As a Jesuit, Catholic university, Santa Clara has embraced the traditions of the Catholic faith and the philosophy of Jesuit education since the University was founded in 1851.
An important principle of Jesuit education is care for the whole person. SCU is a place where faculty and staff members are aware that a student is not a sponge to soak up information. The Jesuit philosophy places a student's humanity first, creating a personalized educational environment where thoughtful questions can be considered.
Care for the whole person also means allowing students to discover their talents through a curriculum that includes a variety of classes. Students are expected to gain mastery of their major subject, but are also required to explore the arts, humanities, and sciences. This creates a person whose talents go beyond specialization, and will include communication, leadership, and creativity.
The ultimate goal for a graduate of SCU is to find what work satisfies and inspires the most, while keeping the needs of others in mind. It's where these two ideas intersect that SCU hopes faculty, staff, and students will find themselves.
SCU fosters a sense in its students, faculty, and staff that they are all members of a community—on campus, in our local region, and among a global citizenry.
About half of Santa Clara University undergraduates are Catholic. However, Santa Clara welcomes all qualified and motivated students. The mix of Catholics and people from other or no faith traditions provides enriching perspectives and prepares our graduates for success in a pluralistic and global society.
Since founding their first school in 1548, the Jesuits have always aimed to provide an education that forms students as whole persons who will change the world for the better. It is this ideal that remains the core of Santa Clara University's mission.
The Jesuit community at SCU
The Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU)
America Magazine, the national Catholic magazine published by Jesuits