President Harvey G. Stenger
Acceptance rate 42% (2015)
Mascot Baxter The Bearcat
|Endowment $97 million|
Campus size 3.59 km²
Total enrollment 16,896 (2015)
Phone +1 607-777-2000
|Former names Triple Cities College (1946–1950)Harpur College (1950–1965)|
Motto From breadth through depth to perspective
Type Public Research universitySpace-grant
Address 4400 Vestal Parkway East, Binghamton, NY 13902, USA
Undergraduate tuition and fees Local tuition: 6,470 USD (2015)
Notable alumni Deborah Tannen, Tony Kornheiser, William Baldwin, Ruben Santiago‑Hudson, Paul Reiser
Similar Stony Brook University, Cornell University, University at Buffalo, Binghamton University School of, State University of New Y
Binghamton university campus tour
The State University of New York at Binghamton, commonly referred to as Binghamton University, is a public research university with campuses in Binghamton, Vestal, and Johnson City, New York, United States. Since its establishment as Triple Cities College in 1946, the school has evolved from a small liberal arts college to a large doctoral-granting institution. Presently consisting of eight colleges and schools, it is now home to more than 17,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Binghamton is one of the four university centers in the State University of New York (SUNY) system.
- Binghamton university campus tour
- Binghamton university move in day
- University leadership
- Colleges and schools
- Anderson Center for the Performing Arts
- University Art Museum
- University Union
- Events Center
- Other athletic facilities
- Science Complex
- Academic Complex
- Innovative Technologies Complex
- Nature Preserve
- Residential communities
- Construction projects
- Student body
- General education
- Rankings and reputation
- Admissions and finance
- Division of Research
- SUNY Research Foundation
- Centers and institutes
- Student organizations
- Pipe Dream
- Harpurs Ferry Student Volunteer Ambulance Service
- Alma mater
- Notable alumni
Binghamton University is currently ranked 86th among the 201 national universities in U.S. News & World Report's 2017 America's Best Colleges and Universities ranking; internationally, it is ranked 701+ according to QS University Rankings. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching has classified the school as a Research University with high research activity.
Although the university's mailing address is in Binghamton, its main campus is in the nearby town of Vestal, with a secondary education center located in downtown Binghamton and a third campus, dedicated to health sciences, under construction in Johnson City, and scheduled to open in 2018. The Vestal campus is listed as a census-designated place with a residential population of 6,177 as of 2010.
Binghamton university move in day
Binghamton University was first established in 1946 in Endicott, New York, as Triple Cities College to serve the needs of local veterans returning from World War II. Thomas J. Watson, a founding member of IBM in Broome County, viewed the Triple Cities region as an area of great potential. In the early 1940s he collaborated with a group of local leaders to begin establishing the two-year school as a satellite of private Syracuse University, donating land that would become the school's early home.
Originally, Triple Cities College students finished their bachelor's degrees at Syracuse. By the 1948–1949 academic year these could be completed entirely at the College. In 1950 it split from Syracuse and became incorporated into the public State University of New York (SUNY) system as Harpur College, named in honor of Robert Harpur, a colonial teacher and pioneer who settled in the Binghamton area. At the time it joined Champlain College in Plattsburgh as the only two liberal arts schools in the New York state system. When Champlain finally closed in 1952 to make way for the Plattsburgh Air Force Base, the records, some students and faculty were transferred to Harpur College in Binghamton. Harpur also received 16,000 non-duplicate volumes and the complete contents of the Champlain College library.
In 1955, Harpur began to plan its current location in Vestal, a town near Binghamton. A site large enough to anticipate future growth was purchased, with the school's move to its new 387-acre (1.57 km2) campus being completed by 1961. Colonial Hall, Triple Cities College's original building in Endicott, stands today as the village's Visitor's Center.
In 1965 Harpur College was selected to join New York state schools at Stony Brook, Albany, and Buffalo as the four new SUNY university centers. Redesignated the State University of New York at Binghamton, the school's new name reflected its status as an advanced degree granting institution. In a nod to tradition, its undergraduate College of Arts and Sciences remained "Harpur College". With more than 60% of undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in Harpur's degree programs it is the largest of Binghamton's constituent schools. In 1967, the School of Advanced Technology was established, the precursor to the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science founded in 1983.
Since 1992 the school has made an effort to distinguish itself from the SUNY system, rebranding itself as "Binghamton University," or "Binghamton University, State University of New York". Still legally and officially the State University of New York at Binghamton, its University Administration Procedures discourage references to the school as "SUNY—Binghamton," "SUNY—B," "Harpur College," or other names not listed above.
