Samiksha Jaiswal (Editor)

Concordia University

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Public University

Jonathan Wener

Graham Carr

+1 514-848-2424


C$ 156.4 million

Alan Shepard


Total enrollment
46,378 (2014)

Concordia University

1974 by the merger of Loyola College (1896) and Sir George Williams University (1926).

7141 Sherbrooke St W, Montreal, QC H4B 1R6, Canada

John Molson School of Business

Undergraduate tuition and fees
Local tuition: 3,368 CAD (2010), Domestic tuition: 6,968 CAD (2010)

Notable alumni
Will Arnett, Mutsumi Takahashi, René Balcer, Gerald T McCaughey, Mireille Gingras

McGill University, Université de Montréal, Université du Québec à Montréal, Dawson College, HEC Montréal


Concordia University (commonly referred to as Concordia) is a public comprehensive university located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Founded in 1974 following the merger of Loyola College and Sir George Williams University, Concordia is one of the three universities in Quebec where English is the primary language of instruction. As of the 2014-2015 academic year, there were 46,378 students enrolled at Concordia, making the university among the largest in Canada by enrolment. The university has two campuses, set approximately 7 kilometres (4 miles) apart: Sir George Williams Campus is the main campus in Downtown Montreal, in an area known as Quartier Concordia, and Loyola Campus in the residential district of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. With four faculties, a school of graduate studies and numerous colleges, centres and institutes, Concordia offers over 300 undergraduate and 100 graduate programs and courses.


The university's John Molson School of Business is consistently ranked within the top 10 Canadian business schools, and within the top 100 worldwide. Moreover, Concordia was ranked 7th among Canadian and 229th among world universities in the International Professional Classification of Higher Education Institutions, a worldwide ranking compiled by the École des Mines de Paris that uses as its sole criterion the number of graduates occupying the rank of Chief Executive Officer at Fortune 500 companies.

Concordia is a non-sectarian and coeducational institution, with more than 200,000 living alumni worldwide. The university is a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, the International Association of Universities, the Association of Commonwealth Universities, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, the Canadian University Society for Intercollegiate Debate as well as the Canadian Bureau for International Education and the Canadian University Press. The university's varsity teams, known as the Stingers, compete in the Quebec Student Sport Federation of Canadian Interuniversity Sport.


Although the roots of its founding institutions go back more than 160 years, Concordia University was formed on August 24, 1974, through the merger of Loyola College (1896) and Sir George Williams University (1926).

Loyola College

Loyola College traces its roots to an English-language program at the Jesuit Collège Sainte-Marie de Montréal (today part of the Université du Québec à Montréal) at the Sacred Heart Convent. In 1896, Loyola College was established at the corner of Bleury Street and Saint Catherine Street. Loyola College was named in honour of Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus. On March 10, 1898, the institution was incorporated by the Government of Quebec and became a full-fledged college. The same year, following a fire, the college was relocated, further west on Drummond Street, south of Saint Catherine. Although founded as a collège classique (the forerunners of Quebec's college system), Loyola began granting university degrees through Université Laval in 1903.

The college moved into the present west-end campus on Sherbrooke Street West in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce in 1916. The School of Sociology opened in 1918. In 1920, the institution became affiliated with the Université de Montréal, which began granting degrees instead of Université Laval.

Memorial bronze honour roll plaques in the entrance hall, administrative offices are dedicated to those from Loyola College who fought in the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War.

The inter-war period was marked by the shift of education in the institution, the "collège classique" education was replaced by humanistic education (Liberal Arts College) in 1940, and Loyola became a four-year university. Loyola College never became a chartered university, and never had the ability to grant its own university degrees. Theology and philosophy were taught to all students until 1972.

In 1940, the Faculty of Science and the Department of Engineering, which became a faculty in 1964, were created. In addition to providing the same undergraduate programs as other colleges, the institution also offered innovative fields of study at the time, such as exercise science and communication studies. Students could enrol in Academic majors starting in 1953 and honours programs in 1958. Students graduating from Loyola could afterwards pursue graduate-level education in other universities, with a few earning Rhodes Scholarships.

Starting in 1958, Loyola also began offering its first evening courses for students not being able to go to school full-time. New courses were given in library science and faith community nursing. Since its creation, Loyola College had welcomed almost exclusively young English-speaking Catholic men as students. It became co-ed in 1959 and became less homogeneous with the ever increasing number of foreign students.

Obtaining a university charter was an important issue in the 1960s. Although many wanted the Loyola College to become Loyola University, the Quebec government preferred to annex it to Sir George Williams University. Negotiations began in 1968 and ended with the creation of Concordia University on August 24, 1974.

