Founded in 1839, Loras College is a four year liberal arts college affiliated with the Catholic church. The college is located in Dubuque, Iowa, as is fellow Catholic college Clarke University. The college is named for its founder and first bishop of Dubuque, Mathias Loras.
Loras is one of the few colleges in the Midwest region to provide a four year, ABET accredited Engineering degree. The course is interdisciplinary in its approach, and previous students have gone on to work for companies such as John Deere and Rockwell Collins.
The Loras College Alumni Campus Centre regularly hosts talks and guest speakers. In 2016 director of Worcester Arts Museum Jim Welu hosted a talk on the Monuments Men, Allied soldiers who retrieved artworks stolen by the Nazis during World War II.
Athletics teams at Loras are known as the Duhawks, a portmanteau of Dubuque and Hawks coined by the Detroit Free Press in 1924. There is a wide array of competitive sports at the college, with eleven men’s and ten women’s programmes. The athletics colours of purple and gold are associated with Loras’ Christian heritage, for not only is purple the colour worn by Catholic bishops, but early Gospel manuscripts were written in gold on a purple background.
Alumni of Loras include congressman Rod Blum and Darin LaHood, Oscar winning actor Don Ameche, and Pulitzer winning photographer Javier Manzano. Baseball great Red Faber pitched a season for Loras, then known as St. Joseph’s College, and the baseball field is named in his honour.
The college motto translates as ‘For God and for Country’. The hilltop location of Loras allows for spectacular views of Dubuque and the nearby Mississippi River.