The first president of Harpur College, who began as dean of Triple Cities College, was Glenn Bartle. The second president, G. Bruce Dearing, served several years during the Vietnam era before leaving to become vice chancellor for academic affairs at the SUNY Central Administration in Albany. Next was C. Peter Magrath, former interim president of the University of Nebraska, who served from 1972–1974 then left to become president at the University of Minnesota.
The fourth president at Binghamton was Clifford D. Clark, who left his position as dean of the business school at the University of Kansas to serve as vice president for academic affairs at Binghamton in 1973. He was asked to take on the job of acting president in the fall of 1974 when Magrath left for Minnesota. Clark was selected as president and served from March 1975 through mid-1990. During this time he led the school's evolution from primarily a four-year liberal arts college to a research university. Clark added the Anderson Center for the Performing Arts and inaugurated the Summer Music Festival, created the Harpur Forum (now called the Binghamton University Forum), established the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, and fostered the expansion and development of the Decker School of Nursing.
Lois B. DeFleur became the university's fifth president upon Clark's retirement in 1990. During her nearly 20-year tenure the University experienced its most significant growth. She oversaw substantial additions to the student and faculty populations, vastly expanded research activities and funding, formalized Binghamton's fundraising efforts, expanded the campus' physical footprint by approximately 20 buildings, launched Binghamton's "green" efforts for which they are now nationally recognized, transitioned the school from Division III athletics to Division I and catalyzed the biggest increase in academic ranking to date. DeFleur retired in 2010 and on July 1, Magrath returned as president on an interim basis.
On November 22, 2011, the SUNY Board of Trustees appointed Harvey G. Stenger, Jr. as the seventh president of Binghamton University, effective January 1, 2012. Stenger had been interim provost and executive vice president for academic affairs at the University at Buffalo since April 2011.
Binghamton is one of four university centers of the State University of New York (SUNY) system and is governed by its Board of Trustees. The Binghamton University Council oversees such aspects of the school's governance as student conduct, budget and physical facilities. Nine of its ten members are appointed by the state governor, one elected by the student body.
The University is organized into six administrative offices: Academic Affairs; Advancement; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; Operations; Research; and Student Affairs. The Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is managed by a chief diversity officer and the other divisions are managed by a vice president.
As of 2012, the university had an endowment of $81,919,000, managed by the not-for-profit Binghamton University Foundation, which also oversees fundraising. Its most recent drive–'Bold.Brilliant.Binghamton—the Campaign for Binghamton University'– raised more than $100 million before ending on June 30, 2012, $5 million over its original goal.
By December 22, 2014, the endowment had exceeded $116 million.
Colleges and schools
Binghamton is composed of the following colleges and schools:
Binghamton has grown to include roughly 120 buildings, including recent additions from a $2.2 billion SUNY capital plan. New facilities include the $375 million East Campus Housing Complex featuring eight new residence halls; academic facilities including a new science building (Science 5); an indoor multipurpose Events Center to accommodate the University's commencement exercises, Bearcat athletic events and other activities; an addition and major renovations to the University Union; and additions to the partially completed Innovative Technologies Complex (ITC), which now includes three buildings: the Biotechnology Building, the $66 million Engineering and Science Building, and the $30 million Center of Excellence. A fourth building—the $70 million Smart Energy Research and Development Facility—is under construction at the ITC, scheduled for completion in 2017. Another significant addition is the $29 million University Downtown Center in downtown Binghamton, which opened in fall 2007 and houses the College of Community and Public Affairs. The 2007 soccer season saw the debut of a new outdoor soccer and lacrosse stadium.
The main campus is shaped like a brain. The primary road on campus creates a closed loop to form the cerebrum and cerebellum, and the main entrance road creates the spinal cord which leads up to a traffic circle (representing the medulla). The main road is thus frequently referred to as The Brain. The connector road, which goes behind the Mountainview and College-in-the-Woods residential communities, is closed for a portion of the year (from late fall to spring). The campus is spread over 930 acres (3.8 km2) just south of the Susquehanna River. It features a 190 acres (0.77 km2) Nature Preserve, which contains forest and wetland areas and includes a six-acre (24,000 m²) pond, named Harpur Pond, that adjoins the campus.
The libraries offer a number of services including research consultation and assistance, a laptop lending program, customized instruction sessions and three information commons located in the Bartle, Science and UDC libraries. The libraries offer access to various online databases to facilitate research for students and faculty. The entire campus is also served by a wireless Internet network which all students, staff and faculty have access to, funded in part by mandatory student technology fees. The computing services center supports Windows, Macintosh and Unix systems, both in public computer labs and for students' personal computers.
