James Madison University
Former names
State Normal and Industrial School (1908–1914)
State Normal School for Women at Harrisonburg (1914–1924)
State Teachers College at Harrisonburg (1924–1938)
Madison College (1938–1977)
Motto"Knowledge is Liberty"[1]
TypePublic research university
EstablishedFebruary 29, 1908; 116 years ago (1908-02-29)
Academic affiliations
Endowment$154.7 million (2021)[2]
Budget$628 million (2020)[3]
PresidentJonathan R. Alger
Academic staff
1,463 (2022)[4]
Students22,224 (2022)[4]
Undergraduates20,346 (2022)[4]
Postgraduates1,878 (2022)[4]
Location, ,
United States
CampusSmall City, 721 acres (2.92 km2)
Other campuses
NewspaperThe Breeze
Colors  Purple
Sporting affiliations
MascotDuke Dog

James Madison University (JMU, Madison, or James Madison) is a public research university in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Founded in 1908 as the State Normal and Industrial School for Women at Harrisonburg, the institution was renamed Madison College in 1938 in honor of President James Madison and then James Madison University in 1977.[6] It has since expanded from its origins as a normal school and teacher's college into a comprehensive university. It is situated in the Shenandoah Valley, just west of Massanutten Mountain.


James Madison, the university's namesake, by John Vanderlyn (1816)
Woodrow Wilson Hall, the centerpiece of the JMU quadrangle.

Founded in 1908 as a women's college, James Madison University was established by the Virginia General Assembly. It was originally called The State Normal and Industrial School for Women at Harrisonburg. In 1914, the name of the university was changed to the State Normal School for Women at Harrisonburg. At first, academic offerings included only the equivalent of technical training or junior college courses, but authorization to award bachelor's degrees was granted in 1916. During this initial period of development, the campus plan was established and six buildings were constructed.[7]

The university became the State Teachers College at Harrisonburg in 1924 and continued under that name until 1938 when it was named Madison College in honor of James Madison, the fourth President of the United States, whose Montpelier estate is located in nearby Orange, Virginia. In 1977, the university's name was changed again to James Madison University.[7]

The first president of the university was Julian Ashby Burruss. The university opened its doors to its first student body in 1909 with an enrollment of 209 students and a faculty of 15. Its first 20 graduates received diplomas in 1911.[7]

In 1919, Burruss resigned the presidency to become president of Virginia Polytechnic Institute. Samuel Page Duke was then chosen as the school's second president. During Duke's administration, nine major buildings were constructed.[7] Duke served as president from 1919 to 1949.

In 1946, men were first enrolled as regular day students. G. Tyler Miller became the third president in 1949, following Duke's retirement. During Miller's administration, from 1949 to 1970, the campus was enlarged by 240 acres (0.97 km2) and 19 buildings were constructed. Major curriculum changes were made and the university was authorized to grant master's degrees in 1954.[7]

Late 20th century

In 1966, by the action of the Virginia General Assembly, the university became a coeducational institution. Ronald E. Carrier, JMU's fourth president, headed the institution from 1971 to 1998. During his administration, student enrollment and the number of faculty and staff tripled, and national fraternities were seen on campus such as Tau Kappa Epsilon, Sigma Phi Epsilon, Alpha Chi Rho, Theta Chi, and others, doctoral programs were authorized, more than 20 major campus buildings were constructed and national publications recognized JMU as one of the finest institutions of its type in America. Carrier Library is named after him.[7]

21st century

Aerial view of campus from 1937, showing the original campus plan, prior to major expansions of the campus.
JMU c. 1920
Keezell Hall, home of the university's English and Foreign Language departments
Varner House
Walkway Towards the Quadrangle

During the first decade of the 21st century under Linwood H. Rose (JMU's fifth president), the university continued to rapidly expand, not only through new construction east of Interstate 81 but also on the west side of campus. In early 2005, JMU purchased the Rockingham Memorial Hospital campus just north of the main JMU campus for over $40 million. The hospital has since moved and JMU now occupies the site after having made substantial renovations to it.[8] In June 2005, the university expanded across South High Street by leasing the former Harrisonburg High School building from the City of Harrisonburg. In May 2006, the university purchased the property.[9] The sale was approved in June 2005 for $17 million.[10][11] The university named the old HHS building Memorial Hall.[12] The Rose Library opened on the east side of campus on August 11, 2008.

