of Wilson for the change.
In 1903, Murry Guggenheim (1858-1939), son of Meyer Guggenheim, bought property in West Long Branch to build a summer residence for himself and his wife, Leonie. The original structure of the Beaux-Arts mansion, designed by Carrère and Hastings is now the Murry and Leonie Guggenheim wing of the Monmouth University Library.
It was also added to the National Register of Historic Places on March 28, 1978.
Monmouth University's placement on the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Ranking increased during the 2010s, moving from 76 in 2005 to 37 in 2012 and 30 in 2013 among regional universities in the Northern United States. By 2018, Monmouth ranked at 28 among northern regional universities, its highest spot at the time from U.S. News & World Report. The ranking also made Monmouth the highest private regional university in New Jersey and the state's second-highest regional university behind The College of New Jersey.
Despite moving up in the U.S. News & World Report ranking, however, Monmouth University has not appeared on Forbes Magazine's List of America's Best Colleges. Mark Blackmon, the director of News and Public Affairs at Monmouth, attributed the school's omission in 2016 to Forbes relying "on some information that can be highly subjective", with schools "[losing] points for awarding grants and scholarships". In response to Forbes allegedly lowering a school's ranking for providing financial support, Blackmon commented that, "We are actually quite proud that we can assist so many students in getting an education", and concluded, "Even though Monmouth failed to make the Forbes list, I think that it doesn't reflect the quality of its teachers and the type of school that Monmouth is. I think it should have definitely made it."
Monmouth University has held multiple academic symposia on the work of Bruce Springsteen and houses the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music.
Monmouth University has a variety of on-campus clubs and organizations, including the campus television station HawkTV; the college radio station WMCX-FM, one of the last media outlets to interview Bob Marley and the first media outlet in America to announce his death; and the student-run newspaper The Outlook, which has been published since 1933.
The Department of Art and Design is an active participant in the arts of Monmouth. It maintains multiple galleries for exhibiting creative works of students, faculty, and staff, as well as practicing artists and designers.
Monmouth University also has its own independent, student run record label, Blue Hawk Records. The music organization allows students to learn hands-on, gaining relevant experience and encountering situations that would occur in the Music Industry. Blue Hawk Records allows students to work together, alongside experienced industry professionals, to build their skills in talent scouting, artist promotion and development, live music and record releases, artwork, packaging, sales, marketing, further learning the structure of business and how to mold artists into marketable material.
Monmouth's athletic teams are known as the Hawks. The school competes as a Division I (NCAA) school in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, with football competing as a FCS independent in the 2013 season before joining the Big South Conference in 2014. Monmouth fields the following sports at the Division I level: baseball, basketball (men's and women's), bowling (women's) cross country (men's and women's), field hockey, football, golf (men's and women's), indoor track (men's and women's), lacrosse (women's and men's), soccer (men's and women's), softball, tennis (men's and women's), and track & field (men's and women's). In the fall of 2014, Monmouth announced the reintroduction of swimming programs (women's and men's) at the Division I level in the fall of 2015.
Monmouth University (then still Monmouth College), added football to the school's ledger of sports teams in 1993. The team's first game was played on September 25 of that year. The first points in school history were scored on a bizarre defensive play by intercepting and returning a two-point conversion.
A new multipurpose activity center opened with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on September 16, 2009. The 153,200-square-foot (14,230 m2) Center currently serves as the primary indoor athletic structure. A partnership agreement with OceanFirst Bank named the facility as the OceanFirst Bank Center in June, 2016. It houses a 4,100 seat competition arena; a 200-meter; six-lane indoor track; locker rooms; educational and conference space; ground-level bookstore; and fitness center. The new facility adjoins the William T. Boylan Gymnasium a 2,500-seat arena built in 1965.
Monmouth has been in the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament in 1996, 2001, 2004, and 2006. Monmouth won their first NCAA men's basketball tournament game in 2006 when they beat Hampton University in that year's play-in game. It was the first time a Northeast Conference school won a game in the NCAA tournament since 1983 when Robert Morris University won in the opening round. Monmouth's men and women's soccer teams as well as baseball, women's lacrosse, men's tennis and men's golf team have also reached the NCAA tournament. The men's lacrosse team made the 2016 NCAA playoff tournament as well. The Monmouth Men's Soccer team is the only sport on campus to ever advance to the 2nd round of the NCAA Tournament. The men's soccer team also hosted three first round NCAA Tournament games on The Great Lawn, in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Monmouth's men's soccer team has even been ranked as one of the top teams in the country. In September 2010, Monmouth attained the #4 spot on the NSCAA/HendrickCars.com National Rankings and has been ranked in the national top 25 every single week for the past two seasons.
