Lakehead University

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Lakehead University
Motto Ad Augusta per Angusta
Motto in English
Through Trials to Triumph
Established Lakehead University 1965; Lakehead Technical Institute 1946
Type Public university
Endowment $31.14 million
Chancellor Derek Burney
President Brian J. R. Stevenson
Academic staff
317 (full time)[1]
Administrative staff
Students 7,848
Undergraduates 7,254
Postgraduates 594
Location Thunder Bay ; Orillia, Ontario, Canada
Campus Rural/Suburban
Colors Royal Blue, Gold
Sports Lakehead Thunderwolves
Mascot The Thunderwolf
Affiliations AUCC, IAU, COU, CIS, UArctic, ACU, CUSID, OUA, AUFSC, Ontario Network of Women in engineering, CBIE, CUP, CFS
Lakehead university wordmark 14

Lakehead University is a public research university with campuses in Thunder Bay and Orillia, Ontario, Canada. Lakehead University, shortened to 'Lakehead U', or 'LU', is non-denominational and provincially supported. It has undergraduate programs, graduate programs, the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law, and is home to the western campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine.

The school has more than 45,000 alumni. The main campus in Thunder Bay has more than 7,900 students. As of September 2006, a new permanent extension campus in Orillia, located about 150 km north of Toronto, has more than 1,100 students.


Lakehead Technical Institute was established in 1946 in response to a brief outlining the need for an institution of higher education in northwestern Ontario.[2] Lakehead University evolved from Lakehead Technical Institute (founded 1946) and Lakehead College of Arts, Science, and Technology (founded 1957). [3]

Lakehead Technical Institute was established on June 4, 1946, by an Order-in-Council of the Province of Ontario. Classes commenced in January 1948, in temporary rented quarters in downtown Port Arthur. In September of that same year, the first university courses were added to the curriculum.[4]

Lakehead College of Arts, Science and Technology was established by an Act of the Ontario Legislature proclaimed on August 1, 1957.[5] Years later, the original Lakehead College of Arts, Science and Technology Act was amended to grant the college authority to establish new faculties, and confer degrees in arts and sciences.[4] The Lakehead University Act, 1965, was given royal assent on June 22, 1965, and came into force on July 1, 1965. The Lakehead College of Arts, Science and Technology, thereafter known as "Lakehead University," was continued under this new charter. The first degrees were conferred on May 5, 1965. The first university chancellor was Senator Norman McLeod Paterson.[6]


Thunder Bay campus

The original college site comprised some 32 hectares of land in south-west Port Arthur, Ontario. From 1962 to 1965, an additional 87 hectares of adjoining land were purchased in anticipation of future expansion. The first building was opened in 1957.

Centennial Building
Advanced Technology & Academic Centre.

In 2005 the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM) was formed as a joint initiative between Lakehead University and Laurentian University in Sudbury. NOSM is organised within the Faculty of Medicine of both Laurentian (East Campus) and Lakehead (West Campus) universities. The medical school has multiple teaching and research sites across Northern Ontario, including large and small communities. Students are given a choice of attending either one of the two main NOSM campuses. NOSM is the only Canadian medical school to be established as a stand-alone not-for-profit corporation, with its own Board of Directors and corporation bylaws.

A new law school was established; the faculty accepted its first students in 2013.[7] The program is housed in the former Port Arthur Collegiate Institute. In 2014 it was named the Bora Laskin Faculty of Law, after the fourteeenth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Canada.

Lakehead University's physical plant now consists of 39 buildings and 116 hectares of property including 40 hectares of landscaped and maintained grounds.

Orillia campus

Lakehead University opened a campus in Downtown Orillia in 2006, and in September 2010 expanded to its new 500 University Avenue location. A new academic building at this site represents the first phase in the development of Canada’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum university campus. A 271-bed student residence building and a cafeteria/bookstore facility opened in November 2012 at the University Avenue site.

All undergraduate programs are offered at the 500 University Avenue site, while the professional year of Lakehead – Orillia’s education programs are offered at the downtown campus. The Orillia campus has an enrollment of over 1,400 students at its two locations (2013/2014).


Accommodations at Lakehead are divided into three living styles: residence halls, apartments and townhouses. The Thunder Bay residence currently has a total of 1,196 beds and three cafeteria/dining halls. Students can choose from meal options that range from kitchenette, full-kitchen and complete meal plan depending on the residence styles.

