The University of St. Michael’s College is a Catholic institution of higher learning that is federated with the University of Toronto, one of the world’s leading research universities. Committed to the pursuit of knowledge, meaning and truth, St. Michael’s is a dynamic centre where Catholic intellectual life thrives in a context of academic freedom and rigorous debate.
St. Michael’s was founded in 1852 by Bishop Armande de Charbonnel, the second Bishop of Toronto, who entrusted the school to his childhood teachers—the Basilian Fathers of Annonay, France—in 1853. The University would continue to grow, becoming a leading centre of international scholarship within a century of its founding.
Today the University is home to a large undergraduate population, and these students all have dual citizenship with the University of Toronto. St. Michael’s sponsors four undergraduate programs including Christianity and Culture, Book and Media Studies, Celtic Studies and Mediaeval Studies. These programs are also linked with University’s first year seminars: the Gilson Seminar in Faith and Ideas, the Boyle Seminar in Scripts and Stories and the McLuhan Seminar in Creativity and Technology.
At the graduate level, St. Michael’s Faculty of Theology continues the tradition of theological education on campus, drawing from the University’s humble beginnings as a minor seminary. The Faculty offers MDiv, MRE and MTS programs, as well as a number of advanced degree programs (including a research-oriented MA in theology, a ThM, DMin and PhD) intended to prepare students for scholarly work and careers in academia. A member of the Toronto School of Theology, the Faculty is also home to the Metropolitan Andrey Sheptytsky Institute of Eastern Christian Studies, which specializes in the theology, spirituality, liturgy, history and ecclesial polity of the Eastern Christian Churches, both Orthodox and Catholic.
St. Michael’s has also been home to many influential scholars throughout its history, such as Canadian media theorist Marshall McLuhan and the great 20th century French philosophers Etienne Gilson and Jacques Maritain. The University’s alumni include many notable figures such as Victor Dodig, President and Chief Executive Officer of the CIBC group of companies, Tony Comper, the former President and Chief Executive Officer of BMO Financial Group, Bonnie Crombie, Mayor of Mississauga, and Paul Martin, the 21st Prime Minister of Canada.
The University boasts an historic, green, picturesque campus in the heart of downtown Toronto. It is home to St. Basil’s Church and the adjacent Odette Hall, the oldest buildings at the University of Toronto. Among the many resources offered to the community is the Kelly Library, one of the busiest libraries in the U of T Libraries system. It is also home to the Canadian Catholic Bioethics Institute as well as the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies.