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Encyclopedia > Colby College

Colby College

Motto Lux Mentis Scientia (The Latin translates to English as "Knowledge is the Light of the Mind.")
Established 1813
Type Private
Endowment $424 million
President William D. "Bro" Adams
Faculty 158 full time and 39 part time
Undergraduates 1,821
Location Waterville, ME, USA
Campus Rural
Athletics 32 varsity teams, 10 club teams
Mascot White Mule
Website www.colby.edu

Colby College, founded in 1813, is an elite liberal arts college located on Mayflower Hill in Waterville, Maine. Image File history File links Colby_College_Seal. ... A motto (from Italian) is a phrase or a short list of words meant formally to describe the general motivation or intention of an entity, social group, or organization. ... The date of establishment or date of founding of an institution is the date on which that institution chooses to claim as its starting point. ... Year 1813 (MDCCCXIII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar). ... Private schools, or independent schools, are schools not administered by local, state, or national government, which retain the right to select their student body and are funded in whole or in part by charging their students tuition rather than with public (state) funds. ... A financial endowment is a transfer of money or property donated to an institution, with the stipulation that it be invested, and the principal remain intact. ... University President is the title of the highest ranking officer within a university, within university systems that prefer that appellation over other variations such as Chancellor or rector. ... A faculty is a division within a university. ... In some educational systems, undergraduate education is post-secondary education up to the level of a Bachelors degree. ... Waterville is a city in Kennebec County, Maine in the United States on the west bank of the Kennebec River. ... Official language(s) None (English and French de facto) Capital Augusta Largest city Portland Area  Ranked 39th  - Total 33,414 sq mi (86,542 km²)  - Width 210 miles (338 km)  - Length 320 miles (515 km)  - % water 13. ... Sign in a rural area in Dalarna, Sweden Qichun, a rural town in Hubei province, China An artists rendering of an aerial view of the Maryland countryside: Jane Frank (Jane Schenthal Frank, 1918-1986), Aerial Series: Ploughed Fields, Maryland, 1974, acrylic and mixed materials on apertured double canvas, 52... Millie, once mascot of the City of Brampton, is now the Brampton Arts Councils representative. ... A website (alternatively, Web site or web site) is a collection of Web pages, images, videos and other digital assets that is hosted on one or several Web server(s), usually accessible via the Internet, cell phone or a LAN. A Web page is a document, typically written in HTML... Year 1813 (MDCCCXIII) was a common year starting on Friday (link will display the full calendar). ... Waterville is a city in Kennebec County, Maine in the United States on the west bank of the Kennebec River. ...

Colby is the 12th oldest independent liberal arts college in the United States. Approximately 1,800 students from 66 countries are enrolled annually; the college offers 53 major fields of study and uses project-based learning. Volunteer programs and service-learning take many students into the surrounding community. More than two thirds of Colby students participate in study-abroad programs. Together with Bates College and Bowdoin College, Colby is one of three small liberal arts colleges in Maine. Colby College competes in the NESCAC league and is considered to be among what are known as the "Little Ivies." Bates College is a private liberal arts college, founded in 1855 by abolitionists, located in Lewiston, Maine, in the United States. ... Bowdoin College, founded in 1794, is a private liberal arts college located in the coastal New England town of Brunswick, Maine. ... The New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) is an athletic conference consisting of highly selective liberal arts colleges located in New England and New York. ... Little Ivies is a colloquialism referring to a group of small, selective[1] American colleges and universities; however, it does not denote any official organization. ...

Although one of the oldest liberal arts colleges in the nation, Colby is in the midst of a major campus building program, including a new social sciences and interdisciplinary studies building. It will house academic departments and the Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement. The College has also created a new program in neuroscience. Drawing of the cells in the chicken cerebellum by S. Ramón y Cajal Neuroscience is a field that is devoted to the scientific study of the nervous system. ...



