Regis High School
As seen from East 84th Street (2019)


United States
Coordinates40°46′46″N 73°57′32″W / 40.779522°N 73.958818°W / 40.779522; -73.958818
School typePrivate, Day
MottoLatin: Deo et Patriae Pietas Christiana Erexit
("Built by Christian Piety for God and Country")
Men for Others
Religious affiliation(s)Roman Catholic
(Society of Jesus (Jesuits))
Patron saint(s)St. John Francis Regis
Established1914; 110 years ago (1914)
FounderJulia M. Grant
PresidentRev. Christopher Devron, S.J.
Faculty37.6 FTEs[1]
Teaching staffDr. Ralph Nofi
Enrollment530 (2019–2020[1])
 • Grade 9133
 • Grade 10137
 • Grade 11132
 • Grade 12128
Student to teacher ratio14.1:1[1]
Campus typeUrban
Color(s)  Scarlet
Song”Regis Alma Mater”
Athletics conferenceCatholic High School Athletic Association
RivalsXavier High School
AccreditationMiddle States Association of Colleges and Schools
  • The Crow (opinion journal)
  • The Falcon (sports journal)
  • The Raven (literary journal)
NewspaperThe Owl
YearbookThe Regian

Regis High School is a private, all-male, Jesuit, secondary school for Roman Catholic boys located on the Upper East Side of Manhattan in New York City.[2]


Regis High School was founded in 1914, through the financial bequest of a single (originally anonymous) benefactress, Julia M. Grant,[a] the widow of New York City mayor Hugh J. Grant. She stipulated that her gift be used to build a Jesuit high school providing a free education for Catholic boys with special consideration given to those who could not otherwise afford a Catholic education.[4] The school continues that policy and does not charge tuition.[5]

The Grants' former home is the residence of the Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, where the pope stays when he visits New York City.[6]

Following the death of her husband in 1910, Julia Grant met with Father David W. Hearn, S.J. and, with a stipulation of strict anonymity, gave him an envelope with the money needed to start a school to educate Catholic boys. After Mrs. Grant died, her children took over the funding of the school. The last surviving member of the family, Lucie Mackey Grant, a daughter-in-law of Julia Grant, died in 2007.

Since the 1960s, Regis has relied primarily on the Grant endowments and alumni donations to keep the school tuition-free. Following Lucie Mackey Grant's death, at an auction of her estate, Regis bid successfully for the original golden chalice used during Mass when the school was founded in 1914.[3]

In April 2021, the school announced that it was firing its president, Fr. Daniel Lahart, after an investigation confirmed that he had engaged in "inappropriate and unwelcome verbal communications and physical conduct, all of a sexual nature, with adult members of the Regis community, including subordinates".[7]

Extracurricular activities

The Owl, the school's newspaper, interviewed Central Intelligence Agency leak case prosecutor and alumnus Patrick J. Fitzgerald in 2006. Its article was linked on the Drudge Report and quoted by the Associated Press.[8]

The Regis Speech and Debate Society, also known as the Hearn Society, is ranked first nationally by the National Speech and Debate Association as of September 2022.[9]

The Regis Repertory has performed plays and musicals since their first show in 1918. They collaborate with female students attending neighboring schools such as Marymount School and Dominican Academy to perform one play and one musical every year.[10]


Regis is home to teams in Basketball, Baseball, Soccer, Volleyball, Golf, Ultimate Frisbee, and track and field. Given the location of the school, many of their events take place on Randall's Island.[11]

The biggest event every year is a triple-header set of basketball games against their rival, Xavier High School, in which the freshman, JV, and Varsity teams play back to back.[12]


The school building was designed by Maginnis & Walsh.[13] Located on 85th Street between Park Avenue and Madison Avenue, Regis's building was partially completed in 1914. Construction on the three-story-high, 1700-seat auditorium was delayed due to World War I preventing the import of the desired Italian marble to be used. It was eventually completed the next year.[14]

In the late 1970s, the stone owl over the south door, popular with students and alumni at the time, disappeared. In 1980, the assistant headmaster found the culprit who stole the owl and privately met up with them to have it returned. It now resides in the Regis Archive, and four owls were placed in the quadrangle to commemorate its return.[15]


In 2002, Regis High School created the REACH (Recruiting Excellence in Academics for Catholic High Schools) Program. Every year they select around 40 Catholic (primarily black or Hispanic) fifth graders from under-served communities in the tri-state area to participate in a rigorous academic camp throughout middle school, including summer school and Saturday classes throughout the school-year. [16]

Their mission statement reads "REACH, through a transformative middle school program, empowers high-achieving young men from under-served communities as Catholic leaders committed to faith, scholarship, and service."

In 2022, more than $3.5 million dollars in scholarships were awarded to members of the REACH program. [17]

Notable alumni

In popular culture

Television shows and film have used Regis High School as a setting. Shows include: Law & Order: Criminal Intent, The Ordained, and The Good Wife.[83]

"Tru Love", a Season 6 episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent was also directed by Norberto Barba, a graduate of Regis.[84]

The films Prince of the City (1981), Finding Forrester (2001), Remember Me (2010), and Straight Outta Tompkins (2013) feature scenes filmed in classrooms, hallways, and offices of Regis.[83]

Lady Gaga was a member of the Regis Repertory during her high school years at the Convent of the Sacred Heart.[85]

In 2020, SNL host and Regis High School alumnus Colin Jost published a personal essay in The New Yorker chronicling his daily commute from his home in Staten Island to school.[86]

See also


  1. ^ The identity of the school's founding benefactor was officially kept secret for decades, though the large portrait in the school's first floor conference room titled "Julia Grant" contradicted the official policy. The online announcement, of an auction that included items related to the school's founding, did so as well.[3] Finally, on October 26, 2009, a documentary film revealed her identity and detailed the circumstances of her gift.
  2. ^ When Marasco's Child's Play premiered on Broadway in 1970, "he refused to reveal the name of his school because he thought that theatergoers would think the work was based on reality". He said the plot originated with a news story about a teacher's suicide and the Bergman film Torment.[61]


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