Our College

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Predecessor Schools

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St Mary's College
Marist Brothers' College
St Vincent's College
Catholic College Bendigo

Catholic College Bendigo has a proud educational history spanning over 130 years. It began with the arrival of the Sisters of Mercy in 1876, who took over the St Aloysius Select School in Barkly Street (later renamed St Mary’s College). It was strengthened with the arrival of the Marist Brothers in 1892.

The Marist Brothers set up a school for boys at first in the hall of St Kilian’s Primary School and a short time later in McCrae Street. The educational landscape was further enriched by the arrival of The Vincentians to Junortoun in the early 1950’s, providing a boarding facility for secondary boys in the district. 

When the Vincentians closed their College and left Bendigo in 1977, the grounds at Junortoun became the Marist Brothers’ College Junior Campus, allowing Catholic education to continue on the site. The same year also saw an end to boarding at St Mary’s College. In 1983 the Junior Campus became part of Catholic College Bendigo when Marist Brothers’ College and St Mary’s College amalgamated. 

As part of an earlier decision by the Governors to develop the College into a co-educational school on only two sites, all classes were gradually relocated to either Junortoun (now known as La Valla) and Barkly Street (now known as Coolock). McCrae Street came under the management of the Diocese and currently houses the DOXA School, the Catholic Education Office, and the Diocesan Resource Centre.

In 2012 following a decision to create a new Catholic secondary college in Bendigo, the Marist Brothers began the process of withdrawing from the governance of Catholic College Bendigo. From January 2013, the College became a fully Mercy College.

For more details of the history of our College and the timeline go to the History page of the website: 

Today all students, current and past, form a bond based on where they have come from. By keeping a connection with the past we can build on the future. Many students develop friendships and memories during their school days that carry them into their adult life. Marist Brothers’, St Mary’s and St Vincent’s all have a long history of ‘Old Boys’, ‘Old Girls’ associations that have flourished and struggled at different times. All have agreed on their aims to foster a spirit of Catholic citizenship and to support the welfare of current students. As well as fund-raising, the associations have always provided a means of past students continuing their relationship with the school and remaining in contact with their former classmates.

In 2003 students, staff and friends from all years of Catholic College Bendigo came together to celebrate 20 years since the amalgamation of St Mary’s College and Marist Brothers’ College. Over 350 people attended a Gala Dinner at the All Seasons with displays of memorabilia and class photos. This was followed by Mass at the Sacred Heart Cathedral the next day. This event rejuvenated the interest in the school’s history and led to the formation of the current Alumni and Archives Office.