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Binghamton University

Binghamton University

The State University of New York at Binghamton, commonly referred to as Binghamton University and SUNY Binghamton, is a public research university with campuses in Binghamton, Vestal, and Johnson City, New York. It is one of the four university centers in the State University of New York (SUNY) system.[6][7] As of Fall 2018, 17,768 undergraduate and graduate students attend the university. The Vestal campus is listed as a census-designated place, with a residential population of 6,177 as of the 2010 Census.[8]

Since its establishment in 1946, the school has evolved from a small liberal arts college to a large research university. Binghamton University was considered to be one of the "Public Ivies," a publicly funded university considered as providing a quality of education comparable to those of the Ivy League according to one source.[9] The university is designated as an R1 Doctoral University with very high research activity according to the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education.[10]

Binghamton's athletic teams are the Bearcats and they compete in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The Bearcats are members of the America East Conference.

Binghamton University
Former names
Triple Cities College (1946–1950)
Harpur College (1950–1965)
MottoFrom breadth through depth to perspective[1]
Public Research university
Endowment$152.6 million[2]
PresidentHarvey G. Stenger
Academic staff
New York
United States

42°05′20″N 75°58′01″W [107]
CampusSuburban, 939 acres (3.80 km2)
ColorsPantone 342[5]
AffiliationsState University of New York
MascotBaxter the Bearcat
Websitewww.binghamton.edu [108]
Binghamton University logo.svg
University rankings
U.S. News & World Report[39]79
Washington Monthly[40]90
U.S. News & World Report[44]734



The Binghamton campus and surroundings

The Binghamton campus and surroundings

Binghamton University was established in 1946 in Endicott, New York, as Triple Cities College[11][12] 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 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.[13] When Champlain closed in 1952 to make way for the Plattsburgh Air Force Base, the records and 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 next to 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 University, Albany, and Buffalo as one of 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.[14] In 1967, the School of Advanced Technology was established, the precursor to the Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, which was 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.[7]


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 to 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 rankings to date. DeFleur retired in 2010 and on July 1, Magrath returned as president on an interim basis.[15]

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.[16]


University leadership

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.[17]

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 2018, the university had an endowment of $152.619 million,[18] managed by the not-for-profit Binghamton University Foundation, which also oversees fundraising.[19] 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.

Colleges and schools

Academic A, School of Management

Academic A, School of Management

Binghamton is composed of the following colleges and schools:

  • Harpur College of Arts and Sciences is the oldest and largest of Binghamton's schools. It has more than 9,400 undergraduates and more than 1,100 graduate students in 26 departments and 14 interdisciplinary degree programs in the fine arts, humanities, natural and social sciences, and mathematics.

  • The College of Community and Public Affairs offers an undergraduate major in human development as well as graduate programs in social work; public administration; student affairs administration; human rights; and teaching, learning and educational leadership. It was formed in July 2006, after a reorganization of its predecessor, the School of Education and Human Development, when it was split off along with the Graduate School of Education. In 2017, the Graduate School of Education merged back into the College of Community and Public Affairs as the Department of Teaching, Learning and Educational Leadership. The department continues to offer master's of science and doctoral degrees.[20]

  • The Decker School of Nursing was established in 1969.[21] The school offers undergraduate, master's and doctoral degrees in nursing. The school is accredited by the Commission of Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

  • The School of Management was established in 1970. It offers bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in management, finance, information science, marketing, accounting, and operations and business analytics. It is accredited by the American Assembly of Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

  • The Thomas J. Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer engineering, biomedical engineering, systems science and industrial engineering, materials science and engineering, and computer science. All of the school's departments have been accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology.

  • The Graduate School administers advanced-degree programs and awards degrees through the seven component colleges above. Graduate students will find almost 70 areas of study. Undergraduate and graduate students are taught and advised by a single faculty.

