Saint Francis University

Saint Francis University

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Saint Francis University

Saint Francis University is a private non-profit Catholic liberal arts institution of higher learning. It offers academic programs that are guided by Catholic tradition and principles and inspired by Saint Francis of Assisi. It is a comprehensive academic community that welcomes all individuals and promotes respect for a diverse population. It is dedicated to delivering past knowledge, values, and culture as essential aspects in facing the world today. U.S. News and World Report ranks Saint Francis University as one of the “Best Colleges.” The university offered the first program in Marine and Environmental Education Specialties.

Saint Francis University offers about 25 undergraduate and 7 graduate majors that focus on knowledge, skills, and values to provide an understanding of Franciscan heritage, traditions, and values. All programs are committed to offering a wide range of knowledge, fostering an understanding of ethical issues, and meeting the specific needs of all students. The university offers distance learning programs in medical science and health science that are delivered through the Blackboard learning management platform. Students are able to access their online courses 24 hours a day, seven days a week from any location with an Internet connection. All lectures including PowerPoint presentations and multimedia components, instructions, study materials, and assignments are available via the Blackboard system. The system also features asynchronous communication tools such as email and threaded discussions. Students are able to complete and submit assignments, take quizzes and tests, and view their progress and grades. Students also have access to My.Francis.Edu, which is an online resource that enables students to register for courses, stay up-to-date with announcements and events of the university, communicate with faculty, staff, and students and handle various business aspects.

Pittsburgh Bishop Michael O’Connor founded Saint Francis University as Saint Francis College in 1847. Shortly after its founding, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania recognized the college and granted it the ability to award educational degrees. In 2001, the college was granted university accreditation status and changed its name to Saint Francis University. The institution was one of the country’s first Catholic universities, the first Franciscan college in the U.S., and one of the nation’s first Catholic institutions to become co-educational. Today, Saint Francis University educates nearly 2,500 undergraduate and graduate students.


The Middle States Commission on Higher Education accredits Saint Francis University.

Schools of Education

School of Arts and Letters: offers programs in several fields such as American studies, history, education, political science, religious studies, fine arts, and psychology.

School of Business: committed to providing education that enables students to acquire a solid knowledge base, love of learning, confidence, drive, skills, and ethical and moral values to lead successful careers and become spiritually fulfilled. Offers various bachelor and master degree programs in areas such as business administration, accounting, economics, marketing, and management.

School of Health Sciences: committed to providing excellent academic quality presented by faculty members that are highly qualified. Offers programs in nursing, exercise physiology, occupational therapy, physical therapy, medical science, and physician assistant sciences.

School of Sciences: consists of five departments: biology, engineering, mathematics, chemistry, and computer science that share the common goal of incorporating theory and practice of a wide range of problem solving, analytical, quantitative, and logical abilities to improve the academic development and communication skills of students to lead to success in academic and careers.

Scholarships Offered

Saint Francis University offers various merit- and need-based scholarships including the Founders Award, Presidential Award, Co-Curricular Award, Assisi Award, Franciscan Award, SEED Award, Fellowship Award, HOBY Award, International Award, and Reach Higher Award, Legacy Award, and Trustee Award. It offers transfer scholarships including the Incentive Transfer Award, Transfer Award, Advanced Transfer Award, Accelerated Transfer Award, Associate Transfer Award, and Associate Excellence Award. Several individuals and groups have donated funding to offer endowed scholarships such as the John and Millie Adamucci Scholarship, Fr. Gervase Cain, T.O.R., Scholarship, Ann Eppard Memorial Scholarship and Congressional Internship, Jacob Fend Foundation Scholarship, Margaret Tobin Award, Robert S. Walters Scholarship, and Barbara Soriano Scholarship Endowment. The university also accepts outside scholarships from various organizations.

Financing Options

Saint Francis University participates in several financial aid programs such as the Federal Pell Grant, Federal Perkins Loan, Academic Competitiveness Grant (ACG), Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant (FSEOG), Federal Direct Stafford Subsidized Loan, Federal Direct Stafford Unsubsidized Loan, National SMART Grant, Federal Work Study, Federal PLUS Loan, and Federal Graduate PLUS Loan. It also accepts state grant programs and alternative loans. Additionally, the university offers a family tuition discount, out of state institutional aid, and payment plans.

Credit Earning Options

Saint Francis University awards credits for previous coursework completed at another accredited college or university. Students are able to transfer up to 64 credits and all courses must have a grade of at least a C. Students may also be granted credits for military credits, CLEP examinations, and Advanced Placements examinations.