Springfield College and the YMCA share a unique partnership, history, and heritage, which date back to the establishment of the College, then known as the School of Christian Workers, in 1885.
Springfield College was founded by David Allen Reed, a visionary minister who was interested in the training and education of lay workers for churches and YMCAs. By 1890, supporters and donors of the School believed that the time had come for the rapidly expanding YMCA movement to have its own school. They sought to have the name and focus of the School changed to the International YMCA Training School, which eventually evolved into Springfield College.
In a historic official articulation agreement, signed on April 7, 2004, the YMCA of the USA designated Springfield College as a premier institution of higher education for YMCA leaders. Springfield College is the only institution to have this type of agreement in place with the YMCA. This agreement has been renewed and remains in place to this day.
Springfield College and the YMCA continue to educate future and current YMCA professionals. There is not another higher education institution that has the type of comprehensive YMCA studies program that Springfield College does. Members of the College’s Office of YMCA Relations work to continuously cultivate relationships with other YMCAs to provide networking and career opportunities for students. This active partnership offers opportunities to enhance academic offerings and student outcomes.