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History

Founded in 1932, we have always had confidence that Deus Providebit - God will provide - in fulfilling the mission of DSPT.

In pursuit of truth in California since 1851

Spaniard Francis S. Vilarrasa, OP, established the first House of Studies of the newly founded Dominican Province of the Most Holy Name of Jesus to prepare six Dominican novices from Spain for the priesthood in Monterey, California.

In 1854 the House of Studies was moved to Benicia, which was the state capital at the time. In 1931, the Master of the Order of Preachers requested that the House of Studies be relocated near a major university. This led to the founding in 1932 of The College of St. Albert the Great in Oakland, near the University of California, Berkeley.

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Why DSPT

Our Mission

1932

Upon request by the Master of the Order, the Western Dominican Province founds the College of St. Albert the Great in Oakland.

1964

The College of St. Albert the Great becomes the first Roman Catholic school to join the Graduate Theological Union (GTU).

1976

St. Albert’s College relocates from its 5-acre estate in Oakland (now St. Albert’s Priory) onto the GTU campus in Berkeley.

1978

The College of St. Albert the Great changes its name to the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology (DSPT).

2006

Needing a permanent location, DSPT purchases its current property in North Berkeley, renovating it and opening the doors to a beautiful new campus.

2023

DSPT continues to form friars and lay men and women in Classical philosophy and Catholic theology.