The United States of America known as the United States or America, is a country composed of 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U. S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D. C. and the largest city by population is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico; the State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean; the U. S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The diverse geography and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.
Paleo-Indians migrated from Siberia to the North American mainland at least 12,000 years ago. European colonization began in the 16th century; the United States emerged from the thirteen British colonies established along the East Coast. Numerous disputes between Great Britain and the colonies following the French and Indian War led to the American Revolution, which began in 1775, the subsequent Declaration of Independence in 1776; the war ended in 1783 with the United States becoming the first country to gain independence from a European power. The current constitution was adopted in 1788, with the first ten amendments, collectively named the Bill of Rights, being ratified in 1791 to guarantee many fundamental civil liberties; the United States embarked on a vigorous expansion across North America throughout the 19th century, acquiring new territories, displacing Native American tribes, admitting new states until it spanned the continent by 1848. During the second half of the 19th century, the Civil War led to the abolition of slavery.
By the end of the century, the United States had extended into the Pacific Ocean, its economy, driven in large part by the Industrial Revolution, began to soar. The Spanish–American War and World War I confirmed the country's status as a global military power; the United States emerged from World War II as a global superpower, the first country to develop nuclear weapons, the only country to use them in warfare, a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Sweeping civil rights legislation, notably the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, outlawed discrimination based on race or color. During the Cold War, the United States and the Soviet Union competed in the Space Race, culminating with the 1969 U. S. Moon landing; the end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 left the United States as the world's sole superpower. The United States is the world's oldest surviving federation, it is a representative democracy.
The United States is a founding member of the United Nations, World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Organization of American States, other international organizations. The United States is a developed country, with the world's largest economy by nominal GDP and second-largest economy by PPP, accounting for a quarter of global GDP; the U. S. economy is post-industrial, characterized by the dominance of services and knowledge-based activities, although the manufacturing sector remains the second-largest in the world. The United States is the world's largest importer and the second largest exporter of goods, by value. Although its population is only 4.3% of the world total, the U. S. holds 31% of the total wealth in the world, the largest share of global wealth concentrated in a single country. Despite wide income and wealth disparities, the United States continues to rank high in measures of socioeconomic performance, including average wage, human development, per capita GDP, worker productivity.
The United States is the foremost military power in the world, making up a third of global military spending, is a leading political and scientific force internationally. In 1507, the German cartographer Martin Waldseemüller produced a world map on which he named the lands of the Western Hemisphere America in honor of the Italian explorer and cartographer Amerigo Vespucci; the first documentary evidence of the phrase "United States of America" is from a letter dated January 2, 1776, written by Stephen Moylan, Esq. to George Washington's aide-de-camp and Muster-Master General of the Continental Army, Lt. Col. Joseph Reed. Moylan expressed his wish to go "with full and ample powers from the United States of America to Spain" to seek assistance in the revolutionary war effort; the first known publication of the phrase "United States of America" was in an anonymous essay in The Virginia Gazette newspaper in Williamsburg, Virginia, on April 6, 1776. The second draft of the Articles of Confederation, prepared by John Dickinson and completed by June 17, 1776, at the latest, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the'United States of America'".
The final version of the Articles sent to the states for ratification in late 1777 contains the sentence "The Stile of this Confederacy shall be'The United States of America'". In June 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the phrase "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA" in all capitalized letters in the headline of his "original Rough draught" of the Declaration of Independence; this draft of the document did not surface unti
Cable-Satellite Public Affairs Network is an American cable and satellite television network, created in 1979 by the cable television industry as a nonprofit public service. It televises many proceedings of the United States federal government, as well as other public affairs programming; the C-SPAN network includes the television channels C-SPAN, C-SPAN2, C-SPAN3, the radio station WCSP-FM, a group of websites which provide streaming media and archives of C-SPAN programs. C-SPAN's television channels are available to 100 million cable and satellite households within the United States, while WCSP-FM is broadcast on FM radio in Washington, D. C. and is available throughout the U. S. on SiriusXM via Internet streaming, globally through apps for iOS, BlackBerry, Android devices. The network televises U. S. political events live and "gavel-to-gavel" coverage of the U. S. Congress, as well as occasional proceedings of the Canadian and British Parliaments and other major events worldwide, its coverage of political and policy events is unmoderated, providing the audience with unfiltered information about politics and government.
