Established in Sault Ste. Marie in 1965 as Algoma College, Algoma University was initially an affiliate of Sudbury's Laurentian University. In 1967, Algoma College began offering classes in a portable building located on the site of what is now Sault College. Algoma College moved into its current location, the former Shingwauk Residential School building, in 1971.
In 2008, after operating as Algoma University College for many years, Algoma University was granted its charter, achieving full autonomous university status as Ontario’s 19th University. The Algoma University Act, 2008 was amended in 2021 to authorize Algoma University to grant graduate degrees, certificates, and diplomas in any and all branches of teaching and learning. Algoma University now offers over 30 academic programs across three unique campuses (Brampton, Sault Ste. Marie, Timmins) in a range of diverse fields and through four faculties: Faculty of Business and Economics, Faculty of Cross-Cultural Studies, Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences and Faculty of Science.
The provincial Shingwauk Education Trust (SET) gives ownership of a portion of the site to Anishinaabek people, and Shingwauk Kinoomaage Gamig (SKG), one of nine provincially recognized Indigenous institutes of higher learning is located on the property. SKG provides academic programs, workshops and seminars on the site which reflect the Anishinaabe worldview, distinguished by Anishinaabe ways of learning and knowing.
In 2006, Algoma signed a Covenant with SET to reinforce the important work being done for the benefit of all students of Algoma and Shingwauk on the site. In 2018, Algoma University, SET, and SKG reaffirmed their partnership and mutual understanding by signing an addendum to the original Covenant. The addendum reinforces the strong commitment by all parties to work closely together to provide quality education to Anishinaabe students and to students of all cultural backgrounds while working in partnership to serve as leaders during this time dedicated by Canada as a period of truth, healing and reconciliation.
Former students of the Shingwauk Residential School formed the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association whose mission is to provide for the well-being of the Children of Shingwauk Alumni who are former students of the Shingwauk and Wawanosh Indian Residential Schools, their families and their communities. The CSAA facilitates the ongoing development of a partnership with Algoma University and the other partners in fulfilling Chief Shingwauk’s vision of “Sharing, Healing and Learning.”
Algoma University College Association signs an affiliation agreement with Laurentian University
AUC offers its first classes; government rules limit AUC to offering the first year only, but 14 subjects are taught
City of Sault Ste. Marie gives Algmoa University College 353 acres of land at Fourth Line and Brule Road for future campus
AUC moves to the site of the former Shingwauk Indian Residential School
Convocation held in Sault Ste. Marie for the first time
Royal Commission appointed to study AUC operations
Trustees appointed by the provincial government to run AUC
AUC granted permission by Laurentian to offer its first Honours/Specialized program, a BA4 Psychology
AUC signs a new affiliation agreement with Laurentian
AUC Foundation is formed
New $3.1million Arthur A. Wishart Library is opened
AUC announces that it will seek its own charter
The George Leach Centre opened in late summer at a cost of 3.2 million. We received $3,097,000 from the Ministry of Colleges and Universities which was part of a funding program from the NDP Government of Ontario for anti-recession Public Works Projects throughout Ontario
AUC Alumni Council formed
Formal independence charter application sent to the Minister of Education and Training; charter not granted
First $1.5 million phase of AUC's residence building, "spirit Village", opens
Dr. Celia Ross becomes president of Algoma University (1998-2010)
Submission the the MTCU of the first annual Strategic Plan, covering the five years from 1999-2004
Accelerated second Degree Program in Computer Science offered by Algoma University
First time that more than half of AUC's applications for first year come from outside the Algoma District
Second $1.2 million phase of AUC's Residence building opens
First Varsity teams at AUC: a men's and women's basketball team
$1.1 million renovation of library completed
Third phase of residence building completed
$6.3 million Information and Communication Technology building opens with new cafeteria and student centre
$1.75 million federal government grant establishes Algoma U's first research chair
Downtown Windsor Park Retirement residence and HSBC building donated by Dr. Lou Lukenda
ICT Lecture Theatre renamed the Great West Life Lecture Theatre in recognition of $100,000 donation
Living Learning Campaign raises $1 million
Algoma U and Shingwauk Education Trust sign covenant pledging pursuit of a common vision and shared commitment to provide education to First Nation communities
First master's level degree in Computer Gaming and Technology in Canada; Algoma U becomes the exclusive North American host for the MSc CGT programme offered by the University of Abertay Dundee, Scotland
Provincial government announces support for an independent Algoma University
On May 29, Algoma University Act 2008 passes third and final reading, officially dissolving Algoma University College and establishing newly independent Algoma University. Algoma University becomes Northern Ontario's fourth university and Ontario's 19th publicly funded university
July 13, Algoma University celebrates its first graduation class
New academic hoods, presidential regalia and mace introduced
University celebrates launch of Brampton campus
Dr. Richard Myers becomes the president of Algoma University (2010 - 2015)
Algoma opens new downtown residence
Governor General David Johnston opens the $22 million Essar Convergence Centre
First courses offered in the St. Thomas extension
Opening of a new 96-bed residence for first-year students
First course offerings in Timmins at Northern College
Algoma University begins competing in university-level intercollegial sport (OUA)
Music and Fine Arts programs move to the former buildings of St. Mary's Paper
Dr. Craig Chamberlin becomes the president of Algoma University (2015 - 2016)
An expansion project for the George Leach Centre, funded in part by the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation begins in April at a cost of $4.9 million
Algoma closes downtown residence; the Windsor Park building is sold
Dr. Celia Ross becomes the president of Algoma University (2016 - 2017)
Completion of expansion of the George Leach Centre
Asima C. Vezina joined the Algoma University leadership team as President and Vice-Chancellor on October 23, 2017, bringing with her more than 25 years of experience in education.
We celebrate the values, personalities, and convictions that make each of us unique - because they also bring us together.
When you look back at your Algoma U experience, our hope is that it will be defined by more than what you’ve learned in the classroom. That’s why we are heavily focused on campus culture, vibrant programming, research and innovation, Anishinaabe Inendamowin, and overall institutional excellence. This is a place where you’ll connect with the most diverse student body in Ontario. Where you’ll benefit from dedicated and caring faculty. Where you’ll find your true self and more.
To encourage a cross-cultural experience, Algoma offers numerous opportunities for all students to experience Anishinaabe culture.
Events and programming are delivered to encourage student success and help promote and celebrate Anishinaabe culture on campus. Opportunities include the Gathering at the Rapids Pow Wow, Anishinaabe Speaker Series, sharing circles, ceremonial feasts/soup & bannock days, elders’/youth gatherings, a ceremonial arbour, visiting elders, two unique programs such as Anishinaabe Inendamowin and Anishinaabe Studies, the Anishinaabe Research Symposium, “Gdo Akiiminaan Ganawendandaan” (Taking Care of our Land) Symposium, and many more.
Algoma University offers a wide range of cultural, academic and social activities that make for a unique, meaningful and life-changing experience for every student.
Our faculty will know you by name, and will provide personal attention and a commitment to your success both inside and outside of the classroom.
Students have ample opportunities to develop solid research skills in a very supportive, dynamic and creative environment that is linked to our community and the world.