Girard College is a 1st-12th grade independent school in Philadelphia that has provided free education and boarding for financially disadvantaged students since it first opened in 1848. Despite the name “College,” Girard has always been a residential school for students between the ages of six and eighteen. The boarding school was created and financed through the will of Stephen Girard, one of the first millionaires in US history, who originally endowed the school for “poor white male orphans.” Owing to the rigorous efforts of civil rights activists to desegregate the school, Girard admitted its first non-white students in 1968; the school became coeducational in 1984. Today, Girard students represent various cultural backgrounds, but all come from families with demonstrated financial need and with one or no birth parents living at home. For much of its history, the school taught a dual curriculum of academic subjects and vocational skill training; today it is fully college-preparatory. Girard College is a significant site in local history and a place of opportunity, student life, and achievement for many generations of students. Please note that Girard College is an active residential school, and campus is only open to the public for advertised events. Founder’s Hall Museum is open to the public for walk-in visitation on Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted, with additional times available by appointment. Visitors are required to check in with the Security Office and present photo ID upon arrival.