|State University of New York at Buffalo|
|University of Buffalo|
|Motto||Mens sana in corpore sano (Latin)|
Motto in English
|Sound Mind in a Sound Body|
|Type||Public research university|
|Established||May 11, 1846|
|State University of New York|
|Endowment||$788.9 million (2020)|
|President||Satish K. Tripathi|
|Provost||A. Scott Weber|
|Students||32,347 (Fall 2020)|
|Undergraduates||22,306 (Fall 2020)|
|Postgraduates||10,041 (Fall 2020)|
1,346 acres (5.45 km2)
|Colors||Blue and White|
|NCAA Division I – MAC|
|Mascot||Victor E. Bull|
|Official name||Edmund B. Hayes Hall|
|Designated||June 21, 2016|
|Edmund B. Hayes Hall|
The State University of New York at Buffalo, commonly referred to as the University at Buffalo (UB) or SUNY Buffalo, is a public research university with campuses in Buffalo and Amherst, New York. The university was founded in 1846 as a private medical college and merged with the State University of New York system in 1962. As of Fall 2020, the university enrolls 32,347 students in 13 colleges, making it the largest public university in the state of New York.
Since its founding by United States President Millard Fillmore, the university has evolved from a small medical school to a large research university. Today, in addition to the College of Arts and Sciences, the university houses the largest state-operated medical school, dental school, education school, business school, engineering school, and pharmacy school, and is also home to New York’s only state-operated law school. UB has the largest enrollment, largest endowment, and most research funding among the universities in the SUNY system. The university offers bachelor’s degrees in over 100 areas of study, as well as 205 master's degrees, 84 doctoral degrees, and 10 professional degrees. The University at Buffalo and the University of Virginia are the only colleges founded by United States Presidents.
The University at Buffalo is classified as an R1 University, meaning that it engages in a very high level of research activity. In 1989, UB was elected to the Association of American Universities, a selective group of major research universities in North America. UB's alumni and faculty have included five Nobel laureates, five Pulitzer Prize winners, one Prime Minister of Somalia, two astronauts, three billionaires, one Academy Award winner, one Emmy Award winner, and Fulbright Scholars.[quantify]
City leaders of Buffalo sought to establish a university in the city from the earliest days of Buffalo. A "University of Western New-York" was begun at Buffalo under the auspices of the Presbyterian Church and property was purchased at North Street and College, (the site of the later YMCA), on the north side of the Allentown district. "University of Western New-York" was chartered by the state on April 8, 1836. However, the project collapsed and no classes were ever offered, and only the layout of College Street remains.
The University of Buffalo (as it was originally named) was founded on May 11, 1846, as a private medical school to train the doctors for the communities of Buffalo, Niagara Falls, and surrounding villages. Future U.S. President Millard Fillmore, then a lawyer who had recently served in the United States House of Representatives, was one of the principal founders. James Platt White was instrumental in obtaining a charter for the university from the state legislature in 1846. He also taught the first class of 89 men in obstetrics. State Assemblyman Nathan K. Hall was also "particularly active in procuring the charter". The doors first opened to students in 1847 and after associating with a hospital for teaching purposes, the first class of students graduated the medical school in July 1847. Fillmore served as the school's first chancellor, a position he held until 1874, even as he served in other capacities during that time, including Comptroller of New York, U.S. Vice President, and eventually President. Fillmore's name now graces the continuing education school Millard Fillmore College on the South campus as well as the Millard Fillmore Academic Center, an academic and administrative services building at the core of the residential Joseph Ellicott Complex, on the North Campus.
Initially, the university did not have its own facilities, and early lectures were given at an old post office on Seneca and Washington streets in Buffalo. The first building specially built for the university was a stone structure at the corner of Main and Virginia streets, built in 1849–50, through donations, public subscription, and a state grant. There were continuous expansions to the college medical programs, including a separate pharmacy division, which is now The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. In 1887, a law school was organized in Buffalo, which quickly became associated with Niagara University just to the north of Buffalo. After four years, in 1891, the law school was acquired by the University of Buffalo as the University of Buffalo Law School, which had a downtown Buffalo facility. In the first few years of the 20th century, the University began planning for a comprehensive undergraduate college to complete the basic structure of a university, and in 1909 the University acquired the Erie County Almshouse grounds from the county of Erie, which became the University of Buffalo's initial campus. The establishment may have been influenced by the 1910 Flexner Report which criticized the preparation of the medical students at the university. With that additional space, in 1915, the then University of Buffalo formed the College of Arts and Sciences, creating an undergraduate division in addition to its prior educational work in the licensed professional fields. In 1916, Grace Millard Knox pledged $500,000 (equivalent to $11,748,000 in 2019) for the establishment of a "department of liberal arts and sciences in the University of Buffalo", which was at the time still a private institution. The initial gift of $100,000 was for the purchase of what would become Townsend Hall and the remainder was to establish the university's first endowment, in her husband's name, to support the department.
