Bellarmine College Preparatory School

Established in 1851, Bellarmine College Preparatory is a renowned all-boys, Jesuit private secondary educational institution located in the College Park neighborhood of San Jose, California. This institution of learning is held in high regard for its rich history, comprehensive academic programs, robust student life, and impactful community service initiatives.

History and Establishment

Bellarmine College Preparatory’s inception is deeply rooted in the Jesuit tradition of education. The establishment of the school occurred in 1851, spearheaded by Fr. John Nobili, S.J., and his companions. The institution began as Santa Clara College, a school dedicated to nurturing secondary and college-age students.

In 1912, the college branched into two distinct entities: Santa Clara University and Santa Clara Prep. After a 13-year coexistence on the same campus, the secondary school relocated to its current location at College Park Campus. The land was purchased from the University of the Pacific, marking a significant milestone in the school’s evolution.

Academic Excellence

Bellarmine College Preparatory is committed to delivering a rigorous and comprehensive academic program that fosters the intellectual growth of its students. The school boasts a rich curriculum that includes traditional subjects, advanced placement courses, and unique programs that cater to diverse student interests.

One of the standout academic programs is Marine Chemistry, a course that provides students with a deep understanding of the chemical aspects of marine environments. The school also offers a dynamic Journalism program where students can hone their writing and reporting skills.

The school’s academic prowess extends to its competitive FIRST Robotics Competition team, Team 254: The Cheesy Poofs, which has secured multiple World Champion titles. Furthermore, Bellarmine’s Speech and Debate Team has established a strong presence on the national stage.

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Campus Life

The Bellarmine campus is a vibrant hub of activity that promotes a strong sense of community among students. Apart from its academic buildings, the campus features state-of-the-art sports facilities, a performing arts center, and dedicated spaces for clubs and other co-curricular activities.

Bellarmine’s athletics program is a key component of campus life, with competitive teams in sports such as football, soccer, and basketball. The school is a member of the West Catholic Athletic League, boasting a strong track record in various sports competitions.

Moreover, the arts play a significant role in Bellarmine’s student life. The school offers robust programs in drama, visual arts, and performing arts, providing ample opportunities for students to explore their creative talents.

Community Service and Spiritual Growth

As a Jesuit institution, Bellarmine College Preparatory places immense importance on community service and spiritual development. The school encourages students to engage in various service projects that align with their interests and values.

In addition to service initiatives, the school hosts regular retreats and masses as part of its spiritual formation program. These activities aim to instill in students the principles of compassion, empathy, and service to others – core tenets of the Jesuit philosophy.

Bellarmine Gala

One of the highlights of the school’s annual calendar is the Bellarmine Gala. This premier fundraising event brings together the entire school community in a celebration of Bellarmine’s mission and achievements. The funds raised during the gala are instrumental in supporting various programs and initiatives at the school.

A Legacy of Success

Bellarmine College Preparatory has made significant contributions to the educational landscape, cultivating a legacy of success that spans over a century. Its alumni network includes accomplished individuals across various fields, including politics, sports, arts, and academia.

The school’s commitment to nurturing well-rounded individuals who embody the principles of leadership, compassion, and service continues to remain at the heart of its mission. As Bellarmine College Preparatory looks to the future, it remains steadfast in its commitment to providing a holistic education that shapes not just successful students, but responsible global citizens.


Bellarmine College Preparatory is more than just a school; it is a community that fosters intellectual growth, spiritual development, and a commitment to service. It is a place where students are encouraged to reach their full potential and make a positive impact in the world. From its rigorous academic programs to its vibrant campus life, Bellarmine offers an enriching experience that prepares students for success in college and beyond.

With its deep-rooted Jesuit traditions, commitment to academic excellence, and focus on holistic development, Bellarmine College Preparatory continues to be a beacon of quality education in San Jose and beyond.

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