Saint Edward’s University was founded in 1877 by the Reverend Edward Sorin, CSC in the city of Austin, Texas, USA. The university was originally founded on farm land donated to the Catholic Church. In the school’s first year, 1878, three farm boys met teachers for classes in a makeshift building on the farm. In 1885 the school got a state charter and changed its name to St. Edward's College. Enrolment began to pick up and in 1888 the new main building was completed. In 1925 St. Edward’s became a university and in 1970 the university became coeducational. Between 1971 and 1975 the college rapidly widened its curriculum, adding a master’s in business administration and theatre arts curriculum among others.
Today St. Edward’s is a thriving private, Catholic, liberal arts university catering to approximately 5,000 students. Study options are available across a wide range of subjects at both postgraduate and graduate level with 10 master’s degrees and bachelor’s degrees in 50 areas of study. Academic programs at the university are divided among the schools of Behavioural and Social Sciences, Education, Humanities, Natural Sciences and The Bill Munday School of Business. The New College also offers bachelor’s degrees for mature students over 24 years of age.
The university campus is a mix of historic architecture from the university’s early days and more modern buildings – the campus has recently gone through a sustained period of development as part of the 2010 and 2015 strategic plans.