The rapid expansion of JMU's campus has at times created tension in the city-university relationship.[13] In 2006, the local ABC affiliate reported that the university had nearly doubled in size in the preceding 20 years,[14] including purchases of several local properties.[15][16]

The university has also experienced tension with local residents with occasional clashes between local police and students at a popular off-campus block party. In 2000, a party with about 2,500 students grew out of hand and required a police presence at the Forest Hills townhouse complex on Village Lane.[17] Ten years later, police equipped with riot gear used force to disperse a group of 8,000 college-aged people at the party.[18][19][20] Several participants were airlifted to a medical center in Charlottesville to treat their injuries.[21] The university condemned the block party attendees' behavior.[22]

In August 2021, the university received national criticism from conservative political commentators and university alumni after an orientation leader training video and other publications surfaced that supposedly labeled white Americans and Christians as oppressors. In a statement to Fox News, the university stood by the training, saying, "The training was held to help ensure that every student guide for freshmen orientation had the tools and understanding to work with incoming students, who might have a different background than their own."[23][24]


James Madison University is classified among "R2: Doctoral Universities – High Research Activity". It offers 139-degree programs on the bachelor's, master's, educational specialist, and doctoral levels. It comprises seven colleges and 78 academic programs, including the College of Arts and Letters; the College of Business; the College of Education; the College of Health and Behavioral Studies; the College of Integrated Science and Engineering; the College of Science and Mathematics; the College of Visual and Performing Arts; and The Graduate School. Total enrollment in the 2012–13 academic year was 19,927—18,392 undergraduates and 1,820 graduate students. JMU granted 4,908 degrees in 2012–4,096 undergraduate degrees, and 812 graduate degrees.

Phi Kappa Phi was the first academic honor society chartered at JMU. The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi (or ΦΚΦ) was established in 1897 to recognize and encourage superior scholarship without restriction as to the area of study and to promote the "unity and democracy of education".

On October 2, 2009, JMU was granted a chapter by the Phi Beta Kappa academic honor society.[25]


Academic rankings
U.S. News & World Report[27]124
Washington Monthly[28]75
WSJ / College Pulse[29]152

The 2024 U.S. News & World Report ranked JMU the No. 124 among national universities.[30] In the 2018 Washington Monthly college rankings, JMU ranked eighth among master's universities nationwide. Washington Monthly assesses the quality of schools based on social mobility (recruiting and graduating low-income students), research (producing cutting-edge scholarship and PhDs), and service (encouraging students to give something back to their country).[31]

In 2013, BloombergBusiness ranked JMU 15th among all undergraduate business schools in the country for return on investment.[32] In 2014 it ranked JMU's College of Business 40th among undergraduate business programs in the U.S.[33] Kiplinger magazine's 2015 "100 Best Values in Public Colleges" ranked JMU 21st in value in the nation among public colleges and universities.[34]


College of Arts and Letters

Main article: James Madison University College of Arts and Letters

College of Business

Main article: James Madison University College of Business

College of Visual and Performing Arts

The College of Visual and Performing Arts includes three schools: the School of Art, Design, and Art History; the School of Music; and the School of Theatre and Dance. The college also includes the Madison Art Collection and the Institute for Visual Studies.

The college's majors were originally part of the College of Arts and Letters. On June 24, 2005, the Board of Visitors approved the Madison College Proposal, which created the College of Visual and Performing Arts out of the College of Arts and Letters.

In September 2010,[35] the college opened the Forbes Center for the Performing Arts, a complex composed of two connected buildings: the Estes Center for Theatre and Dance and the Roberts Center for Music Performance.[36] The $82 million facility was funded by a Virginia higher-education bond package.[37]

The College of Visual and Performing Arts is a member of the International Council of Fine Arts Deans, a multi-national alliance of executive arts administrators in higher education.

School of Art, Design and Art History

The school offers undergraduate majors in Art History (BA), Studio Art (BA, BS, and BFA options), Graphic Design (BFA), Architectural Design (BFA), and Industrial Design (BS). Minors are offered in Studio Art, Design, and Art History. There are also graduate programs in Art Education (MA) and Studio Art (MA and MFA options). The School of Art, Design, and Art History is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).

School of Theatre and Dance

The school offers a Bachelor of Arts degree (BA) with three undergraduate majors: Theatre, Dance, and Musical Theatre. Minors are offered in Theatre and Dance. The School of Theatre and Dance is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre and the National Association of Schools of Dance.

