Providence College is a Catholic college with 3800 undergrads, located in the city about 2 miles from Downtown. PC is the nation’s only college or university operated by the Dominican Friars.
The student population is 75% Catholic; students must take two theology classes and civics; attendance at mass in not required. There seems to be a strong sense of community on campus. There are no fraternities or sororities.
Students say they work hard Monday – Thursday and have time for fun on the weekends. Top sports are basketball and hockey. The “Friars” teams do well in the Big East Conference. This past April, the PC men’s hockey team won the 2015 NCAA Championship defeating Boston University. The college claims to be number 1 in the U.S. in intramurals.
Faculty leaders met with us and discussed highlights of their schools or departments:
Dr. Sheila Adamus, Dean of Arts and Sciences said that core courses in the liberal arts are required – also, proficiency in written and oral communications. There are four courses in western civilization, taught by three-prof teams. The school wants each student to do an internship or community service or other engagement experience.
Dr. Dan Horne, Associate Dean of the business school described how the business school integrates with liberal arts to assure grads have the broad skills required for a business career. The school is AACSB accredited. They are breaking ground on a new business building.
Dr. Brian McCadden of the School of Professional Studies described programs in elementary education, music education and a highly regarded program in social work. Students can usually get a masters in social work in one year.
Admissions staff described how they evaluate applications. Strength of curriculum is important. They want a fair number of honors and APs. Average unweighted GPA of accepted students is 3.55.
In essays, they look at the quality of writing and what they learn about the student. They are looking for commitment in the activities and are big on community service. They want 2 or 3 letters of rec. They are test optional and tests do not drive admission; tests help for merit scholarships. A 31 ACT qualifies for a merit scholarship. They are very keen on increasing their diversity. An interview is encouraged.