Non-political coverage includes historical programming, programs dedicated to non-fiction books, interview programs with noteworthy individuals associated with public policy. C-SPAN is a private, non-profit organization funded by its cable and satellite affiliates, it does not have advertisements on any of its networks, radio stations, or websites, nor does it solicit donations or pledges; the network operates independently, neither the cable industry nor Congress has control of its programming content. Brian Lamb, C-SPAN's chairman and former chief executive officer, first conceived the concept of C-SPAN in 1975 while working as the Washington, D. C. bureau chief of the cable industry trade magazine Cablevision. It was a time of rapid growth in the number of cable television channels available in the United States, Lamb envisioned a cable-industry financed nonprofit network for televising sessions of the U. S. Congress and other public affairs event and policy discussions. Lamb shared his idea with several cable executives.
Among them were Bob Rosencrans, who provided $25,000 of initial funding in 1979, John D. Evans, who provided the wiring and access to the headend needed for the distribution of the C-SPAN signal. C-SPAN was launched on March 19, 1979, in time for the first televised session made available by the House of Representatives, beginning with a speech by then-Tennessee representative Al Gore. Upon its debut, only 3.5 million homes were wired for C-SPAN, the network had just three employees. The second C-SPAN channel, C-SPAN2, followed on June 2, 1986 when the U. S. Senate permitted itself to be televised. C-SPAN3, the most recent expansion channel, began full-time operations on January 22, 2001, shows other public policy and government-related live events on weekdays along with weekend historical programming. C-SPAN3 is the successor of a digital channel called C-SPAN Extra, launched in the Washington D. C. area in 1997, televised live and recorded political events from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday.
C-SPAN Radio began operations on October 9, 1997, covering similar events as the television networks and simulcasting their programming. The station broadcasts on WCSP in Washington, D. C. is available on XM Satellite Radio channel 120 and is streamed live at c-span.org. It was available on Sirius Satellite Radio from 2002 to 2006. Lamb semi-retired in March 2012, coinciding with the channel's 33rd anniversary, gave executive control of the network to his two lieutenants, Rob Kennedy and Susan Swain. On January 12, 2017, the online feed for C-SPAN1 was interrupted and replaced by a feed from the Russian television network RT America for 10 minutes. C-SPAN announced that they were troubleshooting the incident and were "operating under the assumption that it was an internal routing issue." C-SPAN celebrated its 10th anniversary in 1989 with a three-hour retrospective, featuring Lamb recalling the development of the network. The 15th anniversary was commemorated in an unconventional manner as the network facilitated a series of re-enactments of the seven historic Lincoln-Douglas debates of 1858, which were televised from August to October 1994, have been rebroadcast from time to time since.
Five years the series American presidents: Life Portraits, which won a Peabody Award, served as a year-long observation of C-SPAN's 20th anniversary. In 2004, C-SPAN celebrated its 25th anniversary, by which time the flagship network was viewed in 86 million homes, C-SPAN2 was in 70 million homes and C-SPAN3 was in eight million homes. On the anniversary date, C-SPAN repeated the first televised hour of floor debate in the House of Representatives from 1979 and, throughout the month, 25th anniversary features included "then and now" segments with journalists who had appeared on C-SPAN during its early years. Included in the 25th anniversary was an essay contest for viewers to write in about how C-SPAN has influenced their life regarding community service. For example, one essay contest winner wrote about how C-SPAN's non-fiction book programming serves as a resource in his charitable mission to record non-fiction audio books for people who are blind. To commemorate 25 years of taking viewer telephone calls, in 2005, C-SPAN had a 25-hour "call-in marathon", from 8:00 pm.
Eastern Time on Friday, October 7, concluding at 9:00 pm. Eastern Time on Saturday, October 8; the network had a viewer essay contest, the winner of, invited to co-host an hour of the broadcast from C-SPAN's Capitol
Virtual International Authority File
The Virtual International Authority File is an international authority file. It is a joint project of several national libraries and operated by the Online Computer Library Center. Discussion about having a common international authority started in the late 1990s. After a series of failed attempts to come up with a unique common authority file, the new idea was to link existing national authorities; this would present all the benefits of a common file without requiring a large investment of time and expense in the process. The project was initiated by the US Library of Congress, the German National Library and the OCLC on August 6, 2003; the Bibliothèque nationale de France joined the project on October 5, 2007. The project transitioned to being a service of the OCLC on April 4, 2012; the aim is to link the national authority files to a single virtual authority file. In this file, identical records from the different data sets are linked together. A VIAF record receives a standard data number, contains the primary "see" and "see also" records from the original records, refers to the original authority records.
