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About the university

arial photo of uvic campus

The University of Victoria (UVic) is one of Canada’s leading research-intensive universities. We are located in Victoria, on the BC coast.

Facts & figures

  • 22,020 students (undergraduate and graduate)
  • 5,000 employees, including 900 full-time faculty members
  • 580+ patents filed to date
  • 1,145+ invention disclosures to date
  • 169 start-up companies to date
  • #1 among Canadian comprehensive universities for preparing career-ready students (2022 Times Higher Education Global University Employability Ranking)
  • Consistently the top university in North America for international research collaboration (Leiden, 2011-2023)

Learn more about UVic's rankings and reputation.

World-class learning

At UVic we combine three elements: dynamic learning, vital impact and our extraordinary academic environment.

Together, these three elements nurture an environment of discovery, innovation and creativity. This fortifies our work in sustainability and healthy societies. It shapes our world view with diverse perspectives, including those from Indigenous and international communities. It fuels our commitment to economic well-being, technological advances and social justice.

Our commitments

Community engagement is a key part of our success. We work closely with our community partners to foster respect and reconciliation, promote sustainable futures, and uphold our values of equity, diversity and inclusion.

Research strengths

Our research makes a vital impact on people, places and the planet. 

We have identified five overlapping impact areas where we are uniquely positioned to make a difference:

Economic impact

UVic is a proud partner in the Greater Victoria and BC economy. We work with governments, First Nations, businesses and non-profits towards economic and social prosperity. From jobs to research solutions to our alumni making a global impact, we’re a key contributor to a bright future.

Administration & governance

Our Strategic Plan outlines UVic’s vision, values and priorities. It inspires our excellence in research, creative activity, teaching, service, commitment to diversity and inclusion, and engagement to serve students, communities and the world.

Our university plans guide the operational directions for a wide range of UVic activities.

UVic operates under the authority of the University Act and is governed by a Board of Governors and Senate.

History & traditions

The university received degree-granting status in 1963. The origins of UVic, however, can be traced back to 1903 and the establishment of Victoria College, our predecessor institution.

university of victoria shield

The three martlets—footless heraldic birds—on the UVic shield refer to those on the crest of McGill University, with which Victoria College was originally affiliated.

university of victoria coat of arms

The university mottoes, shown on the UVic Coat of Arms, are 'Let there be light' (in Hebrew) and 'A multitude of the wise is the health of the world' (in Latin).

The university colours are red, gold, and blue.

university of victoria flag

The university flag depicts three red martlets in a gold field above a blue field.