History

Laurier traces its roots to the opening of the Evangelical Lutheran Seminary in Waterloo more than 100 years ago in 1911. We’ve gone through several changes since then, and in 1973 our name changed from Waterloo Lutheran University to Wilfrid Laurier University. In 1999, we opened our campus in Brantford.

Read a historical overview of Laurier facilities, including renovations, additions and new construction throughout the years.

Who was Sir Wilfrid Laurier?

Sir Wilfrid Laurier was Canada’s seventh prime minister, serving from 1896 to 1911. He left a complex legacy that holds a variety of meanings to those impacted by decisions made under his leadership.

Mission and Values

A Laurier education is about building the whole person: mind, body and spirit. We believe that your university career must lead to more than just a job to be considered a success; Laurier creates engaged and aware citizens in a culture that inspires lives of leadership and purpose.

Motto

Veritas Omnia Vincit (Truth Conquers All).

By the Numbers

We're Number 1

  • #1: most sustainable campus in Ontario (2017, Corporate Knights)

  • #1: national ranking in “student career services” (CERIC), the highest score among Canadian postsecondary institutions with most impressive career services models.

  • #1: national ranking in “satisfaction with decision to attend Laurier” (2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, Maclean's)

  • #1: national ranking in “residence living” and “extracurricular activities” (2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, Maclean’s)

  • #1: national ranking in “course instructors” (2020, Maclean’s)

  • #1: national ranking in “student life staff” and “administrative staff” (2020, 2019, 2018, Maclean's)

  • #1: Laurier has the largest business degree co-op program in Canada

Institutional Facts

  • 109: age of the institution

  • 20,000: students

  • 1:25: Laurier’s faculty-to-student ratio

  • 100+: courses taught in active learning classrooms

  • 4: fully online undergraduate degrees

  • 3: fully online graduate degrees

  • 24: countries with which we have exchange programs

  • 105,000+: alumni living in 100+ countries around the world

  • 9: faculties

  • 6: campuses and locations

  • 25: research centres and institutes

  • 617,000+: people in Waterloo Region

  • 1.5: hours from the Brantford campus to Toronto

  • 1.5: hours from the Waterloo campus to Toronto

  • <1: hours from the Milton campus to Toronto

  • 10: minutes it takes to walk across Laurier's Waterloo campus

  • 240+: community partnerships between Laurier and organizations in Brantford

  • x2: new One Market campus expansion doubled the footprint of the Brantford campus

Co-op and Employment Facts

  • 97.5%: of 2019 graduates have secure employment or undertook postgraduate studies after graduation

  • 1,000: employers who recruit co-op students at Laurier every year

  • 5,700: co-op jobs posted every year

  • 99.5%: employment rate for Business and Economics co-op in 2019/20

  • 800+: events and workshops held at Laurier’s Career Centre every year

Research Facts

Library Facts

  • 1,000+: student study spots in the Laurier Library

  • 176,000: electronic journals available through the Laurier Library

  • 1,200,000: electronic books available through the Laurier Library

  • 1,000,000: physical items in the Laurier Library

  • 3,000,000: physical items accessible through local universities network in Omni

Clubs and Extracurriculars Facts

  • 200+: clubs and groups at Laurier

  • 6,000: students participating in clubs and groups and who hold an experience record of extracurricular achievements

  • 70%: upper-year students who participate in community service or volunteer work

  • 3,000: volunteer opportunities through our students’ union

  • 4,000+: students who participate in orientation week

  • 5,000: safe walks home provided by Foot Patrol

  • 69: partner institutions with which we have exchange programs

  • 500+: students who went on exchange or participated in other opportunities abroad in 2018/19

Athletics and Recreation Facts

  • 29: intramural sports

  • 555: intramural teams

  • 10: national championships in the last ten years

  • 19: provincial championships in the last ten years

  • 22: varsity sports teams

  • 550: varsity athletes

  • 118,000: square footage of the Laurier YMCA in Brantford

  • 1: Olympic-length swimming pool

  • 104: hours the Athletic Complex is open every week

  • 20: women’s-only fitness centre hours every week

  • 967: dance registrations every year

  • 19: football players drafted to the CFL in the last ten years (including three in the first round)