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Montreal University

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Montreal University

"UdeM" redirects here. For other uses, see UdeM (disambiguation).

Coordinates: 45°30′17″N 73°36′46″W / 45.50472°N 73.61278°W / 45.50472; -73.61278

Université de Montréal
Latin: Universitas Montis Regii
Motto Fide splendet et scientia (Latin)
Motto in English It shines by faith and knowledge
Established 1878 as Université Laval à Montréal
Type Public
Endowment $189.254 million[1]
Rector Guy Breton
Academic staff 7,329[2]
Admin. staff 4,427[2]
Undergraduates 42,684[2]
Postgraduates 15,798[2]
Location Montreal, QC, Canada
Campus Urban, park, 60 ha (150 acres)
Colors Royal blue, White and Black               
Athletics 15 varsity teams
Nickname Carabins
Mascot Carabin

The Université de Montréal (English translation: University of Montreal) [3] (UdeM) is a public research university in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The francophone institution comprises thirteen faculties, more than sixty departments and two[4] affiliated schools: the École Polytechnique (School of Engineering) and HEC Montréal (School of Business). It offers more than 650 undergraduate programmes and graduate programmes, including 71 doctoral programmes.The Times Higher Education World University Rankings of 2012-2013 ranks the Université de Montréal at 84th place globally .

The university has Quebec's largest sponsored research income and the third largest in Canada, allocating close to $524.1 million to research conducted in more than 150 research centres as of 2011.[5] It is also part of the U15 universities. More than 55,000 students are enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs, making it the second largest university in Canada in terms of student enrolment.[2]


Early years

As an institution, the university was first founded when the Université Laval in Quebec City founded a new branch in Montréal in 1878, which became known as the Université de Laval à Montréal.[6] This initially went against the wishes of Montréal's prelate, who advocated an independent university in his city.[7] Certain parts of the institution's educational facilities, such as those of the Séminaire de Québec, had already been established in Montréal as early as 1876.[8] The Vatican granted the university some administrative autonomy in 1889, thus allowing it to choose its own professors and license its own diplomas. However, it was not until 8 May 1919 that a papal charter from Pope Benedict XV granted full autonomy to the university.[9] It thus became an independent Catholic university and adopted Université de Montréal as its name.[10] Laval composed by Wilfrid Beaudry was dedicated to the students at Laval University and the Université de Montréal. The music for piano was published in Québec by J. Beaudry, circa 1906.[11]

At the time of its creation, less than a hundred students were admitted to the university's three faculties, which at that time were located in Old Montreal. These were the faculty of theology (located at the Grand séminaire de Montréal), the faculty of law (hosted by the Society of Saint-Sulpice) and the faculty of medicine (at the Château Ramezay).[12][13]

Graduate training based on German-inspired American models of specialized course work and completion of a research thesis was introduced and adopted.[8] Most of Québec's secondary education establishments employed classic course methods of varying quality. This forced the university to open a preparatory school in 1887 to harmonize the education level of its students. Named the "Faculty of Arts", this school would remain in use until 1972 and was the predecessor of Québec's current CEGEP system.[14]

Founding by provincial charter

Although a branch of Laval University was planned as Montreal's first French-language university, it was not until 14 February 1920, that the first provincial charter founding the university was passed.[9] The second provincial charter was passed in 1950.[9] The policy of university education initiated in the 1960s (following the Quiet Revolution) was a response to popular pressure and the belief that higher education was a key to social justice and economic productivity for individuals as well as society.[8] The third provincial charter, which was passed in 1967, defined the Université de Montréal as a public institution, dedicated to higher learning and research, in the administration of which students and teachers would have the right to participate.[9]

Campus relocation

From 1876 to 1895, most university classes took place in the Grand séminaire de Montréal. From 1895 to 1942, it was housed in a building at the intersection of Saint-Denis and Sainte-Catherine streets in Montreal's eastern downtown Quartier Latin.

Unlike English language universities in Montréal, such as McGill University, the university suffered a lack of funding for two major reasons: the relative poverty of the French Canadian population and the complications ensuing from its remote management from Quebec City. The downtown campus was hit by three different fires between 1919 and 1921, further complicating the university's already precarious finances and forcing it to spend much of its resources on repairing its own infrastructure.[15]

By 1930, enough funds had been accumulated to start the construction of a new campus on the north west slope of Mount Royal, adopting new plans designed by Ernest Cormier. However, the financial crisis of the 1930s virtually suspended all ongoing construction.[16] Many speculated that the university would have to sell off its unfinished building projects in order to ensure its own survival. Not until 1939 did the provincial government directly intervene by injecting public funds.[17] Campus construction subsequently resumed and the mountain campus was officially inaugurated on 3 June 1943.[18] The Cote-des-Neiges site includes property expropriated from a residential development along Decelles Avenue, known as Northmount Heights.[19] The university's former downtown facilities would later serve Montreal's second francophone university, the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).