The original name of the college was the Maine Literary and Theological Institution. After Maine separated from Massachusetts, the new legislature conferred upon the school the right to grant degrees. Soon afterwards, in 1821, the college was renamed Waterville College. During the Civil War, the school was on the verge of closing due to many students leaving to fight the war. Gardner Colby, a Boston merchant and Maine native gave a large donation which prevented the college's closure. The college was named Colby College in gratitude.

In 1871, Colby College was the first all-male college in New England to accept women students. One of the buildings is named after the first woman student, Mary Low, who was the valedictorian of her class.

The original campus was located closer to the town but outgrew it. The city of Waterville eventually deeded some land near the outskirts of the city to the college where the current college campus stands.


Colby is a highly selective, private academic institution and is consistently ranked among the top 20 liberal arts colleges in the country by U.S. News & World Report. In 2006, Colby was ranked 20th. Colby was named one of the "25 New Elite Ivies" by the Kaplan College Guide. U.S. News & World Report is a weekly newsmagazine. ...

Major options include: African-American Studies, American Studies, Anthropology, Art, Biology, Chemistry, Classics, Computer Science, East Asian Studies, Economics, English, Environmental Studies, Environmental Science, French Studies, Geology, Geoscience, German Studies, Government, History, International Studies, Latin American Studies, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Psychology, Religious Studies, Russian Language and Culture, Science, Technology, and Society, Sociology, Spanish, Theater and Dance, and Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies. Administrative Science and Italian Studies are offered as minors.

Students choose from over 500 courses in 53 major fields and have wide flexibility in designing independent study programs, electing special majors, and participating in internships and exchange programs. Historically, Colby has valued understanding of and concern for others, diversity of thought and culture, open access to campus groups and organizations, and personal and academic honesty.


Colby’s libraries—Miller Library, the Bixler (Art and Music) Library, and the Olin (Science) Library—have a rich collection of more than 900,000 books, journals, microfilms, music scores, sound recordings, videos/DVDs, and manuscripts. They provide access to more than 100 Internet databases and more than 6,500 electronic journals. Computer labs, wireless networks, laptops, study areas, and a listening center are available for student use. Miller Library stands at the center of campus and houses the humanities and social science collections, the College archives, and Special Collections. Miller also contains a computer cluster and study areas that are open around the clock, and it is equipped with wireless Internet access. The Art and Music Library, in the Bixler Art and Music Center, features an extensive collection of art and music books, journals, sound recordings, music scores, a computer lab/listening center, and study spaces. Internet ports and wireless access are provided. The Science Library, in the F.W. Olin Science Center, houses books, journals, videos, and topographic maps that support programs in the natural sciences, computer science, and mathematics. Study areas with Internet access are available.

An open-stack system allows easy access to more than 900,000 items, and the online catalog and the library’s electronic indexes and Internet files are available on library workstations and computers campus-wide. The collection strongly supports all curriculum areas and contains more than 1,300 currently received print journals and another 8,500 electronic journals, many long runs of retrospective periodicals, and domestic and international daily newspapers. The Colby libraries are a repository for U.S. and Maine state documents.

As a member of both the Colby-Bates-Bowdoin consortium of libraries and Maine Info Net, Colby provides access to a merged catalog of more than six million items and daily courier service from libraries in Maine. A new consortium, NExpress, comprising Colby, Bates, Bowdoin, Northeastern, Wellesley, and Williams, provides additional access to research materials. Reference librarians and interlibrary loan staff help researchers identify and obtain additional resources. Ten professional librarians provide research assistance to students, faculty, and outside researchers. Instruction in the use of the library and its research materials is offered throughout the curriculum, from an introduction in beginning English classes to in-depth subject searching using sophisticated tools in upper-level classes. The Colby-Bates-Bowdoin (CBB) is an athletic conference containing three NCAA Division III schools, Colby College, Bates College, and Bowdoin College. ...

