Curry College is a private liberal arts-based institution in Milton, in the U.S. state of Massachusetts that was founded as the School of Elocution and Expression in 1879.
The school was founded in 1879 on Boston's Commonwealth Avenue by Anna Baright. Prior to this, Baright taught elocution at Milwaukee Female College, as well as graduating with honors from the Boston University School of Oratory in 1877. Baright was described by one of her professors as "the greatest woman reader [dramatic reciter] in the country." In 1882, Baright married Boston minister and fellow Boston University alumnus and professor Samuel Silas Curry, who later became the school's namesake.
In 1885, the name to the school was changed to the School of Expression, and Boston University trustees gave Curry the right to merge his private lessons into the School of Expression. In 1888, the school was chartered by the state, and Curry left his position at Boston University. Samuel Silas Curry was the head of the school, and Anna Baright Curry a professor. Former Boston University School of Oratory professor and telephone inventor Alexander Graham Bell became the school's first chancellor in 1907, a position he held until his death in 1922. Bell was a professor of Samuel Silas Curry's, and later Curry was present when Bell made the first telephone call in 1876. Samuel Silas Curry and Anna Baright Curry ran the school until their respective deaths in 1921 and 1924. The founders left a lasting impact on the school, with the operations remaining relatively unchanged for nearly a decade after their passing. In 1938, the Massachusetts Legislature gave the institution the power to confer the degrees of Bachelor of Science of oratory and Master of Science of oratory. In 1943, the School of Expression became Curry College, to reflect its founders.
In 1952, the college moved from Commonwealth Avenue in Boston to its current suburban location in Milton, Massachusetts. With the move, Curry placed strong emphasis on communication and self-development. In 1953, Curry College became authorized to confer degrees in the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science, with the first of these degrees awarded in 1955. Throughout the 1960s, Curry College's prevailing emphasis was on becoming accredited, which was achieved in 1970. This allowed Curry College to become a traditional four-year liberal arts college.
After obtaining accreditation, Curry College launched again into pioneering programs. In 1970, the Program for Advancement of Learning (PAL) was established, the nation's first college-level program for students with language-based learning difficulties. In 1974, Curry absorbed the Perry Normal School, which taught teachers of nursery, kindergarten, and primary levels. In 1977, Curry took over the Children's Hospital nursing school and converted it to a degree-granting program. In 1981, Curry established a master's degree program in education. Individually initiated majors, field experience, and equivalent education became increasingly important in this decade. As of the Fall of 2013, Curry College offers 20 majors and over 65 minors and concentrations to its students.
Curry College offers bachelor's degrees in 20 majors, four master's degrees, as well as certificates through its Continuing Education office. The Army and Air Force Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) programs are offered through "a cross-enrolled program with Boston University". Curry is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).
The Program for Advancement of Learning, commonly known as the PAL Program (or simply PAL), is an internationally recognized program that provides academic support for college-able students with specific language-based learning disabilities, executive function disorders, and/or AD/HD. The comprehensive programs has been widely recognized as the country's first college program of its kind and for its leadership role since its inception. Students in the PAL Program are fully mainstreamed within the student body, and constitute roughly 20% of each entering class.
Its main campus in Milton is 135-acre (0.55 km2) near the Blue Hills Reservation and seven miles (11 km) from downtown Boston. Curry maintains a satellite campus in Plymouth offering a smaller array of degrees, including eight bachelor's degree programs, two master's degree programs, and one certificate program, through the Office of Continuing Education and Graduate Studies.
The Milton campus is separated into two sides, North and South, with the Student Center located in the center of campus. The campus has 17 residence halls, ranging from traditional dormitories, to suites, to houses.
The Student Center opened its doors beginning with the Fall 2009 semester, replacing the previous Drapkin Student Center. The 84,000 square foot building is home to numerous facilities, including a state-of-the-art 5,500 square foot fitness center, gymnasium, dining marketplace, game room, the James P. O'Toole Chapel, as well as multiple meeting rooms and lounges. The mail room, campus bookstore, Disability Services, Conference and Event Services, Residence Life office, and Student Activities office are all located within the Student Center. The Hallways of Champions is located just outside of the doors of the gymnasium, showcasing trophies and awards of teams and individual athletes throughout Curry's history. With its central location combined with the contents of the building, the Student Center acts as the hub of the campus.
Curry has an enrollment of approximately 4,100 students. 2,000 or so are traditional students from roughly 31 states and 7 countries, 1,650 are continuing education students, and about 450 are graduate students. Approximately 1,400 students reside on the Curry campus.
Curry offers over 30 clubs and organizations, with the opportunity to create new clubs through the Student Activities Office. The Curry Arts Journal publishes "the work of student writers, artists and photographers". The student newspaper is the Currier Times, which is "published biweekly."
Curry College's athletic teams are nicknamed the Colonels. Curry participates as a member of The Commonwealth Coast Conference (TCCC) in the NCAA Division III, and offers 14 programs to its students (7 each for men's and women's). Men's sports include baseball, basketball, football, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer and tennis; while women's sports include basketball, cross country, lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball.
Along with NCAA athletics, there are numerous intramural and club sports. The men's rugby club competes all around New England with other colleges. The equestrian club is a member of the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA) and competes with other area colleges regularly. The team members get individual and group lessons at a stable in Pembroke, MA. Additional clubs exist on campus that do not compete against other colleges' clubs.
In popular culture
Curry is mentioned in the novels Center Cut and Bad Lie by John Corrigan, Outlaws by George V. Higgins, and Wilson's Women: A Novel of Mystery and Revenge by James W. Ryan.