In 1950, the Industrial Engineering department branched off from the Mechanical Engineering department. In 1956, a Civil Engineering Department was formed under Lehigh University graduate Robert L. Ketter, who went on to become Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and later President of the University. In 1959, WBFO was launched as an AM radio station by UB's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and run by UB's students. The station has since become the launching pad of two modern National Public Radio personalities: Terri Gross and Ira Flatow. In 1961, the Western New York nuclear research program was created at the university. This program installed a miniature, active nuclear fission reactor on the University's South (Main Street) Campus. This program was not particularly active, nor could it compete with other government-run research labs, consequently, the programs performed in this facility were abandoned somewhat shortly after its inception. This reactor was decommissioned in 2005 with little fanfare due to material security concerns.
Acquisition by the SUNY system and second campus
The private University of Buffalo was purchased by and incorporated into the State University of New York (SUNY) system in 1962, and became known as the State University of New York at Buffalo, more commonly known as the University at Buffalo. This acquisition was championed by then-Governor of New York, Nelson Rockefeller. As a part of the agreement to merge the university into the SUNY system, the state began to build an extensive second campus for the university. In 1964, the state acquired several hundred acres in the town of Amherst on the northeast of Buffalo, for development as a comprehensive campus for most of the non-medical disciplines at the University at Buffalo. This is often called the North Campus; it is the center of most University at Buffalo activities. The North Campus project included several major buildings, dormitory complexes, a separate spur of the interstate highway, and a new lake. The undergraduate college, the law school, and graduate schools were all moved to the new campus. During the late 1960s, the College of Arts and Sciences was divided into three separate schools: arts and letters, natural sciences and mathematics, and social sciences. During the 1998–1999 academic year, the three schools were reunited to re-create the existing College of Arts and Sciences, when the faculties of Arts and Letters, Social Sciences, and Natural Sciences and Mathematics were combined, according to a memorandum issued by the State University of New York.
Since 1989, UB has been a member of the Association of American Universities (AAU), an organization of 62 leading research universities in the United States and Canada. UB president Satish K. Tripathi serves on the AAU board of directors.
"UB 2020" strategic plan
Started in 2004 under President John B. Simpson, UB 2020 is a strategic planning initiative to develop and implement a vision for the university over the next 15 years. The centerpiece of UB 2020 is to add about 10,000 more students, 750 faculty members and 600 staff, increasing the size of the university by about 40 percent. UB 2020 also recognizes the university's contribution to the surrounding region. The most recent estimates of UB's impact on the local and regional economies of Western New York report approximately $1.7 billion are brought into the local economy from the presence of UB. This figure is also expected to rise by 40 percent, corresponding with UB's institutional growth.
One of the keys to helping UB achieve the goals of the UB 2020 plan, proponents say, is the passage of S2020 and A2020 known as the UB 2020 Flexibility and Economic Growth Act, by the New York State Legislature. On June 3, 2009, the State Senate passed S2020 and sent the bill to the Assembly for their consideration.
The current president, Satish K. Tripathi, has continued his vocal support of UB 2020 and has been actively engaging in campus-wide discussion on the proposed tuition increases introduced by the bill.
In 2011, the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences received an anonymous donation of $40 million from an alumnus who had graduated from the university during World War II. The donation will contribute to the $375 million project which will relocate the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences to UB's downtown campus. The new school will be designed by HOK Architects.
From FY2011 to FY2012, UB had spent over $300 million on the strategic plan to construct and open four new buildings, including Davis Hall, William R. Greiner Residence Hall, the Clinical and Translational Research Center and Kaleida Health medical research building, and Crossroads Culinary Center.
On August 22, 2013, President Barack Obama came to UB's campus to give a speech about needed higher education reform in the country. President Obama highlighted UB's accolades and specifically chose Buffalo for its excellence and commitment to the future, graduation rates and retention, and quality education at an affordable price.
As of 2015 the UB 2020 initiative, Heart of the Campus will be implemented on each of UB's three campuses in phases. The new school of medicine is also being constructed with additional funding from the NYSUNY 2020 legislation and from a donation of $30 million.
In Fall 2019, UB began construction of the One World Café, an "international eatery" located on North Campus, adjacent to Capen Hall, Norton Hall, and Founder's Plaza.