  • The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, the newest school at Binghamton, and offers doctoral degrees in pharmacy and pharmacology. The school has been granted Candidate status from the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education [109] , which grants all the rights and privileges available to students of accredited schools, and anticipates full accreditation upon graduation of its inaugural class in 2021. The school enrolled its first students in fall 2017,[22] and in 2018 opened its state-of-the-art, $60 million new building on a new Health Sciences Campus in Johnson City, near UHS-Wilson Medical Center.[23][24]


Downtown campus

Downtown campus

The Couper Administration Building

The Couper Administration Building

Binghamton has grown to roughly 120 buildings, including recent additions from a $2.2 billion SUNY capital plan. New facilities include the $375 million East Campus Housing Complex that features 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 Innovative Technologies Complex (ITC), which now includes four buildings: the Biotechnology Building, the $66 million Engineering and Science Building, the $30 million Center of Excellence and the $70 million Smart Energy Building that houses the chemistry and physics departments that was completed in 2017. The $60 million School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences building on the Health Sciences Campus in Johnson City, N.Y., was completed in 2018.[25] 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 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 (in late fall and early spring, to allow for safe migration of salamanders across the road). 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 Glenn G. Bartle Library, named after the University's first president, contains collections in the humanities, social sciences, government documents and collections in mathematical and computer sciences. Additionally, Bartle Library houses the Fine Arts Collection (focusing on works relating to art, music, theater and cinema) and Special Collections (containing the Max Reinhardt Collection, as well as the Edwin A. Link and Marion Clayton Link Archives).

  • The Science Library contains materials in all science and engineering disciplines, as well as a map collection.

  • The University Downtown Center (UDC) Library and Information Commons, opened in August 2007, supports the departments of social work, human development, public administration, and student affairs administration.

The libraries offer a number of services including research consultation and assistance, a laptop lending program, customized instruction sessions and three information commons 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 that 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

Anderson Center at Binghamton University

Anderson Center at Binghamton University

This theater complex has three 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.

University Union

Clock Tower, University Union

Clock Tower, University Union

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 Visions Federal Credit Union.

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.[26]

Events Center

The Events Center is one of 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 8,000 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 athletics 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.

Science Complex

The science complex includes five instructional and office buildings, as well as a four-climate teaching greenhouse[27] and the Science Library. Buildings are named sequentially as Science 1 through 5. They contain faculty offices and classrooms for the biological sciences, anthropology, geological sciences and psychology departments.

Academic Complex

The Academic Complex is a two-building complex that opened in 1999. Academic A houses the School of Management. Academic B houses the Decker School of Nursing.

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 four buildings: the Biotechnology Building, formerly belonging to NYSEG and now extensively renovated; the Engineering and Science Building, opened in 2011; 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; and the Smart Energy Building that houses the chemistry and physics departments, opened in 2017. Early talks indicated plans for a six-building complex at its completion.[28]

Nature Preserve

University Nature Preserve, Vestal, NY

University Nature Preserve, Vestal, NY

The University's Nature Preserve is 190-acre (0.77 km2) on the southern end of campus and 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 six-acre pond, 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. There is continued discussion about management of the rapidly growing deer population in the preserve.

Residential communities

Mountainview College

Mountainview College

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 included a new collegiate center and dining facility. The old Newing community was razed to make room for the new communities. The old Dickinson community was renovated and repurposed for academics, offices and departments. The last of the new Newing and Dickinson residence halls were unveiled in 2013.[29]

  • Dickinson Community: Named for Daniel S. Dickinson, a mid-19th century U.S. Senator from surrounding area, important as the "Defender of the Constitution" in pre-Civil War era. Buildings are named after other prominent local figures, including founders of the University. The buildings of this community were replaced with a new state-of-the-art living community completed in the fall of 2013.

  • Hinman College: Named for New York State Senator Harvey D. Hinman. Buildings are named after former New York State governors, and were constructed between 1967 and 1968.

  • Newing College: Named for Stuart Newing, a local automobile dealer who was active in the effort to have SUNY purchase Triple Cities College. Buildings are named for Southern Tier towns and counties. Newing College was rebuilt completely, and the new residence halls and student center/dining hall opened in fall 2011. The remaining older Newing buildings were demolished to make room for the new Dickinson Community, which opened in the fall of 2013.

  • College-in-the-Woods: Named for its location in a wooded area of the campus. Buildings are named after tribes of the Iroquois Confederacy. College-in-the-Woods opened for residency in the fall of 1973.

