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St Mary's to Welcome Students to New Campus in Edinburgh this September

St Mary's University will start teaching its master’s courses in Theology and Catholic Education this autumn in the Gillis Centre, Edinburgh.

image shows photograph of the gillis centre

St Mary's University will start teaching its master’s courses in Theology and Catholic Education this autumn in the Gillis Centre, Edinburgh.

St Mary’s is pleased to announce that, in partnership with the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh, teaching will begin in the Gillis Centre this September, following a delay caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Students at the Centre will be able to study a taught postgraduate programme in Catholic Education, School Leadership or Theology. St Mary’s, established in 1850, has a long history of academic excellence, and students at the Gillis Centre will be able to access the same expertise throughout their studies.

The University and the Archdiocese have agreed arrangements for St Mary’s to occupy part of the Gillis Centre. The Centre, located in central Edinburgh, was formerly St Margaret's Convent and School.

The announcement has been welcomed by the Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh, the Most Reverend Leo Cushley. He said, “St Mary’s is the UK’s leading Catholic university, so we’re delighted it has agreed to offer courses here. It’s an ideal location and is consistent with our Archdiocesan aim for the advancement of Catholic education. It will help support the Roman Catholic community and give people the opportunity to study a fascinating range of subjects.”

Speaking of the announcement, Chair of St Mary’s University Board of Governors, Bishop Richard Moth, said, “St Mary’s is very pleased to be working with the Archdiocese of St Andrews and Edinburgh. Opening a postgraduate campus in Edinburgh is consistent with the mission of the University to promote higher education and to grow our postgraduate offering.”

Vice-Chancellor of St Mary’s University, Anthony McClaran, said, “After the unavoidable delay caused by Covid-19, we are pleased that we will be teaching our Theology and Education postgraduate courses in Edinburgh from September. Our courses are open to students of all faiths and none, and our flexible programmes at the Gillis Centre will create new opportunities for mature students, teachers and others across central Scotland.”

The postgraduate part-time MA courses will begin at the Strathearn Road campus from Autumn 2021 and information is available via the St Mary’s University website.

St Mary’s University hosts the only faculties in the UK with the ability to offer ecclesiastical degrees, the Mater Ecclesiae College (with awards dating back to 1614). Its long-standing and nationally recognised Education programmes were recently re-confirmed as Ofsted ‘Outstanding’, a rating they have held since 2011.

About the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh

The Catholic Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh is comprised of the Metropolitan Cathedral City of Edinburgh, the counties of Berwickshire, Fife (south of the River Eden), East Lothian, Midlothian, Peeblesshire, Selkirkshire, Roxburghshire, Stirlingshire (except the parishes of Baldernock and East Kilpatrick) and West Lothian.

The estimated Catholic population of the Archdiocese is 115,000.

About the Gillis Centre, Edinburgh

The Gillis Centre, named after Bishop James Gillis, was home to the first post-Reformation convent in Scotland. For over 150 years it was St Margaret’s Convent and School before operating as a seminary from 1986 to 1993.

The Centre currently houses the offices for the Archdiocese. These will be unaffected by the new St Mary’s presence. 

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