Trinity College grounds

History of the College

Our History

At Trinity College, we are proud to be the first residential college established at the University of Melbourne and the second in Australia, enrolling our first student on July 2, 1872.

Since the completion of the original Warden’s Lodge in 1872, through to commencement of classes in the state-of-the-art Gateway Building in 2017 and opening our newest residential building (Dorothy) in 2020, Trinity has been leading the way with world-class heritage buildings and modern environmentally sustainable facilities and classrooms.

For 150 years, students, alumni and staff have lived, studied and worked at the College and have helped shape our rich culture and traditions. They have also made significant contributions to the University of Melbourne and have created positive impact in their respective fields in Australia and around the world.

Trinity was founded initially as both an Anglican residential college as well as a training ground for young men pursuing ordination to the Anglican Church. As one of the earliest, advocates for equality in tertiary education, the College has continued to innovate. We are proud to welcome men and women from a range of ages, nationalities and religious backgrounds.

It is both our diversity and history that makes Trinity such a unique and remarkable place. 

Full History

For the history of the first hundred years of the College, see the Centenary volume Perspective of a Century by Bishop James Grant, published by the Council of Trinity College, Melbourne, 1972.

Doubts and Certainties: A Life of Alexander Leeper by Professor John Poynter (Melbourne University Press, 1997) provides a fascinating biography of the first Warden. It is available from the University Bookroom, and other bookstores.

A book detailing Trinity's 150 year history was released in 2022. 

To purchase these books and to view a complete list of books available to purchase visit our Merchandise pages.