The Catholic University of America

Washington, DC

The Catholic University of America

Washington, DC

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Your story begins here

The Catholic University of America is unique among universities in the United States—even among Catholic universities. And it’s not just because we're located in Washington, DC—a city of global significance and a place of extraordinary educational opportunity. We are a national research university in the heart of the nation's capital, and we are rooted in the Catholic intellectual tradition.

Our university was founded by the Catholic bishops of the United States, with a charter from then Pope Leo XIII, to be the national university of the Catholic Church in America. For more than 130 years, we have lived out our mission to discover and impart the truth through excellence in teaching and research. Catholic University scholars in all fields embrace both reason and faith as they apply the inexhaustible resources of the Catholic intellectual tradition to solve contemporary issues and enrich the culture around us.

Discover a faith-filled community at one of America’s best catholic universities
Service and faith are at the heart of our mission. In all that we do—academics, research, student life—we keep an eye toward that mission. Eighty percent of our undergraduate students are Catholic, and they enjoy many opportunities to celebrate and grow in their faith. Mass is offered daily, both on campus and at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. Especially popular are Sunday Masses in campus chapels with student-run music and liturgy.

Learn more about how we are faithfully Catholic.



Named a College of Distinction for Quality of Teaching


Named a College of Distinction for Student Engagement


Named a College of Distinction for Sense of Community


Named a College of Distinction for Successful Postgraduate Outcomes

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Ranked #9 among The Best 386 Colleges for "Most Engaged in Community Service" | The Princeton Review

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Ranked #21 in the nation among the "Best Green Colleges in the US" | College Consensus


Ranked #83 among "Best Value Schools" | U.S. News & World Report

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Ranked among the "Best Catholic Colleges," "Best Colleges in America," "Best Private Universities in America,"
and "Best Colleges in Washington, DC" | Niche

An Inside Look

What students are saying about us...

  • “I was immediately drawn to Catholic from the moment I stepped on campus. I could tell there was something special and that it was more than just a university, it really was a family.”

    • Kate Janik '22
  • “As a politics student, there's no place like Washington, DC, to live and learn. The opportunities to gain professional experience off campus with internship opportunities have been invaluable to my student experience.”

    • Philip Ahearn '22
  • “I've made excellent friends in all grades and majors. And the professors are gems who care about their students and are great teachers and scholars. This is simply an open and welcoming and cheerful place.”

    • Javier Mazariegos '23
      English and Philosophy double-major