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Hudson University

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Hudson University is a fictional university appearing in American comic books published by the DC Comics. The name is also used as a fictional university depicted in Law & Order and its spin-offs, and less frequently in many other television series and movies.[1][2] It is generally described as being in and/or near New York City, which sits alongside the Hudson River.

Television and Movies[edit]

Without a Trace[edit]

Ted hopes to play basketball at Hudson University. Season 5, Episode 11.


Hudson University is the location of an active shooter case in the NBC drama Blindspot in Season 1, Episode 19.

Blue Bloods[edit]

Hudson University was mentioned in the CBS drama Blue Bloods in Season 2, Episode 14 when three protesters were arrested for assault on a police officer and also in Season 4, Episode 19 after an English professor was found murdered. It was also mentioned in Season 1, Episode 13 and Season 5, Episode 8.


Hudson University is used in ABC's Castle[1] starring Nathan Fillion in the episodes "The Mistress Always Spanks Twice", in which the victim was a student at the fictional school; and "A Deadly Game", in which the police encounter Ukrainian exchange students at Hudson who have bought counterfeit IDs. The school appears again in the episode "Close Encounters of the Murderous Kind", as the location of an altitude chamber. The school was mentioned in the episodes "Head Case" and "Dial M for Mayor" as the employer of the episodes' victims. It is alluded to in "The Fast and the Furriest" as the school of the victim, an evolutionary biology major who was killed while supposedly tracking Bigfoot. In "Time Will Tell", the target of an assassin who may or may not have been from the future was a physics student at Hudson. In the episode "PhDead", Castle became a guest lecturer at Hudson University to solve a student's gruesome murder. In the episode "In Plane Sight" a student with alleged links to ISIS who is on the No Fly List and suspected of killing an air marshall, is referenced to be a student at Hudson University.

The Cosby Show[edit]

Hudson University is used in the NBC sitcom The Cosby Show as the medical school Cliff Huxtable attended, as discussed in Season 1, Ep. 6 "Breaking with Tradition."

Degrassi: The Next Generation[edit]

Hudson University is used in the Canadian teenage drama Degrassi: The Next Generation. One of the main characters, Jimmy Brooks, receives acceptance to the university's Pre-Law program.

Law & Order[edit]

Over the years, Hudson University has seen several detectives visit its campus in search of suspects and witnesses, especially in cases that involve college students and professors.[1] By using a fictional school rather than a real college, the writers of Law & Order are able to weave the university into several narratives without the fear of misrepresenting the rate of crime at one of New York's actual institutions of higher learning.

Hudson University is a composite of several colleges and universities located in New York including Columbia University, Barnard College, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn College, College of Mount Saint Vincent, Hunter College, Lehman College, New York University, City College of New York, Queens College, Union Theological Seminary, General Theological Seminary, Pace University, Fordham University and LIU Post, all of which have been used as filming locations. For filming purposes, NYU is one of the least used locations in the series due to the high cost of filming in the university's buildings and surrounding area (one of Lennie Briscoe's daughters, Julia, was once said to be a film student at NYU, but the show never filmed there). An episode showed Hudson University on a map of New York City where the real life Yeshiva University is located, and a Season 20 episode, "Innocence", depicted a fictional "Hudson Innocence Project" modeled on the real life Innocence Project at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University. That same episode also identified Executive Assistant District Attorney Michael Cutter as a graduate of Hudson's law school, making him the first Law & Order prosecutor to have graduated from a fictional law school. Another episode gave an address of 504 Riverside Drive, which is near International House of New York in Morningside Heights and far from Yeshiva. In the Season 8 episode "Tabloid", the address for Hudson University Law School is given as 62 Centre Street, which would be right next door to the New York County Courthouse, the location of many of the trials depicted in the show.

In Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Detective Elliot Stabler's daughters Maureen and Kathleen are students at Hudson University. The seal of the university is visible in the background during a scene in the season 12 episode "Gray", indicating that the university was established in 1876. In the season 16 episode "Devastating Story", Olivia Benson makes an in-joke about Hudson's high crime rate, informing her son Noah (who is still an infant) that he is never to attend. It is also mentioned in Season 13, Episode 15 and Season 18, Episode 3. It also appears in Season 19, episodes 12 and 15.

The Secret Life of the American Teenager[edit]

The Secret Life of the American Teenager, which takes place in Valley Glen, California, depicts a Hudson University in New York, to which two of its main characters, Amy Juergens and Ben Boykewich, have been accepted.


Hudson University was used on the CBS drama Unforgettable in the episode "Day of the Jackie", in the episode "Till Death", with scenes set in the campus bookstore and Dean's office, and once again in "Breathing Space".

