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Simon Fraser University was founded 50 years ago with a mission to be a different kind of university – to bring an interdisciplinary rigour to learning, to embrace bold initiatives, and to engage deeply with communities near and far.

Our vision is to be Canada’s most community-engaged research university.

Embracing this vision, SFU is committed to marshaling all its resources – the learning energy of its students, the research creativity of its faculty, and the infrastructure of its iconic campuses – to engage with the communities at home and around the world where the University has deep relationships.

SFU believes our approach to engagement will pay enormous dividends – for individuals, institutions and society.

Today, SFU is Canada’s leading comprehensive research university and is ranked one of the top universities in the world. With campuses in British Columbia’s three largest cities – Vancouver, Burnaby and Surrey – SFU has eight faculties, delivers almost 150 programs to over 35,000 students, and boasts more than 130,000 alumni in 130 countries around the world.


SFU has pioneered a number of program “firsts” in Canada and North America:

• Within the Beedie School of Business, the Executive MBA in Aboriginal Business and Leadership and the Americas MBA for Executives are the first of their kind in Canada and North America.

• Core to its commitment to student engagement – SFU established B.C.’s first student incubator via Venture Connection – with 3,100 participants since 2008.

• SFU’s School of Mechatronics Systems Engineering – another North American first – integrates mechanical, electronic and software engineering disciplines.


• SFU delivers 150 programs in eight Faculties, with over 200 institutes and research centres

Beedie School of Business
Faculty of Applied Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Communication,
      Art and Technology
Faculty of Education
Faculty of Environment
Faculty of Health Sciences
Faculty of Science

• SFU serves a highly diverse population and has one of Canada’s highest percentages of international students (19%)

Living its vision as Canada’s leading engaged research university means being a leader in knowledge mobilization and novel approaches to education.

• SFU provides educational opportunities that “connect the dots” between classroom learning and community problem-solving, with a local to global focus. The University encourages students and faculty to engage across traditional disciplines and boundaries for a rich learning experience that provides students with a range of skills needed for career readiness in the global economy.

• SFU’s Information Systems program is a joint program between the Schools of Computing Science and the Beedie School of Business that enables students to combine computing science with business experience. This is one of seven joint majors with the Beedie School and other faculties at SFU.

• As the first of its kind in North America, the School of Mechatronics Systems Engineering, integrates mechanical, electrical and software engineering to meet the increasing demand for engineers who can work across domains.

• The Centre for Coastal Science and Management focuses on marine and coastal ecosystems and resource conservation through interdisciplinary research and learning that integrate social and natural science with local experiences and expertise.

• SFU’s NeuroTechLab, a joint SFU/Surrey Hospital venture, brings together research, medicine and business in developing new technologies and products to improve health care.

• SFU’s Goldcorp Centre for the Arts is a significant focus for the City of Vancouver – home to SFU Woodward’s Cultural Programs supporting performers and artists in the community.

• In the CWTS Leiden Rankings for 2013, SFU ranked 2nd in Canada for international collaboration and 4th for inter-institutional collaboration.

• SFU has over 160 partnership agreements with institutions around the world, including joint degree programs in Brazil, China, Australia and France.

• SFU’s Semester in Dialogue encourages students to examine how they can improve society. Launched over 10 years ago, the highly successful program brings together students to identify how to make a difference in an assigned area such as environment, religion, health care or food policy.

• In 2012 the Beedie School of Business established the Americas MBA for Executives program – the first of its kind – in which 60 students from partner institutions in Canada, the US, Mexico and Brazil work together, studying management issues in each of the four largest economies in the Americas.

• For more than 10 years, SFU has jointly offered dual degree programs in Computing Science with Zhejiang University in China. These programs have won the following awards: 2013 CBIE Panorama Award for Outstanding International Education Program in the Academic Category and the 2012 BC Council for International Education Award for Outstanding Program in International Education.

The greatest innovations in history have come from people bold enough to explore possibilities and take novel approaches. SFU is built on this premise.

SFU supports students and faculty to address challenges in novel ways and apply creative solutions – in the classroom, in their research, in a work placement or starting a new organization or business.

SFU fosters an entrepreneurial culture that transforms ideas into action – beyond traditional business and technology entrepreneurs to include social innovators – all focused on solving global problems.

SFU pioneers 21st century approaches, which includes embracing new solutions in experiential learning.

• Dr. Bozena Kaminska, professor at SFU’s School of Engineering and a Canada Research Chair in Wireless Sensor Networks, developed new anti-counterfeiting technology based on researching the movements of the blue morpho butterfly.

