With the motto ‘Change the World from Here’, the University of San Francisco (USF) is a Catholic university based in San Francisco, North California.
Its scenic 55-acre campus is situated on a hill next to the famous Golden Gate Park, in downtown San Francisco, overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Founded by Jesuits in the mid nineteenth century, the University of San Francisco was the city’s first university. When the inaugural college, known as St. Ignatius Academy, opened its doors in the autumn of 1855, it was to a cohort of only three students. By 1858, that number has grown to 65.
It wasn’t until the college’s Diamond Jubilee in 1930 that the institution was renamed to the University of San Francisco.
Today, the university welcomes students of every faith and no faith, and its approach to learning continues to be defined by Jesuit tradition. Its unique style of education is inspired by ‘Cura personalis’, which means ‘care of the whole person’, where intellect is only one element of a student’s development.
It currently offers more than 100 undergraduate and graduate degree programmes.
USF students are encouraged to extend their education beyond the classroom via internships and ‘service learning’ where they participate in some of the city’s social and community projects.
With its location close to Silicon Valley, USF also emphasises a global outlook and entrepreneurial ethos. The magazine Forbes has ranked USF within the top 25 most entrepreneurial universities in the US.
USF’s athletic teams are known as the Dons and their mascot, Don Francisco (named after the city’s first mayor) appears around campus wearing a signature mask and cape.
Its alumni include two Pulitzer prize winners, a former president of Peru and one of the founders of Starbucks coffee.