The University of Orange is a free school of restoration urbanism in Orange, NJ founded in 2008 and building on a 64-year history of progressive organizing in the city. We build collective capacity for our friends, neighbors, and partners to cultivate a just and equitable city. We offer free courses, work in local coalitions to promote education across the lifecycle, and advocate for equity in urban planning. We hold at once the recognition that racist and classist policies continue to shape cities everywhere, and that the resources we need to heal already exist within our neighborhoods. We solve the problems of our world by learning to see the richness of our cities, becoming lifelong learners, participating in civic life, and having fun with our neighbors.
University of Orange Inc. is a 501c3 tax-exempt organization, and donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.
The UofO Story
The University of Orange grew out of the 2007 celebrations of the 50th anniversary of the fight to desegregate the schools in Orange, NJ. The U of O was founded by longtime community activists and others passionate about the city. The U of O was started with the principle that the city itself is a university.
“In 2007 I came back to my hometown to celebrate the 50th anniversary of organizing to end school segregation. I was not surprised that the city, which had lost its industry and been cut by a highway, was confused about the future. I was surprised that, despite those setbacks, there was tremendous vitality in the people and the built environment. It occurred to me that in that energy was a tool for addressing the confusion. I was proud to join with friends and neighbors to found the University of Orange. We are finding a third path – avoiding disinvestment and gentrification – so that we can reimagine this wonderful city.”
– a note from Board President, Mindy Thompson Fullilove, MD