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Utica College gains university status

Sean I. Mills
Staff writer
email / twitter
Posted 2/16/22

UTICA - Utica College has been renamed as Utica University after 75 years, according to an announcement from President Laura Casamento. An official, on-campus announcement was scheduled for 10 a.m. …

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Utica College gains university status

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UTICA - Utica College has been renamed as Utica University after 75 years, according to an announcement from President Laura Casamento.

An official, on-campus announcement was scheduled for 10 a.m. Thursday at the Cynkus Family Welcome Center.

Casamento sent a letter to students and faculty on Wednesday announcing the name change. She said the New York State Department of Education Board of Regents approved the re-designation on Tuesday.

“This is a proud moment in Utica’s history — the culmination of 75 years of innovation in higher learning and unwavering commitment to the communities we serve,” Casamento wrote in the letter and on the school's website.

“University status is a mark of how far we have come as an institution, as well as a recognition of our enormous potential for growth and achievement in the years ahead.”

Utica University is located off Burrstone Road in Utica. It was founded in 1946 as an extension of Syracuse University, then became financially and legally independent in 1995. The school announced its final transition to full independence in 2008, according to its website.

The school typically has an annual enrollment of more than 3,000 students, offering more than 40 undergraduate programs.

The name change comes on the heels of the state Board of Regents changing the definition of university. The new definition was approved at a January meeting:

"University means a higher educational institution offering a range of registered undergraduate and graduate curricula in the liberal arts and sciences, including graduate programs registered in at least three of the following discipline areas: agriculture, biological sciences, business, education, engineering, fine arts, health professions, humanities, physical sciences and social sciences."

According to the Utica College student newspaper, The Tangerine, this definition change prompted school officials to file for an immediate charter amendment to change the name of the school.

"While there is no doubt that this transition will open many new doors for the institution, the name Utica University matches who we are and have been for some time," the school wrote on their website.

"That’s why not much is going to change, because we have been living and operating as a university for several years. The name University will provide the institution greater stature with respect to, among other opportunities, recruiting students, recruiting faculty and staff, pursuing grants, and achieving wider recognition within the higher education community."

School officials said the "most tangible change" will be new signage and branding across campus, which will be gradually rolled out in the days and weeks to come. Officials said the only material change academically will be the school name on transcripts and diplomas.

"Otherwise, the transition will have no material impact on your academic progress, majors, courses, and financial aid eligibility," the school wrote.

Officials said that rebranded apparel and merchandise will also soon appear in campus bookstores.

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