The Notre Dame of Marbel University (NDMU) is a sectarian institution situated in the culturally pluralistic province of South Cotabato, in the island of Mindanao, Philippines.   It started as Notre Dame of Marbel (NDM), a secondary level educational institution founded by the Oblates of Mary Immaculate (OMI) with the Religious of Virgin Mary (RVM) Sisters in 1946.  It is the first high school to open in South Cotabato and Koronadal Valley.  In 1950, the Oblate Fathers turned over the ownership and management of the Boys Department to the Marist Brothers of the schools (FMS).  Two years later, the Dominican sisters assumed the direction of the Girls Department.   The Marist Brothers, through the years, have transformed it into a College (Notre Dame of Marbel College). 


In response to the need to offer courses which will give professional degrees to students who completed their secondary education, the Marist Brothers started the College Department in 1955.  A complete six-year elementary training department for boys was started in 1962 that serve as a laboratory school for the Education Department.


The Graduate School of Education was opened in 1967. In 1970, it turned out its first graduate in  Master of Arts in Education with specialization in Educational Administration.  In the same year, NDMC accepted the responsibility to become a Regional Science Teaching Center for Western Mindanao. 


In 1968 three college programs namely, Education, Liberal Arts and Commerce, were accredited by the Philippine Accrediting Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities (PAASCU).  To date, these 3 programs are on Level III accredited status while 5 other programs are on Level II status.


In June 1977, the Para-Teacher program was started and in September 1984, the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports  (MECS) recognized NDMU in pioneering a prototype and innovative para-teacher education program with the aim of producing teachers for teaching in culturally pluralistic communities.  MECS recognized the program to be relevant and suitable in reducing regional disparities by producing graduates with effective competencies for teaching in depressed, disadvantaged and underserved rural communities.


Since then, NDMU has been assuming various responsibilities as a leading tertiary institution in the area.  On January 2,1992 it was granted a UNIVERSITY status and was given the name Notre Dame of Marbel University.


To accommodate the growing population of the college department, the Elementary Training Department, which turned co-ed in June 1995, was relocated to a new site, around 3 kilometers away from the main campus,  in June 1996.  Two years later, the elementary was joined by the High School department in the same site.


NDMU has exerted efforts in strengthening its community extension programs and because of its rich experience it was institutionalized in 1995.  What was called the Community Extension Services-Non-Formal Education (CES-NFE) department has become the Champagnat Community College (CCC) serving the University’s extension laboratories.  Since then, CCC has a long list of community-based programs designed around an integrated framework which aims to alleviate poverty and improve the quality of life of the target beneficiaries. 


In 1996, NDMU was identified by CHED as one of the Centers for Excellence in Teacher Education (COE-TE) in Region XI and was selected by ANTEP-DECS (BNFE) as the Lead Institution for Functional Literacy on the National Level.


In 1997, CHED identified NDMU as one of the Centers of Development for Excellence in Information Technology (CODE-IT) in Regions XI and XII. 


In 1999, NDMU was given the Aurora Aragon Quezon Peace National Award in the area of peace through Participatory Development in recognition of NDMU’s vital role in promoting the culture of peace through varied innovative programs for the cultural communities.


NDMU was identified as CHED as Zonal Research Center (ZRC) for Regions XI and XII and ARMM in the year 2000.


The search for quality and excellence is a lifetime pursuit and the limitless capabilities of the University was given due recognition by CHED when it was granted FULL AUTONOMY effective 2001 and was included among the best 30 higher educational institutions in the Philippines.