Lesley University is a liberal arts institution focusing on creative pursuits in the town of Springfield, Massachusetts. Established in 1909 as a women’s college, it has been fully co-educational since 2005. The university is named for its founder, education pioneer Edith Lesley.
The two undergraduate colleges at Lesley are Art & Design, and Liberal Arts & Sciences. Fine Art has been a cornerstone of the institution since its inception, and the modern course offers a Master of Fine Arts programmes in Creative Writing, Photography and Visual Arts. At the Arts College the Photography Laboratory provides 15 individual colour darkrooms, as well as dedicated Animation and Computer Studios on campus.
Internships are a key element of study at Lesley, beginning from freshman year. The nationally accredited Environmental Education Programme offers the opportunity for students to learn about how to inspire teachings of ecology and sustainability to a younger generation, and offers summer internships in Cobscook Bay in rural Maine, and in Boston’s urban centre.
The Lesley Institute for Trauma Sensitivity is devoted to treating people suffering from the long term psychological impact of a traumatic event, with a focus on child sufferers. In 2016, faculty head Sal Terrasi was invited to the White House for a discussion on creating trauma-sensitive school environments.
Athletics teams are known as the Lynx, and compete in the NCAA Division III and New England Collegiate Conference. Basketball and volleyball teams play at the Nicholas Athletic Centre, which seats 450 spectators, and Trum Field for baseball accommodates over 500.