Miller Library’s special collections of first editions and manuscripts have achieved international recognition. The Edwin Arlington Robinson Memorial Room, named for the Pulitzer Prize-winning Maine poet, contains his books, manuscripts, letters, and memorabilia. Colby’s Thomas Hardy Collection is one of the most extensive in the country. Other authors represented in the Robinson Room include A.E. Housman, Sarah Orne Jewett, Kenneth Roberts, Henry James, Willa Cather, John Masefield, William Dean Howells, and Thomas Mann.

The John and Catherine Healy Memorial Room contains the James Augustine Healy Collection of Modern Irish Literature, with inscribed copies, manuscripts, and holograph letters of William Butler Yeats, Sean O’Casey, James Joyce, George Bernard Shaw, and others. The Healy Collection has 7,000 primary and critical sources representing the Irish Literary Renaissance, 1880-1940. The Alfred King Chapman Room houses the College archives, which hold more than 4,000 manuscript files pertaining to Colby alumni, faculty, and staff dating from 1813 to the present. The archives include an extensive collection of books by Colby graduates and faculty members.


Sigma Kappa sorority was founded at Colby in 1874 by the college's first five female students. With the abolition of fraternities at Colby, it is unlikely that the Colby chapters, Alpha, Beta and Gamma, will ever be resurrected. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Year 1874 (MDCCCLXXIV) was a common year starting on Thursday (link with display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Saturday of the 12-day slower Julian calendar). ...

In 1984, following an investigation of campus life commissioned by the Board of Trustees, a decision was made to withdraw recognition from Colby’s fraternities as they were seen to be "exclusionary by nature". The day that fraternity and sorority decision was announced happened to fall on a Sunday and was known as "Bloody Sunday" by many on the campus at the time. The fraternity decision opened up housing throughout the campus to all students on an equal basis, and it created opportunities for students to play a significant role in governance at Colby. The transition to having no fraternities took more than four years as many of the fraternities focused around sports continued to add new members and go "underground." The fraternities were finally dissolved when one of the them was caught hazing pledges in an off-campus house by the Maine State Police. Student-faculty collaboration has long been an important part of the culture, and programs to enhance those relationships were instituted. This article is about the year. ...

Student Body

Today Colby’s 1,870 students, evenly divided between men and women, come from virtually every state and about 70 foreign countries. In 2005, Colby was presented the Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization. The College is a leader in environmental awareness and has won environmental awards for its commitment to sustainable practices on campus, including an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Environmental Merit Award for 2003 and two Maine Governor’s Awards for Environmental Excellence, in 2002 and 2004.

Students have also participated in humanitarian projects to reduce the malaria problem in the Republic of Sierra Leone. [1]

However, Colby students remain primarily a homogeneous group with an 83% White, non-Hispanic student body and 49.5% of all students hailing from New England.[2]

Alumni, now numbering more than 23,000, are represented in all 50 states and 75 foreign countries. Alumni remain engaged with the College through alumni programs, affinity groups, and a directory and related services online, all offered by the Office of Alumni Relations.

Student Life on Campus

While studies do take up a significant portion of the student's time, the college has made a great effort to encourage free events on campus, specifically through the creation in 2003 of a Student Programming Board (SPB). This student-run organization sponsors multiple programs every week ranging from dances to special lectures to bingo nights to large scale live performances. In the past, SPB has brought such acts as Jurassic 5, Citizen Cope, Blackalicious, Ben Folds, Ben Kweller, OK Go, Dane Cook, Talib Kweli, Matisyahu, State Radio and Lupe Fiasco. In addition to SPBs programming, numerous clubs on campus will often put on all-school events. Jurassic 5 was a six- and then later five-piece hip hop group formed in 1994. ... Citizen Cope is a pseudonym of Clarence Greenwood, keyboardist, guitarist, singer, DJ, and record producer, and the name of the band that he leads. ... Blackalicious is an American alternative hip hop duo. ... Benjamin Scott Folds (born September 12, 1966, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina[1]) is an American singer-songwriter and the former frontman of the musical group Ben Folds Five. ... Ben Kweller (born 16 June 1981, San Francisco, California) is an American rock musician. ... This article or section may contain too much repetition. ... Dane Jeffrey Cook (born March 18, 1972) is an American stand-up comedian, actor and musician. ... Talib Kweli (born Talib Kweli Greene in Brooklyn, New York City on October 3, 1975) is an American MC from Brooklyn, New York. ... Matisyahu is the Hebrew name of Matthew Paul Miller (born June 30, 1979), a popular Hasidic Jewish reggae artist. ... State Radio is a rock band formed by former Dispatch member Chad Urmston in 2002 after Dispatch announced their indefinite hiatus (after about two years on hiatus, the band announced a break-up and a final show). ... Wasalu Muhammad Jaco (born February 16, 1982), better known by his stage name Lupe Fiasco, is an American rapper. ...