The university's official legal name is "State University of New York at Buffalo". The more commonly used name and the school's formal academic name is "University at Buffalo", informally "UB". This name is similar to the university's former name of over 100 years, "University of Buffalo". Other names like "SUNY Buffalo", "SUNY at Buffalo", and "Buffalo" are also seen. The university's athletic department, particularly on uniforms, uses the name "Buffalo".
Administration and organization
Buffalo is a public university and is one of four university centers of the 64 campuses in the State University of New York (SUNY) which enrolled 467,991 students and employed 88,024 academic staff in 2014. SUNY is governed by an 18-member Board of Trustees, of which 16 vote. 15 of the voting members are appointed by the Governor of New York and the remaining voting member is elected by students as President of the Student Assembly of the State University of New York. The other two members are non-voting faculty from the University Faculty Senate and Faculty Council of Community Colleges. Carl McCall is the Chairman of the SUNY Board of Trustees and Nancy L. Zimpher is the Chancellor of the SUNY system. Satish K. Tripathi was appointed by the SUNY Board of Trustees as the 15th president of the University at Buffalo in April 2011, becoming the first international-born president the school has had. He previously held a six-year tenure as the UB provost and executive vice president for academic affairs. He receives compensation of $385,000, $115,000, and $150,000 annually from each of the university, SUNY Research Foundation, and the UB Foundation respectively. The University at Buffalo Foundation (UB Foundation) was chartered in 1962 as an independent non-profit corporation and is controlled by a privately appointed board of trustees. It serves as a vehicle to raise private funds for the university, develop real estate, and manage endowment investments on behalf of the university. The foundation managed a $685.2 million endowment for FY2011.
UB is organized into 13 academic schools and colleges.
- The School of Architecture and Planning is the only combined architecture and urban planning school in the State University of New York system, offers the only accredited professional master's degree in architecture, and is one of two SUNY schools that offer an accredited professional master's degree in urban planning. In addition, the Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning also awards the original undergraduate four year pre-professional degrees in architecture and environmental design in the SUNY system. Other degree programs offered by the Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning include a research-oriented Master of Science in Architecture with specializations in historic preservation/urban design, inclusive design, and computing and media technologies; a PhD in urban and regional planning; and, an advanced graduate certificate in historic preservation.
- The College of Arts and Sciences was founded in 1915 and is the largest and most comprehensive academic unit at UB with 29 degree-granting departments, 16 academic programs, and 23 centers and institutes across the humanities, arts, and sciences.
- The School of Dental Medicine was founded in 1892 and offers accredited programs in DDS, oral surgery, and other oral sciences.
- The Graduate School of Education was founded in 1931 and is one of the largest graduate schools at UB. The school has four academic departments: counseling and educational psychology, educational leadership and policy, learning and instruction, and library and information science. In academic year 2008–2009, the Graduate School of Education awarded 472 master's degrees and 52 doctoral degrees.
- The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences was founded in 1946 and offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in six departments. It is the largest public school of engineering in the state of New York. UB is the only public school in New York State to offer a degree in Aerospace Engineering
- The School of Law was founded in 1887 and is the only law school in the SUNY system. The school awarded 265 JD degrees in the 2009–2010 academic year.
- The School of Management was founded in 1923 and offers AACSB-accredited undergraduate, MBA, and doctoral degrees.
- The School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences is the founding faculty of the UB and began in 1846. It offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the biomedical and biotechnical sciences as well as an MD program and residencies.
- The School of Nursing was founded in 1936 and offers bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees in nursing practice and patient care.
- The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences was founded in 1886, making it the second-oldest faculty at UB and one of only two pharmacy schools in the SUNY system.
- The School of Public Health and Health Professions was founded in 2003 from the merger of the Department of Social and Preventive Medicine and the UB School of Health Related Professions. The school offers a bachelor's degree in exercise science as well as professional, master's and PhD degrees.
- The School of Social Work offers graduate MSW and doctoral degrees in social work.
- The Roswell Park Graduate Division is an affiliated academic unit within the Graduate School of UB, in partnership with Roswell Park Cancer Institute, an independent NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center. The Roswell Park Graduate Division offers five PhD programs and two MS programs in basic and translational biomedical research related to cancer. Roswell Park Cancer Institute was founded in 1898 by Dr. Roswell Park and was the world's first cancer research institute.
The University at Buffalo is a large, public research university with very high research activity. Although the SUNY system officially does not have a flagship institution, UB is informally considered to be a flagship public university for New York State. The university has promoted itself as a flagship institution in recent years, and former New York governor Eliot Spitzer once proposed jointly designating both Buffalo and Stony Brook as flagships.
