Mount Saint Vincent University

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"MSVU" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU).
Mount Saint Vincent University
Coat of Arms
Motto Veritas ad Deum ducit (Latin)
Motto in English "Truth Leads to God"
Established 1873
Type Public liberal arts university
Endowment $18.225 million [1] (end of year 2008)
President Ramona Lumpkin
Vice-Chancellor Ramona Lumpkin
Students 3,959[2]
Undergraduates 2,923
Postgraduates 1,036
Location Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
44°40′15″N 63°38′47″W / 44.67083°N 63.64639°W / 44.67083; -63.64639Coordinates: 44°40′15″N 63°38′47″W / 44.67083°N 63.64639°W / 44.67083; -63.64639
Campus Suburban
Former names Mount Saint Vincent Academy (1873-1925), Mount Saint Vincent College (1925-1966)
Colours blue     
Nickname Mystics
Mascot Monty the Mountain Lion
Affiliations AUCC, IAU, CBIE, CUP.

Mount Saint Vincent University is a liberal arts university located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, and was established in 1873.


Mount Saint Vincent University Entrance from the Bedford Highway, Halifax

Established by the Sisters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul in 1873, the Mount was one of the few institutions of higher education for women in Canada at a time when women could not vote. The original purpose of the academy was to train novices and young sisters as teachers, but the Sisters also recognized a need to educate other young women.[3] Over the ensuing years, the order developed a convent, schools, an orphanage, and health care facilities throughout the Halifax area, as well as across North America.

Charles Welsford West (architect) designed the Romanesque chapel and annex (1903–05) at Mount St. Vincent Academy (now University). He served as the Architect, Nova Scotia Public Works & Mines 1932-1950[4]

By 1912, the Sisters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul recognized the need to offer greater opportunity through university education and adopted a progressive[clarification needed] plan to establish a college for young women. It was two years later, in 1914 that the Sisters partnered with Dalhousie University, enabling Mount Saint Vincent to offer the first two years of a bachelors' degree program to be credited toward[clarification needed] a Dalhousie degree.

In 1925, the Nova Scotia Legislature awarded the Mount the right to grant its own degrees, making it the only independent women’s college in the British Commonwealth.[5] By 1951, degrees were offered in Arts, Secretarial Science, Music, Home Economics, Library Science, Nursing and Education.

Sidney Perry Dumaresq (architect) designed major alterations to the Chapel (1926); dormitory and classroom building (c. 1930).[6]

A new charter was granted in 1966 and the College became Mount Saint Vincent University, bringing forth the establishment of a Board of Governors and Senate. This was also a period of tremendous growth – with enrolment increases, new construction and new agreements. In 1967 the Mount began admitting men as students. The University continued to evolve with the expansion of programs during the 1970s and entered into several new fields, including Child Study, Public Relations, Gerontology, Tourism and Hospitality Management, Cooperative Education and Distance Education. In July 1988, the Sisters of Charity of Saint Vincent de Paul officially transferred ownership of the institution to the Board of Governors.


Mount Saint Vincent University offers 38 undergraduate degrees in liberal arts and sciences and an array of professional programs including Applied Human Nutrition, Business Administration, Child and Youth Study, Public Relations, Science Communication and Tourism and Hospitality Management. Following consolidation of post-secondary programs across Nova Scotia in the 1990s, the Mount became home to the only Education program in the Halifax area.

Mount Saint Vincent University is the only university in Canada to offer a Master of Public Relations program (MPR).[7] The MPR program graduated its first class in October 2009.[8] The Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS) recognizes MSVU's MPR program for excellence in PR education in its Pathways to the Profession guide.[9]

The Department of Applied Human Nutrition has an accredited dietetic program. The University is accredited by a professional organization such as the Dietitians of Canada and the university's graduates may subsequently become registered dietitians. List of universities with accredited dietetic programs

The faculty of Education is home to the only School Psychology graduate program in Atlantic Canada. Graduates of this program are eligible to become registered psychologists in Nova Scotia and several other provinces in Canada.[10]

During the 1995 G7 summit, Mount Saint Vincent University awarded an honorary Doctor of Laws degree to Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Academic programs are supported by a wide variety of electronic and print research resources in the MSVU Library.[11] Research services include drop-in reference assistance, research appointments and classroom workshops.

Mount Saint Vincent University is also home to the Centre for Women in Business, a not-for-profit university business development centre (UBDC), dedicated to assisting with entrepreneurial activities both within the university and throughout Nova Scotia.

Founded in 1992 by the University's Department of Business & Tourism, this remains the only UBDC in Canada with a primary focus on women. The Centre served more than 7500 clients over the past 18 years.

Out reach[edit]

The education department assists St Joseph's Teachers College in Kingston, Jamaica with its two year part-time Bachelor and Masters degrees in Primary Education.


Home to the Mystics, the Mount competes in the Atlantic Colleges Athletic Association (ACAA) in Women’s and Men’s Basketball, Soccer and Women’s Volleyball. The Mystics hold a number of regional championship titles in all sports. Both the Men’s and Women’s Basketball teams were undefeated for two straight years in regular season play (2006–07, 2007–08) and went on to capture silver at the national championships in 2007-08.

Notable graduates[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Yearend 2008
  2. ^ "Full-time plus Part-time Enrollment". Association of Atlantic Universities. 2012-10-15. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  3. ^ Mabel H. Laine, Margaret Young, Encyclopedia of Music in Canada.
  4. ^ Biographic Dictionary of Architects in Canada 1800-1950 Charles Welsford West (architect)
  5. ^ Our History, Mount Saint Vincent University.
  6. ^ Sidney Perry Dumaresq
  7. ^ "Public Relations and Communication Studies". Mount Saint Vincent University. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Lovett, Akiko. "First Masters of Public Relations class graduates from the Mount". Mount Saint Vincent University. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  9. ^ "Public Relations and Communication Studies". Mount Saint Vincent University. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  10. ^
  11. ^ MSVU Library

External links[edit]