School of Music

The School of Music offers a Bachelor of Music degree (BM) with concentrations in Composition, Performance, Education, Music Theater, Jazz, and Music Industry. The School of Music is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools Music (NASM). Currently, the university is home to over 30 ensembles, including The Wind Symphony, The University Symphony Orchestra, The Madison Singers, The University Chorus, The JMU Brass Band, The Pep Band, and The Marching Royal Dukes. The marching band with almost 500 members was the recipient of the Sudler Trophy, the highest honor available for a college marching band. In 2005, the School of Music received a gift from Dr. Elizabeth Swallow to designate the school an All-Steinway School.[38] The Marching Royal Dukes is the school's official marching band. Formed in 1972 (same as the football team), the "MRDs" perform at halftime and post-game at all home football games, and travel with the team occasionally to perform at away and post-season games. In 1994, the MRDs were the recipients of the Sudler Trophy, the highest honor available for a college marching band, and was the second ensemble from a school with an I-AA football team to do so, after Florida A&M University

The JMU Brass Band is one of only a few collegiate brass bands in the United States. Formed in the Fall of 2000, the band has twice been named the North American Brass Band Association (NABBA) Honors Section Champion (2004, 2005), and is currently the 2019 NABBA Champion Section runner-up.[39]


James Madison statue in Bluestone area
A near-lifesized statue of James Madison is located on the bluestone section of the campus.
Newman Lake with Bridge
Newman Lake
Harrison Hall

JMU's campus originally consisted of two buildings, Jackson Hall and Maury Hall, which are now known as Darcus Johnson Hall and Gabbin Hall, respectively.[40] Today, the campus has 148 major buildings on 721 acres (2.92 km2).[41] It has become Virginia's second most photographed location on social media sites like Instagram and Twitter, after Kings Dominion.[42]

The campus is divided into six areas: Bluestone Area, Hillside Area, Lake Area (includes Greek Row), Village Area, Ridge Area, and Skyline Area. The Ridge and Skyline areas are on the east side of Interstate 81, while the Bluestone, Hillside, Lake, and Village areas of the campus are on the west side.[43] The two sides are connected both by a bridge over (Carrier Drive), and a tunnel under (Duke Dog Alley), Interstate 81.[44] Other unique campus features include Newman Lake, a 9.7-acre (39,000 m2) body of water in the Lake Area next to Greek Row and Sonner Hall,[45] Grafton-Stovall Theater, an on-campus movie theater, and the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum, a 125-acre urban botanical preserve in Harrisonburg and on campus. The arboretum combines naturalized botanical gardens (33 acres) and forest (92 acres) and is Virginia's only arboretum on a public university campus.

The original, historic Bluestone side of campus is located on South Main Street (also known as U.S. Route 11, and historically as "The Valley Pike") and is the heart of the university. Many of the buildings in the Bluestone area have been constructed out of the same stone, known as "bluestone," which is a type of limestone that is locally sourced from the surrounding Shenandoah Valley.[46] As the university has grown, the campus has expanded significantly beyond the Bluestone area.

John C. Wells Planetarium

Main article: John C. Wells Planetarium

The John C. Wells Planetarium, first opened in 1974, underwent a $1.5 million renovation in 2008. It is now a state-of-the-art hybrid planetarium, the only one of its kind in the world. Its mission is science education and public outreach. It offers free shows to the public every Saturday afternoon and hosts annual summer space camps in July.

East campus expansion

To the east, across Interstate 81, the expansion has included The College of Integrated Science and Engineering (CISE), the University Recreation Center (UREC), Rose Library (originally named East Campus Library),[47] the Festival Conference and Student Center, the Leeolou Alumni Center, several residence halls, the Chemistry and Physics Building, and University Park, which opened in 2012 off Port Republic Road, combining recreational and varsity athletic fields.

Several new campus construction projects were included in Governor Tim Kaine's $1.65 billion higher education bond package. Kaine's proposal designated more than $96 million for JMU projects. Among the projects included were the construction of a new biotechnology building, Centennial Hall ($44.8 million), and the renovation and expansion of Duke Hall ($43.4 million). The proposal also included $8.6 million as the final installment payment for the purchase of Rockingham Memorial Hospital.[48]

