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Kathryn deBros
Noodle Expert Member

December 18, 2019

Ghosts, apparitions, and specters, oh my! You’ll be surprised by the spooks haunting these campuses.

Going to college for the first time can be scary for many reasons, but some schools come with a long legacy of making students’ hearts pound. Following on our 2013 article about the most haunted colleges in the country, here are six more campuses that might make your skin crawl.

Florida State University

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The most famous ghost story at FSU has its origin at Cawthon Hall in the 1970s. A young woman was sunbathing on the Gothic balcony when a bolt of lightening suddenly struck her, killing her instantly. Since then, the residence hall has been the site of all sorts of scary surprises, from toilets flushing without anyone in the stalls to strange noises in the middle of the night. Some residents say they have an eerie feeling that there is another presence in the room with them.

Florida State University also houses Westcott Fountain, formerly known as Gallows Hill. Starting in 1829, this area was the location of Tallahassee's public executions. Students report observing or hearing paranormal activity when they visit the area.

Boston University

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The Shelton Hall dormitory on the Boston, MA campus was formerly the Sheraton Hotel, and the last place that playwright Eugene O’Neill lived. O’Neill was staying in suite 401 in 1953, when he died of what was probably Parkinson’s disease. Today, the fourth floor, known as “The Writer’s Corridor," attracts students on a quest for the inspiration of O’Neill’s spirit.

Seeking guidance from his ghost also means dealing with other scary surprises — the elevator stops on that floor for no reason, the lights dim, there is inexplicable knocking on the door, and some students have noticed a cold wind blowing inside the building.

Georgetown University

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The Georgetown section of D.C. has a long history of being a spooky place. Not only was "The Exorcist" filmed here, but a graduate of the college, William Peter Blatty, wrote the book that the movie was based on. Blatty was inspired by an exorcism that took place in Maryland in the 1940s.

The campus itself houses the haunted Healy Hall, which has been the setting of dozens of supernatural stories. One tale is about a Jesuit who was crushed to death by the hands of the clock in the clock tower. Another legend involves a Jesuit student who opened the Gates to the Underworld when he was chanting from a book of exorcisms.

Salem State University

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Salem, MA is the home of the infamous witch trials and the yearly town-wide Haunted Happenings event, so it makes sense that Salem State University would have some ghostly activity. In room 222 of Bowditch Hall, residents have reported feeling the bed shake violently, as well as experiencing loud banging sounds that cannot be heard outside of the room.

University of Notre Dame

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The famous Indiana school features stories of kindly priests who walk the halls without feet; the famous George “The Gipper" Gipp who haunts the 1881 theater building; and a wise, old Irishman who gives sound advice. Of all of them, Father Sorin is the most frequent visitor. One woman was washing dishes late at night when she saw him walking. It wasn’t until she came across the priest’s portrait hanging over the fireplace in another building that she realized who he was.

California State University - Channel Islands

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The original site for this campus was the Camarillo State Hospital, where doctors implemented brutal practices like ice baths and electroshock therapy to treat patients with afflictions ranging from drug addiction to violent insanity. In 2002, the newest campus of California State opened on the same site, and students continue to hear strange voices and sounds and see apparitions on the grounds.


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Mallett, R. (2013). Haunted Colleges and Universities of Massachusetts. The History Press.

Nagy, J. (2009). Haunt Thee, Notre Dame? Notre Dame Magazine

Sheir, R. (n.d.). ‘Ghosts of Georgetown’ Chases Three Centuries Of Ghosts. Retrieved October 21, 2014, from WAMU

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