Anderson Center for the Performing Arts
This theater complex has three main stages: Watters Theater, seating 550; the Chamber Hall, seating 450; and the Osterhout Concert Theater, seating 1,200. The concert theater has the ability to become an open-air venue, with its movable, floor-to-ceiling glass windows that open up to a grassy hill. The Anderson Center has hosted performers such as the Russian Symphony and Ballet, the Prague National Symphony and the Shakespearian Theater Company. In March 2006, an overflow house, filling all of the Anderson Center's theaters, was present to hear guest speaker Noam Chomsky.
University Art Museum
The University's art collection is housed at more than one location, but all within the Fine Arts Building. The building's main-level gallery hosts various artifacts which belong to the Permanent Collection, though typically showcases student work on a rotating basis. The Permanent Collection in the basement level of the building displays ancient art from Egypt, China and other locales. Lastly, the Elsie B. Rosefsky Gallery, just off the Grand Corridor, presents special exhibits and portfolios.
The University Union is divided into two sections, sometimes referred to as the old Union and the new Union, sometimes referred to as Union East and West respectively, yet called "University Union (UU)" and "University Union West (UUW)" by the University itself. The Union houses many student organizations, a food co-op, The MarketPlace food court, a number of meeting spaces, many new classrooms, the University Bookstore and a branch of M&T Bank.
On August 23, 2013, President Barack Obama hosted a town hall meeting in the University Union to discuss College Affordability with students, faculty, and staff at Binghamton University.
The Events Center is the area's largest venue for athletics, concerts, fairs and more. Home court to the Binghamton Bearcats basketball teams, the facility seats about 5,300 people for games. For concerts, Commencement and other larger events, the Events Center can hold up to 10,000 people. Home site for the America East Conference Men's Basketball Championships in 2005, 2006, and 2008, the court hosted the women's championships in 2007 and 2015. It's also held intercollegiate indoor track meets, tennis matches and wrestling matches, as well as opening and closing ceremonies for the Empire State Games. Its construction cost $33.1M and it opened in 2004.
Other athletic facilities
In addition to the Events Center the north end of campus houses the East and West Gyms, which host student recreation and varsity athletic programs. The East Gym underwent a major renovation, completed in winter 2012, and is now called the Recreational Center at the East Gym, and includes the 10,000-sq. ft. FitSpace fitness facility, three new multipurpose rooms, improved pool and court spaces, a new wellness services suite and completely renovated locker rooms. Other varsity facilities include baseball and softball fields, the Bearcats Sports Complex (a soccer and lacrosse stadium) and an outdoor track. With a gift from an anonymous donor, the baseball fields underwent a $2 million facelift including the addition of artificial turf and lights in 2016. Other student recreation features are a series of playing fields used for soccer, football, rugby and ultimate frisbee.
The science complex includes five instructional and office buildings, as well as a greenhouse and the Science Library. Buildings are named sequentially as Science 1 through 5. They contain faculty offices and classrooms for the chemistry, physics, biology, anthropology, and psychology departments.
The Academic Complex is a two-building complex which opened in 1999. Academic A houses the School of Management. Academic B houses the Decker School of Nursing and the Graduate School of Education.
Innovative Technologies Complex
More commonly known as the ITC, the Innovative Technologies Complex is a new development intended to advance venture capital research in both the support of the university's activities and that of the local high-technology industry. Currently the complex includes three buildings: The Biotechnology Building, formerly belonging to NYSEG and now extensively renovated; the Engineering and Science Building, opened in 2011; and the Center of Excellence Building, which houses the Small Scale Systems Integration and Packaging Center, a New York State Center of Excellence, opened in 2014. The University broke ground in August 2014 for the fourth building on the site, which will house research facilities for the chemistry and physics departments. Early talks indicated plans for a six-building complex at its completion.
The University's Nature Preserve is 190-acre (0.77 km2) located on the southern end of campus and is referred to as the largest laboratory on campus. Students have actively worked to make sure the space remains untouched. The preserve features approximately 10 miles(16 km) of maintained paths, a large lake, marsh areas, vernal pools, tall hills and a hill-top meadow. A popular hang-out spot is the long wooden boardwalk constructed across one of the marshes, overlooking the lake. For several years, there had been much controversy and discussion over the management of deer population that was rapidly growing. The decision to conduct a deer cull was made in 2011 in order to restore an ecologically balanced preserve. However, subsequent community opposition to the plan, for varied reasons, placed the planned culling on hold for the present time.
