University of Waterloo

#206 /
Global Influence

Public research university in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

About University of Waterloo

By James Barham, PhD

The University of Waterloo traces its roots back to the Waterloo College School, founded in 1914.

The college school was the non-theological teaching arm of Waterloo Lutheran Seminary (now Martin Luther University College), itself founded in 1911.

In 1924, the college school began to offer a regular, three-year, liberal arts curriculum under the name of Waterloo College of Arts. The following year the school became officially associated with the University of Western Ontario, under the name of Waterloo College.

In 1957, a separate administrative entity was established within the structure of Waterloo College. It was called Waterloo College Associate Faculties (WCAF).

Two years later, in 1959, WCAF split away from both Waterloo College and the University of Western Ontario, becoming an independent institution of higher learning under the name of the University of Waterloo. Several other Waterloo College academic units—the Mathematics, Economics, German, and Russian Departments, among others—chose to transfer to the new University of Waterloo.

Today, Waterloo’s academic structure comprises 13 schools spread among six faculties. The student body numbers more than 36,000 souls.

In 1999, the cutting-edge Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics (PI) opened in the city of Waterloo. The PI engages in cooperative partnership with the University of Waterloo, among other universities and institutions.

Noted individuals associated with the University of Waterloo include:

  • Mathematicians, Jonathan Borwein, David M. Jackson, Jack Edmonds, Hiroshi Haruki, Ronald C. Read, Doug Stinson, Neil Koblitz & Carsten Thomassen
  • Computer scientists, Gordon Bell, Michele Mosca, Václav Chvátal, Jeffrey Shallit, Gordon Cormack, Rik Holt, David Cheriton, Ian Goldberg, Rasmus Lerdorf & Mike Lazaridis
  • Philosophers, Jan Narveson, Paul Thagard & Justin K.A. Smith
  • Poet, George Elliott Clarke
  • Novelists, James Alan Gardner & Anne Fleming
  • Children’s author, Tim Wynne-Jones
  • Animator, Bill Reeves
  • Actors, Brad Goddard, Steve Smith & Rick Green
  • Astronomers, Clifford Cunningham & Michael Balogh
  • Astrophysicist, Will Percival
  • Cosmologists, Lee Smolin & Michael Hudson
  • Physicists, Donna Strickland (Nobel laureate), Anthony Leggett, Paul S. Wesson, Robert Mann, Michael Gingras, Jeff Z.Y. Chen, Stefan Idziak & James J. Kay
  • Electrical engineers, Vijay Bhargava & Prem Saran Satsangi
  • Electrical engineer and hybrid systems pioneer, Claire J. Tomlin
  • Chemists, Giacinto Scoles & Moustafa Aly Soliman
  • Biophysicists, Zoya Leonenko & Bae-Yeun Ha
  • Theoretical neuroscientist, Chris Eliasmith
  • Psychologist, Lisa Feldman Barrett
  • Social psychologists, Ziva Kunda & Melvin Lerner
  • Anthropologist, Anne Zeller
  • Religious studies scholars Douglas E. Cowan & A. James Reimer
  • Judaica scholar, Paul G. Socken
  • Historians, Ken Coates & W.G. Godfrey
  • Economists, Robert Mundell (Nobel laureate), Maurice Kugler & David X. Li
  • Former Canadian Governor, General David Johnston

According to Wikipedia, The University of Waterloo is a public research university with a main campus in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. The main campus is on of land adjacent to "Uptown" Waterloo and Waterloo Park. The university also operates three satellite campuses and four affiliated university colleges. The university offers academic programs administered by six faculties and thirteen faculty-based schools. Waterloo operates the largest post-secondary co-operative education program in the world, with over 20,000 undergraduate students enrolled in the university's co-op program. Waterloo is a member of the U15, a group of research-intensive universities in Canada.

What Is University of Waterloo Known For?

University of Waterloo is known for it's academic work in the following disciplines:

University of Waterloo's Top Areas of Influence With Degrees Offered

Who Are University of Waterloo's Most Influential Alumni?

University of Waterloo's most influential alumni faculty include professors and professionals in the fields of Computer Science, Mathematics, and Social Work. Here are some of University of Waterloo's most famous alumni:

Robert Tibshirani
Robert Tibshirani
A Canadian statistician.
Peter McLaren
Peter McLaren
A Canadian academic.
Mike Lazaridis
Mike Lazaridis
A Canadian businessman.
Mark Tilden
Mark Tilden
A Canadian roboticist.
David Cheriton
A Canadian businessman and computer scientist.
Douglas N. Walton
A Canadian academic.
David X. Li
A Chinese statistician.
A. K. Dewdney
A Canadian mathematician.
Tom Duff
Tom Duff
An American computer programmer.
Neil Robertson
A Canadian-American graph theorist .
Roberto Ierusalimschy
A Brazilian computer scientist .
Chris Hadfield
Chris Hadfield
A Canadian astronaut.