Colby College has also received recent press resulting from their beer and wine offerings in the dining hall. For a relatively inexpensive cost, students may consume up to two beverages during their meal.

Colby's student newspaper, The Colby Echo, has been published since 1877. The paper distributes 1600 papers weekly in academic buildings, dining halls and throughout Waterville. Colby's radio station, WMHB Waterville 89.7 FM, has been on air since March 1949. WMHB broadcasts new and diverse programming to central Maine and around the world. Colby also has a large a cappella scene. There are six groups on campus: The Blue Lights (Men), The Colby Eight (Men), The Megalomaniacs (Co-ed), The Sirens (Female), The Colbyettes (Female), and EVE (Female). WMHB, 89. ...

The Colby College Museum of Art has a number of collections covering a variety of different styles of paintings, sculpture, and folk art. The Museum is also notable for housing the largest collection of works by American painter Alex Katz in any single collection. There is no admission charge. Alex Katz (born July 24, 1927) is an American figural artist associated with the Pop Art movement. ...

Colby Outdoor Orientation Trips (COOT)

In 1975, Colby instituted their first outdoor orientation trip. From 15 first-year students, 2 upperclassmen and a professor on the first trip, the program has grown to include approximately 98% of incoming classes participating in a COOT. The program now offers 52 trips in the fall semester and an ICED COOT program for those students who spend the first semester of their freshman year abroad. Destinations for Fall semester trips include hiking trips Acadia National Park, Mount Katahdin and other locations around Maine, canoe trips on the Kennebec and Moose Rivers, along with other trips around the state. The various trips are designed to appeal to incoming students with a variety of interests and fitness levels. Acadia National Park preserves much of Mount Desert Island, and associated smaller islands, off the Atlantic coast of Maine. ... Mount Katahdin is the highest mountain in Maine. ... The course of the Kennebec River The Kennebec River is a river, 150 mi (240 km) long, in the state of Maine in the northeastern United States. ...

The focus of COOT is not meant to be the outdoors, but the growth of a group that assists each other with the transition to campus. COOT leaders are chosen from upperclass students and are expected to help the students both during and after the trip with the adjustment to campus life.

Alma Mater

Colby's Alma Mater is "Hail, Colby, Hail". The lyrics to the song were written by Karl R. Kennison from the class of 1906 and it is sung to the tune of "O Canada". Sheet music O Canada is the national anthem of Canada. ...

Hail, Colby, Hail!
Thy people far and near
Stand at thy call,
our alma mater dear.
Thy shaded paths recall our steps
to gather at thy shrine.
Thy memoried halls reclaim our hearts
'til all our thoughts are thine.
Hail, Colby, Hail!
Hail, Colby, Hail!
To thee we lift our hearts and homage pay!
Our Alma Mater, Hail the Blue and Gray!

