Fordham Prep and University Celebrate 175 Years of Service

July 1, 2016 - On June 24, 1841, the feast of St. John the Baptist, Fordham University and Fordham Prep were founded together as St. John's College a small Catholic college in the Bronx. The school started by serving only six students in a seven-year program equivalent to high school and college.

An artist’s rendition from the early days of Fordham, then named St. John’s College.

Exactly 175 years later, the Fordham University community gathered at St. Patrick's Cathedral - the final resting place of the school founder and first archbishop of New York Most Rev. John Hughes, DD - for a Mass that formally launched Fordham's yearlong anniversary celebration. "The cathedral is one of the other gifts that John Hughes gave to the church, the city, and the country, said Fr. Joseph McShane, SJ, president of Fordham University and celebrant at the Mass. "It is fitting therefore that we gather here, near his tomb, to celebrate what he did for us." Click here to read more about the university’s Mass.

Fr. Joseph McShane, SJ, president of Fordham University, celebrates Mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral in honor of Fordham’s 175th anniversary. 

On June 25, the Fordham Prep community gathered for the Founder’s Day Mass celebrated by President Fr. Christopher Devron, SJ, followed by the dedication and blessing of the new entrance and lobby. In 1970, Fordham Preparatory School legally separated from the university and secured its own educational charter from the New York State Board of Regents. Construction of the current Prep building was begun on the northeast corner of the Rose Hill campus, near the historic University Church. Shea Hall opened in 1972. Maloney Hall, containing the Hall of Honor, a second gymnasium and the Leonard Theatre was added in 1991 coinciding with Fordham's 150th anniversary. Click here to read the homily from the Mass. 

Fr. Christopher Devron, SJ, president of Fordham Prep, blesses the school’s new entrance and lobby.

Click here to view an interactive timeline of some of the most notable events in Fordham's history. 

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