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5151 Park Ave
Fairfield, CT 06825-1000
p. 203-371-7999
w. www.sacredheart.edu

Sacred Heart University

Sacred Heart University Rating: 4.0/5 (4 votes)

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Sacred Heart University (SHU) was founded by the Most Reverend Walter W. Curtis in 1963. It is the second-largest Catholic University in New England, and is listed in The Princeton Review’s “Best 373 Colleges: 2011” and “Best 300 Business Schools: 2011” articles. The University was founded with the mission of serving the community of Bridgeport, Connecticut through quality higher education tempered by Catholic morality.

Bishop Walter Curtis believed in innovating Catholic higher education, and so founded SHU as the first Catholic university in the United States that was staffed by lay people. Bishop Curtis recognized their ability to lead the institution into a modern future.

The University later grew to offer on-campus residences and many degree programs, including two doctoral programs in Physical Therapy and Nursing. Today, SHU serves over 6,000 students across five colleges and boasts Division I athletic teams and a state-of-the-art Health and Recreation Center.

SHU continues to stay true to its Catholic origins with projects like the Chapel of the Holy Spirit, completed in 2009, which is featured prominently in the center of campus and serves as a religious hub for students. The University has also been noted for its Center for Christian-Jewish Understanding, which seeks to build a foundation of mutual respect and collaborative learning to help overcome the long-standing animosity between the two religions.


SHU offers a comprehensive academic program that includes undergraduate, graduate, and doctorate degrees. There are five colleges under the SHU umbrella, each serving a specific group of students through the tenets of the Catholic Intellection Tradition (CIT).

The CIT encourages students to develop their talents and understanding through dedication to scholarship and spiritual and ethical values. It emphasizes seeking a broader education through liberal arts and engagement with God and the Catholic Church. It also urges students to use their education to serve their community through service and good will.

College of Arts and Sciences

The College of Arts and Sciences is the largest college at SHU with over 2,000 students. It seeks to give students a broad education in the arts of critical thinking, oral and written expression, careful evaluation, and ethical and moral decision-making. Students can choose from more than 15 majors spanning topics like Biology, Criminal Justice, English, Religious Studies, and Social Work. The College also offers six graduate programs and a number of graduate certificate programs.

John F. Welch College of Business

The John F. Welch College of Business teaches students about the modern business world through hands-on experience, new technologies, and a rich internship program. The curriculum emphasizes business skills, communications skills, and business ethics across all disciplines and majors. Students can choose from six undergraduate degree programs, including Finance, Business Administration, and Sports Management. The MBA graduate program is AACSB accredited, one of the only 5% of business programs to earn that honor. Students at the Welch College of Business enjoy special programs like the Student Entrepreneurs club and the Stamford CFA Society, as well as outside opportunities like internships and job placement services.

College of Health Professionals

The College of Health Professionals offers baccalaureate, master’s, and doctorate programs in Health Sciences, Nursing, Physical Therapy, and Exercise and Nutrition. Students have access to state-of-the-art laboratories and modern equipment that prepare them for careers in the competitive industry. The College is a member of the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions.

Isabelle Farrington College of Education

The Isabelle Farrington College of Education was recently relocated to a new, modern campus in Cambridge. It offers students options for teacher certification, graduate study in education, and a program that lets students earn their undergraduate degree and a Master of Arts in teaching in only five years. The College also actively promotes an internship program, which places students in local schools for hands-on teaching experience and helps them achieve their certification and teaching preparedness goals more quickly.

University College

The University College is SHU’s part-time and distance learning program. It makes higher education accessible to all residents of Bridgeport with options like evening and weekend classes, full and part time classes, online coursework, and non-credit programs. Community members can explore the flexible learning options to fit a certificate or degree program into their everyday life. Adult learners can even earn academic credit for work and life experience.

In addition to traditional classes, SHU offers test preparation, English as a Second Language (ESL) classes, and short-term seminars and workshops that serve the community in different ways.

Most Popular Fields of Study


SHU uses the Common Application for undergraduate admissions. Students can access the Common App online or in hardcopy through the SHU Admissions website. Incoming freshmen should submit their application, high school transcript, a letter of recommendation, and a $50 non-refundable application fee to the University by the application deadline.

Students can also choose to apply Early Decision, which is a binding agreement that is often said to increase chances of acceptance. The Early Decision deadline is at the beginning of December.