Sir George Williams University

In 1851, the first YMCA in North America was established on Ste-Helene street in Old Montreal. Beginning in 1873, the YMCA offered evening classes to allow working people in the English-speaking community to pursue their education while working during the day. Sixty years later, the Montreal YMCA relocated to its current location on Stanley Street in Downtown Montreal. In 1926, the education program at the YMCA was re-organized as Sir George Williams College, named after George Williams, founder of the original YMCA in London, upon which the Montreal YMCA was based. In 1934, Sir George Williams College offered the first undergraduate credit course in adult education in Canada.

Sir George Williams College became Sir George Williams University (SGWU) in 1948, when it received a university charter from the provincial government, though it remained the education arm of the Montreal YMCA. SGWU expanded into its first standalone building, the Norris Building, in 1956. It established a Centre for Human Relations and Community Studies in 1963. SGWU continued to hold classes in the YMCA building until the construction of the Henry F. Hall Building in 1966.

The university gained international attention in 1969, when a group of students occupied the Hall Building's 9th floor computer lab (see Sir George Williams Computer Riot).

Following several years of discussions and planning, Sir George Williams University merged with Loyola College to create Concordia University in 1974. Concordia provided students with representative student organizations and greater power over administrative decisions at the university.


In 1968, in the wake of the Parent Commission Report, which recommended for the secularization of Quebec's educational system, the Quebec government asked Loyola College and Sir George Williams University to consider some form of union. The proposed merger was discussed by the Loyola-Sir George Williams Joint Steering Committee, a committee created to analyze all forms of possible mergers of the two institutions. It was proposed, in 1969, to create a university federation that allowed students to take courses at both campuses without paying additional fees. There is also mention of a shuttle bus service linking the remote facilities 7 km (4.3 mi) apart.

Criticized for the difficulties encountered by the cohesion of the various departments and faculties, this option was set aside, but not totally rejected by the Joint Steering Committee. The Joint Committee of Representatives of the Board of Trustees of Loyola College and the Board of Governors of Sir George Williams University was formed in December 1971 and produced in the fall of 1972, a document outlining the basis of a university with two campuses. While a number of possible models were considered, including that of a loose federation, the solution finally adopted was that of an integrated institution, Concordia University, operating under the existing charter of Sir George Williams University. Following several revisions in November 1972, the document became the main plan of the proposed merger. It was accepted by both institutions, which began the process of consolidating their operations.

In early 1973, the two institutions announced the merger would take place that fall. However, legal and administrative procedures delayed the merger for another year. On August 24, 1974, the Government of Quebec recognized the merger, thus creating Concordia University. The name was taken from the motto of the city of Montreal, Concordia salus (meaning "well-being through harmony").

"When you join together two lively institutions, each with its own philosophies and ways of doing things, each firmly dedicated to freedom of thought and speech, you must expect a measure of friction. We look forward now to a new period of creative friction."

Post merger

The legal existence of Concordia dates from August 24, 1974. The integration of the various faculties of the two institutions into a coherent whole took several years. The five faculties of the new university were a combination of existing faculties and departments prior to the merger. There was a Faculty of Commerce, a Faculty of Science and Faculty of Arts at Sir George Williams University. Additionally, there was a Faculty of Arts and Science from Loyola College. The Faculty of Engineering of both institutions had previously been combined.

The Faculty of Fine Arts was created in 1976.

The first phase of combination of the Faculties of Arts and Science began in 1977 and ended in 1985.

In the late 1980s, the Georges P. Vanier Library on the Loyola Campus was enlarged, while in 1992, the library on Sir George Williams Campus moved to the new J.W. McConnell Building. The Norris Building was closed the same year.

On August 24, 1992, Valery Fabrikant, a Mechanical Engineering professor, shot five colleagues, killing four, on the ninth floor of the Hall Building. Fabrikant was convicted of the murders and sentenced to life imprisonment. The university erected a memorial to the slain professors (four granite tables) in the Hall Building lobby.

Starting in 1998, the university entered a major phase of expansion to meet its growing student enrolment. In August 2003, Concordia inaugurated the Richard J. Renaud Science Complex on Loyola Campus.

The university became a venue for radical and violent protests targeting Israel and Jewish students. On September 9, 2002, a scheduled speech from the then former (and now current) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was cancelled following violent pro-Palestinian riots inside the Henry F. Hall Building.

In 2005, the university launched a major urban redevelopment project in the neighbourhood surrounding Sir George Williams Campus known as the Quartier Concordia. That same year, the Engineering, Computer Science and Visual Arts Integrated Complex opened its doors on Saint Catherine Street West between Guy Street and Mackay Street.

