Saint Mary’s College of California

A view of the Saint Mary's College campus in the spring

“The Lasallian tradition fuels the college’s perspective on teaching and learning: Education is powerful, and it comes with a deep responsibility to improve the world. It’s a mechanism of change.
Colleges That Change Lives

Saint Mary’s College of California
Office of Admissions
P.O. Box 4800
Moraga, CA 94575-4800
(800) 800-4SMC
⋅  2873 undergraduates, including 626 freshmen, and 1,331 graduate students
⋅ 13:1 student-to-faculty ratio
⋅ Average class size: 19
⋅ Comprehensive fee: $63,720
⋅ More than 86 percent of students receive financial aid.
⋅ Fall 2015 average freshman financial aid package: $31,995

Saint Mary's choir performs

Saint Mary's College students cheer on the Gaels

Saint Mary's College students discuss a topic in class

A Saint Mary's College student catches a disc on campus

Saint Mary's College students work together in a science lab

  • Founded in 1863, a residential college of 2,850 undergraduates and 1,200 graduate students.
  • Located on one of America’s most beautiful campuses — 420 acres of rolling hills in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Rests on a foundation of more than 300 years of Lasallian education, rooted in the life and work of Saint John Baptist de La Salle, a radical educational visionary, founder of the Christian Brothers and the patron saint of teachers.

Worth Noting
  • All undergraduate students participate in Collegiate Seminar, a series of discussion-based classes that examine the big ideas of the world’s greatest thinkers.
  • During January term students focus on one class, which is often outside their major during which students travel abroad, provide direct service, explore new ideas or take a courageous step towards personal change.
  • A powerhouse in Division 1 athletics, Saint Mary’s was named the best men’s sports program in the West Coast Conference.
  • Saint Mary’s students provide more than 40,000 hours of service to communities in the U.S. and abroad. The college was included on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction and recognized as one of the top 10 colleges for community service by USA Today College.

Faculty & Academics
  • 211 full-time faculty members, 95 percent of whom hold doctorate degrees
  • 40 academic majors across three schools (Liberal Arts, Science, and Economics and Business Administration).
  • 77 percent of classes taught by full-time faculty and no classes taught by teaching assistants.
  • Operates on a 4-1-4 academic calendar, including two four-month terms and one four-week January Term.
  • Every year at least a third of students conduct research with a professor — and professors often collaborate with the world’s premier research facilities.

Areas of Study
For the most current listings, please check the college website.

– Archaeology Concentration
Art Practice
Art Theory & Criticism
History of Art
Business Administration
– Digital Media Concentration
– Entrepreneurship Concentation
– Finance Concentration
– Global Business Concentration
– Marketing Concentration
– Environmental Concentration
Classical Languages
– Sustainability Studies Concentration
3+2 Engineering
– Creative Writing Emphasis
– Dramatic & Film Arts Emphasis
– Literary Theory & History Emphasis
Earth Science
Environmental Science
Environmental Studies
Global and Regional Studies
– East Asia
– Europe
– Latin America
– Global Studies
Health Science
Integral Program
Justice, Community and Leadership
– Leadership for Social Justice 4+1
– Education
– Teachers for Tomorrow 4+1
– Health & Human Performance
– Health Promotion
– Sports & Recreation Management
Leadership & Organizational Studies (B.A. completion program)
LEAP (Liberal Education for Arts Professionals)
Liberal & Civic Studies
Mathematics / Computer Science Concentration
Performing Arts
– Dance
– Music
– Theatre Performance & Theatre Studies Track
– Technical Theatre & Design Track
– Astrophysics Concentration
Child / Adolescent Development Concentration
– Behavioral Neuroscience Concentration
– Personality Psychology Concentration
– Social Psychology Concentration
Theology & Religious Studies
Women’s and Gender Studies

Campus Life
  • The First Year Experience Program helps Saint Mary’s students with the critical transitions from high school to college, and ultimately to successful post-college lives.
  • 100 percent of freshmen live on campus. There are 13 residence halls and eight townhouse buildings on campus.
  • Saint Mary’s offers a Science Theme Living program, an Honors Living and Learning Community, and Lasallian and Santiago Living and Learning Communities (both of which focus on faith, service and community).
  • Students take part in some 50 clubs and organizations ranging from cultural interests to service and politics to arts and media.
  • More than 60 percent of students participate in some kind of organized athletic activity, including 11 NCAA Division I sports and club sports including Crew (M), Lacrosse (M), Volleyball (M), Water Polo (M, W), and Rubgy (M).
  • Take a virtual campus tour here.

Varsity Sports

NCAA Division I, West Coast Conference:

Baseball (Men)
Cross Country
Golf (Men)
Lacrosse (Women)
Rowing (Women)
Softball (Women)
Volleyball (Women)

Life After College
  • Forbes magazine rated Saint Mary’s in the top five in the U.S. for “raising your earnings potential” and the average starting salary for a Saint Mary’s graduate is above the national average.
  • Eight out of 10 of our graduates who apply to medical school are accepted. Three out of four who apply to law school are accepted.
  • Nearly 10 percent of every graduating class joins a major service organization (including the Peace Corps, the Lasallian volunteers, the Jesuit volunteers and Teach for America).
  • Prominent alumni include Robert Hass ’63, Pulitzer prize winner and Poet Laureate of the United States from 1995-1997; Maria Elena Durazo ’75, executive secretary–treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO; James Guyette ’67, president and CEO, Rolls Royce of North America, Inc; and Laura Garcia-Cannon ’91, anchorwoman, NBC-11 in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Academic Profile of Entering Class
  • Middle 50% SAT composite scores:
    Critical Reading – 510–610
    Math – 500–610
    Writing – 510–610
  • Middle 50% ACT Composite range for entering freshman: 22–27
  • Middle 50% GPA: 3.4–3.9
  • 57 percent students of color
  • 38 percent of students are in the first generation of their family to attend college