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Explore the Nationality Rooms

Cathedral of Learning, University of Pittsburgh

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Cathedral of Learning

When the University of Pittsburgh's Chancellor John G. Bowman had the 42-story Cathedral of Learning built in the 1920s and 1930s, he invited the ethnic groups of Pittsburgh to participate in a novel way: by sponsoring and building classrooms that represent their cultures at their highest level of achievement in authentic styles and materials.

Committees of dedicated volunteers for each of the original Nationality Rooms raised money to pay for these unique contributions to a university they hoped would someday educate their children and grandchildren. Help came from overseas as word spread about these rooms and some governments even provided architects, artists, and materials to make certain their rooms were of the highest quailty and authentic to their traditions.

Nineteen rooms were completed between 1938 and 1957 -- they surround the Commons Room on the Cathedral's first floor. Seven more rooms were dedicated between 1987 and 2000. Four more are in the proposal stage. The newer rooms are being built on the third floor. All are symbols of the cultural diversity of our region and the richness that every culture contributes to the mix.

Rooms built 1938-1957 Rooms added 1987-2000 Proposed Rooms

Chinese Classroom
Czechoslovak Classroom
English Classroom
French Classroom
German Classroom
Greek Classroom
Hungarian Classroom
Indian Classroom
Irish Classroom
Italian Classroom
Lithuanian Classroom
Norwegian Classroom
Polish Classroom
Romanian Classroom
Russian Classroom
Scottish Classroom
Swedish Classroom
Syria-Lebanon Room
Yugoslav Classroom
Early American Room

African Heritage Classroom
Armenian Classroom
Austrian Nationality Room
Israel Heritage Classroom
Japanese Nationality Room
Ukrainian Classroom

Latin American


To schedule a tour of the Nationality Rooms, call 412-624-6000.

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