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A map of Canadian universities founded since 1959

An updated interactive map of Canadian universities founded in the six decades since University Affairs was first published.

By UA/AU | SEP 24 2019

This year marks 60 years of publishing for University Affairs. In the six decades since our first issue of the magazine, we’ve seen the creation of several new universities in Canada. (Universities Canada, which publishes University Affairs, counts more than 90 institutions among its members today.)

Of the 48 universities plotted on the map below, seven were the product of mergers with other institutions and seven were affiliate institutions that became degree-granting universities of their own (both are represented by yellow icons on the map below); 14 were community colleges that transitioned to universities (red icons); and 10 were brand-new institutions built from the ground up (we’ve labelled these “greenfield” institutions and are marked by green icons). Another 10 were created as part of the Université du Québec network, which was founded in 1969 (blue icons).

A few additional facts about these universities:

  • The oldest greenfield is York University, founded in 1959 (happy 60th York!);
  • The youngest greenfield is Ontario Tech University, founded in 2002;
  • 1969 was the busiest year in our range with eight new universities founded, followed by 1974 with five.

Click the icons on the map to find out more about each university.

View a table of the universities included on the map here.

Editor’s note: For many of Canada’s universities, it is difficult to define exactly when they were established. Several institutions included here existed in one form or another well before 1959, and have long, complex histories. For the purposes of this map, we’ve included only fully autonomous universities that received a government charter, giving them official degree-granting status, in 1959 or later. Even at that, some may quibble with our choices. We did not include private universities or affiliated university colleges. Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments.

Earlier versions of this story omitted several universities and neglected to explain the process we used for compiling the list. In this updated version of the article, we’ve also included a link to a list of all the universities on the map.

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  1. Stewart Rood / September 24, 2019 at 09:57

    In Alberta, Mount Royal and McEwan are also universities that transitioned from colleges.

    • Léo Charbonneau / September 24, 2019 at 15:38

      Hello Stewart,
      MacEwan University is there, but you’re correct we neglected to include Mount Royal University. We have rectified our error and apologize to Mount Royal for the oversight.
      Léo Charbonneau, editor

  2. Greg Doran / September 25, 2019 at 14:09

    Unfortunately, the map is not complete. The University of Prince Edward Island was founded in 1969. It was the result of the merger of the Prince of Wales College and Saint Dunstan’s University. Currently, UPEI is celebrating its 50th Anniversary. Just like the weather channel and CAA, University Affairs forgets about PEI as well.

  3. Bradley Shoebottom / September 25, 2019 at 14:19

    UNB Saint John was established in 1964 as a branch of UNB. Just like UQ branches. https://www.unb.ca/academics/calendar/undergraduate/current/historicalsketch/saintjohnhistoricalsketch.html

    STU was given a new name in 1962 and greenfield location in 1963 https://www.stu.ca/about/history/

    U of Windsor merged form several colleges and Assumption University in 1962 http://www.uwindsor.ca/47/our-history

    Fredericton grew online univesities in the 2000s. Yorkville, U of Fredericton, Landsbridge (defunct).
    Your website does not say where you are tracking public or private, just Universities so you should include private universities like Crandall U (Atlantic Baptist College) St Stephen University

  4. Davina DesRoches / September 25, 2019 at 15:46

    I’m not seeing the University of Winnipeg, founded in 1967….

  5. Allen McLean / September 25, 2019 at 16:39

    UBC Okanagan?

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