• In 2008 SFU established Venture Connection – the first incubator for student entrepreneurs in B.C. SFU students have access to advice, training, networking and mentorship to bring their ideas to fruition. More than 3,100 students have participated, with support for over 120 early-stage start-ups.

• Through the Innovation Office at SFU, investors and organizations are connected with talented students and faculty to create new technologies, start-ups and spin-off companies. SFU has assisted, mentored or incubated more than 200 companies in the last 10 years. Successful spin-off companies include SaltWorks, Mobify, MetroLeap and Buyatab.

• The Bombay Stock Exchange Institute Accelerator Program provides opportunities for SFU student entrepreneurs to connect with mentors and investors in both Canada and India.

• Radius, established at the Beedie School of Business, supports entrepreneurs with new ideas about how society might work better. Working with EcoTrust Canada, Radius supported the establishment of Urban Economic Innovation to address the challenges facing cities in the 21st century.

• In 2014 the School of Computing Science at SFU established one of the first master’s degrees in Big Data, embracing the importance of understanding and utilizing large quantities of data to improve quality of life. SFU provides the computational power for storing and analyzing the data and has pioneered visual analytics as the best method for quick examination of complex data.

• The Digital Health Hub, based at SFU and working with partners in the health care system, uses advanced computing and research to build successful technologies and digital health solutions. The director of Digital Health Hub, Dr. Maryam Sadeghi, designed, built and brought to market an innovative mobile app called Moleskin to help users detect the onset of skin cancer.

SFU’s ranking as a leading research university is rooted in academic excellence coupled with a decades-long track record of community-based research and knowledge mobilization.

SFU’s global perspective ensures relevant approaches to learning in the 21st century through strong linkages with other countries, with a particular focus on India, China and Asia Pacific nations. SFU’s India Advisory Council was the first of its kind in Canada, and is just one example of the University’s commitment to engaging with communities at home and around the world.

SFU reaches outside the traditional boundaries of universities to share and apply the knowledge and expertise of students and faculty solving problems in the community and around the world.

• SFU has one of the most extensive co-op programs in the country – with more than 8,000 students annually working with thousands of businesses and organizations across sectors, including technology firms (such as Google and Twitter), mining, utilities, health care and non-governmental organizations. SFU’s Work Integrated Learning department is devoted solely to assisting with co-op placements and transitions to work.

• SFU promotes opportunities for students and faculty to share their knowledge and experience with communities. The Friends of Simon program connects university students as literacy tutors with children and youth in the Lower Mainland. The University sponsors Aboriginal Youth Camps with a particular focus on math skills. Science in Action, a science outreach program, creates a positive science experience for children and youth.

• In 2011 SFU established the Executive MBA in Aboriginal Business and Leadership – the first in North America and the second in the world.

• In partnership with the Tula Foundation, SFU’s Hakai Network for Coastal Peoples, Ecosystems and Management brings together an interdisciplinary team that undertakes research, training and education to support sustainability and conservation in Coastal British Columbia.

• Through the BC-India Mobility Initiative, SFU students work on projects and activities in India in areas such as clean energy, new media, film, and life sciences. SFU was the first university in the country to develop an India Strategy and related Advisory Council.

• SFU provides advice and support for the China Council for International Cooperation on Environment and Development working with international partners on environmental issues in China.

• SFU Public Square was launched in 2012 to meet SFU’s commitment to promote inclusive, relevant and solution-oriented discussions of complex issues on the Canadian and global agenda. Each year SFU Public Square sponsors a Community Summit to encourage debate and dialogue. In partnership with SFU’s VanCity Office of Community Engagement, it also sponsors the SFU Vancouver Speakers Series.

• The Institute for Diaspora Research and Engagement, established in 2013, links interdisciplinary research to community research on migrating peoples and cultures.

Engaging the world since 1965.

As Canada’s engaged university, SFU is defined by its dynamic integration of innovative education, cutting-edge research and far-reaching community engagement. SFU was founded almost 50 years ago with a mission to be a different kind of university — to bring an interdisciplinary approach to learning, embrace bold initiatives, and engage with communities near and far. Today, SFU is a leader amongst Canada’s comprehensive research universities and is ranked one of the top universities in the world under 50 years of age. With campuses in British Columbia’s three largest cities — Vancouver, Surrey and Burnaby — SFU has eight faculties, delivers almost 150 programs to over 35,000 students, and boasts more than 130,000 alumni in over 130 countries around the world.

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8888 University Drive
Burnaby British Columbia
Canada V5A 1S6

250-13450 102nd Avenue
Surrey British Columbia
Canada V3T 0A3

515 West Hastings Street
Vancouver British Columbia
Canada V6B 5K3