The Flash[edit]

Hudson University was used in The Flash episode "Revenge of the Rogues", where it was the location of the creation of the F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. project. It appeared in the episode "All Star Team Up", where it was the site of the murder of an engineering professor named Lindsay Kang at the hands of robotic bees controlled by Brie Larvan. The fictional university was also used in the episode “All Doll’d Up”.

DC's Legends of Tomorrow[edit]

Hudson University was used in DC's Legends of Tomorrow (2016 TV series) episode "Freaks and Geeks", Waverider's crew goes to Hudson University to find and get the ancient cup.

Murder, She Wrote[edit]

In Murder, She Wrote Season 8 (1991-1992) Angela Lansbury as Jessica Fletcher heads off to New York to teach a criminology class at the fictional Hudson University. In episode 2 of Season 8 "Night Fears" Jessica is challenged by another professor to a contest to see who can solve a string of crimes taking place on the Hudson University campus.

Beauty & the Beast[edit]

In this CW television show, Hudson University is the fictional location in which J.T. Forbes works as a bio-chemical professor. The school logo is seen in episode 5 of Season 1 when J.T. was taking technological items from school campus.

The Mysteries of Laura[edit]

On Season 2, Episode 8 of The Mysteries of Laura, "The Mystery of the Ghost in the Machine," Hudson University is the college the suspect in the case attends. Detective Laura Diamond recognizes the colors Blue and Gold in the background of a computer screen shot of his dorm room as the school's colors.


In episode 11 of season 1, a high school student having an affair with his English teacher is described by his parents as having been a wonderful son and student, including "[getting] a full ride at Hudson University".

In episode 3 of Season 1, a Hudson University student stands trial for the murder of the star athlete she had accused of rape three years earlier. Hudson University was also mentioned in episode 4 as the site of a clinical trial study related to a pharmaceutical patent trial.

On episode 14 of season 4, a heart surgeon is arrested because his father allegedly paid $125,000 the admissions office at Hudson University.


In episode 13 of Season 5, the victim failed out of law school at Hudson University.

13 Reasons Why[edit]

In the popular Netflix show, flashbacks reveal that Hannah Baker, a teenager that commits suicide, looked at Hudson University as a potential college opportunity in episode 8 of season 1.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt[edit]

In season 3 episode 2 Kimmy is visiting prospective universities. While going through her collected brochures, she mentions Hudson University as a possible choice. The brochure features stock images of crime scenes, referencing the fictional schools' purportedly high crime rate. In the corner of the brochure there is a starburst saying, "As seen on Law and Order: SVU". SVU often references crimes among students occurring at Hudson University.

SEAL Team[edit]

In episode 2 of season 1, Hudson University is mentioned at a bar by a graduate student who claims to be teaching there. Unlike on most shows, it is said to be located not in New York but in Williamsburg, Virginia, and is loosely based on the College of William & Mary. (The SEAL Team members on the show, like those in real life, live and work in nearby Virginia Beach when not on missions.)


In season 3 episode 5 uranium is stolen from a nuclear lab on Hudson University’s campus.


In episode 5, season 3 of the Netflix series, a scene where the top level heads of the ATLAS organization meet at a funeral being held at Hudson University.

The Night Of[edit]

In episode one of the HBO series, the main character, Naz Khan, tells an officer that he is a student at Hudson University.

The King of Staten Island[edit]

In the movie, the main character, Scott walks across campus with his younger sister Claire, she is a student starting at Hudson University.


In season 2, episode 3 and season 3, episode 1, a Hudson University diploma can be seen hanging on the wall of the Office of the Governor.

An American Pickle[edit]

In the movie, the main character Herschel Greenbaum debates Race, Gender, and Religion at Hudson University with the school's Professor of Humanitarianism Kim Ecklund.


Hudson University is a fictional location in the DC Universe. It was first mentioned in Batman comics in the late 1940s.[3] Like many fictional locations in the comics, Hudson University's corresponding location in the real world is never made clear. According to The Atlas of the DC Universe (published by Mayfair Games), it is located in the fictional city of New Carthage, New York.

Notable former students at Hudson University include Dick Grayson/Robin (who only attended for one semester), Professor Martin Stein, Crystal Frost, Louise Lincoln, and Duela Dent. The father of Amy Winston was a professor of English at Hudson.

In New Adventures of Superboy #51 (1984), a teenaged Clark Kent is shown pondering whether to accept an offer to attend Hudson University, but eventually chooses Metropolis University in Metropolis instead.

See also[edit]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 James Barron (30 March 2010). "A Crime-Plagued College That's Impossible to Get Into". The New York Times. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  2. Megan Driscoll. "Hudson University in New York: Fact or Fiction?". study.com. Retrieved 23 May 2021.
  3. "Media Portrayal of Educators". www.english.illinois.edu.

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