Founded in 1858 as a second level college for the Catholic Diocese of Cloyne, St Colmans College is named after the patron of the diocese. Its first President was Rev. Thomas W. Croke, who was the firstpatron of the GAA. Among its first pupils was John Stanislaus Joyce, the father of the famous writer, James Joyce. The most notable teacher was Thomas McDonagh, the founder of the Irish Volunteers in 1913 and was on the secret Military Council, which planned the 1916 Easter RIsing. The college was designed by John Pyne Hurley of Cork and its one of the must see landmarks in Fermoy.