Forbes Center for the Performing Arts

Beginning in 2002 JMU began receiving state and private funding to construct a state-of-the-art performing arts complex. The facility is opposite Wilson Hall across South Main Street, and visually completes the Main Quad. It was named the Forbes Center for the Performing Arts in honor of Bruce and Lois Forbes, who gave $5 million to the project. The wing of The Forbes Center dedicated to theater and dance is named the Dorothy Thomasson Estes Center for Theatre and Dance in honor of a $2.5 million gift by the husband of Dorothy Estes. The wing dedicated to music is named the Shirley Hanson Roberts Center for Music Performance in honor of a multi-million dollar gift from the husband of Shirley Roberts. The entire PAC was built at a total cost exceeding $92 million, and opened in June 2010 to house academic offices and performances by the Schools of Theatre, Dance, and Music, and the administrative offices of the College of Visual and Performing Arts.[49]

Renaming historic halls

In 2020, JMU's Board of Visitors approved the renaming of three historic buildings on the quad that were named in honor of three prominent Virginian Confederate soldiers: Ashby Hall (named after Turner Ashby), Maury Hall (named after Matthew Fontaine Maury), and Jackson Hall (named after Stonewall Jackson). They were given the temporary names of Valley Hall, Mountain Hall, and Justice Studies Hall, respectively.[50] In 2021, the halls were approved and given new names. Mountain Hall (Maury Hall) was renamed Gabbin Hall after Drs. Joanne V. and Alexander Gabbin, professors at JMU for more than 35 years;[51] Valley Hall (Ashby Hall) was renamed Harper Allen-Lee Hall after Doris Harper Allen and Robert Walker Lee, both notable former staff members at JMU;[52] Justice Studies Hall (Jackson Hall) was renamed Darcus Johnson Hall after Sheary Darcus Johnson, the first black student to graduate from JMU.[53]

In late 2021, the ISAT/CS building was renamed King Hall in honor of Charles W. King; longtime Senior Vice President of the Administration and Finance Division at JMU.[54]


Board of Visitors

Julian Ashby Burruss

Like all public universities in Virginia, James Madison is governed by a Board of Visitors appointed by the Governor of Virginia.[55] In addition to the 15 members appointed by the governor, the speaker of the Faculty Senate and an elected student representative serve as representatives for the faculty and the student body respectively. The appointed members serve for a maximum of two consecutive four-year terms, while the student representative is limited to two one-year terms. The faculty representative serves for as long as he or she remains the speaker of the JMU Faculty Senate.[55] Some appointed members of note include former presidential candidate Carly Fiorina and former first lady of Virginia, Susan Allen.[56][57]


Main article: Jonathan R. Alger

Jonathan R. Alger is the sixth and current president of the university. Before being named president, he served as the senior vice president and counsel at Rutgers University.[58]

Presidents of JMU

Student life

Student body composition as of May 2, 2022
Race and ethnicity[59] Total
White 75% 75
Hispanic 7% 7
Other[a] 7% 7
Asian 5% 5
Black 5% 5
Foreign national 1% 1
Economic diversity
Low-income[b] 14% 14
Affluent[c] 86% 86
Converse Hall

The Princeton Review recognized James Madison as one of 81 schools in America "with a conscience", and in 2006 ranked JMU second in the nation behind only the University of Virginia in the number of Peace Corps volunteers it sent from its student body among "medium-sized" universities.[60] And in 2010, the food at JMU was ranked third in the United States.[61] In 2011 the student body was ranked 20th "happiest in the entire nation" by Newsweek and The Daily Beast.[62] These rankings take into consideration the surrounding area's activities, academics, as well as the social scene on campus.

The school has 35 residence halls, ten of which serve as sorority houses.[63] While most residence halls are only for housing, several halls also provide auxiliary services like computer labs and study lounges.[64] All freshmen must live on campus, and a large portion of JMU's on-campus housing is set aside for incoming students. Consequently, most upperclassmen and graduate students live off campus. Continuing students who wish to live on campus must re-apply for housing each year. While occasional exceptions are granted, generally freshmen are not granted on-campus parking permits.[65] Some JMU halls are set-aside as specialized living and learning residential communities. Shenandoah Hall is devoted to an Honors residential experience, Chesapeake Hall is for pre-professional health disciplines, Gifford Hall includes the Roop Learning Community for future teachers, and Wayland Hall is reserved for majors in the art disciplines.

The Breeze

Main article: The Breeze (newspaper)

The Breeze is a student-run newspaper serving JMU since 1922. Published every Thursday, The Breeze provides news and information to the university community, covering topics such as sports, culture, and business.[66] The Breeze has won numerous awards, including a 2012 Online Pacemaker Award, 2012 VPA award for Best in Show for a Non-Daily News Presentation, and a 2012 VPA sweepstakes award.[67][68][69]

Clubs and organizations

James Madison University has over 350 clubs and organizations for students to choose from. This growing list of involvement opportunities provides students with unique experiences that will help them to grow in community and engagement outside of the classroom.[70] At the administrative level, student clubs and organizations fall under the Office of Student Activities and Involvement.