The data are available for research and data exchange and sharing. Reciprocal updating uses the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting protocol; the file numbers are being added to Wikipedia biographical articles and are incorporated into Wikidata. VIAF's clustering algorithm is run every month; as more data are added from participating libraries, clusters of authority records may coalesce or split, leading to some fluctuation in the VIAF identifier of certain authority records. Authority control Faceted Application of Subject Terminology Integrated Authority File International Standard Authority Data Number International Standard Name Identifier Wikipedia's authority control template for articles Official website VIAF at OCLC
Riverside County, California
Riverside County is one of fifty-eight counties in the U. S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 2,189,641, making it the 4th-most populous county in California and the 11th-most populous in the United States; the name was derived from the city of Riverside, the county seat. Riverside County is included in the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area known as the Inland Empire; the county is included in the Los Angeles-Long Beach, CA Combined Statistical Area. There is a high concentration of sprawling tract housing communities around Riverside and along the Interstate 10, 15, 215 freeways. Rectangular, Riverside County covers 7,208 square miles in Southern California, spanning from the Greater Los Angeles area to the Arizona border. Geographically, the county is desert in the central and eastern portions, but has a Mediterranean climate in the western portion. Most of Joshua Tree National Park is located in the county; the resort cities of Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Rancho Mirage, Desert Hot Springs are all located in the Coachella Valley region of central Riverside County.
Large numbers of Los Angeles area workers have moved to the county in recent years to take advantage of affordable housing. Along with neighboring San Bernardino County, it was one of the fastest growing regions in the state prior to the recent changes in the regional economy. In addition, but significant, numbers of people have been moving into Southwest Riverside County from the San Diego-Tijuana metropolitan area; the cities of Temecula and Murrieta accounted for 20% of the increase in population of the county between 2000 and 2007. Riverside County was named for the Santa Ana River in 1870; the indigenous peoples of what is now Riverside County are Cupeño and Cahuilla Indians. The Luiseño lived in the Aguanga and Temecula Basins, Elsinore Trough and eastern Santa Ana Mountains and southward into San Diego County; the Cahuilla lived to the east and north of the Luiseño in the inland valleys, in the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains and the desert of the Salton Sink. The first European settlement in the county was a Mission San Luis Rey de Francia estancia or farm, at the Luiseño village of Temecula.
Grain and grapes were grown here. In 1819, the Mission granted land to Leandro Serrano, mayordomo of San Antonio de Pala Asistencia for the Mission of San Luis Rey for Rancho Temescal. Following Mexican independence and the 1833 confiscation of Mission lands, more ranchos were granted. Rancho Jurupa in 1838, El Rincon in 1839, Rancho San Jacinto Viejo in 1842, Rancho San Jacinto y San Gorgonio in 1843, Ranchos La Laguna, Temecula in 1844, Ranchos Little Temecula, Potreros de San Juan Capistrano in 1845, Ranchos San Jacinto Sobrante, La Sierra, La Sierra, Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Nuevo y Potrero in 1846. New Mexican colonists founded the town of La Placita on the east side of the Santa Ana River at the northern extremity of what is now the city of Riverside in 1843; when the initial 27 California counties were established in 1850, the area today known as Riverside County was divided between Los Angeles County and San Diego County. In 1853, the eastern part of Los Angeles County was used to create San Bernardino County.
Between 1891 and 1893, several proposals and legislative attempts were put forth to form new counties in Southern California. These proposals included one for one for a San Jacinto County. None of the proposals were adopted until a measure to create Riverside County was signed by Governor Henry H. Markham on March 11, 1893; the new county was created from parts of San Diego County. On May 2, 1893, seventy percent of voters approved the formation of Riverside County. Voters chose the city of Riverside as the county seat by a large margin. Riverside County was formed on May 9, 1893, when the Board of Commissioners filed the final canvass of the votes. Riverside County is the birthplace of lane markings, thanks to Dr. June McCarroll in 1915 when she suggested her idea to the state government; the county is the location of the March Air Reserve Base, one of the oldest airfields continuously operated by the United States military. Established as the Alessandro Flying Training Field in February 1918, it was one of thirty-two U.
