St Clare’s, Oxford was founded by Anne Dreydel OBE and Pamela Morris in 1953. The college grew out of a scheme to establish links between British and European students after the Second World War. Our original name was The Oxford English Centre for Foreign Students. This later became St Clare’s Hall, and then St Clare’s, Oxford. In the mid-50s, students came from more than 12 Western European countries. Over time, the college began to attract a wide range of nationalities. Nowadays there are over 40 nationalities on the IB Diploma alone.
The college began extending it’s offering to include university-level and pre-university study. As well as longer academic courses, short Summer courses became a central feature of the college. Links with USA universities were established in the 1960’s. This collaboration enabled US students to gain credit towards their degree. By the 1970’s US students were coming to St Clare’s for their study abroad programme. This replaced the University of London external degrees which had previously been taught.