The four-year, full-time undergraduate program comprises the majority of enrollments at the university which emphasizes a balanced curriculum across the arts, sciences, and professions. The university enrolled 21,607 undergraduate and 9,896 graduate students in the fall of 2018. Women make up 48% of the student body and 78% of the student body is from the state of New York. Over 7,000 students live in on-campus residential halls and 10,172 students live off campus in affiliated housing (including on-campus affiliated housing). Over 79% of students live on campus their first year.  Undergraduate tuition, room & board, and fees for New York state residents for the 2011–2012 school year totals $18,681 and costs to out-of-state residents totals $27,461. New York State also offers free tuition for all public college and universities for families who have an income of lower than $125,000 and are residents of the state. Other requirements to qualify for free University at Buffalo education include full-time enrollment and staying in the state for a number of years after graduating.
University at Buffalo academic and professional faculty are represented by United University Professions. The two UUP chapters at the University at Buffalo are Health Sciences and Buffalo Center. United University Professions has over 34,000 members at 29 campuses of SUNY.
The University at Buffalo is also one of only two public schools in New York to have a medical school and a dental school, the other being Stony Brook University.
UB is the largest public university in New York and the fourth largest public university in the Northeastern United States, behind only Temple University, Pennsylvania State University, and Rutgers University.
UB offers rolling admission deadlines. For the Class of 2023 (enrolling Fall 2019), the university received 29,900 applications and accepted 18,264 (61.1%), with 4,289 enrolling. The middle 50% range of SAT scores for enrolling freshmen was 590-690 for math, 570-650 for evidence-based reading and writing, and the ACT composite score range was 24-29.
Rankings and reputation
|U.S. News & World Report||88|
|U.S. News & World Report||277|
U.S. News and World Report's 2021 edition of America's Best Colleges ranked UB 88th on their list of "Best National Universities", and 34th among public universities. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ranks UB 1st on their "Green Power List" of top colleges and universities. In the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education 2021 ranking of top colleges and universities, the University at Buffalo was ranked as the 31st best public university and the 121st best college in the nation.
The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) 2018 ranked the Civil Engineering department 5th in the U.S. and 12th globally (World). The School of Management is ranked 70th by U.S. News, 42nd by Forbes and 78th by BusinessWeek, making UB the highest ranked public business school in New York. The School of Education at UB is ranked 70th. The School of Public Health and Health Professions is ranked 31st, the School of Nursing is ranked 91st for masters, 73rd for doctorate, with the anesthesia program ranking 10th in the nation. The School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences is ranked 22nd, the School of Social Work is ranked 24th, the School of Law is ranked 106th. UB was ranked the 56th Best College for Veterans.
The audiology program is ranked 17th, rehabilitation counseling is ranked 21st, speech-language pathology is ranked 30th, English is ranked 44th, library and information studies is ranked 39th, math is 73rd, physics is 85th, fine arts is 69th, political science is 76th, history is 92nd, physical therapy is 79th, occupational therapy is 32nd, computer science is 63rd, chemistry is 76th, statistics is 70th, psychology is 63rd, and clinical psychology is ranked 50th. The Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) ranked the UB dental school #10 in nation and #11 in the world for dentistry and oral sciences.
U.S News ranking of best online programs ranks UB 8th in "Best Online Bachelor's Programs" and 25th in "Best Online Graduate Education Programs".
In the "World University Rankings 2019", Times Higher Education ranked UB at 201-250. US News and Report ranked the university 253 on their "Best Global Universities" ranking in 2019. In Kiplinger's "Best Values in Public Colleges" of 2017, the University at Buffalo ranks 54th in the nation for in-state students and 70th in the nation for out-of-state students. In 2015, Buffalo was ranked #15 in New York State by average professor salaries in data collected by the American Association of University Professors (AAUP).
UB houses two New York State Centers of Excellence (out of the total 11): Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (CBLS)  and Center of Excellence in Materials Informatics (CMI). Emphasis has been placed on developing a community of research scientists centered around an economic initiative to promote Buffalo and create the Center of Excellence for Bioinformatics and Life Sciences as well as other advanced biomedical and engineering disciplines.
Total research expenditures for the fiscal year of 2017 were $401 million, ranking 59th nationally.
UB has nine libraries on its North (Amherst), South (Buffalo), and Downtown (Buffalo) campuses. The libraries' 3.8 million-plus print volumes are augmented by extensive digital resources, including full-text electronic journals, databases, media, and special collections, which include the world's single largest collection of James Joyce manuscripts and artifacts.
The University at Buffalo is the state's largest and most comprehensive public university and is spread across three campuses: North Campus, South Campus, and Downtown Campus. The Sustainable Endowments Institute's College Sustainability Report Card awarded the university a B+. UB was awarded the EPA "Environmental Champion Award" in 2015 and is ranked as one of the top 50 "green colleges and universities" in the nation, working towards becoming climate neutral by 2030.
