5 Rhode Island 
          Education Resources

Why go to college in Rhode Island?
You don't have to be a fan of the highly rated television show "Providence" to love the Ocean State.  Rhode Island is part of New England in the northeastern corner of the United States. Rhode Island is a state with legendary mansions, over 100 miles of beautiful beaches, unspoiled scenic trails as well as a growing, modern capital city-- Providence

There is always something to do and see in Rhode Island, whatever your interests-- from the usual recreational activities like going to the beach or shopping to whale watching.  Rhode Island is the home of the third oldest zoo in the United States--Roger Willams Park Zoo.  Called "New England's Great Zoo" by the Boston Globe, it is considered to be among America's top ten zoos. Although Rhode Island is the smallest state in the U.S., it is one of the biggest in terms of the gifts to the country. It offers a unique blend of geographic, historic and cultural diversity, as well as a wide range of recreational activities. 

Despite its size, Rhode Island offers one of the nation's largest concentrations of registered historic landmarks. Did you know that 20% of the official historic landmarks in the U.S. are in Rhode Island?

Take time to visit some of the choices that you have for higher education in Rhode Island on the following web pages.  Rhode Island offers everything from the largest community college in New England to nationally ranked private and Ivy League institutions. There really is something for everyone, Rhode Island colleges and universities provide some of the finest opportunities in America for students studying everything from oceanography to education, culinary arts, business, graphic arts, film making, liberal arts and engineering.

Rhode Island Colleges On-line 

Community College of Rhode Island
Established by the General Assembly in 1960, the Community College of Rhode Island  seeks to provide: an opportunity for students to complete their first two-years of college, workforce training beyond the high school level, a focus on teaching and student services, an avenue for adults to pursue post-secondary education, extensive involvement with the community, and specialized workforce education and training courses for business and industry.  The largest community college in New England, the Community College of Rhode Island has three permanent campuses:  The Knight Campus in Warwick, the Flanagan Campus in Lincoln, and the Providence Campus  in South Providence.  Satellite campuses are located at East Providence High School, Middletown High School, Newport Hospital, North Kingstown High School and Westerly High School.  Fall 1998 headcount enrollment at the Community College was 15,366. 

Rhode Island College
Established in 1854, Rhode Island College is now the state's principal urban public institution of higher learning -- in setting, student body, curriculum and priorities.  It provides undergraduate programs in the arts and sciences as well as in pre-professional and professional fields.  It also offers some graduate programs in the arts and sciences and in the areas of community, public and social service.  It grants neither associate's degrees nor doctorates, except for a Ph.D. in Education offered jointly with the University of Rhode Island.  The faculty's first priority is teaching, but this focus is enriched by a strong commitment to research and community service.  Rhode Island College is located on a 125-acre campus straddling the Providence/North Providence line.  Headcount enrollment at Rhode Island College for the fall of 1998 was 8,683. 

University of Rhode Island
From its beginnings in 1888, the University of Rhode Island has grown to become the state's public, comprehensive university, and is a land grant, sea grant, and urban grant institution, with responsibility for cooperative extension services.  It provides instructional programs through the doctoral degree level, and among the three public institutions has the primary responsibility for research.  The University of Rhode Island consists of four campuses: the 1,200 acre Kingston Campus located in Kingston, the 165 acre Narragansett Bay Campus located off South Ferry Road in Narragansett, the 2,300 acre W. Alton Jones Campus in West Greenwich, and the Providence Center which houses the Alan Shawn Feinstein College of Continuing Education.  At the University of Rhode Island, total headcount enrollment for the fall 1998 semester was 14,319 students. 

Brown University
Established in 1764, Brown is the seventh oldest college in the nation and a member of the Ivy League.  Originally named Rhode Island College, the institution was renamed in 1804 for Nicholas Brown, an original incorporator and benefactor.  Women were first admitted in 1891 to study at what became known as Pembroke College, which merged with Brown's undergraduate college in 1971.  Brown University offers bachelorís, masterís and doctoral degrees in the liberal arts and sciences, a masterís degree in teaching, plus a medical education program leading to the MD degree.  The Brown campus is located on Providenceís East Side.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 7,782.

Bryant College
Bryant College was founded in 1863 to provide specialized training in business administration.  Located on a 320 acre campus on Douglas Pike in Smithfield that opened in 1971, Bryant College offers associate's, bachelorís, and masterís degree programs, including an MBA.  Bryant is home of the RI Small Business Development Center and is the summer training camp site for the New England Patriots.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 3,365.

Johnson & Wales University
Founded in 1914, Johnson & Wales University offers associate's degrees, baccalaureate degrees, masterís degrees and the doctorate in education.  Johnson & Wales is a career-oriented institution that concentrates in business, food service, hospitality, teacher education and technology.  The main campus is located in downtown Providence, with a second campus headquartered at the Harborside Park waterfront site near the Providence/Cranston line.  Other major learning centers are located at the Johnson & Wales Inn in Seekonk and the Airport Center in Warwick.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 8,381.

