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In the first edition of the magazine, 'St. Peter's Annual', published in 1916, we read that those seeking admission to the Divinity School had first to sit an Entrance Examination. 'The subject matter for this Examination included the business studied the previous year.' Once accepted by the College a student had to pay a yearly pension of £31 10s. 0d. as follows:
Autumn Term: £12 12s. 0d.
Winter Term: £9 9s. 0d.
Spring Term: £9 9s. 0d.
Of the 48 students registered in the School for the academic year 1915-1916 some were studying for the Diocese of Ferns while, according to the Editor, the majority, after ordination will 'find themselves in the heart of America's busy life, or the prosperous boundaries of the "Australian Bush" while others still will associate themselves with the ever sunny shores of New Zealand.'
Student concerns included the progress of the war and news from their one-time fellow students now serving as chaplains to the troops. The chief recreational pursuits were concerts, debates, Gaelic football, hurling and soccer. An interesting item recorded in this 1916 magazine is the ordination in the College Chapel of a Benedictine monk from their House at Edermine in the presence of his Abbot, and friend of the College, Dom Columba Marmion - an historic occasion for the College.
The following year the number of students had increased to 54. Fear was high among them that the School would have to close because of conscription and this led to an increased interest in the national issue which resulted in the establishment of a Gaelic Society.
The third and final edition of the 'St. Peter's Annual' not only records the obsequies of the late Bishop, Dr. Browne, but also includes a detailed account of the election, appointment and consecration of his successor Very Rev. William Codd, Parish Priest of Blackwater.
The new Bishop was no stranger to the Divinity School or to Wexford Town where he was born in 1866. He studied at the C.B.S., St. Peter's and the Irish College, Rome, where he was ordained in 1889. On his return to Wexford Fr. Codd was appointed Professor in the Intermediate Classes in the College. In 1897, when Dr. Browne established the Divinity School, he appointed Fr. Codd as the first Professor of Dogmatic Theology. He served as President of the College, from 1903-1912, when he was appointed Parish Priest of Blackwater.
In 1916 Grattan Flood wrote in his 'History of the Diocese of Ferns' that the 'school had secured the splendid mansion adjoining the College as an annexe. This is already crowded with students such that further accommodation must soon be provided' (The mansion referred to by Flood is the present Bishop's House). By 1918 the number of of students had increased to 67 and the new Bishop decided to 'exchange mansions' and give St. Mary's, which he considered more spacious, to the College as a residence for the seminarians.
By the late 1920's St. Mary's had proven to be too small and the Bishop decided that the time was right for the construction of a new seminary building [The 'New Wing']. Responsibility for ensuring the realisation of this decision was given to the President of the College, Very Rev. James Doran.