The North Campus, a census-designated place also called "University at Buffalo", located in the suburb of Amherst, began in the 1970s. Many academic programs, including the entirety of the undergraduate College of Arts and Sciences, the University at Buffalo Law School, the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, the School of Management, the Graduate School of Social Work, and the Graduate School of Education, as well as Lockwood Memorial Library, Oscar A. Silverman Library, and many administrative offices, are located on UB's North Campus.
The North Campus is home to administrative and academic offices. The main buildings are arranged along one academic "spine", a second floor connecting corridor, that connects most of the main academic buildings. The whole campus covers 1,192 acres (5 km2) with 146 buildings containing 6,715,492 sq ft (623,890 m2), 11 residence halls and 5 apartment complexes. Its immense size also necessitated the creation of a shuttle system circling the academic sector and surrounding areas including the administrative complex, located nearly a quarter mile from the central academic area. When originally built by the state of New York, the North Campus was provided with two Interstate exits, from I-290 and I-990, its own internal parkway, the John James Audubon Parkway, and two small lakes created from Ellicott Creek. As a census-designated place, the residential population recorded at the 2010 census was 6,066.
The North Campus offers a variety of entertainment programming and activity for students. It contains the Student Union, which houses offices for the Student Association and student-interest clubs; Slee Hall, which presents contemporary and classical music concerts; Alumni Arena, the home-court for University Athletics; the UB Center for the Arts, a non-profit presenter of a wide variety of professional entertainment and University at Buffalo Stadium, the 30,000 seat football stadium.
The South Campus, also known as the Main Street campus, located on 154 acres (0.62 km2) in North Buffalo, is the former grounds of the Erie County Almshouse and Insane Asylum, of which four buildings still remain (Hayes Hall, the former insane asylum; Wende Hall, a former maternity hospital; Hayes D; and Townsend Hall, a former nurses' quarters). Edmund B. Hayes Hall located on South Campus is a registered U.S. National Historical Place.  The college was designed by architect E.B. Green in 1910, and was intended to resemble Trinity College, Dublin. Its 53 buildings contain (3,045,198 sq ft (282,908 m2)) and include six resident halls. This campus is served by the northernmost subway station on Buffalo's Niagara Frontier Metro Rail system.
Today, the South Campus is home to the School of Nursing, School of Pharmacy, Dental School, and the School of Architecture and Urban Planning. The Medical School is currently in the process of moving from South Campus to the new Downtown Campus in Buffalo. In addition, the University at Buffalo South Campus is the home of the WBFO radio station, the University's biomedical science research complex, the Health Sciences Library, and certain administrative offices. Twenty percent of UB's resident population also continues to live in the original residential complexes located on the South (Main Street) Campus.
In 2002, UB commissioned Boston firm Chan Krieger to create a third campus center. The Downtown Campus is the site of UB's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Science, which partners in research with UB's Ira G. Ross Eye Institute as well as the Roswell Park Cancer Institute and Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute to compose the Buffalo-Niagara Medical Campus. The medical campus, which is designed to meet LEED Silver criteria, incorporates high efficiency lighting, heat recovery systems, and an EnergyStar roof.
Also located in the downtown area is UB's Research Institute on Addictions (RIA), Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) and the Jacobs Executive Development Center (JEDC). The campus includes six major properties and a total of 43 buildings, counting shared lease space (588,506 sq ft (54,674 m2)).
In September 2007, UB added the former M. Wile and Company Factory Building on the southeast corner of Goodell and Ellicott streets and the former Trico Products Corp. building complex on the northwest corner of Goodell and Ellicott streets to its properties downtown. The UB Regional Institute, Center on Rehabilitation Synergy, and a number of pre-K-16 initiatives related to UB's civic engagement mission, such as the UB-Buffalo Public Schools Partnership office, are set to relocate to the first site. The latter location has been purchased to house additional biomedical and life science-related businesses connected to the Buffalo-Niagara Medical Campus.
UB's teaching hospitals include Buffalo General Hospital, the Erie County Medical Center (ECMC), Millard Fillmore Hospital, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Veterans Affairs Western New York Health Care System, and the John R. Oishei Children's Hospital. Additional facilities include free clinics such as the Kaleida Health's Niagara Family Health Center and the Lighthouse Free Medical Clinic, a program run by UB medical students.