Naval War College
On October 6, 1884, Secretary of the Navy William E. Chandler gave the order that: "A college is hereby established for an advanced course of professional study for naval officers, to be known as the Naval War College."  Such were the humble beginnings of what is now the oldest continuing institution of its kind in the world.  Now in its second century of service to the U.S. Navy and the nation, the Naval War College continues to prepare its students for the remainder of their military careers by providing them with a professional military education based on intellectual flexibility, flowing from a clear understanding of the fundamental principles which have governed national security affairs in peace and in war throughout history.

New England Institute of Technology
Established in 1940, NEIT specializes in the preparation of students for immediate employment in business, high technology industries and the applied trades.  The institution grants associate's and bachelorís degrees in technical and career fields.  Its Providence campus was joined in 1981 by a new Warwick campus located on Post Road.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 2,537.

Providence College
Providence College, a Dominican institution of higher education, was founded in 1917 by the Bishop of the Diocese of Providence.  Providence College awards baccalaureate degrees in the arts and sciences.  The Graduate School offers masterís degrees in business administration, history, education, and religious studies.  The 104 acre campus is located at the corner of River Avenue and Eaton Street in Providence.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 5,534.

Rhode Island School of Design
Rhode Island School of Design, founded in 1877, is a professional arts college offering students the environment and opportunity to foster their development as artists, architects and designers.  The college offers degrees at the baccalaureate and masterís levels, including a masterís in teaching.  The campus is located among over 35 buildings on Providence's East Side.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 2,082.

Roger Williams University
Roger Williams University offers career-oriented studies as well as programs in the liberal arts and sciences.  The school offers associate's and bachelorís degrees, including the bachelor in architecture and fine arts, the masterís degree in criminal justice and the doctorate of law.  Originally a branch of Northeastern University, in 1956 it was chartered by the state as Roger Williams Junior College, and in 1967 the institution was granted the right to award bachelorís degrees.  The campus, on the Bristol waterfront, covers 97 acres.  The School of Continuing Education is located in downtown Providence on Washington Street.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 3,704.

Salve Regina University
Salve Regina University is a Catholic college of the arts and sciences located in Newport.  Established in 1934, it offers the associate's degree in justice studies, general studies and management, and bachelorís degrees in a variety of arts and sciences; in addition, the masterís degree is offered in social service and management fields, and a doctorate is offered in humanities.  The campus consists of 19 buildings, some turn-of-the-century, located on Ochre Point.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 2,217.

Zion Bible Institute
Zion Bible Institute is one of the oldest Pentecostal Bible training centers in the country.  The school opened in the fall of 1924.  In 1985, Zion Bible Institute moved to a 108-acre campus in Barrington, formerly the site of Barrington College.  Zion Bible Institute is authorized by the Board of Governors for Higher Education to offer baccalaureate degrees in three areas:  Bible, theology, and divinity.  Headcount enrollment in fall 1998 was 425.


Proprietary schools are privately-owned business, trade and technical schools that offer training for entry-level employment and the upgrading of existing skills in non-licensed occupations.  Proprietary schools are not licensed to grant degrees but may award certificates.

Currently there are 15 proprietary schools operating in Rhode Island.

The Arthur Angelo School of Cosmetology and Hair Design, established in 1959, is located in Providence.  It offers programs in hairdressing, instructor training, esthetician, and manicuring.

The Computer-Ed Business Institute, established in 1994, is located in North Providence.  It offers programs in office specialist, computerized bookkeeping, business software specialist, PC repair, and CADD.

The International Yacht Restoration School, established in 1998, is located in Newport.  It offers programs in yacht restoration.

The Katharine Gibbs School, established in 1911, is located in Providence.  It offers programs in  secretarial, administrative assistant, information processing, paralegal/legal assistant, travel & conference planning, PC NET, and computer technical support.

Loretta's School of Cosmetology, established in 1983, is located in East Providence.  It offers programs in  hairdressing, instructor training, sculptured nails, and manicuring.

The MotoRing Technical Training Institute (MTTI), established in 1985, is located in East Providence.  It offers programs in small engine/motorcycle repair, automotive service technician, telecommunication cabling, and computer service technician.

Nationwide Tractor Trailer Driving School, established in 1969, is located in Lincoln.  It offers programs in tractor trailer driving.

New England Tractor Trailer Training School of Massachusetts, Inc., established in 1966, is located in  Pawtucket.  It offers programs in tractor trailer driving, diesel mechanics, and commercial drivers license.

The Newport School of Hairdressing, established in 1966, has locations in Bristol, Cranston, and Pawtucket.  It offers programs in hairdressing and instructor training.

The Ocean State Business Institute, established in 1977, is located in Narragansett.  It offers programs in  secretarial, stenographic, accounting, computer programming, and word processing.

The Rhode Island Beauty Academy, established in 1993, is located in Johnston.  It offers programs in hairdressing, manicuring, instructor training, barbering, and esthetician.