In September 2009, the university marked the opening of the new building for the John Molson School of Business.


The university has two campuses, set approximately 7 km apart: Sir George Williams Campus in the downtown core of Montreal, in an area known as Quartier Concordia (at the Guy-Concordia Metro station), and Loyola Campus in the residential west-end district of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce. They are connected by free shuttle-bus service for students, faculty and staff.

Libraries, Archives and Galleries

Concordia University has two main library locations: the R. Howard Webster Library located in the J.W. McConnell Building of Sir George Williams Campus, and the Georges P. Vanier Library on Loyola Campus. Concordia Libraries house several special and unique collections including the Azrieli Holocaust Collection and the Irving Layton Collection. Most special collections are located in the Vanier Library. The Libraries also maintains the university's institutional repository, Spectrum. The Concordia Libraries are members of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries. Concordia University Libraries also has partnerships with the Canadian Research Knowledge Network and The Data Liberation Initiative.

Concordia University's Hall Building houses The Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery. Samuel Schecter, an art enthusiast and businessman, set up two funds in 1962 to be used for the purchase of Canadian art at Sir George Williams University and at Loyola College (Montreal). When Sir George Williams University and Loyola College merged under the name Concordia in 1974 their respective art collections were also combined. The collection of the Leonard & Bina Ellen Gallery consists of 1700 paintings, sculptures, prints, photographs and videos, many of the works by 20th-century Canadian artists.

The Concordia University Archives house official records of, or relating to, or people/activities connected with Concordia University and its two founding institutions. The collection consists of manuscripts, texts, photographs, audio-visual material and artifacts.

New buildings

In 2001, Concordia embarked on a mission to develop and expand the quality of the downtown campus, and to revive the west end in Montreal.

The university has also acquired the historic Grey Nuns motherhouse near its Sir George Williams Campus, for $18 million. Built in 1871, it would alone double the size of the current downtown campus. From 2007 to 2022, the university will begin occupying the building in four separate phases. The large property will house the faculty of Fine Arts and possibly the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema, and other departments. Currently the Grey Nuns building is only partially owned by Concordia (about 1/3 of the building on Saint-Mathieu Road), however full control of the building will be given to Concordia University in 2011. Concordia Residence Life currently houses nearly 250 students each year in the Grey Nuns Building. The dorm rooms are among the largest in the country, as many of the rooms have been transformed from when the section of the Grey Nuns Building was occupied by the Grey Nuns. The site was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 2011.

The Engineering, Computer Science and Visual Arts Integrated Complex (EV Building) at Saint Catherine Street and Guy Street was opened in September 2005. The building is directly connected to the Guy-Concordia Metro station and also houses Le Gym, a facility of Athletics and Recreation. Across the street, the 100-year-old TD Canada Trust building was donated to Concordia in 2005 by the Toronto-Dominion Bank. The university had planned to begin using this space in 2006.

Construction of the new John Molson School of Business (JMSB) Building that is located on the corner of Guy and de Maisonneuve streets began in February 2007. The Quebec Minister of Education, Recreation and Sports, Jean-Marc Fournier, on October 30, 2006, announced an investment of $60 million towards the construction of the new building. The minister made the announcement during a ceremony at Concordia. The government's $60 million represents about half of the total construction costs. Construction started on January 22, 2006, and the building was completed and opened in September 2009. The 15-story building now houses the JMSB's 6,000 full and part-time students under the same roof for the very first time. The Departments of Contemporary Dance, Theatre and Music at Concordia have also moved into the new JMSB Building. It is connected to the EV Building by a tunnel under Guy Street.

In April 2010, a 120-metre tunnel completed the underground connections of the Guy-Concordia Metro station with the Henry F. Hall Building and the J.W. McConnell Building.

Quartier Concordia

Quartier Concordia is a neighbourhood redevelopment project centred around Concordia University's Sir George Williams Campus in downtown Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Bordered by Sherbrooke Street, Saint-Mathieu Street, René Lévesque Boulevard and Bishop Street, the district is designed to be a green urban campus that will improve the use and quality of public places and spaces, student life on campus and transportation.

As part of the redesign, the small Norman Bethune Square has been redesigned and enlarged. Sidewalks in the area will also be widened, with additional trees.

As of September 2010, an underground tunnel links the university's Henry F. Hall and J.W. McConnell buildings with the Guy-Concordia Metro station. The hallway was completed in Spring 2010. However, a project to create a green space on Mackay Street has been put on hold.