The men's residence for 52 students was opened in fall of 1962, and has grown to include a residence village consisting of 10 new buildings. The village is situated on the banks of the McIntyre River within easy 5-minute walking distance of all university buildings and athletic facilities.

From 1989 to 1992, a complex of townhouses marked the newest addition to the residence facility that includes handicap accessible units.

A 271-bed residence in Orillia opened its doors in late Fall 2012.

Academic organization

The university has nine faculties: Business Administration, Education, Engineering, Natural Resources Management, Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences, Science and Environmental Studies, Social Sciences and Humanities, Medicine, and Graduate Studies. The Faculty of Law welcomed its first students in September 2013.[8]

By full-time undergraduate enrollment, the Social Sciences & Humanities is the largest faculty at Lakehead 29.6%, followed by Health and Behavioral Sciences 21.2%, Science & Environmental Studies 15.6%, Engineering 11.2%, Education 12.4%, Business Administration 6.4%, Natural Resources Management1.9%, Medicine 1.7%.


A bilingual sign. The languages are English and Anishinaabe.

As a percentage of total student population, Lakehead University has one of the largest aboriginal student communities in Canada. The university has a governing board with senate policies along with Aboriginal-governed councils within its university governance structure. Lakehead also offers Aboriginal support including the Office of Aboriginal Initiatives. Special first-year bridging programs for Aboriginal students are provided. Dedicated tutoring services are available within Lakehead’s Native Nursing Access Program. There is also the Superior Science Program which goes to remote Aboriginal communities.[9] Lakehead has Canada's only Department of Aboriginal Education to foster Native Language instruction and prepare teachers to meet the needs of Aboriginal students and communities.

Scholarships and bursaries

The Government of Canada sponsors an Aboriginal Bursaries Search Tool that lists over 680 scholarships, bursaries, and other incentives offered by governments, universities, and industry to support Aboriginal post-secondary participation. Lakehead University scholarships for Aboriginal, First Nations and Métis students include: Hamlin Family Fund Nursing Bursaries; Hamlin Family Fund Bursary; Hamlin Family Fund Native Bursary; Lakehead University Native Award; TBayTel Bursary [10]

Apart from these awards, Lakehead University provides entrance scholarships to high school students with marks above 80%, paid out during four years of undergraduate. Lakehead also offers free tuition to students with a 95% average or higher.[11]

Student life

Lakehead University Student Union, or LUSU, serves as a governing body for student-run clubs. Students can participate in various activities in numerous clubs ranging from student government to multi-cultural and athletics. LUSU is also responsible for publishing the student newspaper, The Argus, as well as running The Study Coffeehouse and The Outpost Pub. These sites serve as gathering places for many campus community activities and as performance venues.


Lakehead's Thunder Bay campus has two main athletic facilities known as the Fieldhouse and the Hangar. The Fieldhouse contains a main gymnasium, weight room, squash court, 50 meter swimming pool and change-room facilities. The Hangar has a 200 meter indoor track, soccer field, cardio area, aerobic studio and a climbing wall. Lakehead University is represented in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport league by the Lakehead Thunderwolves. Varsity teams include: Basketball, Cross-Country, Hockey, Nordic Skiing, Track & Field, Volleyball, and Wrestling. it also has multiple club teams including, Men's Volleyball, men's and women's curling, and rowing.

Notable alumni

See also


  1. Institutional Statistics Book
  2. Heritage Trust Lakehead University
  3. Lakehead University
  4. 4.0 4.1 Harold S. Braun with William G. Tamblyn. 'A Northern Vision: The Development of Lakehead University.' Thunder Bay: Lakehead University, President's Office, 1987.
  5. Lakehead University Act
  6. Pound, Richard W. (2005). 'Fitzhenry and Whiteside Book of Canadian Facts and Dates'. Fitzhenry and Whiteside.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Lakehead wins approval to launch law school". The Globe and Mail, July 5, 2011.
  8. "Search". The Globe and Mail.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. "The University of Winnipeg". Retrieved 28 August 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. "Aboriginal Bursaries Search Tool". Retrieved 28 August 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "Financing Your Education - Lakehead University". Retrieved 28 August 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Swimming to Success" (PDF). Sursum Corda. Summer 2010. Retrieved 4 May 2012.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. TALBOT (Don) Donald Malcolm, Who's Who in Australia |access-date= requires |url= (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

Further reading

  • Harold S. Braun with William G. Tamblyn. 'A Northern Vision: The Development of Lakehead University.' Thunder Bay: Lakehead University, President's Office, 1987.

External links