Simon Fraser University (SFU) is a public research university located in the city of Burnaby, in British Columbia, Canada.
Named after the Scottish explorer, Simon Fraser, the university opened its doors in 1965 to 2,500 students. Today, SFU boasts around 30,000 students and alumni of 130,000. It is regularly ranked among Canada’s top universities.
Home to three separate campuses, all in the Greater Vancouver area, the university’s main campus was designed by Canadian architects Arthur Erickson and Geoffrey Massey and lies at the top of Burnaby Mountain.
The university’s urban campus in downtown Vancouver covers 385,000 square feet in, what The Vancouver Sun newspaper has described, the ‘Intellectual Heart of the City.’
Its Surrey campus spans 350,000-square-feet and is located in one of Canada’s largest and fastest-growing cities. Designed by the architect Bing Thom, the campus is described as an ‘architectural masterpiece’ and has won several national and international awards.
The university offers undergraduate and graduate programmes in social sciences, natural sciences, engineering, computing science, business, education, health sciences, environmental studies and humanities, across eight faculties.
Internationalisation is an integral aspect of SFU’s culture and the university offers a number of student exchange programmes with partner universities in Europe, Australia, the US, China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Japan and more.
The university is also the only Canadian member of the NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association), the largest collegiate sports organisation in the world.
Its athletic team is called the SFU Clan. Their official mascot, a Scottish Terrier called McFogg the Dog, is, reputedly named after SFU’s first president, Patrick McTaggart-Cowan, who was given the nickname ‘McFog’ after serving as a meteorologist during wartime.
Among its alumni are two Olympic gold medal winners: Daniel Igali for freestyle wrestling at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and Carol Huynh for wrestling at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.