History

 

Our Sponsors and Early History

Marywood was founded in the spirit of dedicated service characteristic of the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This religious congregation was established in 1845; a Redemptorist missionary, Louis Florent Gillet, C.S.S.R., and an African American sister, Theresa Maxis Duchemin, IHM founded the Congregation in Monroe, Michigan. The Congregation undertook its ministry in Northeast Pennsylvania in 1858, operating schools and social services facilities throughout the region.

As educators who were concerned with the needs of the women in Northeast Pennsylvania, the sisters began plans for a women’s liberal arts college in Scranton. The idea, conceived by Mother M. Cyril Conway, IHM, and endorsed by the Most Reverend Michael J. Hoban, D.D., bishop of Scranton, was realized by Mother M. Germaine O’Neill, who formally opened Marywood College in September 1915.

In 1917, the College was incorporated under the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and approved to grant three degrees: Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Science in Home Economics. Marywood became a charter member of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools in 1921.

Amendments to the Charter

Amendments to the first charter enabled the University to grant the degrees of Master of Arts (1922), Bachelor of Science in Education (1922), Bachelor of Science and Master of Science (1928), Bachelor of Science in Library Science (1937), Master of Social Work (1969), Bachelor of Social Work (1974), Master of Public Administration (1975), Bachelor of Science in Nursing (1978), Master of Business Administration (1980), Master of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts (1981), Master of Arts in Teaching (1985), Master of Health Services Administration (1995), Doctor of Philosophy (1995), Master of Education, (2000), Doctor of Psychology (2000), and Educational Specialist (2005).

Continued Growth during Marywood’s First Century

Marywood further was empowered to educate students as school librarians (1929), vocational home economics teachers (1936), guidance counselors (1938), public school psychologists (1942), and teachers of the mentally retarded (1948) and to grant graduate certificates in theology (1953). A revision of the bylaws was made in 1968, establishing a new Board of Trustees to include both religious and lay members as Marywood’s governing body, while retaining ownership by the members of the corporation, namely, the congregation administrator and the other officers of the congregation.

During the 1960s, the graduate education activities of the College were formalized in the establishment of a Graduate School of Arts and Sciences and a School of Social Work. From 1981 to 1990, the Gillet School extended Marywood’s services in baccalaureate, non-degree, and non-credit/continuing education at the undergraduate level.

Men have attended the graduate schools since their establishment and have been enrolled in undergraduate programs since the 1970s.

In 1990, the Undergraduate School was restructured to provide residence for men as well as women. All the degree-granting units of the College were fully coeducational, with residence opportunities for all students. At that time, non-credit and continuing professional educational programs were offered to a wide variety of publics through the School of Continuing Education, which replaced the Gillet School. Enrichment, professional continuing education, and customized employee training solutions are presently offered through Academic Affairs.

Marywood’s continued growth brought another dramatic change in 1997, when the Pennsylvania Department of Education, recognizing the institution’s academic excellence as well as its significant contributions in research, cultural activities, educational outreach, service and importance to the community, granted university status.

21st Century Progress

In 2003, the University underwent an academic restructuring, forming colleges to house its degree programs. Presently, those colleges include: the College of Health and Human Services, the College of Arts and Sciences, and the College of Professional Studies.

The region’s first School of Architecture opened at Marywood in the Fall 2009 semester. The School of Architecture offers a pre-professional degree, Bachelor of Environmental Design in Architecture (B.E.D.A.), and a professional degree program, the five-year Bachelor of Architecture (B.ARCH.).

Recognizing the unique model of its business program, as well as its entrepreneurial focus and collaboration, the Marywood University School of Business and Global Innovation (SBGI) was established in 2014. The SBGI is housed in the College of Professional Studies.

In 2019, a bachelor’s program in Respiratory Therapy was established in the College of Health and Human Services.