Saint Leo University Announces Merger with Marymount California University

Posted inEducationSaint Leo University

Photo: (left) Aerial view of Saint Leo University / (right) Aerial view of Marymount California University
Officials announce signed agreement, now seeking accrediting approval 

ST. LEO, FL – Saint Leo University President Jeffrey Senese announced today that the university has signed an agreement to merge with Marymount California University, following a vote from the university’s board of trustees.

This agreement will unite the two Catholic, values-based institutions together under the Saint Leo University name, helping to provide students everywhere with a quality education. Saint Leo University is based in St. Leo, Florida, north of Tampa, and Marymount California University is in Rancho Palos Verdes, California.

“There is value that comes from two universities working together to create something powerful for our students,” said Saint Leo University President Jeffrey Senese. “Working with Marymount, Saint Leo University looks forward to making an even more meaningful impact on Catholic higher education from coast to coast.” 

This first merger for Saint Leo is expected to offer many benefits for both institutions, providing students with more degree program options and internship opportunities, around-the-clock support for students studying online, and more university location options to consider attending, among other benefits.

“Working with Saint Leo will allow us to deliver on our mission in even greater ways here in California,” said Brian Marcotte, president of Marymount California University. “Our students will still be able to enjoy all the benefits of our beautiful campus, residential villas, athletic programs and more, while having access to significantly expanded academics and new learning opportunities made possible by this partnership. Both institutions share compatible missions and a strong commitment to student success, which can energize us both.”

Following the signed agreement, Saint Leo University will next seek acceptance from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to move forward with merging Marymount into Saint Leo as one institution. While the two institutions work to develop these plans, an immediate next step will be to work to allow new students at Marymount an immediate opportunity to consider additional degree programs.

About Saint Leo University

Saint Leo University is one of the largest Catholic universities in the nation, offering 59 undergraduate and graduate-level degree programs to more than 18,200 students each year. Founded in 1889 by Benedictine monks, the private, nonprofit university is known for providing a values-based education to learners of all backgrounds and ages in the liberal arts tradition. Saint Leo is regionally accredited and offers a residential campus in the Tampa Bay region of Florida, 16 education centers in five states, and an online program for students anywhere. The university is home to more than 100,000 alumni. Learn more at

About Marymount California University

Marymount California University is a private liberal arts university in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, rooted in the Catholic faith. The school welcomes students of all faiths, backgrounds and diversity of experience to build skills for lifelong learning in a supportive community that promotes academic and career success. Students thrive in small, interactive classes guided by engaged faculty who challenge them to explore, create and imagine—as a foundation for their own personal and professional development. Ranked among the top liberal arts schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, Marymount offers undergraduate and graduate programs that lead to associate’s, bachelor`s and master`s degrees. MCU is also a College of Distinction and ranks #1 in California (#3 in America) for its safe campus (Niche). For more information, visit