Student Life


St. Mary’s College is situated on 465 rolling acres in the picturesque Flint Hills of Northeastern Kansas. Students attend classes in the historic St. Mary’s College building, originally constructed by Jesuit missionaries in 1870, beautifully restored and updated in recent years. The College library houses nearly 70,000 volumes and students also have access to libraries at Universities in neighboring communities.

Rules and Decorum

Upon entering St. Mary’s College, students need to have a clear understanding of how our college differs from most secular institutions. Students come from varied backgrounds, and a common rule helps to promote cohesion. Beyond this, the controlled and closely quartered boarding school environment demands a universally applicable set of clearly understood guidelines for issues of safety. Most our students live on campus, and many policies apply especially to them; day students must use common sense in distinguishing between policies that apply to them and those that apply to boarders. As a traditional Catholic College, St. Mary’s requires a standard of conduct based on the perennial teachings of the Church, which sets forth guidelines not to oppress, but to encourage human activity toward the noble and transcendent. St. Mary’s students as a rule lead lives based on the guidelines listed below. In the exceptional instance, failure to follow these guidelines for behavior may result in disciplinary action or expulsion.

General Decorum

  • St. Mary’s College assumes a level of maturity, civility, and nobility appropriate to college-aged traditional Catholics. 
  • The college provides unparalleled access to the Catholic Sacraments, as well as a College Chaplain. Students are encouraged to take full advantage of these exceptional conditions.
  • Alcohol, drugs, firearms, and indecent entertainment—music, movies, and literature—are forbidden on campus; tobacco use is restricted. 
  • Students must live on campus unless living locally with parents. 
  • Dormitories are closed in accordance with the Academic Calendar. Students must request permission from the Rector to occupy the dorms during breaks.
  • The College dormitories are private dwellings. Non-residents including visitors and day students must have permission to occupy dorm spaces.
  • Students will respect the property and privacy of others and will obtain permission before using personal property or entering another’s room.
  • Men’s and women’s quarters remain off limits to members of the opposite sex at all times. Men are allowed near the women’s dorm only at meal times.
  • College students will not enter Academy buildings without permission.
  • Students must have written approval of the Rector to work off-campus; given the demands of the course of study, approved work hours will be limited.
  • Students must have approval for attendance at off-campus gatherings. • Students are expected to help with dorm jobs as scheduled.
  • Students are permitted to have cars on campus; use may be restricted.
  • Students are expected to abide by the rules concerning personal electronics, computer usage, internet publishing, and social networking outlined in the College Catalog. 
  • Guidelines for attire apply to all college students during school hours. 


Modesty rests on Charity: for love of God and neighbor, Catholics are bound to think, speak, and act in a way that preserves individual virtue and promotes it in others. Modesty in dress is an individual act of will, a deflection of unwanted attention rather than an active attempt to attract others, whose motives and thoughts, if directly inspired by immodesty, become a grave matter of complicit responsibility. As with any Catholic guidelines, the strictures harmonize with nature and common sense. However, as Pope Pius XII wrote, “There always exists an absolute norm to be preserved, no matter how broad and changeable the relative morals of styles may be.” With this in mind, men and women of the College will adhere to the following principles and guidelines:
      • Clothing should conceal rather than reveal the figure 
      • Dresses and skirts should extend well below the knee when seated
      • Clothing should provide sufficient coverage for the chest and arms
      • Transparent or flesh-toned clothing is forbidden


Attire for Men

Men will observe military standards for hair, and remain clean-shaven. During school hours and at liturgical functions, College men will observe professional standards for dress: dress pants and shoes, dress shirts and ties. School hours extend through the completion of all classes: male students are not exempt from attire standards during free periods. During nonschool hours, men will wear neat, activity-appropriate clothing.

Attire for Women

Women will exercise Catholic discretion in cosmetics use and hair styling. During class hours and at liturgical functions, women of the College will wear conservative skirts or dresses; all clothing must adhere to accepted standards both of Catholic modesty and professionalism. School hours extend through the completion of all classes: female students are not exempt from attire standards during free periods. During non-school hours, women will adhere to standards of modesty delineated above.

Hours & Facilities Access

College personnel should know the location of students at all times. Students will make their intended whereabouts known verbally with a proper authority, or, in the case of curfew extensions or requests to leave campus, in writing with a Permission Request form. Curfew is 10:00pm Sunday through Thursday, 11:00pm Friday and Saturday. Grand silence is observed in the dormitories after 11:00pm weekdays, and midnight Friday and Saturday. College buildings are locked after curfew.

Attendance and Punctuality

Students are expected to attend all classes, and to be on time for each class and activity. Instructors will determine individual policies for tardiness. Students are responsible for making up all class work. Repeated absences or tardiness may constitute grounds for loss of credits or dismissal.

Personal Electronics

The College encourages students to develop mature and civil relationships based in reality. Though an increasingly necessary convenience, the use of cell phones and personal electronics in the presence of others is an essentially anti-social behavior; students should refrain from the use of personal electronics in the College building to the greatest extent possible.

Internet and Computer Usage

The College provides a computer lab with internet-enabled computers reserved for current student use during posted hours. The internet provides a powerful and valuable tool for students, but also poses potentially severe moral risks. Students must realize this, and also understand that they are responsible for restricting their use of the internet for research, study, and e-mail only. The College strongly discourages the creation, hosting, or maintenance of personal websites, and participation in on-line socialnetworking.