At A Glance

Belen Jesuit Preparatory School was founded in 1854 in Havana, Cuba by Queen Isabel II of Spain. The task of educating students was assigned to the priests and brothers of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits), whose teaching tradition is synonymous with academic excellence and spiritual discipline. In 1961, the new political regime of Cuba confiscated the school property and expelled the Jesuit faculty. The school was re-established in Miami the same year, and over the next decade, continued to grow.

Today, Belen Jesuit sits on a 33-acre site in western Miami-Dade County. Students enjoy the rich cultural diversity of a major metropolitan community, as well as Miami’s beautiful weather and beaches. Since its inception in Miami, over 8,000 young men have graduated from Belen Jesuit Preparatory School. 

Belen Jesuit is a member of the Society of Jesus Caribbean Province which consists of the sections of Miami, Dominican Republic, Cuba, Jamaica, and Guyana.
Over 8,000 young men have graduated from Belen Jesuit in Miami since 1961.

Jesuit Education

The Society of Jesus is a Roman Catholic religious order founded by Pope Paul III at the request of Saint Ignatius of Loyola in 1540. The objective of the order is to help all men and women to live according to Christ's example of love and service; hence, the motto of the Society, "Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam." The Jesuits dedicated themselves to spread the Gospel in mission lands and to the ministry of education very early in their history. The order has been a missionary and a "teaching order" from its origin in the 16th century.

Belen Jesuit Preparatory School is accredited by Cognia. The School is also affiliated with the National Catholic Educational Association and is a member of the Jesuit Schools Network (JSN) and Jesuit High School College Counselors Association.

Belen Jesuit Through History

List of 26 items.

  • 1854

    Her Majesty Isabel II, Queen of Spain, issued a royal charter founding the Colegio de Belén (Belen School) in Havana, Cuba. Belen School begins its educational work in the building formerly occupied by the convent and convalescent hospital of Our Lady of Belen, hence the name of the school.
  • 1925

    Sixty acres of new land and several buildings are donated to Belen School. The complex is later known as "The Palace of Education."
  • 1961

    Belen Jesuit School is established in the United States. The fourth floor of the Gesu Elementary School, located in what is now the parking lot of Gesu Church in downtown Miami, becomes the first site of Belen Jesuit Preparatory School. The actual building no longer exists.
  • 1962

    Belen Jesuit Preparatory School acquires its own building and moves to a new site on the corner of SW 8th Street and 7th Avenue in Miami.
  • 1980

    Ground-breaking ceremony is held for a new building on a 30 acre-site located in west Dade County.
  • 1981

    The school year 1981-82 begins in the new facilities with an enrollment of 598 students.
  • 1992

    A language laboratory, two computer laboratories and four new classrooms are installed. The library is remodeled. A new track and a parking lot are added.
  • 1995

    The Roberto C. Goizueta Athletic Center is inaugurated. Two more classrooms are added. Computers are updated in the computer labs.
  • 1996

    Belen Jesuit receives accreditation from SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools), a prestigious and recognized association devoted to recognizing elite institutions.
  • 1998

    Belen Jesuit inaugurates the new Vincam wing, providing a larger cafeteria, eight new classrooms, and a guest dining room.
  • 2002

    Belen inaugurates the additions of Villa Javier, the Jesuit residence, and the Raúl and Nidia Rodríguez Science Pavilion. Work is also completed on the new outdoor basketball courts and tennis courts.
  • 2003

    The Ignatian Center for the Arts Center is completed. The art center consists of the Ophelia & Juan Js. Roca Theater, Olga & Carlos Saladrigas Art Gallery, 7 classrooms, and a music rehearsal hall. The athletic complex is also renovated.
  • 2008

    The Administration Building is completed. The administration building houses the offices of the President, Advancement, Admissions, Alumni, Registrar, Business, Copy Center, Technology Director, and the Cosculluela Dining Hall.
  • 2011

    The School celebrates its Golden Jubilee, the fiftieth anniversary of the reestablishment of the school in South Florida. The school unveiled the Ecos de un Belén  lejano painting by Cuban-American artist Humberto Calzada in the Administration building. Additionally, a complete renovation of the school’s central patio is completed and renamed the Garrido Family Plaza.
  • 2012

    The new academic year begins a new era of teaching at Belen Jesuit with the implementation of a one‐to‐one program using the Apple iPad device and utilizing all-digital textbooks. In the fall, the football team kicks off its 41st season by debuting a new artificial turf football field. The newly named Sánchez Field will be used continuously for many sports including football, soccer, and lacrosse.
  • 2013

    The school unveils a seven-foot bronzed statue of St. Ignatius of Loyola, blessed by Archbishop Thomas Wenski at the school’s main entrance. That summer, the Nike Hill & Tunnel is inaugurated, which extends the length of the cross-country course to 1.7 miles.
  • 2014

    In January, the northwest lot of Belen Jesuit is transformed from a vacant lot to a beautiful practice field, featuring an artificial turf. The Hernández Field is used by athletes who play soccer, lacrosse and football, and by track and cross-country runners.

    In December, the historical book, "Men for Others: The Belen Jesuit Story" by author Zeida Sardiñas is published. The book recounts the story of how the Jesuits founded Belen in Cuba and Miami.
  • 2015

    In the fall, Bishop Fernando Isern blesses the grounds where construction on the new cafeteria and kitchen will be built. The new Dining Hall will provide the school with a larger space for eating and meal preparation, as well as a modern space for learning, community meetings, and formal gatherings.
  • 2016

    In the spring, Miami Auxiliary Bishop Peter Baldacchino blesses the grounds where the Gian Zumpano Aquatic Center will be built. The new aquatic center will feature a state-of-the-art Olympic sized pool and will be home to the championship-winning swimming and water polo teams.

