A proud past
Founded in 1868 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, HNU was a beacon of education, empowerment, and service for over a century and a half in Oakland.Read about HNU's History
Holy Names University, founded by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary (SNJM), was rooted in Catholic intellectual and spiritual traditions. The University empowered a diverse student body to think critically and imaginatively, to understand and employ the various modes of knowledge, to communicate clearly and persuasively, to pursue leadership opportunities, and to promote the common good.
SNJM Core Values
The Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary commit themselves to the fulfillment of the human potential through these core values:
• Full Development of the Human Person
• Education in the Faith
• Dedication to Women and Children
• Dedication to Justice
• Service to People who are Poor or Marginalized
• Love for the Names of Jesus and Mary
Former Accreditations, Memberships, Rankings, and Distinctions
California Board of Behavioral Sciences
California Board of Behavioral Sciences-approved MFT and LPCC licensure programs.
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) accreditation for undergraduate and graduate nursing programs.
National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)
National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division II Active Member participating in the Pacific West Conference from to 2016 though 2023.
WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC)
The Western Association of Schools and Colleges’ Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) is the regional body that provides accreditation for Holy Names University (HNU). HNU first became fully accredited in 1949.
Chamber of Commerces: Oakland Chamber of Commerce, Oakland African American Chamber of Commerce, Oakland Latino Chamber of Commerce, San Leandro Chamber of Commerce.
- US News and World Report Best Colleges Guide 2021 ranks HNU 6th Most Diverse University in their Regional Universities West category.
- US News and World Report Best Colleges Guide 2021 ranks HNU in their Regional Universities West category.
- US News and World Report Best Colleges Guide 2020 ranks HNU 6th Most Diverse University in their Regional Universities West category.
- US News and World Report Best Colleges Guide 2020 ranks HNU 17th in their new Top Performers in Social Mobility category in their Regional Universities West category.
- US News and World Report Best Colleges Guide 2020 ranks HNU in their Regional Universities West category.
- College of Distinction, 2019-2020
- Catholic College of Distinction, 2019-2020
- Most Promising Places to Work in Student Affairs, 2018, 2021 Diverse Issues in Higher Education.
- HNU was a Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI) and is a member of the Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities (HACU).
- HNU was an Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution.
- HNU was a founding member of Yes We Must Coalition, a national organization striving to promote college access and success for low-income students by promoting the work of small, independent, not-for-profit colleges and universities and others committed to this purpose.
- HNU was a founding member of Oakland Promise, an initiative dedicated to ensuring every child in Oakland graduates high school with the expectations, resources, and skills to complete college and be successful in the career of his or her choice.
- HNU established the Center for Social Justice and Civic Engagement in 2008, the Center was acknowledged as a model for aligning educational actions with institutional mission. The work of the Center was recognized as enriching the understanding of social issues through personal exploration and socially responsible leadership at the University and within the local and global community.
- Athletics: 8 California Pacific Athletic Conference All-Sports Awards (1997–1998, 1999–2000, 2000–2001, 2002–2003, 2005–2006, 2008–2009, 2009–2010, 2010–2011); 54 California Pacific Conference Championships; 36 NAIA National Tournament Appearances.