Worcester and New England

Our home city of Worcester, Massachusetts offers cultural, professional and recreational opportunities for students of every interest — from the masterworks displayed in the Worcester Art Museum to the one-of-kind restaurants on Shrewsbury Street. And with the ski slopes of Vermont and New Hampshire, the stunning beaches of Rhode Island and Cape Cod, and the cities of Boston and Providence all within striking distance, there’s much to discover throughout this dynamic six-state region.

Worcester skyline at rush hour
Worcester and New England

Worcester is in the heart of New England, located 38 miles from Boston, 43 miles from Providence and 178 miles from New York City. There are shuttles and other transportation options available for those interested in making the trip.

New England Beauty

The New England region is renowned for its beauty, which takes on a new character with each season – from the first buds of spring and the heat of the summer to spectacular fall foliage and pristine winter snowfalls. Watch a video depicting autumnal beauty on The Hill.

exterior of Hanover Theatre for the Performing Arts
Worcester’s Accolades
group of Holy Cross students crossing Shrewsbury Street in Worcester
Worcester: A City of Opportunity

Over the past few years, Worcester has garnered regional and national attention for its job opportunities, cost of living, restaurants and cultural offerings, among other characteristics. Read the stories in the The New York Times, NPR, Boston Globe, Boston Magazine and MassLive.com.

Welcome to Worcester

The second-largest city in New England, Worcester is a hub of activity. Holy Cross students take advantage of the many valuable opportunities the city provides by pursuing internships and gaining hands-on experience with local institutions such as UMass Medical Center, the Hanover Insurance Group and the United Way of Central Massachusetts, and by giving back to the greater community through service activities with organizations like Abby’s House and the Boys and Girls Club.

Worcester was founded in 1722 and boasts more than its fair share of history: President John Adams, composer Cole Porter and comedian Denis Leary have all called Worcester home; one of the nation’s first public parks opened on Highland Street in 1854; even the iconic yellow smiley face originated here.

These days Worcester’s star continues to rise, as new developments and a growing college-age population  — thanks to the city’s nine colleges and universities — create even greater opportunity for residents and students alike. From 2010 to 2020, Worcester's population grew 14% to 206,518, faster than any other major city in New England, according to the U.S. Census. 

How Do You Say Worcester?

In spite of what the “C” may make you think, Worcester is pronounced “WUUSS-TER.”


Whether your idea of a good time is a no-holds-barred arena rock show, an elegant performance by a string quartet or something in between, Worcester has you covered. The 15,000 seat DCU Center hosts everything from NCAA sporting events and monster truck rallies to performances by the likes of Elton John, Carrie Underwood and Michael Bublé. For an evening that’s a little more low-key, historic Mechanics Hall has welcomed artists that include Yo-Yo Ma and Livingston Taylor, and the Hanover Theatre regularly features Broadway tours and nationally recognized performers. The WooSox, a professional minor league baseball team, began their first season in 2021 at the new Polar Park in Worcester. Worcester is also home to the Bravehearts, a collegiate summer baseball franchise, who play their home games at Holy Cross’ own Fitton Field.


Worcester features an impressive mix of history, art and outdoor fun. The historic Canal District offers events, clubs, restaurants, and retail. The award-winning American Antiquarian Society holds the largest collection of printed materials dating from the arrival of the first European settlers to 1876. The Worcester Art Museum hosts world-class exhibitions and displays masterworks by Renoir, Monet, Matisse and Cezanne. Or for something a bit more natural, you can explore the EcoTarium, a unique indoor-outdoor environmental museum, or venture out of town to ski, bike, hike, rock climb or kayak at nearby Broad Meadow Brook SanctuaryBlackstone River Bikeway, Blackstone Gateway Park, Blackstone Heritage Corridor Visitor Center, Purgatory Chasm and Wachusett Mountain.


No matter if it's Chinese food, pizza, pasta or a sandwich you crave, the hundreds of restaurants in Worcester will satisfy the most discriminating eater — usually at prices anyone can afford. The Worcester Lunch Car Company made the city famous for its beautifully crafted diner cars, and you can still step into the Boulevard, the Kenmore or the Miss Worcester diners for an authentic taste of the past. The Worcester Public Market is a European-style marketplace featuring mostly food vendors. Unique ethnic neighborhoods offer a range of cuisines, and Shrewsbury Street is a popular destination with more than 40 restaurants and shops.

Good Eats

Buzzfeed recently named Miss Worcester the top diner “you should eat at before you die.” Read the Buzzfeed article.


In central New England, there’s no shortage of opportunities to indulge your inner shopaholic. Worcester has a variety of stores and sellers to match its eclectic character — from the diverse merchants of Shrewsbury Street to the vendors of the Crompton Collective — and many are within walking distance of the College. If you’re looking for a more traditional shopping center, we’re also just minutes from the Auburn Mall and the Shoppes at Blackstone Valley. The Natick Mall — the largest in New England with more than 200 stores — is about 45 minutes away, as are the Wrentham Outlets.

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