Front-end budgeted

There are 10 front-end budgeted groups on campus, including the Black Student Alliance (BSA), Inter-Fraternity Council (IFC), Latinx Student Alliance (LSA), Madison Equality, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Panhellenic, SafeRides, Student Ambassadors (SA), Student Government Association (SGA), and University Program Board (UPB).[71] The funds allocated to these organization are voted on by the SGA, with the exception to the SGA budget which is approved separately by the administration. Some FEB organizations are more active than others, causing debate about their status from year-to-year.

Student Government Association

The JMU Student Government Association (SGA) was founded in 1915 and stood as the first organization on campus. Their goal was to establish an organization whose role was to be the voice for the JMU student population and advocate on behalf of the students to the administration and the rest of the community.

SGA consists of two governing bodies, the Executive Council and the Student Senate. The Executive Council consists of the Student Body President, Student Body Vice President, and SGA Treasurer, positions that are elected by the JMU Student Body each academic year. The fourth member of the Executive Council is the Speaker of the Senate, who is voted on by the Student Senate. Meanwhile, the Senate consists of Academic Senators and Class Council members who form the various committees within the Senate.

Students on the James Madison University quad
The Shenandoah Mountains
JMU's East Campus overlooks distant mountains.
King Hall (formerly ISAT/CS Building)

SGA has initiated many of the university's traditional events and programs, such as Homecoming's Purple Out, Mr. and Ms. Madison, Ring Premiere, the Annual Tree Lighting, the Big Event, and SafeRides. They also vote on Front End Budgeted (FEB) organizational budgets each year as well as allocate contingency funds to other organizations throughout the school year. In 2015, the organization celebrated its 100th year since being founded.

Student Ambassadors

The JMU Student Ambassadors work alongside the Admissions Office to offer student-led tours for prospective students. Formerly, the Ambassadors were also associated with the Alumni Office until the GOLD Network was established. Ambassadors are volunteers and are not paid.[72]

University Program Board

The University Program Board (UPB) puts on large-scale events at JMU, including concerts and themed alternative night-out events like Late Night Breakfast.


Founded in 2003, SafeRides originated as a program run by the SGA. Inspired by a program at Texas A&M, the organization is a student-led non-profit where unpaid members are dedicated to picking up and driving students home at night at no charge. SafeRides was approved as a FEB organization by the SGA in 2022. By 2022, they had given more than 100,000 rides.[73]

Greek life

James Madison University is home to over two dozen social fraternity and sorority chapters. It is also home to members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, National Association of Latino Fraternal Organizations, and National APIDA Panhellenic Association. A monument dedicated to the members of the Inter-Cultural Greek Council was built in 2022 by the institution's Student Success Center and dubbed "The Yard" in honor of the social justice and community service committed by the organizations.[74]

The university's main gym and athletic center is the University Recreation Center (UREC)

A cappella

JMU is home to ten a cappella ensembles: four all-female, three all-male, and three co-educational groups.[75] They are nationally recognized, with many of them featured on the Best of College A Cappella (BOCA) yearly compilation albums.[76][77][78] Several of the groups, such as Note-oriety and The Overtones, have gone "viral" for their music videos, "Pretty Hurts"[79] and "Say Love",[80] respectively. Note-oriety has also performed at the White House in Washington, D.C.[81]

Speech Team

The JMU Speech Team has been recognized by AFA-NIET as one of the top 20 intercollegiate speech teams in the nation.[citation needed] JMU Forensics is the only program in the nation directed by two recipients of AFA's most respected coaching awards: Distinguished Service and Outstanding New Coach.[82]


JMU has the largest InterVarsity Christian Fellowship organization in the country.[83]

Club sports

Club soccer

The JMU men's and women's club soccer teams are two of the most decorated club organizations in JMU school history.

