Saint Mary’s College is a women’s college that offers more than just an extensive academic education. Offering a home to over 1,500 women, fully equipped all vital amenities such as laundry facilities, wellness centers and personal enrichment groups. The College offers a challenging academic atmosphere inside the classrooms that is supported and strengthened by a wide range of student-operated groups and activities throughout the campus grounds. Life after graduation will require a level of preparedness that incorporates academic knowledge with professional training, leadership qualities and strong social skills. It is these qualities and training methods that each and every Saint Mary’s student posses upon graduating.
The deep history of the College has prepared generations of women for the professional world and competitive job market. Being a woman in an ever-changing world can be a difficult task. For this reason, the College strives to provide women with all of the leadership qualities and academic training that enables them to take charge in their professional careers with confidence and initiative.
The history of Saint Mary’s College is owed in its entirety to the Sisters of the Holy Cross, a group of French clergy women, who travelled from Le Mans to assist the apostolate of education in northern Indiana. There, they would be welcomed by the brothers and priests of Holy cross, under the strict orders of the bishop of Vincennes to establish a local college for students. In 1844, just outside the Notre Dame du Lac, these sisters established the grounds for what is now known as Saint Mary’s College for women. By 1855, the College was relocated to the current location in order to establish a more stable campus on grounds that suited growth and future construction. The Sisters of the Holy Cross, in response to the outcries of local Christians that desired a educational facility for their daughters to attend, developed what is known today as one of the largest Catholic colleges for women in the country.
Saint Mary’s College is accredited by the Commission on Higher Learning, as well as holds individual accreditation for the various programs such as the National Chemistry Association, The Indiana Department of Child Care and the National Council on Social Work.
Through the efforts of the first 11 presidents established the school from its initial intention to educate the local orphans to the established liberal arts learning institute that it has become. During the 1970s, the College proposed a merger with the infamous Notre Dame University to develop a coeducational facility, however, proposals were rejected. Over the years, the College has evolved with the changing times, yet remained an all-women facility. For over 150 years, the College has operated independently for the greater good of women across the world.
Students that attend Saint Mary’s College can take advantage of the smaller sized classes that offer a 10:1 student-faculty ratio. This helps to maintain the community setting amongst the student body and faculty members, giving each student the dedicated attention needed to reach their goals effectively. Over 85% of the full-time faculty retain an advanced degree in their study area, which gives students an additional advantage over others just by given the opportunity to research with faculty members that have already experienced field work hands-on .
With over 75 student-run organizations and clubs, all students actively participate in at least one special interest group on campus. With everything from the Ultimate Frisbee Club to the Student Leaders of America, students have their choice in niche groups that help them to showcase their abilities and talents while acquiring new ones. This eclectic campus lifestyle also helps students to develop friendships, mentors and role models that help them advance in their personal lives during and after their college experience.
Living on campus offers students a clearer perspective on the benefits that the College offers. Living, studying and working amongst the student body enables each students a strong support system to help guide them through both their accomplishments and setbacks while attending Saint Mary’s. Students can decide between the many residence halls that can accommodate up to four students per dorm, or the variety of apartment complexes located throughout the campus. Members of the Residence Life Staff also reside in all facilities to ensure safety and compliance is met at all times.
The majority of students that attend Saint Mary’s College receive financial aid to help with the tuition and costs of college. For this reason, the College offers a wide variety of resources and assistance for students to take advantage of. The Office of Financial Aid works diligently to help students explore, apply and obtain the proper funding that optimizes their schedules and coursework. In order to accomplish this, students are encouraged to explore all options and incorporate the cost of all out-of-pocket expenses such as supplies, books and personal expenses.
Federal and state funding is accepted at Saint Mary’s in the forms of grants, scholarships and traditional loans. However, all students are also considered for private funding awarded by the College for merit-based and artistic achievement. Athletic scholarships are also awarded to students each year that can accommodate full or partial tuition.