Students enter the university in September, or, in some cases, in January or May. An undergraduate degree normally takes three or four years studying full-time to complete, a Master's takes from a year and a half to three years, and a Ph.D. is at least four years long. Certificates and diplomas usually take no longer than a year and a half to complete.

Concordia has more than 300 undergraduate programs, divided into four faculties. The faculties are the Faculty of Arts and Science, the Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science, the Faculty of Fine Arts and the John Molson School of Business. Students are normally enrolled in one of these faculties, but they may take courses from any of the others as part of their studies. Class sizes vary from 85 to 400 students.

The School of Graduate Studies offers about 70 programs leading to master's and doctoral degrees, as well as graduate diplomas and certificates for professionals seeking to upgrade their knowledge and skills.

The Centre for Continuing Education offers programs and services designed to make it easier for students to attend the university and be successful at their studies.

The Institute for Co-operative Education administers more than 40 bachelor's and master's programs in an alternating co-op work study format. Concordia's co-op programs enable students to enrich their learning by participating in career-relevant 12-17 week full-time, paid work terms. Depending on their faculty and major, co-op students will usually graduate with a minimum of 12 months of academically relevant work experience. There are also Industrial Experience and Professional Experience options in certain disciplinefs that enable students to participate in a summer-only work term. Concordia is a member of the Canadian Association for Co-operative Education (CAFCE).

During the 2014-2015 academic year, there were 30,068 undergraduate students, 7,835 graduate students and 2,475 Continuing Education enrolled at Conocordia University.

Faculty of Arts and Science

Concordia University's Faculty of Arts and Science contains 21 departments and seven colleges, schools and institutes in the humanities, sciences and social sciences at the undergraduate and graduate levels. There are over 293 programs, offering more than 2,400 courses. There are 500 full-time and 400 part-time faculty members. During the 2010-2011 academic year, there were 15,767 undergraduate and 2,103 graduate students enrolled in the faculty.

In addition to regular academic programs, the Faculty of Arts and Science also includes three colleges, two schools and two institutes. These are the Liberal Arts College, the Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability, the School of Community and Public Affairs, the School of Canadian Irish Studies, the Science College, the Simone de Beauvoir Institute and the Concordia Institute for Canadian Jewish Studies.

The Loyola College for Diversity and Sustainability (formerly Loyola International College) is an interdisciplinary college of Concordia University on Loyola Campus, the original site of Loyola College. It offers minor programs in Diversity and the Contemporary World and Sustainability Studies.

At the undergraduate level, the Faculty of Arts and Science offers both Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BSc) programs with majors ranging from economics, political science and sociology to actuarial mathematics, biology and ecology.

Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science

The Faculty of Engineering and Computer Science (ENCS) offers 86 undergraduate and graduate-level programs in the following disciplines: Aerospace Engineering, Building Engineering, Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Information Systems Security, Mechanical Engineering, Quality Systems Engineering and Software Engineering. The engineering programs are all accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board (CAEB). During the 2010-2011 academic year, there were 3,501 undergraduate and 2,438 graduate students enrolled in the faculty.

Bridge Building Competition

The Troitsky Bridge Building Competition brings together engineering students from across Canada and parts of the United States. Teams of students representing their universities must build a 1-metre-long bridge using only regular popsicle sticks, toothpicks, dental floss, and white glue. A panel of judges grades the bridges based on originality and presentation while a hydraulic loading device is used to determine the maximum load and performance.

Faculty of Fine Arts

The Faculty of Fine Arts offers 60 programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. It includes nine departments and four research institutes. During the 2010-2011 academic year, there were 3,153 undergraduate and 555 graduate students enrolled in the faculty. Among the departments is The Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. It is informally identified as MHSoC, and accepts 200 students a year, for study in the fields of animation, film production and film studies. It is the largest, university-based centre for the study of film animation, film production and film studies in Canada.

John Molson School of Business

The John Molson School of Business (JMSB) (formerly the Faculty of Commerce and Administration) offers 48 different programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels from six different departments. The departments are Accountancy, Finance, Marketing, Management and Supply Chain & Business Technology Management. During the 2014-15 academic year there were 7,768 undergraduate students and 1,454 graduate students enrolled, and JMSB has 51,000 alumni. The JMSB is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB). The business school has been located in a LEED silver-certified building.


Concordia is included in the 2016 Times Higher Education World University Rankings "150 Under 50," a ranking of the top 150 universities worldwide under 50 years old.

