First things first.
Saint Mary’s is NOT a Catholic college. It IS a public college offering an outstanding education to students as part of Maryland’s public education system. The college is located on the banks of the Saint Mary’s River, a tributary of the Potomac on the western shore of Chesapeake Bay. The town of Saint Mary’s is the fourth oldest town in the United States and the site of the passing of the Maryland Toleration Act in 1649, establishing religious freedom in the colony. Once the capitol of Maryland, the town is a valuable source of archeological and historical information and maintains an active interpretive center for many visitors.
The history of the college certainly sets it apart from other state supported institutions. Although the college was established as part of Maryland’s system of higher education, it is NOT a part of the University of Maryland. It is called “Maryland’s Public Honors College” and provides an exceptional and challenging education for about two thousand student in the liberal arts and sciences.
Take a moment to consider this: A student from the State of Maryland will pay about fifteen thousand dollars for a year at Saint Mary’s; an out-of-state student will pay about thirty eight thousand dollars. That’s TOTAL cost – tuition, room, board, fees…everything. The comparable cost at one of the private colleges in Saint Mary’s peer cohort would be at least fifty thousand dollars.