Rollins History

Fox Day 2023, a group of students and the fox jumping in the air

Traditions at Rollins

Some things never change. Rollins has been around for more than 135 years, and we’re always keeping an eye on the future, but our traditions help anchor us to the past. That’s what it means to be part of the Rollins legacy. Click for a few of our favorite Rollins traditions.


Fast Facts About Rollins

  • Established 1885
  • Affiliation: Nonsectarian, Independent, and Coeducational
  • Accreditation: Rollins College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)
  • Location and Campus: Winter Park, Florida, an attractive and historic residential community adjacent to the city of Orlando; the 80-acre campus is situated on the shores of beautiful Lake Virginia
  • Walk of Fame containing more than 200 stones gathered from the birthplaces of influential cultural and historical figures and engraved with their names
  • Twenty-three varsity athletic teams and nine athletic facilities
  • Five fraternities and seven sororities and more than 100 student organizations, ranging from social and cultural to service, special interest, and honorary
  • Eighteen residential halls
  • Four-level, 54,000-square-foot library containing more than 300,000 volumes and over 50,000 serial titles
  • More than 250 personal computers available for student use
  • Fine arts museum with six display galleries, a print study room, an educational gallery, and a collection of more than 6,000 works

More than 135 Years of History, Briefly

  • Chartered in 1885 by New England Congregationalists as a coeducational liberal arts college
  • The oldest recognized college in the state of Florida
  • During World War I, established a naval unit that enabled students to take basic and advanced courses in naval training
  • The Rollins College Conference Plan, conceived in 1927 by the college’s eighth president, Hamilton Holt, is nationally recognized for emphasizing close teacher-student scholarship and conversational-style class structure
  • In 1927, established the annual Animated Magazine speaker series, which brought to Rollins the leading scholars, thought leaders, and artists of the time to engage and share ideas with the Rollins community
  • Hosts the third-oldest continuously operating Bach Festival Society choir and orchestra in the United States, which was founded in 1935