UB art galleries
UB is home to two university art galleries, the UB Anderson Art Gallery and the UB Art Gallery at the Center for the Arts. Adjacent to the UB South Campus is the UB Anderson Art Gallery, a converted elementary school with an all-glass atrium exhibit space. The UB Anderson Gallery hosts exhibitions curated by faculty and visiting curators and features works from international and professional artist in its two floor facility. The UB Anderson Gallery building, along with over 1,200 works of art, was donated to the University in 2000 by collector and gallery owner David K. Anderson, son of legendary New York gallerist Martha Jackson. Selections from the personal collection of Martha Jackson that was donated to the UB Anderson Gallery by David Anderson are on display in a 360 degree permanent installation in the Martha Jackson Gallery Archives and Research Center, on the second floor of the gallery.
The UB Art Gallery at the Center for the Arts is located on the north campus, and features works from contemporary artists, as well as faculty and students across disciplines.
Comprehensive Physical Plan
The University at Buffalo has grown to an enrollment of approximately 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students, and a staff of 14,000 employees, across three campuses in the last 160 years. In order to accommodate both students and faculty, the university is currently implementing a $4.5 million Comprehensive Physical Plan to help in growth as well as to best utilize and enhance current facilities. Connecting all three campuses, as well as the facilities UB uses, is also a major element of the project. The firm granted the contract to lead the project is Beyer Blinder Belle.
The comprehensive physical planning process is broken into four phases. Currently, UB is implementing "phase one" by seeking input from the local and university communities to pinpoint issues, opportunities, and concerns related to this expansion. The project recognizes UB's potential for excellence, in regard to the university's physical environment, by highlighting and evaluating various positive and negative attributes of the three campuses, including housing, circulation, functionality, landscape, and community interface.
Associations and activities
UB has two student-run periodicals: The Spectrum, and Subject, both of which are run as independend nonprofits. The Spectrum is a campus newspaper, which distributes on campus and online. Subject is a student-run online multimedia outlet that includes student-written articles, and radio shows, video, and podcasts by students and alumni.
Subject was founded in 2020 by alumni of former campus radio station WRUB, and campus magazine Generation,, after Sub-Board I, the student services corporation that funded them both, was shut down in 2019.
After the retirement of John B. Simpson, the undergraduate students have also developed a university forum with the hopes of developing a thriving online campus. This move was supported by now incumbent president Satish K Tripathi who called it a "model of University spirit and entrepreneurship".
The UB Student Alumni Association (UBSAA) annually hosts the world's largest collegiate mud-volleyball game known as "Oozefest". One hundred ninety-two teams of at least six students compete in a double elimination volleyball tournament at "The Mud Pit" each Spring before finals. Fire trucks are brought in to saturate the dirt courts to create the mud. Awards are handed out to not only the victors, but the most creatively dressed. In the past, students have worn business suits and even dresses to the tournament.
Held annually since 1991 has been the Linda Yalem Safety Run, formerly called the Linda Yalem Memorial Run. Linda Yalem was a sophomore at UB who was studying communications and training for the New York City Marathon when she was raped and killed by Altemio Sanchez after going for a run on the Ellicott Creek Bike Path on September 29, 1990. The Run is held every year in her memory and to promote safety for runners.
In 1923, an honorary senior society called Bisonhead was founded. It has since represented twelve undergraduate leaders at UB each year.
Many of UB's clubs, such as the UB Accounting Association, are run through the Undergraduate Student Association and the Graduate Student Association, with each level requiring respective senate recognition for clubs.
Student residence halls are located on both the North and South Campuses. On the North Campus, there is the Ellicott Complex, which consists of Fargo, Porter, Red Jacket, Richmond, Spaulding, and Wilkeson Quadrangles. The Ellicott Complex is also known as "Lego Land" because the shapes of the buildings resemble Legos stacked upon each other. Next to Fargo Quad is the newly built in 2011 Greiner Hall, a dorm strictly for sophomores. Also on North Campus is the Governors Complex, home to the Freshman Honors Housing and various other living communities. There are also off-campus housing options close to the north campus such as The Triad Apartments.
On South Campus is Goodyear and Clement Hall. The unique aspect of these dorms is that residents share a bathroom with the adjacent room, rather than have a communal bathroom. Up until Spring of 2011, there were four other dorm buildings, referred to as "The Quad": MacDonald, Pritchard, Schoellkopf, and Michael Hall. Michael Hall currently exists as the Student Health Center, the other three are not in use.
In 1999, the university built its first apartment complex for families and graduate students at Flickinger Court. Since the success of Flickinger, UB has developed South Lake Village, Hadley Village, Flint Village, and Creekside Apartments. Most students who wish to still live on or near the North Campus but enjoy the lifestyle of apartment living take advantage of these apartments. University Village at Sweethome, Villas at Rensch, and Villas at Chestnut Ridge are student apartment communities adjacent to the North Campus and offer a shuttle service. Collegiate Village off campus apartments offers transportation to both North and South Campus. Students also find housing in private locations. Those locations are generally situated in the University Heights district of Buffalo, and other areas close to the North and South Campuses. The school assigns rooms based on a lottery system.
