University of Lethbridge

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University of Lethbridge
University of lethbridge logo.svg
Motto Latin: Fiat Lux
Motto in English
Let there be light
Type Public
Established 1967
Endowment $147M[1]
Chancellor Janice Varzari
President Dr. Michael J. Mahon
Provost Dr. Andrew Hakin
Academic staff
Undergraduates 8,631[3]
Postgraduates 604[3]
Location Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Campus Urban, 185 ha (460 acres) or 1.85 km2 (0.71 sq mi)
Colours Blue & Gold         
Nickname Horns
Affiliations AUCC, IAU, U Sports, ACU, CWUAA, CUP.
Mascot Luxie

The University of Lethbridge (also known as uLethbridge, uLeth, and U of L) is a publicly funded comprehensive academic and research university, founded in the liberal education tradition, located in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, with a second campus in the city of Calgary, Alberta. The main building, University Hall, sits among the coulees on the west side of the Oldman River.


The University of Lethbridge, established in 1967, is a comprehensive academic and research institution (CARI) offering over 150 undergraduate degree programs in the Faculties of Arts & Science, Management, Education, Health Sciences and Fine Arts. It is home to a School of Graduate Studies, with over 50 masters and PhD programs and offers an engineering transfer program. The university is well known for its emphases on liberal education, experiential learning, interdisciplinary research, and co-op programs. In 2017, the university established a School of Liberal Education.

University Hall, designed by architect Arthur Erickson and completed in 1971 within the coulee landscape west of the Oldman River, has received international acclaim for its architectural originality and functional design. The university has since expanded to include a library, the Centre for Sport and Wellness, Anderson Hall, Student’s Union building, Alberta Water and Environmental Science Building, Markin Hall, the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience, Community Stadium, Penny Building (downtown), and several residences. The university also has a satellite campus in Calgary, offering degree programs through evening and weekend courses in management and health sciences.


The latest development at the University of Lethbridge is the Destination Project, the first phase of which is a new $280M 38,500 square metres (414,000 sq ft) science and academic building. This facility, set to open in 2019, will feature state-of-the-art laboratory and teaching facilities, as well as outreach and maker spaces. The building will be home to over 100 faculty researchers in physics, astronomy, chemistry, biochemistry, biological sciences, neuroscience, and psychology.


The president of the University of Lethbridge, Mike Mahon, is in his second term and has led the institution since July 1, 2010. Mahon, who previously held the role of the dean of the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Alberta, is also the chair of the Board of Universities Canada.


Founded on the principle of liberal education and known for its transdisciplinary programs, experiential education, cooperative education, and undergraduate involvement in faculty research, the University of Lethbridge offers both graduate and undergraduate degrees in five faculties and two schools, as described below.


The University of Lethbridge provides special first-year bridging programs for Aboriginal students. The University of Lethbridge’s Niitsitapi Teacher Education Program with Red Crow Community College was developed in partnership with specific Aboriginal communities to meet specific needs within Aboriginal communities.[4]


The University of Lethbridge is a research-intensive university, named "Research University of the Year" in the undergraduate category in 2012, and consistently ranks highly in terms of TriCouncil funding, especially in the sciences, but increasingly in all fields of scholarly inquiry [5]. It is home to 60 research chairs, 8 Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada, and 2 Order of Canada recipients.

The University is home to 15 centres and institutes, which transcend traditional disciplinary boundaries, including include the Alberta Gambling Research Institute (AGRI), Alberta RNA Research and Training Institute (ARRTI), Alberta Terrestrial Imaging Centre (ATIC), Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience (CCBN), Canadian Centre for Research in Advanced Fluorine Technologies (C-CRAFT), Centre for the Study of Scholarly Communication (CSSC), Centre for Culture and Community (CCC), Centre for Oral History and Tradition (COHT), Centre for Socially Responsible Marketing (CSRM), Health Services Quality Institute (HSQI), Institute for Child and Youth Studies (I-CYS), Institute for Space Imaging Science (ISIS), Prentice Institute for Global Population and Economy, Small Business Institute (SBI), and Water Institute for Sustainable Environments (WISE).

The university’s infrastructure in the sciences and information technology is accessible to undergraduate students and the university is a provincial leader in terms of undergraduate involvement in publishable and translational faculty research and innovation.

In 2005, the United Nations named the University of Lethbridge the Canadian Centre of its Water for Life decade (2005–2015).

