The UK’s leading Catholic university has today announced it is to launch postgraduate courses in Scotland for the first time.

St Mary’s University, Twickenham, has agreed arrangements with the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh for a range of theology and education subjects to be taught at the Gillis Centre in Edinburgh.

The announcement has been welcomed by Archbishop 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.”

The site, 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.

It currently houses the offices for the Archdiocese, which will be unaffected by the move.

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.”

Interim Vice-Chancellor of St Mary’s University, Dave Hartnett, said, “We are greatly pleased to have this opportunity to offer our theology and education postgraduate courses in Edinburgh. Our courses are open to students of all faiths and none. 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 2020 and information will soon be 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 (dating back to 1614). Its long-standing and nationally recognised Education programme was recently re-confirmed as Ofsted ‘Outstanding’.

Read the press release here