Brebeuf Jesuit At a Glance
- Founded in 1962
- Co-ed College Preparatory School located in Northwest Indianapolis.
- Catholic Jesuit school with daily Mass
- Enrollment – 775 students in grades 9-12
- Approximately 50% of Brebeuf Jesuit’s students are non-Catholic and ascribe to a variety of traditions, including multiple denominations of Protestantism, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, Sikhism, and many more
- Student Teacher Ratio of 12:1
- More than 50 co-curriculars and clubs
- One in four students receive financial aid based only on demonstrated financial need. Approximately $2 million of aid is awarded annually.
- 15 Honors, 21 AP, and 5 College-Accredited Courses
- 29 athletic teams
- 85% of students participate in athletics during their four years.
- Community service hours requirement
- 80% of Brebeuf Jesuit faculty have attained a Master’s degree or above
Brebeuf Jesuit Braves refer to this ultimate goal of their education using the Ignatian creed “AMDG” – Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam – “for the Greater Glory of God.” Brebeuf’s caring faculty guide students to succeed by attaining the Grad at Grad goals of becoming Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam: Open to Growth, Intellectually Competent, Loving, Religious, and Committed to Promoting Justice.
Brebeuf Jesuit has been recognized by the Indiana Department of Education as a Four-Star School for the past four years – the only private Catholic high school in the state with this distinction.
Men and Women for Others
Maroon and Gold
Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School was the dream of Fr. William Schmidt, SJ. Ordained on June 16, 1943, at the Jesuit training center West Baden College, West Baden Springs, Ind., Fr. Schmidt returned to Indiana 16 years later to organize a Jesuit high school in Indianapolis.
He began much as St. Ignatius Loyola began his own ministry in the 16th century. Fr. Schmidt had nothing of his own so he begged for assistance to build a school. Working from a tiny office in the Circle Tower in downtown Indianapolis, Fr. Schmidt enlisted the help of Archbishop Paul Schulte. Several archdiocesan priests did likewise. Among them was Msgr. Charles Ross, with whom Fr. Schmidt lived at St. Pius X Rectory.
Indianapolis and the Society of Jesus both provided for Brebeuf Jesuit – spiritually and financially. As the school grew in strength and in the affection of the people of Indianapolis, that support has continued.
For the Brebeuf Jesuit campus, Fr. Schmidt chose farmland on, what was then, two-lane Route 100 northwest of Indianapolis. It seemed a nice quiet setting for a school to prepare city boys for college. The local fire department burned down the farmhouse that stood lord of the cornfields, and as work on the building itself began, Fr. Schmidt was on hand to see that it was done right. And he remained on hand for six years after the school opened to see that it was run right.
Brebeuf Jesuit opened as Brebeuf Preparatory School on Sept. 4, 1962, with 10 Jesuits, two lay teachers and 167 freshman boys. On Sept. 7, 1965, when the school opened with all four classes, 633 students studied with 22 Jesuit and 15 lay faculty and staff members. In August 1976, the school welcome 156 young women to make Brebeuf co-educational.
Behind the name Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School
Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School is named in honor of St. Jean de Brébeuf, a 17th century North American Jesuit martyr. Born in France in 1592, Brébeuf entered the Society of Jesus in 1617 and arrived in New France (Canada) in 1625 to be a missionary to the American Indians. He was tortured and killed by the Iroquois Indians in 1649 at Ste. Marie (a site located about 12 miles east of Midland, Ontario).
Brébeuf sought his own fulfillment and salvation by grasping the task put before him by God: to teach Indians in Canada the law of love of God and the love of humanity that is essential for civilized human life. Brébeuf taught his beloved Indians by living among them and taking on their culture. He used candlelight; he traveled on horseback, on foot and in canoes; he taught under the fir trees much of the time; he walked 10 hours on foot to get to his children; he ate roots; and he brought the message of Christianity, the “good news”, to his people
The sgraffito that so identifies the Brebeuf Jesuit chapel contains symbols of Brébeuf and the six other Jesuits and one layman who are the North American martyrs of the 17th century. The sgraffito was produced by the Conrad Schmitt Studio of Milwaukee, Wis. The project was directed by Felix G. Senger. The artwork was donated to Brebeuf Jesuit by Mr. and Mrs. Frank McKinney.