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The Franciscan School of Theology

University of San Diego and Franciscan School of Theology Affiliation

In 2012, the University of San Diego (USD) and the Franciscan School of Theology (FST) entered into an affiliation agreement to enhance their Catholic identities, to promote academic excellence, to expand the breadth of their respective curricular offerings, and to otherwise advance their respective missions.

Through the affiliation, FST students can enroll in selected and approved of USD graduate courses offered through the School of Leadership and Education Sciences, the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies, the MBA program, and the Departments of History and Philosophy. These courses enhance the capabilities of graduate students to serve in stewardship roles in the Church and other mission-oriented institutions. Meanwhile, USD graduate students now have access to FST courses that complement their degree programs, specifically within the theological disciplines. The affiliation also provides opportunities for USD and FST faculty and students to collaborate with one another in service, research and other scholarly activities.

FST grounds The Franciscan School of Theology grounds at Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside, CA.

Franciscan School of Theology History

Franciscan friars have taught theology in California since the Spanish mission period. Originating from an apostolic college first established at Mission Santa Barbara in 1854, the Franciscan School of Theology took on its current name and moved to Berkeley, CA, in 1968. Today, the school prepares lay, religious and priestly candidates for ministry and leadership. FST brings 800 years of Franciscan scholarship into dialog with contemporary religious and social concerns, emphasizing a special regard for those at the margins of Church and society, for the poor, and for justice.

FST, the only freestanding Franciscan graduate-level school of theology in the English speaking world, is dedicated to transmitting the rich heritage of Catholic theology flowing from the spiritual, social and ethical teachings of St. Francis of Assisi and developed by Franciscan theologians such as St. Bonaventure, a Doctor of the Church, and Blessed John Duns Scotus.

"Forging a relationship with USD gives FST an opportunity to explore new ways of expressing our faith for the twenty-first century,” said Father John Hardin, OFM, leader of the Franciscan friars in the western U.S. and Chair of the Board of Trustees at the Franciscan School of Theology. "We are excited about bringing together the spiritual, theological and social riches of the Franciscan tradition and USD’s excellence in contemporary sciences, non-profit management, public service, peace work and more."

"The affiliation between the University of San Diego and the Franciscan School of Theology enhances the distinction and distinctiveness of both institutions. It offers opportunities for special academic and program collaborations that will benefit the faculties, students, and communities of both USD and FST," said University of San Diego Chair of the Board of Trustees Ron Fowler.

FST students attend classes in Old Mission San Luis Rey in Oceanside, Calif.

FST is governed by a Board of Trustees made up of eight friars of the Province of St. Barbara, and by a Board of Regents made up of lay and religious members.

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