A Catholic and Marianist University

About St. Mary’s University

Mission Statement

St. Mary’s University, as a Catholic Marianist University, fosters the formation of people in faith and educates leaders for the common good through community, integrated liberal arts and professional education, and academic excellence.

Our mission statement is a reflection of the Characteristics of Marianist Universities. There are five elements that characterize the Marianist approach to education: educate for formation in faith, provide an integral quality education, educate in the family spirit, educate for service, justice and peace, and educate for adaptation and change. The three Marianist universities have published a book called Characteristics of Marianist Universities to fully describe the Marianist approach to education at the university level.

Who We Are

St. Mary’s University, founded in 1852 by Marianist brothers and priests, is the first institution of higher learning in San Antonio and the oldest Catholic university in Texas and the Southwest. Personal attention and powerful academic programs have made St. Mary’s a nationally recognized liberal arts institution.

The University provides a Catholic education experience that evokes academic excellence while integrating liberal studies, professional preparation and ethical commitment. St. Mary’s full-time faculty members, 93 percent of whom hold doctoral or terminal degrees in their fields, are committed to student success in and out of the classroom. St. Mary’s offers more than 75 programs, including two doctoral and two law programs. With a diverse student population of about 3,800 of all faiths and backgrounds, the student/faculty ratio of 12-to-1 permits small classes and promotes active learning.

The Marianists who came to San Antonio in 1852 responded to the call of their superiors to establish an educational institution to regenerate the people of the city. Through their work and the work of those who followed them, St. Mary’s University has maintained its reputation as “a noble institution destined to be a great education center of the Southwest.”



Alumna Unearths an Ancient Warrior Queen


Olivia Navarro-Farr, Ph.D. (B.A. '98), and a team of archaeologists made a career-defining discovery in the summer of 2012: In a collapsed chamber in Guatemala was the tome of Lady K'abel, a powerful Maya queen who ruled the ancient city of El Peru-Waka' with her husband more than 1,300 years ago.

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