  • Mountainview College: The four individual residential halls—Cascade, Hunter, Marcy, and Windham—were named after peaks in the Adirondack and Catskill Mountains and each house up to 300 students. Mountainview was completed between 2003 and 2004.[30]

  • Susquehanna Community: Buildings are named for tributaries of the Susquehanna River, which flows through the city of Binghamton.

  • Hillside Community: Named for its location at the highest part of the Binghamton campus. Halls are named for New York state parks. The 16 apartment buildings are ordered in alphabetical order clockwise.

Construction projects

Currently, the University is executing and planning several projects to accommodate growth in the student body, research capacity, and quality of education.[31]

  • The East Campus Housing Project reconstructed the Newing and Dickinson residential communities; construction began in late Spring 2008 with the construction of one new building in Newing.[32] Completed in fall 2013, East Campus now consists of two entirely new housing communities and a collegiate center/dining hall.

  • The Innovative Technologies Complex, currently consists of four buildings. The entire complex is dedicated primarily to venture capital research in the areas of science and engineering. The second building, completed in 2011, houses some Watson School of Engineering departments (with the exception of computer science and systems science). The third building, completed in 2014, houses the Small Scale Systems Integration and Packaging Center (S3IP), the University's New York State Center of Excellence.[33] The fourth building, completed in 2017, houses the chemistry and physics departments.

  • A fifth science building began construction in Spring 2009 and was completed in 2011, expanding the existing science complex on the main campus. The new facility hosts the biological sciences and psychology departments. Once completed, renovations were made to the existing buildings Science 3 and Science 4.[34]

  • The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences building was completed and opened in 2018, housing the University's newest school at the Health Sciences Campus in Johnson City, N.Y.

  • Various pathway, bridge, pipeline and other infrastructure work is taking place. Projects such as paths and bridges are creating increased access to expanding portions of campus, others are for aesthetic contributions and others simply for repair. In addition, major renovations were made to the old Dickinson Community, including transforming space into offices for the Binghamton University Foundation and the Division of Advancement. A new, state-of-the-art Admissions Center opened in 2014 in the former Dickinson Dining Hall.


  • Bus transportation on campus and in local neighborhoods with a high density of students is provided by the student-owned and operated Off Campus College Transport (OCCT). OCCT is entirely student run and is free for all students; it is supported by the mandatory student activity and transportation fees and by funds and resources provided by the university. OCCT is managed by the Student Association.

  • Students, faculty and staff are able to ride the Broome County Transit bus system for free, paid for through a portion of the transportation fee.[35]

  • The ESCAPE Student Bus Service, operated by the Student Association, provides coach transportation to students between the Vestal campus and the New York metropolitan area on weekends and on university breaks.


Rankings and reputation

  • Binghamton is ranked 79th among national universities, 31st among public schools, in the 2020 U.S. News & World Report.[45][46][47] and 725th among global universities, in the 2018 U.S. News & World Report.[48][46][47]

  • The 2017 Money Magazine ranking for "Best Colleges For Your Money" placed Binghamton at 33rd out of 711 colleges and universities. This ranking placed Binghamton ahead of Cornell University (59th), Georgetown (56th), Stony Brook (54th), Notre Dame (40th), and Brown University (34th) [49]

  • The university is ranked 654th in the world, 185th in the nation in the 2016 Center for University World Rankings.[50]

  • Binghamton University is ranked the 18th best public college in the US by The Business Journals in 2015.[51][52]

  • In 2016 Binghamton was ranked as the 10th best public college in the United States by Business Insider.[53]

  • In 2018, the university was ranked 401-500 by Times Higher Education World Ranking.[54]

  • In its inaugural college rankings, based upon "... the economic value of a university...," The Economist ranked Binghamton University 74th overall in the nation.[55]

  • The university was ranked by U.S. News & World Report in 2010 the 11th Up-and-Coming Schools which are making the most promising and innovative changes in the areas of academics, faculty, and student life; although it has since dropped in the rankings on their own lists.[56]

  • The university was called a Public Ivy by Howard and Matthew Greene in a book titled The Public Ivies: America's Flagship Public Universities (2001).[9] It was a runner-up for the original Public Ivy list in 1985.[57]

