Bharat Ratna Maharshi Dhondo Keshav Karve founded the SNDT Women’s University. Undeterred by hostile attitudes, stiff opposition and meager resources, he dedicated his life to the advancement of Indian women by promoting their education and making them self reliant and independent.
In 1916, The Maharshi’s school, which was set up in 1896 as an Ashram at Hingne near Pune, was established as a University. The turning point of the University came when Sir Vithaldas Thackersey, an eminent industrialist of Mumbai, deeply committed to the cause of Women’s Education, stepped forward with a donation of Rs. 15 lakhs. The university was named Shrimati Nathibai Damodar Thackersey (SNDT) Women’s University in the memory of his mother.
The motto of the university is which means, "An enlightened woman is a source of infinite strength". S.N.D.T. Women's University has done yeoman's service for the upliftment of women's status, fulfilling its mission " To Empower Women through Education". Today there is demand for S.N.D.T. University courses in many states.
The university has three campuses – one at Pune, and two in Mumbai, at Churchgate and Juhu. In addition to 38 University Departments and 11 colleges located on these three campuses, the University has 192 affiliated colleges in Maharashtra, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.