Camosun College

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Camosun College
TypePublic (Post-Secondary) community college
PresidentSherri Bell
Academic staff
Administrative staff
Students9,793 FTE
UndergraduatesUpgrading, University Transfer, Certificates, Diplomas, Associate's Degrees, Bachelor of Business Administration, Bachelor of Athletic & Exercise Therapy,[1] Bachelor of Sport and Fitness Leadership.
Postgraduatespost-degree diplomas
Location, ,
CampusUrban/Rural Lansdowne and Interurban
Sports teamsCamosun Chargers
Colours     Green
AffiliationsACCC, CCAA, CBIE, CUP.
The Lansdowne Campus in September 2011

Camosun College is a community college located in Greater Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. The college has two campuses, Lansdowne and Interurban, with a total enrollment of ~20,000 students (including Continuing Education). Camosun College also provides contract training for local business; research, innovation and prototyping services for industry; and trained co-op students for employers.

The Lansdowne campus provides university transfer and access programs, as well as career, technical and vocational programs in the fields of the arts, sciences, business, health and human services. The Interurban campus delivers programs in the trades, technologies, business, sport and exercise education, and access programs. The college also hosts a student paper, The Nexus.

The enabling legislation is the College and Institute Act.[2]

Student body[edit]

As of the 2013–14 fiscal year, Camosun had more than 19,000 full-time and part-time students (9,793 full-time equivalents [FTEs])[3] between its Lansdowne and Interurban campuses. About 1,000 Aboriginal students from 50 First Nations including Métis and Inuit groups, and over 1,100 international students from 60 different countries attend the college each year.


The Young Building at Lansdowne Campus

The roots of the college began in 1914 when the Young Building[4] was built as Victoria's first Normal School on part of a 3-hectare (7.5-acre) plot belonging to the Hudson's Bay Company, now part of the Lansdowne Campus. The school's enrollment at the time was about 275.[5]

During the Second World War, the Young Building was converted into a military hospital.[5] In 1946, the building was returned to its original function as an educational institution shared between the Normal School and Victoria College, which were united in 1956.

In 1967, the Normal School and Victoria College moved to the site of the Gordon Head Campus of the University of Victoria and the Institute of Adult Studies was established by the Greater Victoria School Board. The Institute of Adult Studies was located in what is currently the Ewing Building, and was the first centre in Canada to offer daytime courses for adults wishing to upgrade to high school graduation.

Local interest in a community college grew, and on October 9, 1970, Victoria residents voted in favour of establishing a college. Plans for "Juan de Fuca" College were followed. The provincial government formally approved the college on October 27, 1970.

In 1971 the college councillors voted on a name change, and "Camosun" (pronounced Cam-Ō-sun) was chosen, as it had been an early name for Victoria. It is originally a Lkwungen (Songhees) name for an area of Victoria where different waters meet and are transformed. By September 1971, the final steps toward the realization of a college were taken when Camosun (Lansdowne campus) and the BC Vocational School (Interurban campus) merged to become BC's ninth community college.

The trade-mark with the words 'Camosun College' was filed with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office Canadian Trade-marks database on 2008-02-22.[6]

Camosun College enrolled its first students in September 1971 when it opened as a two-year institution offering university transfer, vocational and upgrading courses to the residents of southern Vancouver Island.

In 2014, the college had about 900 employees and a budget of $105 million.



The Lansdowne campus is located in Saanich, on the corner of Lansdowne and Foul Bay Roads, overlooking the city of Victoria and the Olympic Mountains. Each semester, the Lansdowne campus hosts students enrolled in university transfer, college preparatory and access programs as well as career programs in arts,[7] science, business, health and human services.

The campus facilities are surrounded by tree-lined grounds. The Alan Batey Library, opened in 1991, is located prominently in the centre of the campus. The Dental Health Education Centre, opened in 1990, stands opposite the Library. The newest facility on campus is the Wilna Thomas Building with its adjoining Cultural Centre.

The Isabel Dawson building is the centre for most student services including information and registration, academic advising, financial aid, assessment, disability support services, international student services, counselling and the career resource centre. The Fisher building houses the campus bookstore and cafeteria, as well as classrooms, labs and offices for nursing, biology, physics, chemistry and other disciplines. The Paul Building and Richmond House also provide space for classrooms, labs and offices. The Child Care Centre looks after about 25 children on campus.

In the southeast corner of the campus the Dunlop House is a heritage building which houses the Hotel and Restaurant Management program's student-operated restaurant. In contrast to all the facilities on campus, the 1914 Young Building with its clock tower and Italian Renaissance architecture, sits on the south-west corner of the campus and is an historic city landmark.

Camosun College's music program and the Victoria Conservatory of Music have shared a building on the Lansdowne campus since 1991.[8]

Opened in September 2012, Camosun's medical imaging facility offers a two-year program in medical radiography technology.


Cherry Tree Blossoms at Interurban Campus

The Interurban campus is located in a rural Saanich setting, approximately 15 minutes from downtown Victoria. Students attend classes at Interurban focused on trades, technology, business or access programs. The campus is surrounded by natural woodland, fields and walking trails.