Faculties and schools[edit]

Students' Union building at University of Lethbridge

The University of Lethbridge offers over 150 degree programs. It has seven faculties and schools that administer its bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees.

  • Faculty of Arts and Science
  • Faculty of Education
  • Faculty of Fine Arts
  • Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Dhillon School of Business
  • School of Graduate Studies
  • School of Liberal Education

The Faculty of Arts and Science offers 9 pre-professional programs in dentistry, journalism, law, medicine, nutrition and food sciences, optometry, social work, and veterinary medicine, as well as an engineering transfer program, through which students take their first year at the University of Lethbridge before completing their degrees at the University of Alberta or the University of Saskatchewan.

The Agility program in Innovation and Entrepreneurship was launched at the university in 2015. This program encourages transdisciplinary innovation, including social innovation, and will soon include a large makerspace in the new science and academic building to complement existing, specialized makerspaces. The university also partners with tecconnect (Economic Development Lethbridge), RINSA, and other organizations to encourage the production of spinoffs and collaboration with industry.


The University of Lethbridge was ranked 3rd in Canada in the primarily undergraduate category in the 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 Maclean’s University Rankings.[6]


The university is represented in U Sports by the Lethbridge Pronghorns, formerly known as the Chinooks. They have men's and women's teams in basketball, ice hockey, judo, rugby union, soccer, swimming, and track and field. They lack teams in volleyball.The Pronghorns have won national championships in men's hockey (1994) and women's rugby (2007, 2008, 2009[7]).[citation needed] The university has an intramurals program.

The home arena for the Pronghorns is First Choice Saving Centre, which includes 3 full-size basketball courts, an indoor track field, a rock-climbing wall, and an exercise room. The construction was finished in 2006 and is open to public on a membership basis.

An outdoor stadium is situated in the southern campus and opened in fall of 2009. It is the home for Pronghorns soccer teams and the women’s rugby team.

Art Gallery [edit]

The University of Lethbridge Art Gallery has one of the largest collections in Canada of 19th and 20th-century Canadian, American and European art, with over 13,000 pieces including drawing, print making, painting, photography, sculpture and installation.

The previous director, Jeffrey Spalding, spearheaded this nationally renowned art collection. Josephine Mills was appointed director/curator of the Art Gallery in 2001 and maintains a strong exhibition, publication, and research program.

The collection quickly outgrew available archiving and storage space, so a new building was completed in 1999 to house large works. Additional renovations were made in 2000 and 2003 to update a study area for the collection and an incoming/outgoing art handling area.

In 2006, a comprehensive registration database was made available online of the University of Lethbridge collections.

Lineage and establishment[edit]

University of Lethbridge
Chancellor Term start Term end
Louis S. Turcotte 1968 1972
James Oshiro 1972 1975
Van E. Christou 1975 1979
Islay M. Arnold 1979 1983
William S. Russell 1983 1987
Keith V. Robin 1987 1991
Ingrid M. Speaker 1991 1995
Robert Hironaka 1995 1999
Jim Horsman 1999 2003
Shirley DeBow 2003 2007
Richard Davidson 2007 2011
Shirley McClellan 2011 2015
Janice Varzari 2015
President Term start Term end
Russell J. Leskiw (acting) 1967 1967
W.A.S. "Sam" Smith 1967 1972
William E. Beckel 1972 1979
John H. Woods 1979 1986
Gerald S. Kenyon (acting) 1986 1987
Howard E. Tennant 1987 2000
William H. Cade 2000 2010
Michael J. Mahon 2010

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Town Hall Meeting will update budgetary process". University of Lethbridge. 2009. Retrieved 2009-10-08. 
  2. ^ "Discover U of L". University of Lethbridge. 2009. Retrieved 2009.  Check date values in: |accessdate= (help)
  3. ^ a b "Annual Indicators for 2010 - 2011". University of Lethbridge. 2011. Retrieved July 16, 2011. 
  4. ^ "The University of Winnipeg" (PDF). Archived from the original on 2008-06-26. Retrieved 2015-08-28. 
  5. ^ "Research Universities of the Year 2012" (PDF). Research InfoSource. Retrieved 19 December 2012. 
  6. ^
  7. ^

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 49°40′00″N 112°51′50″W / 49.66667°N 112.86389°W / 49.66667; -112.86389 (University of Lethbridge)