Nuclear research

Main article: Montréal Laboratory

In 1943, the university assisted the Western Allies by providing laboratory accommodations on its campus. Scientists there worked to develop a nuclear reactor, notably by conducting various heavy water experiments. The research was part of the larger Manhattan Project, which aimed to develop the first atomic bomb. Scientists here managed to produce the first atomic battery to work outside of the United States. One of the participating Québécois scientists, Pierre Demers, also discovered a series of radioactive elements issued from Neptunium.[20]

Growth and expansion

Two distinct schools eventually became affiliated to the university. The first was the École Polytechnique, a school of engineering, which was founded in 1873 and became affiliated in 1887. The second was the École des Hautes Études Commerciales, or HEC, which was founded in 1907 and became part of the university in 1915.[12] The first francophone school of architecture in Canada opened in 1907 at the École Polytechnique.[21]

Between 1920 and 1925, seven new faculties were added to the initial three: Philosophy, Literature, Sciences, Veterinary medicine, Dental surgery, Pharmacy and Social sciences.[15] Notably, the Faculty of Social sciences was founded in 1920 by Édouard Montpetit, the first laic to lead a faculty.[22] He thereafter fulfilled the role of secretary-general until 1950.

In 1965, the appointment of the university's first secular rector, Roger Gaudry, paved the way for modernization. The university established the first adult education degree program offered by a French Canadian university in 1968. An important event that marked the university's history was the École Polytechnique massacre. On 6 December 1989, a gunman armed with an automatic rifle entered the École Polytechnique building, killing 14 people, all of whom were women, before taking his own life.

Since 2002, the university has embarked on its largest construction projects since the late 1960s, with five new modern buildings planned for advanced research in pharmacology, engineering, aerospace, cancer studies and biotechnology.[12]


On 4 September 2003 Canada Post issued 'Université de Montréal, 1878-2003' to mark the 125th anniversary of the establishment of Université de Montréal. The stamp was designed by Denis L'Allier, based on a photograph by Guy Lavigueur as part of the Canadian Universities series. The 48¢ stamps are perforated 13.5 and were printed by Canadian Bank Note Company, Limited. [23]


The university's main campus is located on the northern slope of Mont-Royal in the Outremont and Côte-des-Neiges boroughs.

Its landmark Pavilion Roger-Gaudry, designed by noted architect Ernest Cormier, and named for former rector Roger Gaudry, can be seen from around the campus and is known for its imposing tower. It is built mainly in the Art Deco style, with some elements of International style. On 14 September 1954, a Roll of Honour plaque on the wall at the right of the stairs to the Court of Honour in Roger-Gaudry Pavillon was dedicated alumni of the Université de Montréal who died in armed service during the Second World War. [24] On November 1963, a memorial plaque was dedicated to the memory of those members of the Université de Montréal who served in the Armed Forces during the First and Second World Wars and Korea. [25]

The campus is served by the Côte-des-Neiges, Université-de-Montreal, and Édouard-Montpetit metro stations.

Apart from its main Mont-Royal campus, the university also maintains four regional facilities in Lanaudière, Laval, Longueuil, Québec and Mauricie.[26] The campus in Laval, just north of Montréal, was opened in 2006. It is Laval's first university campus, and is located in the area near the Montmorency metro station. In October 2009, the university announced an expansion to its Laval satellite campus with the commissioning of its six-storey Cité du Savoir complex.[27] In order to solve the problem of lack of space on its main campus, the university is also planning to open a new campus in Outremont.[28]

The Centre hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal (CHUM) and the Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine are the two teaching hospital networks of the Université de Montréal's Faculty of Medicine, although the latter is also affiliated with other medical institutions such as the Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal, Montreal Heart Institute, Hôpital Sacré-Coeur and Hôpital Maisonneuve-Rosemont.


