Located in the borough of California in Pennsylvania, the California University of Pennsylvania (Cal U) is a public university with a student enrolment of around 8,000.
The institution was founded in 1852 as a small academy which was primarily used as a teacher training college. Over the years the university expanded, adding more and more programs and it became part of the State System of Higher Education in 1983, adopting its current name at the same time.
Today it is part of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the tenth-largest university system in the United States.
The 294-acre Cal U campus is situated on the shore of the Monongahela River, 35 miles south of the city of Pittsburgh, and contains a 92-acre arboretum which hosts several university buildings and is open to the public.
Since 2000, six new accommodation complexes have been constructed and notable campus buildings include the 6,000-seat Convocation Center, the largest indoor venue in the area, as well as the Heron Hall sports and fitness centre.
Campus traditions include Homecoming, a week of activities in October every year, as well as the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service which is the most-anticipated event of the university’s Black History Month celebration, and The Big Event is another noted occasion when students give a day of service to the local community, helping out with chores like washing windows, painting and other community work.
Notable former students include Frank Mascara, who served in the House of Representatives from 1995 to 2003, as well as American football stars Eric Kush, Rishaw Johnson and Perry Kemp.