Campus Resources

Government & Community Relations

Overbrook

 Overbrook

In the early 1920s, when former University president Albert G. Brown, S.J. decided to move the college campus from its location just north of the city at Seventeenth and Stiles to its current site in Overbrook on Philadelphia's west side, he selected the location in part because its hilltop perch overlooking downtown Philadelphia provided a dramatic setting for the construction of the college's main building, Barbelin Hall. In fact, for many years Barbelin's signature carillon tower ranked as the highest point from sea level in the city of Philadelphia. Later, according to oral tradition, students and faculty frequently saw real hawks circling the skies above Barbelin, before swooping down on their prey. The familiar scene eventually led to the coining of the moniker “Hawk Hill.”