La Salle University is named after Saint John Baptist de La Salle, the Patron Saint of Teachers. Saint John Baptist de La Salle was born into a wealthy family in Reims, France during the 17th century. He was well-educated, held a doctoral degree and was an ordained priest at the Cathedral of Reims.
Through many encounters, De La Salle found himself called to serve the poor and disadvantaged, specifically children, whose lack of access to education was perpetuating poverty.
Responding to these needs, he began to establish schools. In 1680, John Baptist de La Salle founded a Catholic religious order of men that is now known as the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He lived the remainder of his life among the poor, ministering to his teachers (his Brothers) and touching the minds and hearts of his students so that they might lead more purposeful lives.
This form of apostolic life has evolved over three centuries. The Brothers of the Christian Schools and the Lasallian Mission, derived from De La Salle’s name, places a commitment on education and specifically for those who are poor and marginalized. The term “Lasallian” is more than just a label, it guides everything we do – why we do things and how we do things.
As a Lasallian university at La Salle we believe:
La Salle University is part of a global Lasallian network of Brothers and Lasallian Partners (men and women, married and single, women and men religious who belong to other institutes, diocesan priests and deacons who share responsibility with the Brothers for the Lasallian educational mission.) operating over 1,000 schools, colleges, universities, and other educational centers, in 80 countries on six continents and serving over 1 million students.
La Salle University is part of an International Association of La Salle Universities that currently include 64 Lasallian higher education institutions.