In 1865, two years before Canada achieved nationhood, St. Jerome's College was founded by the Congregation of the Resurrection to meet the demand for higher education in Waterloo County.
Over the years, the College grew in size and occupied various locations in the Kitchener-Waterloo area. In 1959, through an Act of the Ontario Legislature, St. Jerome's College was granted independent university status. The name was changed to the University of St. Jerome's College to reflect new university powers and the authority to grant degrees.
As an independent University, St. Jerome's College entered into federation with the newly-established University of Waterloo, and a series of College buildings were constructed in the heart of the UW campus. In the federation agreement, St. Jerome's waived its degree-granting rights so that, now, students of the College earn Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Mathematics degrees of the University of Waterloo.
Today, St. Jerome's College provides students with a contemporary Catholic context in which the Christian tradition serves as the basis for a rich academic, liturgical, and community life. With over 1,000 full- and part-time students, a men's and women's residence accommodating 250 students, and a faculty and staff of over 50 men and women, St. Jerome's College is a dynamic community.
The College teaches courses in English, History, Religious Studies, Psychology, French, Italian, Mathematics, Sociology, and Philosophy, and offers special summer programs in Sexuality, Marriage and the Family, and Theological Renewal.
From its local roots in Waterloo County, St. Jerome's has grown and today serves a much wider constituency. The College teaches undergraduate students from high schools throughout the province of Ontario and beyond. Educators, health care professionals, pastoral care workers and others take advantage of special programs for professional upgrading and development.
The College brings its campus to the community in many ways, most notably through lectures and mini-courses sponsored by the St. Jerome's Centre for Catholic Experience. The Centre works to heighten public awareness and understanding of the major social and religious issues of the day.