The Sawyer School, established in 1916, has locations in Pawtucket, Warwick, Newport, Providence, Westerly, and Woonsocket.  It offers programs in secretarial, travel & tourism, radio & TV, office information processing, medical assistant, and business information processing.

The School of Medical & Legal Secretarial Sciences, established in 1977, is located in Providence.  It offers programs in legal transcription, medical transcription, and medical-legal transcription.

Trinity Rep Conservatory, established in 1978, is located in Providence.  It offers programs in professional theatre.

The Warwick Academy of Beauty Culture, established in 1969, is located in Warwick.  It offers programs in  hairdressing, manicuring, and esthetician.


College Planning Center
The College Planning Center, a resource center sponsored by the Rhode Island Student Loan Association (RISLA), offers Rhode Islanders up-to-date information on college admission, financial aid, distance learning, and careers. The center also offers free scholarship searches and community outreach services.  Experienced financial aid and admissions professionals are available seven days a week to answer questions.  The center is committed to reaching all populations within the Rhode Island community to ensure access to this essential information.  The College Planning Center Home Page provides links to websites with information on financial aid, college selection, career and job search, and distance learning.  Computer terminals, available at the center, can be used to access information on the Internet related to the college admission and financial aid application process.  The College Planning Center is located at the Warwick Mall, 400 Bald Hill Road, Suite R10.  The phone number is 736-1182 or 1183.

New England Regional Student Program (RSP)
This program enables New England residents to get a reduction on out-of-state tuition when they enroll at public colleges and universities in a New England state, other than that of their legal residence, and study RSP-approved majors which are not offered by their home states.  All 77 public colleges and universities in New England participate in offering hundreds of academic programs through RSP.  Programs are available at all academic levels from associate's degrees through doctoral and first professional degrees.  The RSP is a tuition reduction program, not a financial assistance or scholarship program, and students accepted through RSP are eligible to apply for financial aid from other sources.  The catalog of RSP eligible programs is available in high school guidance offices, public libraries, college career services and admissions offices at New England public colleges and universities.  For more information call New England Regional Student Program 617-357-9620 or visit the website

Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority
The Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority (RIHEAA), was created to provide financial assistance to students and their families which will allow them to realize their postsecondary educational goals.  The mission of RIHEAA is to provide educational access and choice to the residents of Rhode Island, by promoting equal postsecondary opportunity to students who are restricted from participating in the educational program of their choice due to insufficient financial resources.  RIHEAA administers the Rhode Island State Grant Program, the Scholar Recognition Program, the Student Employment Network and the College Bound Fund, and is the guarantor of the Federal Stafford and PLUS loan programs.  For additional information call 401-736-1100. 

College Bound Fund
College Bound Fund is a state sponsored trust, offered through the Rhode Island Higher Education Assistance Authority, that is available for families to save for higher education expenses. The money in the trust is privately managed under the supervision of the State Investment Commission.  While the money is on deposit in an account, there are no federal or state taxes on the earnings.  When the child is ready to attend college or graduate school, amounts can be withdrawn to pay for tuition, room, board, fees, books, supplies and equipment required for enrollment or attendance at virtually any public or independent educational institution in the nation.  For information on enrollment or administrative matters, call toll free 1-888-324-5057 or visit their website

Rhode Island Office of Higher Education
The Rhode Island Office of Higher Education has information on the Rhode Island Board of Governors and issues related to higher education in Rhode Island.  RIOHE makes available factual information on the colleges and universities (Higher Education in Rhode Island: A Briefing Book) and proprietary schools (Directory of Proprietary Schools in Rhode Island) that operate in this state.  Preparing for College: A Guide for Students, Families, and Educators is the RIOHE website which provides information and annotated hyperlinks to Internet sources on college planning and the application process.  For people who do not speak English as their native language, there is information on English as a Second Language Programs (ESL in Rhode Island Public Colleges and University: A Directory).  Students planning to transfer among the public higher education institutions should consult their advisor and The Transfer Guide for Students, which lists course equivalencies and articulation agreements.  Many reports are now available online at the Rhode Island Board of Governors website.  Other reports can be requested by calling 401-222-6560 or writing to Rhode Island Office of Higher Education, 301 Promenade St., Providence, RI 02908.

Rhode Island Student Loan Association (RISLA)
Rhode Island Student Loan Association (RISLA) is a non-profit state authority dedicated to providing affordable loans for higher education.  To be eligible, you must be a Rhode Island resident or attending college in Rhode Island.  RISLA provides easy, local access to low cost educational funds; helps Rhode Island colleges and universities to be more financially competitive in attracting and retaining exemplary students; counsels students and parents on how they can afford higher education; and provides state-of-the-art loan processing and disbursement services.  Information is available on the Stafford, Parent PLUS, RI Family Education, Partnership, and Scholarship Loan programs.  Call 736-1190 or 800-758-7562.

Rhode Island Office of Higher Education
Academic Affairs
301 Promenade Street, Providence, RI 02908-5748
(401) 222-6560

Website Developed in December 1998 by Timothy S. Chace and Phyllis Harnick
Site last updated December 2000