On the 9th of February of 1853, an earthquake left the Sanctuary of San Nicolas (Ermita of San Nicolas) in a precarious situation. Therefore, the Order of the Jesuits, under the leadership of Father Ramon Posada, reconstructed and extended the Church of San Nicolas, having received the grounds from don Isidro González y don Manuel Fuentes, prominent citizens who donated them to the Jesuits. The grounds extended from the current Rodolfo Robles Street and the 12th Avenue up to the 14th Avenue of zone 3, including the current football stadium Mario Camposeco and the gym Quetzalteco. The San José de Calasanz College was established there. After the Jesuit Order was expelled by Justo Rufino Barrios on the night of the 12the of August 1871, the next day the honorable municipality called for an emergency meeting and demanded the Jesuit installations for the establishment of a college.
But it is until the 7th of June that the properties of the Jesuits are confiscated by law and the 1st of July 1872 the College of the West is founded by mayor Don Valentin Escobar and endorsed on the 17th of June by Don Justo Rufino Barrios. The first director of the school was Don Anselmo Valdez and its first bachelor was Don Manuel Estrada Cabrera, who later during more than a decade was dictator of Guatemala.
The governmental decree of March 27 1873, established that from the production of the plantation confiscated to the Jesuits, 2000 pesos will be assigned to the construction of the assembly hall of the College of the West and the work started on the 5th of April 1873. On February 18th 1902, an earthquake destroyed the installations of the Institute and until 1913 it was located in the house of Don Eusebio Ibarra, between the 10th and 12th Avenues and the first street of Zone 1. The current building of the INVO started to be built on the 1st of April 1907; the tower in 1912. All together it was opened in January of 1914. The architects in charge of the work were Carmen Rimola and Mariano Guerrero; the head of construction was Don Agatón Boj. In 1915, mayor Mariano López Pacheco donated the National Pavalion, which is still preserved on the civil altar of the institute.