S. Army Air Service training camps established after the United States entry into World War I in April 1917; the airfield was renamed March Field the following month for 2d Lieutenant Peyton C. March, Jr. the deceased son of the then-Army Chief of Staff, General Peyton C. March, killed in an air crash in Texas just fifteen days after being commissioned. March Field remained an active Army Air Service U. S. Army Air Corps installation throughout the interwar period becoming a major installation of the U. S. Army Air Forces during World War II. Renamed March Air Force Base in 1947 following the establishment of the U. S. Air Force, it was a major Strategic Air Command installation throughout the Cold War. In 1996, it was transferred to the Air Force Reserve Command and gained its current name as a major base for the Air Force Reserve and the California Air National Guard. Riverside county was a major focal point of the Civil Rights Movements in the US the African-American sections of Riverside and Mexican-American communities of the Coachella Valley visited by Cesar Chavez of the farm labor union struggle.
Riverside county has been a focus of modern Native American Gaming enterprises. In the early 1980s, the county government attempted to shut down small bingo halls operated by the Morongo Band of Cahuilla Mission In
La Quinta, California
La Quinta is a resort city in Riverside County, United States in the Coachella Valley between Indian Wells and Indio. The population was 37,467 at the 2010 census, up from 23,694 at the 2000 census; the Robb Report credits La Quinta as the leading golf destination in the US. Among those destinations is the La Quinta Resort and Club, a resort dating to 1926, where director Frank Capra wrote the screenplay for Lost Horizon; the Tom Fazio-designed golf course at The Quarry at La Quinta is ranked among the top 100 golf courses in the United States. In January 2008, the Arnold Palmer Classic Course at the city's SilverRock Golf Resort became one of the four host golf courses for the annual Bob Hope Chrysler Classic PGA golf tournament. In the late-19th century and early-20th century, agriculture developed in present-day La Quinta and "East Valley" by pre-modern and modern irrigation techniques. At the time and federal land surveyors declared the sand dunes uninhabitable, only the hard rock ground of the "Marshall Cove" held potential farming and residential development.
In 1926, Walter Morgan established the La Quinta Resort at the northern section of Marshall Cove as a type of secluded hideaway for nearby Hollywood's celebrities and socialites. The Resort was the site for the Coachella Valley's first golf course, coinciding with the construction and pavement of State Route 111 in the 1930s. Further expansion of Washington Street in the 1950s and 1960s connected La Quinta with US Highways 60 and 99; as nearby desert cities grew to capacity, La Quinta's growth rose by the mid-1980s, which led to its incorporation as a city in Riverside County in 1982. In the 1980 census, La Quinta had 4,200 residents increased to 11,215 by 1990 in the city's early phases of residential area growth, it was predominantly a part-time community until around that time. La Quinta is located at 33°40′31″N 116°17′51″W. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 35.6 square miles, of which, 35.1 square miles of it is land and 0.4 square miles of it is water.
The city's elevation is 56 feet above sea level. La Quinta is located on the floor of the Coachella Valley, is surrounded entirely by the Santa Rosa Mountains; as the floor of the valley sank, it was covered by the Pacific Ocean. Silt deposits from the flow of the Colorado River into the Gulf of California caused the basin to be cut off from the ocean. Five hundred years ago, the Colorado River changed its course and the east Coachella Valley flooded, leading to the creation of Lake Cahuilla, fresh water; the most prominent feature of the La Quinta area is its Santa Rosa Mountains. Visitors to Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim, California and EPCOT at the Walt Disney World Resort in Bay Lake, Florida are treated to a brief glimpse of the foothills in one of the park's attractions: Soarin' Over California; the "Palm Springs" segment of Soarin' Over California was shot at the world-famous PGA West golf complex in La Quinta. The Santa Rosa Mountains are nestled against the golf course and can be seen in the segment.
The area is close to the earthquake-causing San Andreas Fault, with some companies offering jeep tours to the fault line. The climate of the Coachella Valley is influenced by the surrounding geography. High mountain ranges on three sides contribute to its unique and year-round warm climate, with the some of warmest winters west of the Rocky Mountains. La Quinta has a warm winter/hot summer climate: Its average annual high temperature is 89.5 °F and average annual low is 62.1 °F but summer highs above 108 °F are common and sometimes exceed 120 °F, while summer night lows stay above 82 °F. Winters are warm with daytime highs between 68 and 86 °F. Under 4 inches of annual precipitation are average, with over 348 days of sunshine per year; the hottest temperature recorded there was 125 °F on July 6, 1905. The mean annual temperature is 75.8 °F. The estimated 2012 population was 38,075, similar to Palm Springs. La Quinta grew at a higher rate than most other cities in California during the 2000s. La Quinta is in the Coachella Valley and is close to all major cities in that valley, including: The city enjoys a healthy tourism industry during the cooler winter months in which "snowbird" tourists arrive.