    On November 29 Jesuit Fathers Willie García-Tuñón, Alberto Garcia, and Pedro Cartaya celebrated mass on the occasion of the blessing of the Chapel of Our Lady in the Garrido Plaza.
  • 2017

    On March 19, Father Willie García-Tuñón celebrated mass in honor of the feast of St. Joseph at the newly renovated St. Joseph’s Patio, located between the school’s kitchen and Vincam Wing.  The patio is adorned with a beautiful new statue of St. Joseph and a European Olive Tree.

    Just in time for the first bell of the 2017-2018 school year, the Dining Hall is blessed and inaugurated on August 21, followed by a ribbon-cutting ceremony on the first full day of school, August 22. 
  • 2018

    Archbishop Thomas Wenski blesses the Gian Zumpano Aquatic Center on June 6, 2018 along with the Jesuit Fathers of Miami, led by Rev. Guillermo M. García-Tuñón, S.J.'87, Belen President and Rev. Alberto Garcia, S.J., Jesuit Superior of Miami.

    “The Gian Zumpano Aquatic Center embodies all that Gian Zumpano represented,” said Jesuit Father García-Tuñón. “His selflessness and generosity touched the community and Belen Jesuit. Gian was only a year older than I and was my friend. I am honored that this facility will memorialize a true Man for Others through the efforts of Gian’s family and friends.”
  • 2019

    In April, four tennis courts were added behind the Gian Zumpano Aquatic Center. These multi-functional courts will also function as basketball and volleyball courts.

    On May 29, School Chaplain Father Christian A. Sáenz, S.J. blessed the grounds of the future site of the Our Lady of Belen Chapel during the Groundbreaking Ceremony.

    On September 6, the new field lights were turned on and the first football game was played at night. The Wolverines played the Doral Academy Falcons and earned their first win of the season. Lights were also added to the varsity baseball field.

    On October 26, Father Guillermo M. García-Tuñón launched the public phase of the ‘For the Greater Glory’ campaign which aims to raise $34 million towards the strategic vision of the school.

    On November 25, School Chaplain Father Christian A. Sáenz, S.J. blessed the grounds of the Arroyo Quad, located behind the Dining Hall. This beautiful park recognizes those courageous men who ventured far and worked hard to assure that tyranny would not have the last word and that Ignatian education would flourish. Memorialized in the quad are the Jesuit priests and brothers who have served at Belen Jesuit.
  • 2020

    On January 28, School Chaplain Father Christian A. Sáenz, S.J. blessed the Fides Et Ratio Patio. The patio features a bronze statue of Father Matteo Ricci, S.J. as is located near the Raul and Nidia Rodriguez Science Pavilion. 

    On March 16, as a result of a global pandemic, Belen Jesuit transitioned to a distance learning model to complete the 2019-2020 school year. The campus was closed and all sports and activities were canceled or postponed.

    The 2020-2021 school year began with classes being held virtually but by mid-September, we had transitioned to a hybrid model and in the new year transitioned to full back. 

    The state-of-the-art Roberto C. Goizueta Innovation Center opened for the 2020-21 academic year. The 8,000 square foot facility is an integral part of Belen’s mission of academic excellence. The facility offers a mix of traditional classrooms, maker space, and a science lab. The STEAM Program gives students access to a large selection of tools and is home to the Robotics teams and Engineering classes. 
  • 2021

    Classroom Renovations began in the spring of 2021. Phase one of this project includes a complete re-imaging of the classrooms to a more modern design with enhanced technology, functionality, and new furniture. So far, 15 classrooms have been renovated. The goal is to have all classrooms completed within the next couple of years.
  • 2022

    In February, a statue of Jesuit saint Aloysius de Gonzaga was blessed. Located in the newly constructed Gonzaga Pit it is located in between the Gian Zumpano Aquatic Center and the Shanley Family Administration building. This area will be utilized as an area for reflection and presentations.

    In May, the Our Lady of Belen Chapel was dedicated in a special Mass celebrated by The Most. Rev. Thomas Wenski, Archbishop of Miami. In addition to the archbishop, the Mass included Fr. Martin Lenk, SJ., Provincial of the Antilles Province, Fr. Alberto García, S.J., Superior of the Jesuits in Miami, Fr. Guillermo M. García-Tuñón, S.J., President of Belen Jesuit, priests, deacons, and invited guests.

    In June, the groundbreaking and blessing of the Roberto Surís Athletic Center was held. The three-story, nearly 60,000-square-foot building will feature two workout rooms, a gym, two dozen treadmills, ERG Machines, golf simulators, and much more!
  • 2023

    In February, the main school building was renamed the José Milton Foundation to commemorate the largest single donation made to the school to date. 

    In April, the Communication Arts and Multimedia Center, which houses WBLN, ECHOES Yearbook, and film classes, was renamed the Conde Media Center, in honor of Drs. Maria and Cesar Conde, parents of César R. Conde '91. 
500 SW 127th Avenue, Miami, FL 33184
phone: 305.223.8600 | fax: 305.227.2565 | email:
Belen Jesuit Preparatory School was founded in 1854 in Havana, Cuba by Queen Isabel II of Spain.  The task of educating students was assigned to the priests and brothers of the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits), whose teaching tradition is synonymous with academic excellence and spiritual discipline.  In 1961, the new political regime of Cuba confiscated the School property and expelled the Jesuit faculty.  The School was re-established in Miami the same year, and over the next decade, continued to grow.  Today, Belen Jesuit sits on a 30-acre site in western Dade County, only minutes away from downtown Miami.