Our History

The Heart of St Alberts

50 Years and Counting

In the mid 1950s the University Council approached the Catholic Diocese of Armidale and asked if the Church would build and run an all-male College and an all-female College on the Armidale campus. In response to this request the all-male University College, now known as St. Albert’s College, was founded in 1969, under the direction of the Dominican Fathers.

In 1971 at the request of the university the College was expanded from 120 residents to 300 residents and became the largest college on the campus. Then in 1976 the College became co-educational and now houses up to 300 male and female residents. In the mid 1990s St. Albert’s became the only College at UNE with a fully catered and a self catered option for its residents.

St. Albert’s is the only independently run college at UNE with all of the other colleges operated by the University itself.

As an affiliated college, St. Albert’s was from the start integrated in every way possible with the life of the University and the Residential System.

As a Christian college St. Albert’s sees every individual as important and is open to people of all faiths. This produces a strong family atmosphere at the College, where everyone supports the other residents as they meet the challenges of today’s society. Being part of the Catholic Church the College has developed its own Catholic character and is able to support and develop young Catholics at UNE without being separatist or exclusive.

During the first 33 years of the College’s history the College was run by the Dominican Fathers and they filled the roles of Master, Dean and Chaplain and went on to provide academic, pastoral, spiritual and moral support to thousands of university students. They supplied vision, leadership and management to the College through many difficult and trying times, as well as providing the base of operations for the University Chaplaincy.

At the end of 1997 the shortage of suitable priests in the Dominican Order saw the position of Master of the College passed onto lay staff, as the future of the College was decided. The decision was then made to pass the leadership and administration of the College over to the Catholic Diocese of Armidale, which was led by Bishop Luc Matthys. On the weekend of 27-28 October 2001, the Dominican Fathers ended their formal association with the College. The Diocese now appointed the Master of the College who led and administered St. Albert’s, on behalf of the Bishop, with the advice of the College Council.

In 2015 the Bishop of Armidale decided to pass the Governance and direction of the College to a Board of Directors and the Master became the Chief Executive Officer of the company called St. Albert’s College.

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