Université de Montréal is a publicly funded research university, and a member of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada.[29] Undergraduate students make the majority of the university community, accounting for 74 percent of the university student body, followed by master students at 19 percent, and doctoral students at 7 percent.[2] The full-time undergraduate programs comprise the majority of the school's enrolment, made up of 42,684 undergraduate students. From the 1 June 2010 to the 31 May 2011, the university conferred 7,012 bachelor degrees, 461 doctoral degrees, and 3,893 master degrees.[2]

Depending on a student's citizenship, they may be eligible for financial assistance from the Student Financial Assistance program, administered by the provincial Ministry of Education, Recreation and Sports, and/or the Canada Student Loans and Grants through the federal and provincial governments. The university's Office of Financial Aid acts as intermediaries between the students and the Quebec government for all matters relating to financial assistance programs.[30] The financial aid provided may come in the form of loans, grants, bursaries, scholarships fellowships and work programs.


University rankings
Université de Montréal
ARWU World[31] 102-150
ARWU Engineering & CS[32] 101-150
ARWU Life Sciences[33] 101-150
ARWU Clinical Medicine[34] 151-200
ARWU Social Sciences[35] 76-100
THE-WUR World[36] 106
THE-WUR Life Sciences[37] 49
THE-WUR Health Sciences[38] 47
Canadian rankings
ARWU National[39] 5-6
HESA Science/Engineering[40] 2
HESA Social.Sci/Humanities[40] 6
Maclean's Medical/Doctoral[41] 12
THE-WUR National[36] 5

Université de Montréal has consistently been ranked one of Canada's top universities. The 2013-2014 Times Higher Education World University Rankings placed the university 106th in the world, and fifth in Canada.[36] The 2013 QS World University Rankings ranked the university 92nd in the world, and fourth in Canada.[42] The 2012 Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU) rankings, the university ranked 101-150th in the world.[31] In terms of national rankings, Maclean's ranked the university 12th in their 2011 Medical Doctoral university rankings.[41] The university was ranked in spite of having opted out—along with several other universities in Canada—of participating in Maclean's graduate survey since 2006.[43]

The university was ranked 76-100th in the 2012 ARWU rankings within the field of social sciences, and 5-8th in the country.[35] The 2012-2013 Times Higher Education rankings for clinical, pre-clinical, and health universities, the university's health science programs ranked 47th in the world and fourth in Canada.[38] The Université de Montréal Faculty of Law was ranked second, out of the six civil law schools in Canada in Maclean's 2011 law school rankings.[44]

HEC Montréal, an affiliated business school with the university has also received significant recognition. The business school had ranked 12th on the 2011 Forbes ranking of the best international one-year MBA programs, placing higher than any Canadian business school.[45] The 2011 Financial Times ranking for master's in management programs placed HEC Montréal 39th in the world, and first in the country.[46] In CNN Expansion's 2011 ranking of the world's best MBA program, HEC Montréal was ranked 62nd in the world, and second nationally.[47] In The Economist's 2011 ranking of the best MBA program in North America, HEC Montréal was 56th on the continent, and fifth nationally.[48] The 2010 Bloomberg Businessweek biannual business school rankings had also ranked HEC Montréal as the 15th best business school outside the United States, and the sixth best business school in Canada.[49] The QS ranking of North American MBA programs placed HEC Montréal 30th in North America, and 7th in Canada.[50] In a employability survey published by the New York Times in October 2011, when CEOs and chairmans were asked to select the top universities which they recruited from, HEC Montréal placed 46th in the world, and second in Canada.[51]


In Research Infosource's 2011 ranking of Canada's 50 top research universities, the university was ranked third, with a sponsored research income of $524,133 million, the third largest in the country. The university has an average of $278,200 per faculty member, making it the fifth most research-intensive full-service university.[52] In terms of research performance, High Impact Universities 2010 ranked the university 108th out of 500 universities, and sixth in the country.[53] In the field of medicine, dentistry, pharmacology, and health sciences, the 2010 High Impact Universities ranking placed Université de Montréal in 68th in the world, and fifth nationally.[54] In the field of life, agricultural and biological sciences, the 2010 High Impact Universities ranking placed the university 99th in the world, and fourth in Canada.[55]

The Higher Education Evaluation and Accreditation Council of Taiwan (HEEACT), an organization which also evaluates universities based on their scientific paper's performances, ranked the university 101st in the world, and sixth in Canada.[56] In HEEACT's 2011 rankings which focused on life sciences, the university was ranked 81st in the world, and fourth in Canada.[57] In HEEACT's rankings focusing on clinical medicines, the university was also ranked 81st in the world, and sixth in the country.[58] The HEEACT rankings focusing on social sciences placed the university 83rd in the world and seventh in Canada.[59] In the Higher Education Strategy Associates 2012 ranking of Canadian universities based on research strength, the Université de Montréal was placed second nationally in the field of science and engineering and sixth nationally in the field of social sciences and humanities.[60]