^"Men's soccer fills void", The Temple News, August 28, 2012. Accessed February 14, 2018. "The 2012 season is upon the men's soccer team, and senior midfielder Cody Calafiore said he's ready as he'll ever be. It's Calafiore's final year sporting the Cherry and White - the colors he's worn on game days the past two years since he transferred from Monmouth University."
^Survivor Cast: Stephenie, CBS.com. Accessed February 12, 2018. "After graduating, she attended Temple University in Philadelphia before transferring to Monmouth University in Long Branch, New Jersey. She played Division One Lacrosse at both universities and was a four-year starter."
^Edelson, Stephen. "Watch: Shore's greatest hoops players of the 90s", Asbury Park Press, February 16, 2016. Accessed February 13, 2018. "Albano scored 1,599 career points at Monmouth University, fourth on its all-time Division I scoring list, and was a member of the Hawks' first NCAA Tournament team in 1996, averaging 17.2 ppg that season."
^Zeigler, Mark. "From Aztecs star to Libyan hoops hero", The San Diego Union-Tribune, October 15, 2011. Accessed February 13, 2018. "The connection was Alpha Bangura, who had played at Monmouth University before transferring to St. John's and who, like Holcomb, had embarked on an overseas basketball career that took him places he never dreamed of visiting."
^Edelson, Stephen. "Alex Blackwell to return to Monmouth University", Asbury Park Press, August 27, 2015. "Alex Blackwell's coming home.That's right, the guy who put Monmouth University on the Div. I basketball map is expected to return for the first time in several decades later this year to be inducted into the school's Hall of Fame.Blackwell, who attended Toms River North, played the 1992-93 season with the Los Angeles Lakers before globetrotting the world until he retired in 2011, at age 41."
^Wendy Boglioli, Monmouth Hawks. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Wendy Boglioli attended Monmouth University from 1973 to 1976 and is one of the most decorated athletes in Monmouth Athletics history. Boglioli was the American Record Holder in the 100-meter butterfly, the 100-meter freestyle and 100-meter butterfly in 1976, 1977 and 1978. At the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, she received a gold medal in the 4x100 freestyle relay, which set the World and Olympic Records, and a bronze medal in the 100-meter butterfly."
^Morris, Tim. "Freehold Twp. grad Brikowski catches on with Arena Football", News Transcript, July 25, 2012. Accessed February 12, 2018. "The road to the AFL was quite a roller coaster for Brikowski. After starring at Freehold Township, he received a scholarship to play football at the University of Akron.He was never comfortable at Akron and came home to play for Monmouth University."
^Edelson, Stephen. "Monmouth Basketball: Calloway heads Hall of Fame class", Asbury Park Press, January 10, 2018. "Monmouth University announced this year's class for its Athletic Hall of Fame, with Dave Calloway, a former men's basketball player and coach, heading the group, which will be honored at halftime of the Hawks key MAAC showdown with Iona on Jan. 19 at OceanFirst Bank Center."
^Jim Carone, Rider Broncs baseball. Accessed February 13, 2018. "Jim Carone was hired in September of 2006 as the new assistant baseball coach at Rider. A 2003 graduate of Monmouth University, Carone came to Rider fromWagner College where he served as assistant coach."
^Newman, Josh. "Super Bowl LI: Monmouth's Chris Hogan the latest Patriots star", Asbury Park Press, January 23, 2017. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Chris Hogan did not play four years of football at Monmouth University, but Hawks head coach Kevin Callahan sure wishes he had. Hogan, an overnight folk hero after nine catches for 180 yards and two touchdowns in the New England Patriots' 36-17 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers in the AFC Championship Game, played just one season for Callahan."
^Newman, Josh. "HS Football: Manalapan's LJ Holder paving his own path", Asbury Park Press, September 8, 2016. Accessed February 13, 2018. "Will Holder is a charter member of the Monmouth University football program, which began in 1993. His name is still plastered all over the program's record book in several receiving categories, both for a single season and a career. He was the first Hawk to be signed by a National Football League team when he went to training camp with the Oakland Raiders in 2005."
^Edelson, Stephen. "Monmouth, goalkeeper Eric Klenofsky ready for No. 20 Denver", Asbury Park Press, August 25, 2016. Accessed February 14, 2018. "In his fifth Major League Soccer season, Bryan Meredith of the San Jose Earthquakes is the gold standard for Monmouth University goalkeepers; the Scotch Plains native played on the 2009 and 2010 teams that rank as the greatest in program history.What current keeper Eric Klenofsky of Lincoln Park wants more than anything is to secure his own legacy with the Hawks before joining Meredith at the next level."
^Bradley, Jeff. "Boston Red Sox select Monmouth's Pat Light in MLB Draft", The Star-Ledger, June 4, 2012. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Pat Light had to wait until past 11 p.m. before he received the news that he was the first New Jersey player to be selected in the Major League Baseball Draft, but said it was well worth the wait. Light, a 6-foot-6 righthanded pitcher out of Monmouth University and Christian Brothers Academy was taken by the Red Sox with the No. 37 overall pick."
