Campus Attractions at Lynn University
By Florence Beth Snyder
Lynn University has an international country club vibe befitting its location in one of America's swankiest cities and a student body comprised of future-focused men and women from 100 nations.
You might call that a miracle if you were around in 1962 when a handful of nuns affiliated with the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary broke ground here in Boca Raton for a two-year liberal arts junior college for women.
The bean farms and strawberry fields that surrounded the snake-infested school then known as Marymount College are long gone. But the Founding Mothers' presence is felt everywhere.
Among Marymount’s earliest graduates were students from Spain, Italy and Latin America. The nuns' aspirations to deliver an innovative education to an international student body quickly outstripped the religious order’s financial resources, but angels intervened in the form of wealthy patrons, including the Lynn family, in whose honor the school is now named.
Faith remains a core component of a Lynn University education, and is best experienced in the spectacular Snyder Sanctuary. Opened in 2015, the Sanctuary is made up of seven 50-foot-high walls that lean on each other to form a strong, stable structure. It houses a 1,700-square-foot sanctuary, a 2,000-square-foot wing, and a labyrinth that incorporates an "ancient pattern found in cultures around the world and is used to quiet the mind, find balance and encourage meditation and insight" among visitors of every belief system.
Triangular glass interstices are translucent at the ground level, becoming more transparent as they rise, directing attention to the trees, the skies, and the heavens.
“The Snyder Sanctuary walls need one another for support, similar to how we do,” said architect Herbert S. Newman. “While each wall faces a different direction, together they create a sense of unity and shared purpose.”
Unity and shared purpose are also reflected in the Remembrance Plaza, which honors the legacies of six Lynn students and professors who were performing community service in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, when theirs were among the 220,000 lives claimed by an earthquake in 2010.
Today, six prisms, six steps, six Tabebuia trees and six benches stand in their memory in the Plaza, whose focal point is a continuous, cascading waterfall.
Lynn University took a much happier turn on the world stage when it hosted the 2012 debate between incumbent President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney. Sixty-five million viewers tuned in and got a good long look at the Keith C. and Elaine Johnson Wold Performing Arts Center.
The Wold’s 750-seat mainstage is home to Lynn’s theater arts program and a robust schedule of concerts and cultural events, including performances by students, guest artists, and teachers at Lynn’s Conservatory of Music. The Conservatory is focused on “developing the exceptional instrumentalist’s performance ability.” Conservatory students receive full-tuition scholarships and extensive performance opportunities, to the delight of Lynn audiences.
The Schmidt Family Studio at the Wold is the site of "smaller or more avant-garde productions."
Lynn’s “Fighting Knights” compete in all 14 NCAA Division II intercollegiate sports as members of the Sunshine State Conference. The Fighting Knights' National Championships and Sunshine State Conference awards are on display at the Count and Countess deHoernle Sports and Cultural Center.
Lynn University is known for its College of Education, and generations of future teachers have honed their skills with happy campers at Pine Tree Camps. It's the only summer camp in the area accredited by American Camp Association and offers half-day, full-day and sleepover options for boys and girls ages 3-14.
Kids visiting grandparents for the summer and local kids who came to Pine Tree as toddlers kept coming back until they were old enough to be junior counselors play and learn under the watchful eyes of Pine Tree's professionals. There's a GameTech Institute for kids who want to invent their own video games; JurrasiCamp for the paleontologists of tomorrow, and even a Circus Camp where kids can learn to ride a unicycle and fly on a trapeze.
If you go…
3601 N. Military Trail, Boca Raton, Fla., 33431