The university’s sports teams are known as the Buffalo Bulls, or UB Bulls. The Bulls compete in Division I (Division I FBS of the NCAA in football), and are a member of the Mid-American Conference (MAC) for all sports. The Bulls have been a member of the Mid-American Conference since 1998.
Buffalo is the only SUNY school to field a Division I FBS football team, the highest level of college football. They are also the only SUNY school to have had their men’s basketball team nationally ranked and the only SUNY school to have had their women’s basketball team nationally ranked. Because of its academic and athletic successes, the University at Buffalo is consistency cited as the athletic flagship of the SUNY system. 
Buffalo Bulls field athletic teams in many other sports as well.  Men's team sports at UB include those in football, basketball, baseball, track and field, wrestling, soccer, swimming and diving, cross country, and tennis. The Bulls' women's teams feature basketball, track and field, cross country, volleyball, softball, soccer, rowing, tennis, and swimming and diving. Cheerleading is co-ed. The Bulls have had many athletes turn professional in football, baseball, basketball, soccer, and volleyball.
Over 30 Buffalo Bulls baseball players have been selected in the MLB draft. Notable Buffalo baseball alumni include: Joe Hesketh, Tom Murphy, Bill Schuster, Eddie Basinski and Steve Geltz. The rowing program is an associate member of the Colonial Athletic Association. The Women's Rowing team won the CAA championship in April 2010 for the first time. In May 2010, the team won the Jack & Nancy Seitz Women's Point Trophy at the Dad Vail Regatta for the third year in a row. In 2015 UB's men track and field star, Jonathan Jones, became the first national champion in UB's Division I history when he won the shot put at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
The mascot of UB's athletic teams is Victor E. Bull, a blue bull with a gold nose ring. The university is home to the Thunder of the East marching band. The band performs at all home football games and travels to both local and national parades and competitions. Buffalo has three fight songs: "Victory March", "Go for a Touchdown", and "Buffalo Fight Song".
The men’s basketball team plays their home games at the 6,783 seat Alumni Arena. The Bulls were champions of the Mid-American Conference in 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019 and thus earned the automatic bid to March Madness in each of those seasons. They are the only MAC school to win the conference tournament in 4 seasons out of 5. In 2018 the Bulls upset No. 4 seed Arizona in the First Round of March Madness, advancing to the Second Round (Round of 32) for the first time in school history. In the 2018-19 season Buffalo, led by C.J. Massinburg, earned a national ranking for the first time in the Associated Press poll. The basketball team was nationally ranked for most of the season with a high ranking of #11 on both the AP and Coaches Polls. For the second year in a row the Bulls won a game in the NCAA tournament, defeating Arizona State.
The women's basketball team won the MAC championship and made their first trip to the NCAA Tournament in program history in 2016. In 2017 the women's team made another trip to the NCAA Tournament beating South Florida in the first round and Florida State in the second round, making the sweet sixteen for the first time in program history. The team finished with a final ranking of #21 in the Coaches Poll. In 2019, the men's and women's basketball teams both won the MAC championship on the same day, the second time the Bulls had done so in four seasons. The women's team defeated Rutgers in the NCAA tournament in their third appearance in March Madness in four years.
The University at Buffalo football team plays their home games at the 31,000+ capacity University at Buffalo Stadium. In 1958, the football team won the Lambert Cup, emblematic of supremacy in Eastern U.S. small-college football. That led to the team's first bowl invitation, to the Tangerine Bowl in Orlando, Florida, against Florida State University. But the Bulls would be allowed to participate only if backup defensive end Mike Wilson and starting halfback Willie Evans, who were black, did not play. The team stood behind the two, and refused the bowl offer. Buffalo did not receive another bowl invitation until the 2008 season when they won the MAC championship against previously undefeated Ball State.
Several UB football stars from the 1950s and early 1960s went on to play professional football, including quarterback John Stofa with the American Football League's Miami Dolphins and Cincinnati Bengals, and defensive lineman Gerry Philbin with the AFL's New York Jets. Philbin is a member of the AFL Hall of Fame and the All-time All-AFL Team. Philbin and UB's Willie Ross were the first two UB graduates to play on professional football championship teams in the United States: Ross with the 1964 AFL Champion Buffalo Bills; and Philbin with the 1968 AFL Champion New York Jets, who also won that season's AFL-NFL World Championship Game (Super Bowl III). James Starks was on the Green Bay Packers Super Bowl XLV champions as a rookie. Ramon Guzman played on the 2009 Grey Cup champion Montreal Alouettes.