Residence halls at Binghamton are grouped into seven communities. The apartment communities used to house graduate students, but now house undergraduates. Of the residential colleges, Dickinson Community and Newing College are the newest. Dickinson features "flats" of either four single rooms or two double rooms and a single, while Newing features semi-private room styles sharing private bathrooms as well as some common bathrooms. College-in-the-Woods mixes suites and double- and triple-occupancy rooms, and Hinman College and Mountainview College consist of suites, exclusively. Susquehanna Community and Hillside Community contain only apartments.
The newly completed Newing College, opened in fall 2011, and Dickinson Community, completed in 2013, are part of the University's $375 million East Campus Housing project, which also includes a new collegiate center and dining facility. The old Newing community was razed to make room for the new communities. The old Dickinson community is being renovated and repurposed for academics, offices and departments. The last of the new Newing and Dickinson residence halls were unveiled in 2013.
Currently, the University is executing and planning several projects to accommodate growth in the student body, research capacity, and quality of education.
As of 2016, there are 13,632 undergraduate students and 3,660 graduate students enrolled at Binghamton University, with 848 full-time faculty and a student-to-faculty of 20:1. 84% of undergraduate students at Binghamton are residents of New York state, with more than 60 percent from the greater New York City area and the remainder from all corners of the state. The remaining 16 percent of the undergraduate student body is made up of residents of other states in the U.S. (7.5 percent) and international students (8.5 percent) from around the world. Since 1990, the university has experienced growth in enrollment (with a 1990 enrollment of 11,883). Since the arrival of President Harvey Stenger in 2012, the university had launched a plan to grow to 20,000 students by 2020, while adding faculty and staff to support the growth.
Binghamton offers more than 130 academic undergraduate majors, minors, certificates, concentrations, emphases, tracks and specializations and more than 60 master's, 30 doctorate and 50 accelerated (combined bachelor's/master's) degrees. There also exist interdisciplinary programs that allow individualized degree programs at both the undergraduate and graduate level. The school offers several early assurance programs which guarantee acceptance to graduate/professional schools outside of Binghamton, such as SUNY Upstate Medical School. Binghamton is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
The university requires students to have completed 12 general education requirements in order to graduate, with some exceptions depending on the school. These include courses in aesthetics, global inter-dependencies, humanities, laboratory science, composition and oral communication, mathematics, physical activity and wellness, social science and U.S. pluralism. Individual schools within the University have additional requirements. Students in Harpur College must complete a minimum of 126 credits to graduate. Most classes at Binghamton are worth four credits, rather than the more usual three. The typical undergraduate's course load thus consists of four courses (for 16 credits) rather than the usual five (for 15 credits).
Rankings and reputation
Admissions and finance
Binghamton University is one of the most selective schools in the SUNY system. In 2015, the university received more than 30,000 applications for approximately 2,600 freshman spaces. Binghamton has a four-year graduation rate of 70 percent (third highest among all public schools according to the National Education Trust), with an acceptance rate of 41.7%.
The university is designated as an advanced research institution, with a division of research, an independent research foundation, several research centers including a New York State Center of Excellence, and partnerships with other institutions. Binghamton University was ranked 163rd nationally in research and development expenditures by the National Science Foundation. In fiscal year 2013, the university had research expenditures of $76 million.
Division of Research
The office of the vice president for research is in charge of the university's Division of Research. The Office of Sponsored Programs supports the Binghamton University community in its efforts to seek and obtain external awards to support research, training, and other scholarly and creative activities. It provides support to faculty and staff in all aspects of proposal preparation, submission and grant administration. The Office of Research Compliance ensures the protection of human subjects, the welfare of animals, safe use of select agents pathogens and toxins, and to enhance the ethical conduct in research programs. The Office of Research Advancement facilitates the growth of research and scholarship, and helps build awareness of the work being done on campus. The Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Partnerships supports entrepreneurship, commercialization of technologies, start-ups and business incubation, and facilitates partnerships with the community and industry.
SUNY Research Foundation
The Research Foundation for the State University of New York is a private, nonprofit educational corporation that administers externally funded contracts and grants for and on behalf of SUNY. The foundation carries out its responsibilities pursuant to a 1977 agreement with the university. It is separate from the university and does not receive services provided to New York State agencies or state appropriation to support corporate functions. Sponsored program functions delegated to the campuses are conducted under the supervision of foundation operations managers. The Office of Sponsored Funds Administration, often referred to as “post-award administration,” is the fiscal and operational office for the foundation. It provides sponsored project personnel with comprehensive financial, project accounting, human resources, procurement, accounts payable and reporting services, as well as support for projects administered through the Research Foundation.
