York University is helping to shape the global thinkers and thinking that will define tomorrow. York is Canada’s third largest university, with a commitment to excellence which reflects a rich diversity of perspectives and a strong sense of social responsibility that sets us apart.

York U At A Glance 2014

About York U

York U was founded in 1959

  • York U is the 2nd largest university in Ontario, 3rd largest in Canada
  • 280+ university partnerships across the globe
  • $1 billion operating budget

Our Community

York U has 47,000 undergraduate and 6,000 graduate students for a total of 53,000 students

  • 7,000+ faculty and staff
  • 275,000+ alumni
  • 5,190 international students from 171 countries

Our campuses

Vari HallKeele Campus
Located 30 minutes from downtown Toronto, the Keele campus offers a rigorous academic foundation balanced by real-world experiential education. Our 53,000 students, from across the world, are enrolled in 160+ undergraduate and 59 graduate programs.
Glendon ManorGlendon Campus
Set on the historic Wood family estate, the Glendon campus is a lush parkland in the heart of Toronto offering an intimate learning community. Home to 2,700 students, Glendon specializes exclusively in the liberal arts, and is the only campus in Canada to do so in more than one language.

Academic Excellence

  • 11 Faculties
  • 5,000 courses, 200+ undergraduate and graduate degree programs
  • 12,043 degrees granted in 2014
  • The Schulich School of Business ranked first among Canadian schools in The Economist
  • Home to Canada’s largest Liberal Arts program
  • Offers the Greater Toronto Area’s only Digital Media program, incorporating performance
98% of professors have the highest educational qualification in their field
  • Osgoode Hall Law School internationally renowned as one of Canada’s largest and most distinguished law schools
  • Home to Canada’s only Space Engineering program
  • Largest psychology program in North America
  • The Disaster & Emergency Management program is the leading program of its kind in Canada
  • Glendon campus is the only bilingual university campus in southern Ontario

Did You Know

Murray Ross, York U's first president sitting at a desk on the land before the university was builtLeading the way
With the founding of York U, Dr. Murray Ross (pictured here in 1960) realized his vision of a leading interdisciplinary research and teaching institution. Ross served as the University’s first president for a decade and went on to receive the Order of Canada, among other honours.
York U ObservatorySpace explorations
York U has its own astronomical observatory located at the Keele campus and provides an invaluable hands-on teaching and research facility for all undergraduate and graduate astronomy students. It is also open to the public for tours all year around.
Las NubesYork U rainforest
The Las Nubes research centre is located in the Costa Rican rainforest and is visited by students in the environmental studies program every summer for field experience studies. York even brews its own brand of “Las Nubes” coffee.


External research funding at York U is $71 million
  • 34 Canada Research Chairs*
  • 26 Active Fellows of the Royal Society of Canada
  • 26 Research Centres
  • 28 Distinguished Research Professors
  • 613 agreements facilitated by Innovation York  in 2014
*CRC data is based on 2012 biannual chairs reallocation exercise

Notable Alumni

Our accomplished alumni span the globe making an impact in their fields and redefining leadership.

York U has 275,000+ alumni
  • Rachel McAdams, BFA ’01, Actress
  • Rick Waugh, MBA ’74, LLD ’07, CEO, Scotiabank
  • Dr. Roger Pulwarty, Physical Scientist, US National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration, BSc ’86
  • The Honourable Justice Michael Tulloch, BA ’86, LLB ’89
  • Dr. Steve MacLean, Astronaut & Quantum Physicist, BSc ’77, PhD ’83, DSc ’93
  • Sandie Rinaldo, Anchor, CTV National News Weekend Co-Host/Reporter, W5, BA ’73
  • Joel Cohen, Writer & Producer of The Simpsons, MBA ’92
  • Dan Riskin, Evolutionary Biologist & Television Show Host, MSc ’00
  • Dan Kanter, Musical Director & Guitarist for Justin Bieber, BFA ’07
  • Kathleen Taylor, Chair-elect, RBC, Osgoode Hall Law School, Schulich School of Business, JD/MBA ’84

Learn about more of our notable York U alumni