Let’s look back in time and find out how this vibrant institution got its start. From the early beginnings in the 1940s to the dynamic campus of today, those who have come before us have been instrumental in the college’s success through the decades. Founders Celebration is a time to reflect on and take pride in the college’s many accomplishments and look forward to a bright, thriving future for our college.

Read the timeline starting with our founding in the 1940s and scroll through images in our decade photo slideshow. Images were curated from the college's archival materials and facts highlight key moments in college history. To discover additional archival imagery, visit the Daemen Digital Commons. Contact the Alumni Relations office to learn more and schedule a history lesson today.  

1940s

1948

College students c. 1948

College students celebrate the Moving Up Day (MUD) ceremony each year. They created custom floats and selected a queen.

1948

Campus entrance c. 1948

The pillars mark the entrance to the college from Main Street and are present today.

1949

Daemen Hall c. 1949

Daemen Hall (currently MusicalFare Theatre) was originally the music and theatre classroom space on campus. The original sign 'Daemen Hall 1949' is visible above the former entrance.   

1952

1952 Class of '52

Members of the first graduating class of 1952 walk to their commencement ceremonies. They are the first students to graduate at the college (1948-1952).


1950s

1953

College students c. 1953

Students in a classroom lecture for Modern Language.

1954

College students c. 1954

Members of the sophomore class pose for a yearbook photo. All students were featured in the campus yearbook and each class took small group photos (like this one) at various campus locations. 

1957

College students c. 1957

Students pose with the student newspaper, The Ascent, which is still in publication today as the Insight.

1958

1958 students in car

Students post on a Chevrolet Bel Air during a festive campus event. 


1960s

1960

c. 1961 science lab

Students listen in during classroom lab instruction. 

1960

College students c. 1960

Students pose for a yearbook photo. 

c. 1968

James McNeill, first male student, c. 1968

In 1965, the first male student, James McNeill, was admitted into the theatre arts program. Here he is backstage during a late 1960s performance. He graduated in 1968. 

1968

1968 male students

The formerly all-women's college first saw male classmates in Art, Theater Arts and Medical Technology from 1965 until 1971. 


1970s

1971

College students c. 1971

By 1971, all academic concentrations and new residence halls were available to male students. Here are group of students at the sit on the campus lawn.

c. 1971

1970s RCH sign

Standing in front of an early 1970s sign, the newly co-educational college highlights changes arriving on campus with a changing student population.

c. 1972

College students c. 1972

The men's basketball team picture here is from the early 1970s. College athletics had been first established by women's exhibition teams in the 1950s and 1960s. The co-educational backdrop of the early 1970s led to an increase in student athletics.

1977

Daemen College Sign

In 1977, the name Daemen College is first officially used. 


1980s

c. 1981

College students c. 1981

Students gather on campus for an outdoor event.

1981

1981 students at lockers

Students gather to collect mail on campus. 

1985

1985 Canavan Hall

On September 23, 1985 Lourdes Hall was rededicated as Canavan Hall in honor of former President Canavan. She was present for the rededication.

c. 1986

c. 1986 college students

College students stand outside the Wick Center for an event. The Wick Center was the center of campus for student life in the 1980s.


1990s

c. 1991

College students c. 1991

Friends gather on campus by the residence halls of Campus Drive.

c. 1993

c. 1993 student

Students enjoying campus life at an event in the early 1990s. 

1997

College students c. 1997

During the college’s 50th anniversary celebrations, banners were placed around campus to celebrate the milestone. Here students enjoy warm weather and relax outside the front lawn in front of Lumsden Gymnasium.

1998

Rosary hall dedication

The historic Georgian mansion we call Rosary Hall was rededicated August 31, 1998, nearly 50 years to the day when the students of Rosary Hill College first walked through its doors.


2000s

2007

Academic Festival presentation, chalk wall with student 2007

Established in 2001, Academic Festival brings us together on campus to celebrate the academic and creative achievements of Daemen students. The Festival centers on student presentations to the campus and community, showcasing academic excellence and achievement through presentations, exhibitions, and performances.

2007

2007 Sue Falsone

Sue Falsone '96, was named Head Athletic Trainer for the Los Angeles Dodgers in Major League Baseball and was the first female head athletic trainer in the major American professional sports leagues.

c. 2008

College students c. 2008

The women's soccer team and other student athletes were members of the NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics).

c. 2009

classroom with students c. 2006

Students in the classroom setting observe a presentation. 


2010s

2020

2020 Willie the Wildcat

Arriving on campus in 2003, Willie the Wildcat is the current mascot of Daemen Athletics. Willie the Wildcat can be found all over campus, on social media, and even as online GIFs. Go Wildcats!

2015

Gerald Beverly '15

Gerald Beverly '15 was acquired by the Canton Charge in 2016.

2016

Alumni House 2016

Alumni House was opened in 2016 to campus. Built in 1917, the building was purchased in 1971 and was a campus residence.

2016

Honors House 2016

Honors House was opened in 2016 to campus. Built in 1920 and purchased in 1922 by private owners. They sold the house to campus in 2015. It is home to the Dr. Peter A. Siedlecki Honors Lounge

c. 2017

College students c. 2017

Students pose on the campus wall for a photo shoot. The wall is part of a multi year campus beautification project. The decorative multi-tiered stone extends across the entire front of the campus along Main Street and down to the Getzville Road entrance near Curtis Hall. 

2019

Annie Stoll '08 at the Grammy Awards red carpet in 2019

Annie Stoll '08 won a 2019 Grammy Award for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package for her art direction on “Squeeze Box: The Complete Works of Weird Al Yankovic.”

2020

Antony Jones '01

Antony Jones '01 was appointed chairman and CEO Of Georgia Entertainment Association, Inc.