Khalil Mack was selected as the 1st round 5th pick in the NFL draft, becoming the first UB football player to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft. In his time at Buffalo, Mack became the all-time NCAA record for forced fumbles and is also tied for most career tackles for loss in NCAA history. In his time in the NFL, Mack has been one of the most accomplished players in the league. He has been selected for the Pro Bowl every year from 2015-2019 and been named First Team All-Pro in 2015, 2016 and 2018. In 2015, Mack became the first first-team All-Pro in NFL history to be elected in two different positions in the same year, as a defensive end and outside linebacker. Mack was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year for the 2016 season.
The 2020 season saw Buffalo ranked in the AP Poll for the first time in program history led by running back Jaret Patterson en route to an undefeated regulae season. On November 28, 2020 Patterson rushed for 409 yards while scoring 8 touchdowns, tying a Division 1 FBS record against Kent State.
Notable alumni and faculty
UB has over 230,000 alumni who live in over 130 countries in the world. Among the individuals who have attended, graduated, or taught at the university are biomedical engineering professor Leslie Ying, NASA astronauts Gregory Jarvis and Ellen S. Baker, Emmy-winning American journalist Wolf Blitzer, the distinguished alumni award recipient and acclaimed dancer Roberto Villanueva, Chairman and former CEO of A+E Networks Abbe Raven, Founder of Miramax and The Weinstein Company Harvey Weinstein, CEO of Paramount Pictures Brad Grey, billionaire, founder, chairman, and CEO of Baidu Robin Li, CEO of Intel Bob Swan, Pulitzer Prize-winner Tom Toles, Nobel Prize-winners, Ronald Coase, Herbert A. Hauptman and Sir John Carew Eccles, and winners of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, Norman McCombs, Wilson Greatbach, and Erich Bloch. Billionaire and owner of the Boston Bruins, Jeremy Jacobs, physicist Mendel Sachs, musician and civil rights activist Charles Mingus, pianist and composer Richard Aaker Trythall, civil engineer, genealogist and author Angelo F. Coniglio, scholar of medieval religion Carolyn Muessig, creator of the BitTorrent peer-to-peer client Bram Cohen, National Public Radio personalities Terri Gross and Ira Flatow, American actor, director, and producer Ron Silver, Academy Award-winning sound engineer Thomas Curley, and physician Mary Blair Moody, the first woman to earn a medical degree from the school. The painter Martha Visser't Hooft taught at the University from 1956-1958. Among the athletes who have graduated from the university are football players Gerry Philbin, Naaman Roosevelt, Branden Oliver, Khalil Mack and James Starks along with soccer player Bobby Shuttleworth. Khalil Mack was drafted by the Raiders fifth overall in the 2014 NFL Draft. Mack holds the all-time NCAA record for forced fumbles and is also tied for career tackles for loss in the NCAA. In 2015, he became the first first-team All-Pro in NFL history to be elected in two different positions in the same year, as a defensive end and outside linebacker. Mack was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year for the 2016 season.
Over the years, the University at Buffalo has also been particularly distinguished in contemporary creative writing. Noted novelists who have taught on its faculty include John Barth, Raymond Federman and Anthony Burgess. Noted faculty poets include George Starbuck (1983 Lenore Marshall Prize), Charles Olson, Robert Creeley (Bollingen Prize 1999), John Logan, (Lenore Marshall Prize 1982), Irving Feldman (MacArthur Foundation Fellow 1992), Carl Dennis (2000 Ruth Lilly Poetry Prize; 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry), Robert Hass (Poet Laureate of the United States 1995–97, 2007 National Book Award, 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry), Charles Bernstein (co-founder of the University's notable Poetics Program), Steve McCaffery, and Susan Howe (Bollingen Prize 2011). Former UB students include Michael Casey (Yale Younger Poets Award), Tony Petrosky (Walt Whitman Award), Donald Revell (2004 Lenore Marshall Prize), Charles Baxter, Michael Davidson, Jonas Zdanys, and, from the Poetics Program, Elizabeth Willis, Peter Gizzi, Juliana Spahr, Jena Osman, and Yunte Huang. Michel Foucault taught in the French department in 1970 and 1972.
Political leaders who have attended and taught at the university include Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, the 9th President and 21st Prime Minister of Somalia; and Zhou Ji, Minister of Education of the People's Republic of China. Alumni have also served in the United States House of Representatives, including Jack Quinn, and William F. Walsh. Other lawmakers, such as New York State Assembly Member Joseph Giglio and United States Attorney Dennis Vacco, are also graduates.
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