Club ultimate

The JMU men's ultimate team, the Flying Hellfish, was founded in 1997.[84] The team is named after the Simpsons episode 22, season 7, "Raging Abe Simpson and His Grumbling Grandson in 'The Curse of the Flying Hellfish'"[85][86] Since 2005, the team has hosted an annual tournament known as "The Hellfish Bonanza," which attracts between 12 and 16 teams from across the east coast.[85] Several current and former Hellfish play Ultimate professionally for Major League Ultimate's Washington DC Current and the American Ultimate Disc League's DC Breeze.[citation needed]

Marching Royal Dukes

Main article: Marching Royal Dukes

James Madison University has the largest collegiate marching band in the nation, with 540 members as of Fall 2022. Nicknamed "Virginia's Finest", the Marching Royal Dukes have performed at venues such as the inaugurations of Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, the NFC title game between Washington and Dallas in 1983, Bands of America Grand National Championships in 1988 and 1991. The band has made four appearances in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, first in 2001, again in 2008, 2013, and most recently in 2018. In the past decade, the band has taken trips to Europe during the school's winter break, featuring Athens, Dublin, Monaco, London, and Rome.[87] During their 2014-15 trip to Europe, the MRDs participated in the 2015 Italian New Year's Day Parade in the Vatican.[88]


James Madison Athletics block logo

Main article: James Madison Dukes

James Madison University's athletic teams are known as the Dukes. An English bulldog, with a crown and cape, and Duke Dog, a gray canine costume in a purple cape and crown, serve as the school's mascot. The "Dukes" nickname is in honor of Samuel Page Duke, the university's second president. The school colors are royal purple and gold. Madison competes in the NCAA's Division I in the Sun Belt Conference and the Eastern College Athletic Conference.

Beginning in July 2022, the football program began competing in the NCAA's Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) as part of the Sun Belt Conference. Before that, the team participated in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) and within the Colonial Athletic Association.

The football team's stadium.

Over 546 varsity athletes compete in football, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's soccer, men's and women's tennis, women's swimming and diving, women's volleyball, baseball, women's lacrosse, field hockey, men's and women's golf, women's cross country and track and field, and softball. James Madison has won five national championships in football (2), field hockey, women's lacrosse, and archery, giving the Dukes the second-most national titles by a college or university in Virginia.

James Madison University invested heavily in new athletic facilities throughout the tenure of President Linwood Rose. JMU built a new multimillion-dollar baseball and softball field complex that opened in 2010. Additionally, after the last football game of 2009, the university began an expansion of Bridgeforth Stadium that increased seating capacity to approximately 25,000. Construction was completed in time for the 2011 football season.[89]

In 2020, the annual athletic fee for each student was $2,340, which finances three-quarters of Athletic Department revenues.[90]


James Madison's baseball team advanced to the College World Series in 1983, becoming the first Virginia school to do so.


In 2012, the James Madison women's basketball team won a program record 29 games and advanced to the WNIT National Championship game, where it lost to Oklahoma State University. The Lady Dukes defeated Wake Forest, Davidson College, Virginia, South Florida, and Syracuse before falling to Oklahoma State. In 2013, head coach Kenny Brooks led his team back to the WNIT defeating NC A&T, NC State, and Fordham before falling to Florida in the tournament's quarterfinals. In 2014, the Dukes posted an overall 29–6 record that culminated with an 85–69 loss to Texas A&M University in the NCAA Championship Round of 32. This marked the ninth consecutive year that the Dukes participated in postseason play and the program's ninth consecutive season with 20 victories, a school record.[citation needed]

In 2013, James Madison University's men's basketball team won the CAA championship title for the first time since 1994. The Dukes then won their first NCAA tournament game in 30 years, defeating Long Island University-Brooklyn. The Dukes fell to Indiana in the second round, 83–62, finishing the season with a 21–15 record.[91]

In 2024, James Madison University’s men’s basketball team won the Sun Belt tournament. Their record is 31-3 as they go into the NCAA tournament in March. They are predicted to be seeded 11 or 12.

Field hockey

The JMU women's field hockey team won the university's first national title in 1994.


JMU football won the NCAA Division I-AA national title in 2004, with a 13–2 record, and in 2016 with a 14–1 record going undefeated in the FCS. The 2004 squad was the only team in history to win the title after playing four straight road playoff games. Since 2004, the JMU football team has appeared in the playoffs in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2011, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019. In addition to winning the FCS national championships after the 2004 and 2016 seasons, they were national runners-up for the 2017 and 2019 seasons.

Notable alumni

This section should include a summary of List of James Madison University alumni. See Wikipedia:Summary style for information on how to incorporate it into this article's main text. (October 2023)

Main article: List of James Madison University alumni


  1. ^ Other consists of Multiracial Americans & those who prefer to not say.
  2. ^ The percentage of students who received an income-based federal Pell grant intended for low-income students.
  3. ^ The percentage of students who are a part of the American middle class at the bare minimum.


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