Student life

The two main student unions on administrative and policy issues are the Fédération des associations étudiantes du campus de l'Université de Montréal (FAÉCUM), which represents the interests of all full-time undergraduate and graduate students, and the Association Étudiante de la Maîtrise et du Doctorat de HEC Montréal (AEMD), which represents the interests of those enrolled in HEC Montréal.[62][63] FAÉCUM traces its linage back to 1989, when the Fédération étudiante universitaire du Québec (FEUQ) was founded, and is currently the largest student organization in Quebec.[64] The organizations and clubs accredited at the university cover a wide range of interests including academics, culture, religion, social issues, and recreation. FAÉCUM is currently associated with 82 student organizations and clubs.[65] Three fraternities and sororities are recognized by the university's student union, Sigma Thêta Pi, Nu Delta Mu and Zeta Zeta Lambda.[66]


The university's student population operates a number of media outlets throughout the campus environment. The Quartier Libre, is university's main student newspaper.[67] CISM-FM is an independently owned radio station, owned by the students of the Université de Montréal, and operated by the student union.[68] The radio started in 1970, and received a permit from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) on 10 July 1990 to transmit on an FM band. On 14 March 1991, CISM's broadcasting antenna was boosted to 10 000 watts. With a broadcasting radius of 70 km, CISM is now the world's largest French-language university radio station.[69] The CFTU-DT television station also receives its technical and administrative support from the student body.[70]


Main article: Montreal Carabins

Sport teams at Université de Montréal are known as the Carabins. The Carabins sports teams participate in the Canadian Interuniversity Sport's (CIS) Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ) conference for most varsity sports. Varsity teams include badminton, Canadian football, cheerleading, golf, hockey, swimming, alpine skiing, soccer, tennis and volleyball.[71] The athletics program at the university dates back to 1922.[61] The university's athletic facilities is open to both their varsity teams as well as to their students. The major sports facility at the university is the Centre d'éducation physique et des sports de l'Université de Montréal (CEPSUM), which is also home to all of the Carabin's varsity teams.[72] The building itself was built in 1976, in preparation for the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montréal. The outdoor stadium of CEPSUM, which hosts the university's football team, can seat around 5,100 people.[72]

Notable alumni and faculty

The university has an extensive alumni network, with more than 300,000 members registered with the university's alumni network.[73] Throughout the university's history, faculty, alumni, and former students have played prominent roles in a number of fields. Many former students have gained local and national prominence for serving in government. Michaëlle Jean served as Governor General of Canada,[74] and Pierre Trudeau served as the 15th Prime Minister of Canada.[75] Ten Premiers of Quebec have also graduated from the university, including Jean-Jacques Bertrand,[76] Robert Bourassa,[77] Maurice Duplessis,[78] Lomer Gouin,[79] Daniel Johnson, Jr.,[80] Daniel Johnson Sr.,[76] Pierre-Marc Johnson,[81] Bernard Landry,[82] Jacques Parizeau,[83] and Paul Sauvé.[84]

A number of students have also gained prominence for their research and work in a number of scientific fields. Roger Guillemin, a graduate of the university, would later be awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his work with neurohormones.[85] Alumnus Ishfaq Ahmad, would also gain prominence for his work with Pakistan's nuclear weapon's program, and their nuclear power program.[86] Jocelyn Faubert, known for his work in the fields of visual perception, is currently a faculty member of the university.[87] Gilles Brassard, best known for his fundamental work in quantum cryptography, quantum teleportation, quantum entanglementdistillation, quantum pseudo-telepathy, and the classical simulation of quantum entanglement.[88]

Several prominent business leaders have also graduated from the university. Graduates include Philippe de Gaspé Beaubien, founder and CEO of Telemedia,[89] Louis R. Chênevert, chairman and CEO of the United Technologies Corporation, Calin Rovinescu, President and CEO of Air Canada, [90] and Pierre Karl Péladeau, president and CEO of Quebecor.[91]

See also

Notes and references

Further reading

  • Bizier, Hélène-Andrée. 1993. L'Université de Montréal: la quête du savoir. Montréal: Libre expression. 311 pp. [1]

External links

  • Official website
  • Pictures and information on Université de Montréal buildings
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