The years seem to go by so quickly. In June of 1923, Mother Mary Berchmans founded Saint Mary Junior College. A century later, her vision of “an education for the times” still rings true. As I sit in her office in Saint Mary Hall and look out over the front campus she designed, I am struck by how much has remained the same: the fountain and flowers, the stately halls that ring the circle – Xavier, Saint Mary, Mead, and Berchmans. Saint Mary is still committed to “educating for the times” 100 years later.
Now, we teach cybersecurity and physical therapy. Technology in the classrooms has replaced the chalkboards. The pool is now a Human Anatomy Lab with eight donors. The library is now a learning center and a hub for activity. With over 30 undergraduate programs, 11 graduate degrees, and three doctoral degrees, we are poised for the future. We educate both women and men and sponsor 28 varsity sports. We have grown to over 1,200 students!
And we are still true to our mission. We still educate students to ask the deeper questions, to become lifelong learners, and to live value-centered lives. We still teach theology and philosophy. We are still a strong Catholic university that holds the Gospel as our north star.
We are grateful for all of you who have been a part of the Saint Mary story these many years – those who studied in her weathered classrooms, roamed her sacred grounds, and supported her. Together, with God’s grace, we will position Saint Mary for her next 100 years.
As Mother Xavier said, “Look forward to the good that is yet to be!”
Sister Diane Steele, SCL, PhD, C’83