In addition, the Maclean's Guide to Canadian Universities ranked Concordia 10th nationally out of comprehensive universities in its 2016 edition. On an international scale, QS World University Rankings ranked Concordia 411-420 overall. Concordia placed 151-200 in the QS World University Rankings in the fields of Education and Training, English Language and Literature, Communication and Media Studies, Accounting and Finance, Linguistics, Psychology, and Civil and Structural Engineering. Concordia University's John Molson School of Business has fared well in academic rankings. In 2015, The Economist ranked JMSB's Master of Business Administration program 88th in the world. Bloomberg Businessweek ranked Concordia's MBA 24th worldwide and fifth best in Canada. The Academic Ranking of World Universities ranked Concordia University 151-200 worldwide in Economics and Business. Concordia University has also gained a considerable level of prestige in social sciences and humanities. Higher Education Strategy Associates' rankings of Canadian universities in 2012 placed Concordia 9th nationally in social sciences and humanities. Concordia placed 20th in Canada in natural sciences and engineering according to rankings of Canadian universities by the Higher Education Strategy Associates. Concordia's civil engineering program ranked 20th worldwide in 2016 by ARWU. For the Software Development category, Concordia University was ranked as the sixth best university in Canada.


Concordia University's athletic teams are called the Concordia Stingers. They compete with other schools in Canadian Interuniversity Sport, and more specifically, in the Quebec Student Sports Federation and the Quebec University Football League. The university has 10 varsity teams. In the fall, teams compete in Canadian football, men's and women's soccer, men's and women's rugby union and sport wrestling. There are female and male wrestlers on the team from year to year, however they compete as one team. In the winter, teams compete in men's and women's ice hockey and men's and women's basketball.

The Concordia Stingers women's ice hockey team won the Canadian national championships in 1998 and 1999. The Stingers baseball club beat Cape Breton University Capers 12-2 to win the 2009 National Baseball Crown.

Student organizations

The Concordia Student Union (usually referred to as the CSU) is the organization representing undergraduate students at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Its membership totals more than 33,000 students. Concordia students voted in favour of accreditation of their student union in a referendum in December 2000. As a result, the CSU is now legally accountable only to its student constituents.

Another noteworthy aspect of Concordia University is the number of longstanding fee-levy groups which provide numerous services, funded by the student population in the form of per-credit fees. These include the People's Potato, which offers a four-course vegan meal, the anti-capitalist grocery store, The Frigo Vert, and the Coop Bookstore.

Concordia University has a campus radio station, (CJLO) and television station, (CUTV). Concordia also has three student-run newspapers, The Link, The Concordian and French-language L'Organe. The Concordian and L'Organe are members of Canadian University Press (CUP). The university also assists in the publishing of the only student-run, bilingual literary/arts magazine The Void, founded in 2002, as well as arts magazine Interfold. The Link left the CUP network in 2012.

Concordia University is home to local and international fraternities and sororities. The Delta Phi Epsilon Sorority, represented by the Beta Pi chapter, was established at Concordia in 1994. The Zeta Tau Omega sorority (ZTΩ) was founded in 1968 by six women studying at Montreal. Mu Omicron Zeta fraternity, commonly referred to as MOZ (pronounced like "moes"), was founded in 1992. The Brotherhood of Omicron is another locally based fraternity at Concordia. Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) Fraternity has its Kappa Chi (KX) Chapter at Concordia, which was founded in 1967 at Loyola College. Alpha Epsilon Pi (ΑΕΠ) — the largest fraternity in Canada—established a chapter at Concordia in 2015.

Notable alumni and faculty

Concordia's alumni and faculty have achieved fame for their accomplishments in many fields. Distinguished alumni include a former governor general (Georges Vanier), presidents and Chief Executive Officers of major businesses (Dominic D'Alessandro, Mireille Gingras, Gerald T. McCaughey, L. Jacques Menard), philosopher Keith Heron, authors (E. Annie Proulx, Mordecai Richler, Nino Ricci, Chandra Venugopal, James Cummins), political leaders and ministers, academics Kim Sawchuk, scientists, actors (Will Arnett, Adam Kelly, Patrick Kwok-Choon), filmmakers (Moyra Davey, René Balcer, Peter Lenkov, Alex Rice, Lynne Stopkewich, B. P. Paquette, Donald Tarlton, James Tupper, Steven Woloshen, Louise Archambault, Maziar Bahari, Simone Rapisarda Casanova, Yung Chang), musicians (Emily Haines, Prita Chhabra, Julian Kytasty, Régine Chassagne, Sarah Neufeld, Michael Laucke, Richard Reed Parry, Amy Millan, Matthew Otto of Majical Cloudz), and news anchors (Dareen Abu Ghaida, Mutsumi Takahashi).


Concordia University Wikipedia

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