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Wilfrid Laurier University


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Laurier students are not content with only earning a university degree. To them, education is a springboard to something more significant: it is the key to shaping a life, building a community, and making a difference.

For more than a century, Laurier has been known for academic excellence. However, we have also been dedicated to the philosophy that our students' success is measured through more than grades – it is based on the quality of their lives and those they inspire.

Our innovative programs in arts and social sciences, business, and economics, music, science, social work, and education cover a broad spectrum. At their heart, though, they reflect a common purpose: Laurier's determination to address global social, health, and environmental problems and advance creative pursuits.

Laurier's two campuses are in Waterloo and Brantford, but we also have a Faculty of Social Work in nearby Kitchener and a weekend MBA program in Toronto. In all, we have 19,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Kitchener-Waterloo, with a population of about 350,000, is small enough to be safe and easy to navigate but large enough to offer great art, music, restaurants, and other big-city amenities. Our campus in Brantford is fully embedded in the student-friendly downtown core and a stone's throw from the Grand River and many outdoor activities. Both campuses are only about an hour from Toronto, Canada's biggest city.

However, no matter where you study at Laurier, you are a Golden Hawk, which means you are part of a tight-knit, supportive community that knows how to aim high, work hard and take advantage of some truly amazing opportunities to make a difference.

Take a look at our events calendar – there is always something going on. Moreover, we play as hard as we work. We offer more than a dozen varsity sports if you are looking for some intense competition (Laurier has won seven national titles since 2000). However, if varsity is not your speed, we have great fitness centers and dozens of intramural sports on both campuses.

If you have an interest, we probably have a club for it, and if we do not, we will help you start one.

Out-of-class activities are a massive part of the Laurier experience – we provide the academics to succeed in your career and the extracurriculars so you can succeed in life.

Like many universities in Canada, Wilfrid Laurier University has a bicameral governance system. At Laurier, our bicameral governance system provides two separate and distinct governing bodies: the Senate and the Board of Governors. The powers of both the Senate and the Board of Governors are set out in the Wilfrid Laurier University Act (the Act).

While each governing body has its responsibilities, there are many areas where both bodies must act to advance a university initiative. For example, the creation of a new academic department requires that Senate review and recommend the proposal to the Board then considers the proposal, including its financial and other implications for the university, before approving the new department.

The Act also outlines each governing body's membership, which is broadly representative of the university community and external stakeholders. Each governing body has appointed and elected members, with cross-appointments to ensure open communication between the two.

The University Secretariat provides professional advice to and facilitates the Senate, Board of Governors, their committees and councils, participants, and resources on all matters relating to university governance. The Secretariat is responsible for supporting the development, revision, and interpretation of university-level policies and keeping the official records of governing documents and records of decisions made by the governing bodies.

Wilfrid Laurier University recognizes that intellectual inquiry, critical reflection, and scholarly integrity are the cornerstones of all universities, including our exceptional institution.

Our unique values are drawn from the critical elements on which Laurier was founded and which will continue to nurture and shape what we become.

  • Our intimate community environment
  • Our academic and institutional tradition
  • New and integrated communities of learning and application
  • Diversity and a culture of inclusivity
  • Developing the whole person: mind, spirit, and body
  • Community focus and global engagement
  • A life of purpose and citizenship
  • Learning through experience
  • Our vision provides a lens that we use to look at the world to understand what we do and what we aspire to be.

Our commitment is to justice and sustainability now. In the future, so we strive to ignite the minds, spirits, and hearts of our communities through excellence in teaching and learning, in the discovery, scholarly exploration, and application of new ideas, and in instilling the courage to engage and challenge the world in all its complexity. The mission describes our core purpose and commitment to stakeholders.

Wilfrid Laurier University is devoted to excellence in learning, research, scholarship, and creativity. It challenges people to become engaged and aware citizens of an increasingly complex world. It fulfills its mission by advancing knowledge, supporting and enhancing high-quality undergraduate, graduate, and professional education, and emphasizing co-curricular development of the whole student.

For centuries, academic libraries were, first and foremost, places where students and faculty members could find and work with books and articles in printed form.

However, in recent years, with the proliferation of digital media, libraries' role has been transformed.

The Laurier Library of the 21st century is the intellectual and cultural heart of Laurier: an academic nexus of collections, research, and scholarly publishing, and an experiential hive of community, creative expression, and making.

We are home to the award-winning Robert Langen Art Gallery to WLU Press, a leading Canadian scholarly publisher and a thriving program of author events, film screenings, concerts, and workshops.

We also house the Laurier Archives, keeper of the university's historical record and legacy, as well as leading collections on the environment, music, and the Lutheran Church.

Moreover, of course, we continue to provide digital resources, books, instruction sessions, and study spaces that inspire our users to achieve excellence in their research, work, and lives.

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