Centers and institutes
33 organized research centers and institutes for advanced studies facilitate interdisciplinary and specialized research at the university. The university is home to the New York State Center of Excellence in Small Scale Systems Integration and Packaging (S3IP). S3IP conducts research in areas such as microelectronics manufacturing and packaging, data center energy management, and solar energy. Other research centers and institutes include the Center for Development and Behavioural Neuroscience (CDBN), Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Philosophy, Interpretation, and Culture (CPIC), Institute for Materials Research (IMR), and the Fernand Braudel Center for the Study of Economies, Historical Systems, and Civilizations (FBC).
The university operates the Southern Tier Center on Aging in conjunction with the SUNY Upstate Medical Center. The center develops, implements and evaluates new interventions and models of service delivery geared to enhancing quality of life of older adults and their caregivers.
Student organizations at Binghamton are organized and run through the Student Association at Binghamton University. The Student Association provides a number of services and entertainment for students, including bus transportation and the annual Spring Fling festival. In 2013, the University and the Student Association collaborated to introduce B-Engaged, a website which features a complete list of all involvement opportunities at Binghamton.
In 1961 a group of students founded WRAF, a limited transmission AM station, with a studios in the Student Union. It broadcast live remote athletic events to the home campus. In 1964 it obtained a low wattage FM license and began broadcasting as WHRW. It continues as a free-format student run radio station that broadcasts at 90.5 FM to areas throughout the Southern Tier. Students and community members can join the Apprenticeship process where after a semester of shadowing, they can DJ their own content shows.
Founded in 1946, Pipe Dream is Binghamton University's oldest student organization. The paper is published twice-weekly in the fall and spring with one issue in the summer aimed at students at orientation. Content sections include News, Sports, Opinion, and Release, the arts and entertainment section.
Harpur's Ferry Student Volunteer Ambulance Service
Formed in 1973, Harpur's Ferry provides EMS care for the Binghamton University Campus and all off-campus students. As of 2012, they have twice been recognized as the No. 1 collegiate Emergency Medical Service agency in the nation.
Explorchestra is the university's composers' orchestra and is dedicated to the promotion of new music by composers from diverse backgrounds. The ensemble performs exclusively original music and offers its members the opportunity to compose, conduct, perform, and produce music without enrolling in the music major. Explorchestra has strong ties with the Music Department, as well as the Binghamton Philharmonic and many local Broome County businesses.
Binghamton University's debate team has consistently been ranked as one of the top ten debate programs in the nation by the Cross Examination Debate Association and was ranked 1st in 2008. The team regularly competes at regional and national tournaments and has regularly qualified to attend the National Debate Tournament. They hosted both national tournaments in 2016 in addition to being the host for the District 8 qualifying division. They also host an annual online debate tournament that accepts participants from anywhere in the world.
Binghamton University's Intercollegiate Athletics program is an NCAA Division I program. The Intercollegiate Athletics program comprises 21 sports that compete in the America East Conference for all sports except wrestling and golf. The 21 sports include Baseball, Men's & Women's Basketball, Men's & Women's Cross Country, Men's Golf, Men's & Women's Lacrosse, Men's & Women's Soccer, Softball, Men's & Women's Swimming & Diving, Men's & Women's Tennis, Men's & Women's Indoor Track, Men's & Women's Outdoor Track, Women's Volleyball and Men's Wrestling.
The school also hosts several intramural and inter-community sports. Binghamton University, and more specifically Hinman College, is considered to be the creator of Co-Rec Football, a popular version of flag/touch football and is generally played amongst several teams within each dormitory community.
In the Rolling Hills of Binghamton is the official alma mater of Binghamton University, composed by David Engel (class of 1986)In the rolling hills of Binghamton, ’neath everchanging skies,
Where two gently flowing rivers meet, we form our cherished ties.
Through our bold pursuit of excellence, we proudly bear your name!Oh Binghamton, we carry thee, with us for all our timeAnd through us individually, forever may you shine.
To fans of the americana-psychedelic-rock band The Grateful Dead, the name "Harpur College" specifically refers to a legendary concert the band played at the college on May 2, 1970. The reverence in which this concert is held owes both to the quality of the performance and to the fact that high quality bootleg cassette recordings circulated widely among "DeadHeads" for decades before the recording was officially released on CD as Dick's Picks Volume 8. "The Harpur College show has long been prized by tape collectors as an example of the depth the Dead were capable of on any given night."