Immaculate Heart of Mary College, Manila


IHMC had its beginnings in 1750. It was then when a pious young lady named Mother Paula, of the Third Order of St. Dominic, sailed from Spain to the Philippines . Her mission was to provide a home for the poor and abandoned children. She took care of them in a house she called Beaterio de Santa Rosa , named in honor of St. Rose of Lima , the first native saint of Latin America .

After Mother Paula's death, the house was placed under the Royal Patronage. The Royal Audiencia, through its regent, His Excellency D.S. Triviño, sought the assistance of the Daughters of Charity to continue the work of Mother Paula. In 1866, Sister Gervasia, Carmen and Eustaquia de Lara took over the Beaterio, and with the approval of its Board of Directors, changed its name to Colegio de Sta. Rosa. Aside from providing home for the young girls, the Sisters saw to it that the girls received thorough Catholic education.

The school enjoyed the support of the Spanish government and the wealthy families of the time. It was able to withstand the revolution and the earthquake that rocked the period. Through the passing of years, it grew into an elite school for girls. In 1933-1934, the High School Home Economics was opened. Two years later, the Junior Normal College was inaugurated.

However, on the fateful day of December 27, 1941, a bomb dropped by the Japanese reduced the school into shambles. The Sisters then sought refuge in Concordia College , the Provincial House of the Daughters of Charity at that time. In spite of the war, the Sisters still kept on with their mission of looking after the homeless children, and teaching catechism in the neighborhood. They engaged in needlework to support themselves.

When liberation came in 1943, Mrs. Warner, an American who stayed with the Sisters, offered her home at Manga Avenue in Santa Mesa as new school site. The house was a total mess. It had neither doors nor windows and the walls were dilapidated. However, they were able to reopen the primary school and offer a special course in needlework and handicraft.

In 1946, with Sister Carmen Reta, D.C. as Visitatrix, a building located at 142 Sociego Street in Santa Mesa was bought and there the Sisters resumed their operation. In October, the Board of Directors of Santa Rosa proposed for the Sisters' return to the former site in Intramuros. But the Sisters refused the offer because of certain modifications on some conditions of the proposal, which they could not accept. Much to their regret, they had to relinquish the name Colegio de Santa Rosa . Instead, they adopted the name Immaculate Heart of Mary College.

The Sisters were then faced with the great task of putting up a college of their own. By dint of hard work, extreme dedication and cooperation, and the renewed faith and devotion to the Blessed Mother, the school's population grew and its building was expanded. As true Daughters of Charity, they did not forget the poor, attending to both their material and spiritual needs.

In 1952, The Sisters saw the need to expand. They bought a lot along Aurora Boulevard , where the College presently stands. A four-storey, U-shaped building was built. It was inaugurated on February 2, 1957, along with the unveiling of the image of Our Lady at the campus rotunda, by Father Zacarias Subiñas, C.M.

In 1957, the school launched a program of expansion under Sister Filomena Zulueta, D.C. Additional wings were built to house the chapel and the auditorium. New equipment and facilities were installed. Saint Joseph 's Home was completed in 1959.

A new test on the Sisters' spirit came on May 28, 1960. A few days before the opening of classes, a flood caused by a strong typhoon immersed the school in nine feet deep water. As rushing waters carried away the surrounding walls; the basement was completely submerged in water; the laboratory was destroyed; and the bookstore suffered a big loss. In spite of this untimely catastrophe, the Sisters managed to open classes on June 12 as scheduled.

In August of the same year, the Sisters were able to move into their new living quarters. Eighteen Sisters looked after the whole moral Catholic formation of more than 1,524 students, with the help of 45 lay faculty members. More than 15% of the population enjoyed full and partial scholarships, including twenty Catholic Charities recipients.

From then on, institutional development continued with Sister Felicidad Camomot, D.C. at the helm. The period of 1963-1972 saw the construction of an additional wing, the Sacred Heart Building , to house the Grade School classrooms. The Speech Laboratory, the Conference Room, the Office of the Directress and the Media Center were provided with air conditioning units. A Covered Court was constructed and the service of a security agency was hired.

More importantly, personnel upgrading was undertaken. Lay teachers joined the administrative staff. The Guidance Office and the different unit offices were given priority. However, due to inadequate enrolment because of the sprouting of colleges around the area, the College Department had to be phased out. In spite of this setback, however, the administration's resolve to carry on with its thrust did not falter.

The school has continued upgrading itself through the years. In 1983, the individualized Reading Program was implemented and still in the process of continuous improvement. The Basic Education Department (BED) is on its way. It had its Congregational Evaluation Visit (CEV) on March 3-5, 1986. After which, the PAASCU Survey followed on November 18-19, 24-26, 1986 for high school and elementary respectively. It was on September 13-15, 1988 that the high school was granted formal accreditation. The elementary had theirs on September 19-21 of the same year. Four years later, in 1992, the Grade School and High School were granted the first re-accreditation in September and October respectively. The second PAASCU re-accreditation visit for Grade School and High School departments was on November 11, 1997 and February 3-4, 1998 respectively. IHMC was again granted a five-year accreditation status. On September 9 and 10, 2002, the High School Department went through the PAASCU re-accreditation process while the Elementary Department was revisited on October 7 and 8, 2002. IHMC was again given another five-year accreditation status.

An institution stays on job because it provides a response to certain basic human needs. Immaculate Heart of Mary College has always been working to answer man's need to know and learn which is basic to his full development.

Today, the school stands high and lofty with ideals as the Sanctuary of the Blessed Mother. It is the living symbol of the Daughters of Charity's unselfish contribution to the development of the youth – this nation's hope.