Historical timeline

  • 1813—the Massachusetts Legislature grants a charter to the Maine Literary and Theological Institution as a Baptist college
  • 1818—Rev. Jeremiah Chaplin is selected by the Board of Trustees as the College's first president, classes are first taught in Chaplin's home starting in the fall
  • 1821—the Maine Legislature empowers the Institution to grant degrees and its name is changed to Waterville College
  • 1822George Dana Boardman becomes Colby's first graduate
  • 1825—theological department discontinued[3]
  • 1832—planting of the Boardman Willows
  • 1833—Rev. Rufus Babcock becomes Colby's second president
  • 1867—name of the college changed to Colby College to honor its benefactor Gardner Colby
  • 1869—dedication of Memorial Hall, the first Civil War memorial erected on a college campus, to honor Colby men who died in the war
  • 1871—becomes coeducational[3]
  • 1874Sigma Kappa Sorority is founded by Colby's first five female students
  • 1875Mary Caffrey Low becomes Colby's first female graduate; she was the valedictorian of her class
  • 1923—the White Mule becomes Colby's mascot as the result of an editorial written by Joseph Coburn Smith in the student newspaper, The Echo
  • 1937—groundbreaking for the new campus located on Mayflower Hill
  • 1951—the last class takes place on the old campus in Coburn Hall
  • 2007—Lunder art collection valued at $100 million donated by Paula and Peter Lunder

Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Coptic Orthodox Pope · Roman Catholic Pope Archbishop of Canterbury · Patriarch of Constantinople Christianity Portal This box:      Baptist... George Dana Boardman was born February 8 1801 in Livermore, Maine, the son of the Rev. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Mary Caffrey Low is one of the five founding members of the Sigma Kappa sorority. ...

Notable Alumni & Staff

See also: List of Colby College people

Many notable individuals have been affiliated with Colby College, including: General Benjamin F. Butler (1838), TV personality Billy Bush (1994), Historian Doris Kearns Goodwin (1964), abolitionist Elijah P. Lovejoy (1826), and Senator Margaret Chase Smith (1943). This is a list of notable individuals affiliated with Colby College in Waterville, Maine. ... Benjamin Franklin Butler (1795–1858) was a U.S. lawyer. ... William Hall Billy Bush (born October 13, 1971), co-host of the syndicated NBC Universal TV show Access Hollywood. ... Doris Kearns Goodwin (born January 4, 1943) is an award-winning author and historian. ... Elijah Parish Lovejoy November 9,1802 – November 7, 1837), the son of Daniel Lovejoy, a Congregational minister, was an American minister and journalist who was murdered for his abolitionist views. ... Margaret Chase Smith (December 14, 1897–May 29, 1995) was a Republican Senator from Maine, and one of the most successful politicians in Maine history. ...


Colby College has an endowment equivalent to $232,952 per student. [4]

Points of interest

Established in 1948 by businessman Roger Babson (also founder of Babson College), the Gravity Research Foundation was an organization designed to find ways to block or reduce the effect of gravity. ... The Perkins Arboretum (128 acres; 51. ...

Popular Culture

For other uses, see HBO (disambiguation). ... The Sopranos is an American television drama series created by David Chase and originally broadcast on the HBO network. ... Drew University is a small, private university located in Madison, New Jersey. ... The Myth of Fingerprints is a 1997 film written and directed by Bart Freundlich. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...

Further reading

  • Fotiades, Anestes. Colby College 1813-1963: A Venture of Faith (1994)
  • Marriner, Ernest Cummings. The History of Colby College (1962)
  • Marriner, Ernest Cummings. The Man of Mayflower Hill: A Biography of Franklin W. Johnson (1967)
  • Marriner, Ernest Cummings. The Strider Years (1980)
  • Smith, Earl. Mayflower Hill: A History of Colby College (2006)
  • Soule, Bertha Louise. Colby's Roman, Julian Daniel Taylor (1938)
  • Soule, Bertha Louise. Colby's President Roberts (1943)
  • Whittemore, Edwin Carey. The History of Colby College (1927)

External links


  1. ^ http://kennebecjournal.mainetoday.com/news/local/3411334.html
  2. ^ http://www.colby.edu/admissions_cs/about/stats.cfm
  3. ^ a b Maine League of Historical Societies and Museums (1970). in Doris A. Isaacson: Maine: A Guide 'Down East'. Rockland, Me: Courier-Gazette, Inc., 226-227. 
  4. ^ http://www.colby.edu/campaign/endowment/index.cfm



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