Students may choose to submit standardized test scores and additional materials through the Common App website. Admissions Counselors are available to answer student questions and advise them on the application process.


SHU has a vibrant and diverse student life. The campus has nearly 50 student clubs and organizations, a student-run newspaper, volunteer opportunities, theatre and the arts, and more. Students can also participate in the campus radio station, student government, and Greek life, or simply enjoy the different events and activities that happen across campus every week.

One way to stay involved is by choosing to live in one of the on-campus dormitories. More than 70% of students live on campus, and the ten residential buildings offer students a great way to meet one another and socialize. Residence halls also have their own programming and special events throughout the year.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


SHU is an NCAA Division I college that offers 31 men’s and women’s varsity teams in a variety of sports. It participates in the Northeast Conference, Atlantic Hockey, and the Colonial Athletic Association. The Pioneers compete in sports like baseball, basketball, rowing, wrestling, and more.

Students who want to participate in sports but aren’t on a varsity team are welcome to join one of the 25 club teams, which compete on an intercollegiate level and often travel to away games. Students can also join intramural sports teams to compete on-campus against other students, faculty and staff in a fun and casual environment.

Every student has free access to the state-of-the-art facilities at the William H. Pitt Health and Recreation Center. Completed in 1997 and renovated in 2007, the building offers basketball courts with stadium seating, a weight room, an indoor track, a batting cage, a fitness center, and athletic equipment. Students can work out on their own or sign up for one of many free fitness classes. The main level is also home to the Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Center, which includes examination rooms and physical therapy labs for student and athlete use.


  • “FAQs: The Best 376 Colleges, 2012 Edition.” The Princeton Review. Web. 03 Aug. 2011.
  • Welcome to Sacred Heart University, Fairfield CT – Sacred Heart University. Web. 03 Aug. 2011

Information Summary

Ranks 20th in Connecticut and 1449th overall
See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list

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College Campus :: Sacred Heart University Campus Building :: Sacred Heart University College Building :: Sacred Heart University Back-To-School Week-2010 :: Sacred Heart University Back to School 2010 :: Sacred Heart University

Campus Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 Students
Aggravated assault N/A N/A
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Rape N/A N/A
Robbery N/A N/A
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 11 0.17
Larceny N/A N/A
Vehicle theft N/A N/A
Arrest 4 0.06

Local Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 People
Aggravated assault 14 0.02
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Forcible Rape 1 0.00
Robbery 9 0.02
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 194 0.33
Larceny 885 1.49
Vehicle theft 52 0.09

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 1212th for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in Connecticut.

Carnegie Foundation Classification

Master's Colleges and Universities (larger programs)
UndergraduateBalanced arts & sciences/professions, some graduate coexistence
GraduatePostbaccalaureate with arts & sciences (education dominant)
Undergraduate PopulationFull-time four-year, selective, lower transfer-in
EnrollmentHigh undergraduate
Size & SettingMedium four-year, highly residential

General Characteristics

Title IV EligibilityParticipates in Title IV federal financial aid programs
Highest offeringDoctoral degree
Calendar SystemSemester
Years of college work requiredN/A
Variable Tuition
Religious AffiliationRoman Catholic
Congressional District904

Special Learning Opportunities

Distance LearningN/A
ROTC — Army / Navy / Air Force  —   /   / 
Study Abroad
Weekend College
Teacher Certification

Student Tuition Costs and Fees

Ranks 185th for total cost of attendance
  In District In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
FT Undergraduate Tuition $34,800 $34,800 $34,800
FT Undergraduate Required Fees $250 $250 $250
PT Undergraduate per Credit Hour $530 $530 $530
FT Graduate Tuition $22,775 $22,775 $22,775
FT Graduate Required Fees N/A N/A N/A
PT Graduate per Credit Hour $617 $617 $617
Total Cost of Attendance — On-Campus $53,569 $53,569 $53,569
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus w/out Family $45,510 $45,510 $45,510
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus with Family $40,550 $40,550 $40,550

Student Tuition Cost History and Trends

Prior year cost comparison
  In District In State Out of State
Published Tuition & Fees $32,724 $34,030 $32,724 $34,030 $32,724 $34,030
  Cost (regardless of residency)
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Books & Supplies $1,200(N/C)
On-Campus – Room & Board $12,776 $13,230
On-Campus – Other Expenses $3,800(N/C)
Off-Campus w/out Family – Room & Board $4,960(N/C)
Off-Campus w/out Family – Other Expenses $4,300(N/C)
Off-Campus with Family – Room & Board $4,300(N/C)

