The school was founded by Frank S. DiPietro in 1962 as Franklin Pierce College, named after Franklin Pierce, the 14th president of the United States and the only U.S. president from New Hampshire. The school opened its doors to its first set of students in the winter of 1963. They began with just under 100 students and 6 full-time professors. The campus consisted of four older buildings known as the Manor, Rindge Hall, The White House, and Ravencroft Theatre. Many classes were conducted in downtown Rindge. Also buildings there were used as residence halls. In the winter of 1964, Crestview Hall was built, and by then the college had 150 students. That building was used for both dorms and classrooms, enabling the college to move completely to its current location. In the winter of 1965, Monadnock Hall was built for more classrooms on the ground floor and residence halls on the above floor. Later that year Edgewood was built. At that time the cafeteria moved from the Manor to the ground floor with residence halls on the two upper floors. Also that year, the DiGregorio building was built and housed a post office along with student lounges, a snack bar, and book store. Still, despite the additional buildings, the campus remained overcrowded as the student body grew to over 500 students. The school still lacked a library, so in 1967 a resource center was built. The library moved from one of the classroom/dorm buildings to the resource center along with academic and administrative offices. Eventually, the television production center, radio station, computer labs, and the cable TV system headend would be located there. In the fall of 1968, Granite Hall opened as a dormitory with health services in the basement. In 1969, New Hampshire Hall opened for more dormitories with the fire department in the basement. Mt. Washington Hall was built as an extension to New Hampshire in 1969 and also housed the music department. In 1971, Marcucella Hall was built for classrooms, enabling most of the classrooms in Crestview and Monadnock to relocate there. The Manor remained a student center as Rindge Hall became financial aid and registration offices. Franklin Pierce held its first graduation in 1967 and became accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC) in 1968. While the college was overcrowded by 1970 despite building projects, the student body began to shrink by 1972. The college stayed roughly the same size throughout the 1970s. In 1975, Frank DiPietro stepped down as college president, and former New Hampshire governor Walter Peterson took over. Under Peterson, the college returned to financial solvency. In the late 1970s to the early 1980s, the focus was maintenance of the student body rather than growth. By the early '80s, the college was ready for expansion. In 1985, the Emily Flint Campus Center began to be built and opened in the fall of 1986. This would house the Post Office, Student Activities, conference centers, Cafeteria, Snack Bar, and Book Store, among other uses. The former cafeteria became residence halls on one side and a workout room on the other side. The Degregorio building became the registrar's and bursar's office. A cable television system was installed in 1986. In 1987, trailers were added to house students. In 1988, apartment-type residences called Mountainview were added. Throughout the '70s and '80s, satellite campuses were added around New Hampshire mostly for adult education. In the mid-1990s, Northwoods were built for more apartments replacing the 1987 trailers. In 1995, Walter Peterson stepped down and George Haggerty took over as college president. That year North Fields Activity Center, an athletic building also known as "the Bubble", was built, and Crestview was converted into classroom buildings. In 1998, Cheshire Hall was built with suite-style housing and apartment-style housing. In 2002, the library building added a new floor, and this became the Fitzwater Communication Center. In 2007, the college gained university status and was renamed Franklin Pierce University. In 2008, the White House was torn down, and a new classroom building called Petrocelli Hall was built in its place. In 2009, James F. Birge became the university's fourth president. In 2010, Crestview was condemned and to the present is only used for storage and is being considered for razing due to its wear, age, and condition. In 2012, the university welcomed the largest group of new feshmen in its 50-year history, 550 freshmen, 56 transfer students, and 10 part-time students for a total of 616 new students. Also in 2012, the university completed $1 million in renovations to its dining hall as well as completed construction of the Dr. Arthur and Martha Pappas Health Science and Athletic Training Center to support its new Health Sciences program.