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Mount Celebrates 80 Years of Making History

Oct. 1, 2005 -- Mount Saint Mary’s University proudly celebrates its 80th anniversary beginning in October with Homecoming reunion events, commemorative banners posted throughout Los Angeles, and a tribute to the College’s Education Department graduates.


In 1925, MSMU was founded in a pioneering spirit blazed by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet. At a time when few colleges were offering admission to women, the sisters believed that every capable woman should be given the opportunity to be challenged in an academically rigorous environment.

The landmark College primarily educates women, but men are enrolled in some programs. The sisters originally established MSMU at St. Mary’s Academy in Inglewood. Foreseeing the need for more space, the sisters purchased approximately 33 acres for the Chalon Campus, which officially opened for classes in 1931 in the Santa Monica Mountains. Since MSMU’s beginnings, it has broken ground in areas as distinct as nursing education and bachelor’s and master’s degree programs for working adults.

In 1952, MSMU granted the first baccalaureate degrees in nursing in Southern California. In 1955, MSMU inaugurated its graduate program, and the historic Doheny Campus opened in 1962 adding the Associate in Arts Program. MSMU made history again in 1992 with the opening of its successful Weekend College for working adults. In 2002, MSMU established its doctoral degree program in Physical Therapy. Today, MSMU celebrates its more than 14,500 alumni who serve around the world as nurses, doctors, lawyers, teachers, accountants, social workers, business owners, and much more.

Among the events planned in coming weeks:
• The Music Department hosts the Alumnae Concert at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, in the Pompeian Room of the Doheny Mansion. General admission: $10; students and seniors: $5. Information: 310-954-4266.
• MSMU celebrates Homecoming beginning at noon Saturday, Oct. 22, on the Chalon Campus. Online registration available. Information: 213-477-2767. A Founders Day Mass will be held at 4 p.m. in Mary Chapel. Reunion receptions will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the Chalon Circle.
• The Music Department presents the Christmas Choral Concert at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, in Mary Chapel. The Weekend College Alumni Network is hosting a wine and cheese reception at 7 p.m. before the concert. A separate dessert reception will be held following the concert. Information: 310-954-4266.
• Festive purple and gold banners are posted this month near both the Chalon and Doheny campuses. Banners may be seen along Sunset Boulevard between Bundy Drive and I-405, and on Adams Boulevard between Figueroa Street and St. James Place. Banners also are on display on Figueroa Street near downtown.

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