Located next to Interurban Road, the Campus Centre provides information about Camosun programs and services. The building also houses registration, the career resource centre, academic advising, counselling, student and alumni employment services, the bookstore, library, fitness centre, Student Society offices and a number of administrative offices, meeting rooms and classrooms. On the courtyard side of the building the clock-tower faces a pole carved especially for Camosun by Richard Hunt, as part of the 1994 Commonwealth Games legacy.

In the middle of campus sits the Helmut Huber Cook Training Centre, which houses the Culinary Arts Foundation program.[9] The campus community and the public can purchase breakfast and lunch prepared by students, and in the evening, part of the cafeteria is transformed into the Classroom Restaurant. In 2018 the Culinary Arts program was expanded to include food truck operation.[10]

On the north end of the campus, the Jack White and John Drysdale buildings house the offices of Continuing Education and Contract Training and most of Camosun's trades programs. Several entry-level, apprenticeship, pre-employment and upgrading programs operate year-round, all providing a mix of in-class learning and hands-on shop work.

Overlooking the campus is the Technology Centre and the Centre for Business and Access. Joined together in the middle, these buildings feature plant-filled atriums. The building also includes a daycare centre for infants, toddlers and preschoolers.

Behind the campus is the Vancouver Island Technology Park, providing access for Camosun faculty and students entering into partnerships with local industry and research projects. Located on the south side of the campus, the Pacific Institute for Sport Excellence (PISE), a centre for academics and athletics, was completed in September 2008. The centre is a partnership between Camosun College and Pacific Sport Victoria and brings together local and national-level sport education, leadership, research and athletic development under one roof.

With provincial funding received in September 2012,[11] Camosun's Centre for Trades Education and Innovation (CTEI) was designed by B+H Architects and built by CitySpaces Consulting, and was expected to be completed in early 2015. The new centre includes a Marine and Metal Trades Centre for the welding, sheet metal, metal fabrication, nautical and ship building and repair programs, as well as a Mechanical Trades Centre for the heavy duty/commercial truck transport and automotive service technician programs.[12] There is also an electrical shop.[13]


Camosun's Centre for Applied Research and Innovation (CARI) supports faculty and staff by providing assistance to obtain research grants and project funding, find project partners, fill out forms, understand related policies.


The president of the college is Sherri Bell.

Sports and Students' Union Activities[edit]


Camosun College has five sports teams (all called the Chargers): men's basketball, women's basketball,[14] men's volleyball, women's volleyball, and men's golf. There is also a curling team.[15]


Many clubs have been organized at the college, including: Associate Degree Club, British Columbia Young Liberals of Camosun, Camosun College Greens, Camosun College Persian Club, Debate Club, Psychology Club, French Club, Chinese Conversation Club, Falun Gong Club, International Club, Students for Environmental Awareness, Japanese Conversation Club, Korean Conversation Club, Carpe Diem/ Ballroom Dance, Camosun NDP, Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship, Mechanical Engineers Club, Poker Club, Bob's Wrenchman, and Camosun Cashflow Club.

Student Affairs[edit]

The student union on Campus is the Camosun College Student Society, where directors are elected for one year terms. Elections are every March/April and by-elections in October.

The Nexus is Camosun College's official student newspaper and is editorially separate from the Camosun College Student Society. It is a member of the Canadian University Press.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "One-on-one connection at One Therapy Rehabilitation". Williams Lake Tribune, Tara Sprickerhoff. Apr. 16, 2018
  2. ^ College and Institute Act
  3. ^ "Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) and Headcount Enrolment - About our Students - Institutional Research and Planning - Camosun College".
  4. ^ Provincial Normal School. Canadian Register of Historic Places. Retrieved 2013-07-28.
  5. ^ a b Ian Gibbs (25 April 2017). Victoria's Most Haunted: Ghost Stories from BC's Historic Capital City. Touchwood Editions. pp. 117–. ISBN 978-1-77151-214-5.
  6. ^;jsessionid=0001nQO0GxekC2eNmFOKWl6CdPN:1LNLUVUR73?lang=eng&status=&fileNumber=1384577&extension=0&startingDocumentIndexOnPage=1 trade-mark
  7. ^ "‘On the Cusp’ debuts at Victoria store front". Victoria News, Apr. 22, 2018
  8. ^ "Music at Community Colleges". Archived from the original on 2011-06-07. Retrieved 2012-07-27. The Encyclopedia of Music in Canada
  9. ^ "Culinary arts dream comes true with Songhees, Camosun College partnership". Jeff Bell, Times Colonist, March 29, 2018
  10. ^ "Victoria's Camosun College rolls out food truck classroom". CBC News, Jan 28, 2018
  11. ^ "Camosun to build Trades Learning Centre for Excellence - Camosun College".
  12. ^ "Joining the new wave of women in trades". Victoria News, Travis Paterson. Apr. 26, 2018
  13. ^ "Upgraded electrical-training shop at Camosun named after Lionel Houle". Times Colonist, February 20, 2018
  14. ^ "Camosun Chargers edged out in championship game". Times Colonist, March 3, 2018
  15. ^ "Names and Games: Camosun College curlers make rare trip to nationals". Times Colonist, Brian Drewry March 21, 2018

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 48°29′29″N 123°25′03″W / 48.491483°N 123.417395°W / 48.491483; -123.417395