  • Binghamton was ranked 90th in the 2019 National Universities category of the Washington Monthly College rankings.[58]

  • According to the 2014 BusinessWeek rankings, the undergraduate business school was ranked 57th among Public Schools in the nation.[59] In 2010 it was ranked as having the second best accounting program.[60]

  • Binghamton's QS World University Rankings have decreased annually from 501 in 2008, to 601 in 2012 and 701+ in 2013 with higher numbers reflecting worse performance.[61]

  • According to Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, Binghamton was ranked the #15 best value for in-state students and #4 for out-of-state students in Kiplinger's "Best Values in Public Colleges 2014".[62]

  • Binghamton ranked 174 on the 2014 Forbes America's Best Colleges rankings.[63][64]

  • Fiske Guide to Colleges (2010) labeled Binghamton as "The Premier Public University in the Northeast," a statement that has become prominent in the university's marketing efforts.[65]

  • According to the 2014 U.S. News & World Report, Binghamton has one of the highest student to faculty ratios of any university in the country at 20:1.[46]

  • The 2014 U.S. News & World Report ranked the following departments as such: 86 for mathematical sciences; 119 for undergraduate business; 129 undergraduate engineering; 164 Biological Science, 148 chemistry, 193 nursing among others.[46]

  • Binghamton ranks 573rd in the world in terms of number of highly cited researchers according to the World Top 500 Universities rankings, while the academic quality of the university was not ranked.[66]

  • According to Matthew Telfer, Distinguished Alumni Award Recipient of 2012, Binghamton University is known as 'The Poor Man's Harvard' or 'Public Ivy.'[67]

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.[68] In the Fall of 2017, the undergraduate acceptance rate was 40%.[69]

  • According to the latest data (Fall 2016), Binghamton University has the following records: median SAT score: 1800–2060; median ACT score: 26–31; Freshmen Retention Rate: 91.7% (National Avg. 73.3%); Student To Faculty Ratio: 20:1; Academic Offerings: Nearly 130; Freshmen Enrolled: 2,657; Transfers Enrolled: 1,052; Median High School GPA: 3.3–3.9 or 91–97; Average Transfer GPA: 3.5.[70][71]

  • The average debt at graduation is $14,734, and the school is in the top 15 lowest debt-load amongst public colleges in the country.[72]

  • In-state tuition is $6,670 and out-of-state tuition is $21,550 (as of September 2017).[73]

Student body

As of 2018, there are 14,021 undergraduate students and 3,747 graduate students enrolled at Binghamton University, with 768 full-time faculty and a student-to-faculty of 20:1.[4] 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.[74][75][76] 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.

General education

The university requires students to have completed 12 general education requirements in order to graduate, with some exceptions[77] 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.[78] Individual schools within the University have additional requirements.[79] 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).


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.[80] 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.[81] 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[82] 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.[83] The university is home to the New York State Center of Excellence in Small Scale Systems Integration and Packaging (S3IP).[84] S3IP conducts research in areas such as microelectronics manufacturing and packaging, data center energy management, and solar energy.[85] 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).[83]


The university's Office of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Partnerships can connect people to resources available through programs such as STARTUP NY, the Small Business Development Center, the region's Trade Adjustment Assistance Center, campus Start-Up Suites and the Koffman Southern Tier Incubator.

Student life

Student organizations

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.[86]


In 1961 a group of students founded WRAF, a limited transmission AM station, with a studios in the Student Union. It broadcasts 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.

Pipe Dream

Founded in 1946, Pipe Dream (which was called The Colonial News until its name was changed to Pipe Dream around 1970) is SUNY at Binghamton'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.[87]


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.[88] 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.[89] They also host an annual online debate tournament that accepts participants from anywhere in the world.[90]


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.

