Related: Goings On, History, The WRLC Consortium

Catholic University: 126 Years Strong


On Easter Sunday — April 10 — 1887, Pope Leo XIII authorized the establishment of The Catholic University of America (CUA). Since they are our nearest academic neighbor in the Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area (you probably know it as the WRLC), we too celebrate their founding today!

Albert Hall at Catholic University, Brookland, DC.

Albert Hall, CUA. Circa 1909-1919. Courtesy Library of Congress.

Catholic University officially opened in November 1889 and its courses focused on mental and moral philosophy; English literature; scriptures; and theology; with canon law soon to follow. They soon became a pioneer in American Catholic education — and a leading modern university — by adding research and graduate student training to their curriculum.

Today, this private coed university has approximately 6,800 students in 72 bachelor’s programs, 103 master’s programs, and 66 doctoral programs. They have thirteen schools, including colleges of architecture and planning, arts and sciences, business and economics, canon law, engineering, law, library and information science, music, nursing, philosophy, social service, and theology. It continues to be the nation’s flagship Catholic school and maintains a unique status as ‘the bishops’ university’.

As a student at Trinity Washington University — a member of the Consortium of Universities — you have full access to CUA’s libraries and archives, plus the opportunity to take classes at Catholic. The Consortium is like 11 universities for the price of one!

Plus, each library in the Consortium has its own unique focus and mission, which means that if you can’t find it here at Trinity, you’re quite likely to find it somewhere in the neighborhood. As far as Catholic’s focus goes, “The American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives preserves not only the institutional memory of the Catholic University of America but also the documentary heritage of the American Catholic people.” That — not to mention the curricula of those thirteen CUA colleges.

The Consortium of Universities of the Washington Metropolitan Area.

If you’ve never used the Consortium library services before, ask a librarian how to get started. Requests books, movies, and articles from Catholic University and the rest of our consortium partners.

For more on our neighbor, The Catholic University of America, follow these links:

Or, you can always visit their campus in person, just up the road.

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