^"Chuck Martin Named Assistant Men's Basketball Coach", Indiana Hoosiers men's basketball. June 30, 2014. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Martin began his college playing career at Champlain Junior College in Vermont, where he captained a pair of NJCAA tournament teams. He played his final two seasons at Monmouth University, where he played point guard and averaged 7.1 points per game.Martin is a 1993 graduate of Monmouth with a bachelor's degree in communications."
^"Bryan Meredith Signs With San Jose Earthquakes", Monmouth Hawks men's soccer, January 27, 2014. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Former Monmouth University men's soccer star goalkeeper Bryan Meredith has signed with the San Jose Earthquakes, the team recently announced. The goalkeeper from Scotch Plains, N.J., joins the Major League Soccer (MLS) club following recent stints with Seattle Sounders FC, IK Brage (Sweden), and the New York Cosmos."
^Newman, Josh. "Monmouth's Justin Robinson signs first contract with Russian club", Asbury Park Press, August 1, 2017. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Hopefully, Justin Robinson owns a warm coat.Four-and-half months after a standout career at Monmouth University came to a close, and two weeks removed from a positive showing at Vegas Summer League with the Miami Heat, Robinson has signed a two-year contract with Avtodor Saratov of the highly regarded VTB United League."
^Newman, Josh. "Monmouth's Neal Sterling chosen in NFL Draft by Jacksonville Jaguars", Asbury Park Press, May 2, 2015. Accessed February 12, 2018. "Neal Sterling spent Saturday with his phone in his hand, waiting for the call that would change his life forever. Before that call finally came, he was fielding a different kind of call.As the NFL Draft played out on Saturday, NFL personnel from various teams were calling the 6-foot-4, 236-pound Monmouth University wide receiver to let him know that while they weren't going to be able to draft him, there would be interest as an undrafted free agent."
^Edelson, Travis. "Travis Taylor finds a home in Europe", Asbury Park Press, January 27, 2015. Accessed February 13, 2018. "It's the latest stop in a journey that began as a late-blooming prospect at Union High School, before flashing his potential in two seasons at Monmouth University and finishing his college career at Xavier."
^"Anthony Vazquez Signs With Puerto Rico Islanders", Monmouth Hawks, April 27, 2012. Accessed February 14, 2018. "Former Monmouth University men's soccer player Anthony Vazquez (Belford, N.J./Middletown North) has signed a professional contract to play for the Puerto Rico Islanders of the North American Soccer League (NASL)."
^"ClassNotes", Monmouth University Magazine, 2009. Accessed February 12, 2018.
^"In Memory of Lee Lozowick (1943-2010)" by Tom Huston, EnglighteNext Magazine, November 20, 2010
^Thornton, Yvonne S. & Coudert, (1995). The Ditchdigger's Daughters: A Black Family's Astonishing Success Story, Kensington Publishing Co. ISBN1-55972-271-1
^"Q&A with Yvonne Thornton", C-SPAN, December 13, 2007. Accessed February 14, 2018. "Rita, my kid sister. Rita is in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey. And she - we all graduated from Monmouth University. It was formally Monmouth College, but now Monmouth University."
^Bachrach Named Dean of School of Science, Monmouth University, July 7, 2016. Accessed February 14, 2018. "Monmouth University has named Steven Bachrach, Ph.D., new dean of its School of Science. Bachrach, an accomplished scholar and researcher with a breadth of academic and administrative leadership experience, will join the University on Aug. 1."
^Jenny Rosenthal Bramley, G Kass-Simon (Editor), Deborah Nash (Editor), Patricia Farnes (Editor), "Women of Science: Righting the Record", Indiana University Press (January 1990)
^Josh Emmons, Monmouth University, September 19, 2012. Accessed February, 14, 2018. "Emmons has taught at Grinnell College, the University of Iowa and Loyola University, and he is now an assistant professor of creative writing at Monmouth University."
^Maiden, Michael. "Eduard Helly: The Most Famous Monmouth Professor You Have Never Heard About", Monmouth University Magazine, Winter 2008, Vol. XXVIII, No.1, backed up by the Internet Archive as of July 21, 2015. Accessed February 14, 2018. "A personal recommendation from Albert Einstein, who escaped from Nazi Germany in 1933, helped him secure a teaching position at a Paterson Junior College during the Great Depression.... This renowned mathematician, Eduard Helly, was also once a Monmouth faculty member. As Einstein had five years before him, Helly escaped from Nazi persecution, making his way to the United States."
^"Ken Loeffler", Beaver County Sports Hall of Fame. Accessed April 5, 2018.