The most prominent industry is golfing with more than twenty golf courses, including the world-famous PGA West, which has hosted prestigious tournaments such as The Skins Game, Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, The Grand Slam of Golf, The Legends of Golf, as well as the PGA Tour Qualifying School. La Quinta has increased the number of retail shopping centers, both discount and high-end retailers brought millions of revenue dollars to the city, the city council hopes for La Quinta to share a reputation for shoppers like Palm Desert and Palm Springs by the end of the decade. In addition to standard service industries, La Quinta is the site of the first Wal-Mart Supercenter in California. Moreover, many residents work for the tourist industries in hotels, golf courses, nearby Vegas-style casinos, such as: Spa Resort Casino, Agua Caliente Casino, Spotlight 29, Fantasy Springs and Augustine Casino. There are many service industry jobs related to the construction, hotel and retail industries. La Quinta has sought to bring in high-paying professional businesses to the city and has benefited from neighboring cities' growth.
Brawley is a city in the Imperial Valley and within Imperial County, southern California, United States. The population was 24,953 at the 2010 census, up from 22,052 in 2000; the town has a significant cattle and feed industry, hosts the annual Cattle Call Rodeo. Year-round agriculture is an important economic activity in Brawley. Summer daytime temperatures exceed 105 °F; the Imperial Land Company laid out the town in 1902 and named it Braly in honor of J. H. Braly, who owned the land. After Braly refused to permit the use of his name, the name was changed to Brawley; the first post office at Brawley opened in 1903. Incorporated in 1908, it was a "tent city" of only 100 persons involved in railroads and the earliest introduction of agriculture, it had a population of 11,922 in 1950, but population growth was slow from the 1960s to the early 1990s. Brawley is located in the Colorado Lower Colorado River Valley regions; the city's elevation, like other Imperial Valley towns, is below sea level. It is 13 miles north of El Centro, about 70 miles west of Yuma, Arizona, 95 miles southeast of Palm Springs and 130 miles east of San Diego.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Brawley has a total area of 7.7 square miles. All is land within the city limits, except for the Alamo River and New River that seasonally flow through the city; the New River has been reported as the most polluted river in North America. Average January temperatures in Brawley are a high of 69.4 °F or 20.8 °C and a low of 38.9 °F or 3.8 °C. Average July temperatures are a high of 107.6 °F or 42.0 °C and a low of 75.2 °F or 24.0 °C. On average, 177.0 afternoons during the year have 32 °C or higher. The record high temperature was 122 °F on July 1, 1950, the record low temperature was 4 °F on January 1, 1919. Average annual precipitation is 2.65 inches with an average of 13 days with measurable precipitation. December is the wettest month of the year; the wettest year was 1939 with 8.18 inches, while the driest year was 1953, in which no measurable precipitation fell in Brawley. The most rainfall in one month was 6.75 inches in September 1939. The most rainfall in 24 hours was 3.90 inches on October 10, 1932.
A rare snowfall in December 1932 brought a total of 3.0 inches. The 2010 United States Census reported that Brawley had a population of 24,953; the population density was 3,248.4 people per square mile. The racial makeup of Brawley was 13,570 White, 510 African American, 241 Native American, 349 Asian, 32 Pacific Islander, 9,258 from other races, 993 from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 20,344 persons; the Census reported that 24,779 people lived in households, 63 lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, 111 were institutionalized. There were 7,623 households, out of which 3,827 had children under the age of 18 living in them, 3,932 were opposite-sex married couples living together, 1,560 had a female householder with no husband present, 543 had a male householder with no wife present. There were 589 unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, 23 same-sex married couples or partnerships. 1,346 households were made up of individuals and 550 had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older.