Binghamton athletics gained significant negative attention during the Binghamton University basketball scandal in 2010, when it was revealed that the school had compromised its integrity and committed internal violations in pursuit of athletic glory. The scandal left Binghamton's basketball team in ruin.[91]

Alma mater

In the Rolling Hills of Binghamton is the official alma mater of Binghamton University, composed by David Engel (class of 1986)[92]


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."[93]

Notable alumni

  • Robyn Adele Anderson, 2011, founding member and primary vocalist for Postmodern Jukebox[94]

  • Billy Baldwin, 1985, actor

  • David P. Barash, 1966, Evolutionary Biologist, Professor of Psychology at University of Washington and author of over 30 books

  • Andrew Bergman, screenwriter, author and director

  • Alan Berliner, 1982, Emmy award-winning documentary filmmaker

  • Leland Bobbé, photographer

  • Morteza Aghatehrani, Iranian politician, cleric, scholar, mujtahid

  • Paul Bové, 1989, Professor of English, University of Pittsburgh[95]

  • Mark Mathew Braunstein, 1974, author

  • Joseph Buttigieg, Ph.D. 1976, Professor of English, Notre Dame University, father of Presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg

  • Stephanie Courtney, 1992, actress, Flo (Progressive Insurance)

  • Amy Dacey, 1993, CEO of the Democratic National Committee

  • Grey J. Dimenna, President of Monmouth University

  • Ronald G. Ehrenberg, 1966, Labor Economist & Author

  • Michael J. Epstein, 1998, filmmaker, musician, and writer

  • Faisal Farooqui, 1999, Founder and CEO of MouthShut.com[96]

  • Norman Finkelstein, 1974, political scientist, professor

  • Stewart D. Friedman, 1974, author and professor[97]

  • Steven Fulop, 1999, mayor of Jersey City, New Jersey

  • Adam Gazzaley, 1990, Professor of Neurology, Physiology, and Psychiatry, UCSF

  • Yasmin Hurd, 1982, Professor of Neuroscience, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai[98]

  • Sunny Hostin, 1990, co-host of The View and senior legal correspondent for ABC News

  • Hakeem Jeffries, 1992, New York State Assembly, United States House of Representatives

  • Mona Jhaveri, cancer researcher and entrepreneur focusing on biotech funding

  • Bill T. Jones, dancer and choreographer

  • Elaine D. Kaplan, 1976, Judge of the United States Court of Federal Claims

  • Ellyn Kaschak, 1965, clinical psychologist, retired professor

  • Merle Keitel, 1980, Psychologist, author and academic

  • Tony Kornheiser, 1970, host of The Tony Kornheiser Show

  • Marc Lawrence, 1981, screenwriter and director

  • Arnold J. Levine, 1961, molecular biologist, President of Rockefeller University

  • Michael Lederer, 1981, author

  • John Liu, 1988, 43rd New York City Comptroller

  • Donna Lupardo, MA 1983, New York State Assembly

  • Geraldine MacDonald, 1968, MS 1973, Honorary Doctor of Letters 2017, businesswoman, technology executive

  • Monica Martinez, 1999, member of the New York State Senate[99]

  • Stephanie McCurry, PhD 1988, Professor of History, Columbia University[100]

  • Ingrid Michaelson, 2001, musician

  • Camille Paglia, 1968, critic, author, Professor at University of the Arts

  • Lee Ranaldo, 1978, musician, writer, artist, guitarist of Sonic Youth

  • Paul Reiser, 1977, actor, comedian

  • Dave Rubin, 1998, comedian, talk show host

  • Robert A. Rubinstein, PhD 1977, Distinguished Professor of Anthropology, Syracuse University[101]

  • Ruben Santiago-Hudson, 1978, actor

  • Thomas Secunda, 1977, American business executive; Co-Founder/Vice Chairman of Bloomberg L.P.[102]

  • Beverly J. Silver, PhD 1992, Professor and Chair of Sociology, Johns Hopkins University[103]

  • Karthik Sivakumar, Indian Actor

  • Art Spiegelman, 1995 Honorary Doctorate. Cartoonist and Editor, creator of Maus (attended Harpur, never graduated)

  • Deborah Tannen, 1966, academic/writer on linguistics, discourse analysis, and interpersonal communication

  • David E. Wellbery, 1969, scholar, author

  • Donald E. Westlake, novelist and screenwriter (did not graduate)

  • Jillian York, 2004, journalist

  • Arnie Zane, choreographer, dancer, co-founder of Bill T. Jones-Arnie Zane and Company

  • Jake Keegan, 2012, professional soccer player


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