Admission Details

Effective as of 2014-09-19
Application Fee RequiredN/A
Undergraduate Application Fee$70
Graduate Application Fee$60
First Professional Application FeeN/A
Applicants 7,781 (2,871 male / 4,910 female)
Admitted 5,932 (2,140 male / 3,792 female)
Admission rate 76%
First-time Enrollment 865 (350 male / 515 female)
FT Enrollment 865 (350 male / 515 female)
PT Enrollment N/A (N/A male / N/A female)
Total Enrollment6,983

Admission Criteria

 = Required,   = Recommended,   = Neither required nor recommended
Open Admissions
Secondary School GPA / Rank / Record  /   / 
College Prep. Completion
Formal competency demoN/A
Admission test scoresN/A
Other testsN/A

Admission Credits Accepted

Dual Credit
Life Experience
Advanced Placement (AP)

Athletics - Association Memberships

Sports / Athletic Conference Memberships NCAA
NCAA Football Conference Northeast Conference
NCAA Basketball Conference Northeast Conference
NCAA Baseball Conference Northeast Conference
NCAA Track & Field Conference Northeast Conference

Student Services

Remedial Services
Academic / Career Counseling
PT Cost-defraying Employment
Career Placement
On-Campus Day Care
Library Facility

Student Living

First-time Room / Board Required
Dorm Capacity2,634
Meals per WeekN/A
Room Fee$9,475
Board Fee$4,400

Student Completion / Graduation Demographics

Total 60 68 77 27 2 1,157 148 1,542
Accounting 3 4 3 37 8 55
Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions, Other 1 10 1 12
Art/Art Studies, General 3 15 1 19
Athletic Training/Trainer 2 2 1 56 8 69
Biology/Biological Sciences, General 1 1 3 1 30 4 40
Business Administration and Management, General 8 10 13 3 1 143 14 193
Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, Other
Chemistry, General 20 7 1 28
Cinematography and Film/Video Production
Communication, General
Communication, Journalism, and Related Programs, Other 2 1 4 7
Computer and Information Sciences, General 22 1 1 2 17 1 44
Criminal Justice/Law Enforcement Administration 1 3 1 1 11 1 18
Criminal Justice/Safety Studies 4 4 30 5 43
Cyber/Computer Forensics and Counterterrorism
Economics, General 4 3 7
Education, General 1 1 8 2 234 16 262
Elementary and Middle School Administration/Principalship 1 56 3 60
English Language and Literature, General 1 1 21 8 31
Environmental Engineering Technology/Environmental Technology 8 8
Exercise Physiology 7 7
Family Practice Nurse/Nursing 1 1 1 1 1 10 15
Finance, General 1 3 5 3 23 7 42
General Studies 6 4 26 6 42
Health Information/Medical Records Administration/Administrator
Health/Health Care Administration/Management
History, General 1 1 10 4 16
Human Resources Development
Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies 1 1
Marketing/Marketing Management, General 1 1 1 1 41 6 51
Mathematics, General 8 2 10
Nursing Administration 4 20 2 26
Occupational Therapy/Therapist 1 3 1 32 1 38
Philosophy 2 1 3
Physical Therapy/Therapist
Political Science and Government, General 1 1 2 11 15
Psychology, General 4 6 72 15 98
Psychology, Other 4 3 35 6 48
Public Relations/Image Management 2 2 2 2 16 1 25
Reading Teacher Education 1 10 1 12
Registered Nursing/Registered Nurse 4 3 6 94 11 118
Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Professions, Other 1 1
Religion/Religious Studies 6 6
Social Work 2 2 15 5 24
Sociology 2 10 3 15
Spanish Language and Literature 1 3 4
Speech Communication and Rhetoric 1 24 3 29
Speech-Language Pathology/Pathologist

Faculty Compensation / Salaries

Ranks 761st for the average full-time faculty salary.
Effective as of 2014-09-20
Tenure system N/A
Average FT Salary $79,352 ($82,087 male / $69,948 female)
Number of FT Faculty 249 (119 male / 130 female)
Number of PT Faculty 664
FT Faculty Ratio 0.4 : 1
Total Benefits $7,480,048

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