The average household size was 3.25. There were 6,035 families; the population was spread out with 8,138 people under the age of 18, 2,670 people aged 18 to 24, 6,065 people aged 25 to 44, 5,572 people aged 45 to 64, 2,508 people who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30.2 years. For every 100 females, there were 94.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.2 males. There were 8,231 housing units at an average density of 1,071.5 per square mile, of which 7,623 were occupied, of which 3,970 were owner-occupied, 3,653 were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 2.0%. 12,950 people lived in owner-occupied housing units and 11,829 people lived in rental housing units. As of the census of 2000, there were 22,052 people, 6,631 households, 5,265 families residing in the city; the population density was 3,783.0 people per square mile. There were 7,038 housing units at an average density of 1,207.4 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 52.8% White, 2.5% Black or African American, 1.1% Native American, 1.3% Asian, 0.2% Pacific Islander, 37.9% from other races, 4.3% from two or more races.
73.8% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 6,631 households out of which 48.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.0% were married couples living together, 17.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 20.6% were non-families. 17.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.1% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.3 and the average family size was 3.7. In the city, the population was spread out with 34.5% under the age of 18, 9.6% from 18 to 24, 28.2% from 25 to 44, 18.1% from 45 to 64, 9.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females, there were 96.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.5 males. The median income for a household in the city was $31,277, the median income for a family was $35,514. Males had a median income of $34,617 versus $25,064 for females. T
Alma mater is an allegorical Latin phrase for a university, school, or college that one attended. In US usage it can mean the school from which one graduated; the phrase is variously translated as "nourishing mother", "nursing mother", or "fostering mother", suggesting that a school provides intellectual nourishment to its students. Fine arts will depict educational institutions using a robed woman as a visual metaphor. Before its current usage, alma mater was an honorific title for various Latin mother goddesses Ceres or Cybele, in Catholicism for the Virgin Mary, it entered academic usage when the University of Bologna adopted the motto Alma Mater Studiorum, which describes its heritage as the oldest operating university in the Western world. It is related to alumnus, a term used for a university graduate that means a "nursling" or "one, nourished". Although alma was a common epithet for Ceres, Cybele and other mother goddesses, it was not used in conjunction with mater in classical Latin. In the Oxford Latin Dictionary, the phrase is attributed to Lucretius' De rerum natura, where it is used as an epithet to describe an earth goddess: After the fall of Rome, the term came into Christian liturgical usage in association with the Virgin Mary.
"Alma Redemptoris Mater" is a well-known 11th century antiphon devoted to Mary. The earliest documented use of the term to refer to a university in an English-speaking country is in 1600, when the University of Cambridge printer, John Legate, began using an emblem for the university's press; the device's first-known appearance is on the title-page of William Perkins' A Golden Chain, where the Latin phrase Alma Mater Cantabrigia is inscribed on a pedestal bearing a nude, lactating woman wearing a mural crown. In English etymological reference works, the first university-related usage is cited in 1710, when an academic mother figure is mentioned in a remembrance of Henry More by Richard Ward. Many historic European universities have adopted Alma Mater as part of the Latin translation of their official name; the University of Bologna Latin name, Alma Mater Studiorum, refers to its status as the oldest continuously operating university in the world. Other European universities, such as the Alma Mater Lipsiensis in Leipzig, Germany, or Alma Mater Jagiellonica, have used the expression in conjunction with geographical or foundational characteristics.
At least one, the Alma Mater Europaea in Salzburg, Austria, an international university founded by the European Academy of Sciences and Arts in 2010, uses the term as its official name. In the United States, the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, has been called the "Alma Mater of the Nation" because of its ties to the country's founding. At Queen's University in Kingston and the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, British Columbia, the main student government is known as the Alma Mater Society; the ancient Roman world had many statues of the Alma Mater, some still extant. Modern sculptures are found in prominent locations on several American university campuses. For example, in the United States: there is a well-known bronze statue of Alma Mater by Daniel Chester French situated on the steps of Columbia University's Low Library. An altarpiece mural in Yale University's Sterling Memorial Library, painted in 1932 by Eugene Savage, depicts the Alma Mater as a bearer of light and truth, standing in the midst of the personified arts and sciences.
Outside the United States, there is an Alma Mater sculpture on the steps of the monumental entrance to the Universidad de La Habana, in Havana, Cuba. The statue was cast in 1919 by Mario Korbel, with Feliciana Villalón Wilson as the inspiration for Alma Mater, it was installed in its current location in 1927, at the direction of architect Raul Otero. Media related to Alma mater at Wikimedia Commons The dictionary definition of alma mater at Wiktionary Alma Mater Europaea website