Ave Maria College has been providing Catholic secondary education for young women since 1963.
The College was founded by the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary (FMMs) to provide an education for the young women of the Essendon area. The Sisters had already responded to Archbishop Mannix’s call to become involved in education, having first opened Ave Maria Kindergarten in 1957 and a primary school in 1958.
After 15 years of service, the FMMs withdrew from the school to pass it across to lay leadership. The FMMs had established the school during a period of enormous change in Catholic education. Upon their departure, they gifted the school to the Archbishop of Melbourne and Ave Maria College became a Diocesan school.
The FMM sisters remain firm friends of the College and retain their link with the appointment of Sr Heather Weedon FMM as one of the College Canonical Administrators. The College cherishes the Franciscan value of peace, justice, care for creation and dignity for all.
Although the school is barely recognisable from its early years, the Franciscan charism in which Ave Maria College was founded remains a source of inspiration for each new generation of students.
The College Crest
- The star represents the star of the sea which in Latin is AVE MARIS STELLA, a favourite hymn of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary.
- The boat sailing through calm waters guided by the star represents the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary spreading Christianity guided by God.
- The water symbolises worldwide understanding and peace among nations, which is the goal of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary.