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|Queen's College (1838–1841)|
Acadia College (1841–1891)
|Motto||In pulvere vinces|
Motto in English
|"By effort (lit. 'in dust'), you will conquer"|
|Type||Public Liberal Arts University|
|Currently non-denominational; initially founded by Baptists|
|AUCC, IAU, CUSID, CBIE, CUP, Maple League of Universities|
|Endowment||$109.4 million (2021)|
|President||Jeffrey J. Hennessy|
|211 full-time, 37 part-time (as of 2008)|
|Campus||250 acres (101 ha)|
|Colours||Red and blue |
|Nickname||Axemen and Axewomen|
|U Sports – AUS|
Acadia University is a public, predominantly undergraduate university located in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada, with some graduate programs at the master's level and one at the doctoral level. The enabling legislation consists of the Acadia University Act and the Amended Acadia University Act 2000.
The Wolfville Campus houses Acadia University Archives and the Acadia University Art Gallery. Acadia offers over 200 degree combinations in the faculties of arts, pure and applied science, professional studies, and theology. The student-faculty ratio is 15:1 and the average class size is 28. Open Acadia offers correspondence and distance education courses.
As of September 2023[update], Jeffrey J. Hennessy is Acadia's 17th President and Vice Chancellor.
Acadia began as an extension of Horton Academy in 1828, which was founded in Horton, Nova Scotia, by Baptists from Nova Scotia and Queen's College in 1838, who will be gathered into the Canadian Baptists of Atlantic Canada (Canadian Baptist Ministries). It was designed to prepare men for the ministry and to supply education for lay members.
In 1838, the Nova Scotia Baptist Education Society founded Queen's College (named for Queen Victoria). The college began with 21 students in January 1839. The name "Queen's College" was denied to the Baptist school, so it was renamed "Acadia College" in 1841, in reference to the history of the area as an Acadian settlement. Acadia College awarded its first degrees in 1843 and became Acadia University in 1891, established by the Acadia University Act.
The Granville Street Baptist Church (now First Baptist Church Halifax) was an instrumental and determining factor in the founding of the university. It has played a supporting role throughout its history, and shares much of the credit for its survival and development. Many individuals who have made significant contributions to Acadia University, including the first president John Pryor, were members of the First Baptist Church Halifax congregation. Similarly, the adjacent Wolfville United Baptist Church plays a significant role in the life of the university.
This was unique at the time, and a direct result of Baptists being denied entry into other schools that required religious tests of their students and staff.
In 1851, the power of appointing governors was transferred from the Nova Scotia Baptist Education Society to the Baptist Convention of the Maritime Provinces.
Charles Osborne Wickenden, an architect, and J.C. Dumaresq designed the Central Building, Acadia College, 1878–79.
In 1891, there were changes in the Act of Incorporation.
Andrew R. Cobb designed several campus buildings including: Raynor Hall Residence, 1916; and Horton House, designed by Cobb in the Georgian style, and built by James Reid of Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, which was opened in 1915 as Horton Academy. Today, Horton Hall is the home of the Department of Psychology and Research and Graduate Studies. Emmerson Hall, built in 1913, is particularly interesting for the variety of building stones used. In 1967 Emmerson Hall was converted to classrooms and offices for the School of Education. It is a registered Heritage Property.
Unveiled on 16 August 1963, a wooden and metal organ in Manning Chapel, Acadia University, is dedicated to Acadia University's war dead of the First and Second World Wars and the Korean War. A book of remembrance in Manning Chapel, Acadia University was unveiled on 1 March 1998 through the efforts of the Wolfville Historical Society.
In 1966, it terminated its affiliation with the Canadian Baptists of Atlantic Canada (Canadian Baptist Ministries).  The denomination maintains nine seats on the university's Board of Governors.
Acadia is a laureate of Washington's Smithsonian Institution and a part of the permanent research collection of the National Museum of American History. Acadia is also the only Canadian university selected for inclusion in the Education and Academia category of the Computerworld Smithsonian Award.
Acadia University's Board of Governors and members of the Acadia University Faculty Association (AUFA) have ratified a new collective agreement covering the period 1 July 2010 to 30 June 2014. The faculty of Acadia University have been on strike three times in the history of the institution. The first was 24 February to 12 March 2004. The second was 15 October to 5 November 2007. The second strike was resolved after the province's labour minister, Mark Parent, appointed a mediator, on 1 November, to facilitate an agreement. The third strike began on 1 February 2022 and ended 1 March 2022 with both sides agreeing to binding arbitration.
In Maclean's 2023 Guide to Canadian Universities, Acadia was ranked fifth in the publication's "primarily undergraduate" Canadian university category, tied with Bishop's University. In the same year, the publication ranked Acadia 33rd, in Maclean's reputation survey.
Acadia is organized into four faculties: Arts, Pure & Applied Science, Professional Studies and Theology. Each faculty is further divided into departments and schools specialized in areas of teaching and research.
Acadia has over 15 research centres and 6 research chairs. Undergraduate students have the opportunity to participate in many research opportunities in a small university setting.
The Division of Research & Graduate Studies is separate from the faculties and oversees graduate students as well as Acadia's research programs.
Acadia's research programs explore coastal environments, ethno-cultural diversity, social justice, environmental monitoring and climate change, organizational relationships, data mining, the impact of digital technologies, and lifestyle choices contributing to health and wellness. Acadia's research centres include the Tidal Energy Institute, the Acadia Institute for Data Analytics, and the Beaubassin Field Station. Applied research opportunities include research with local wineries and grape growers, alternative insect control techniques and technologies.
The Acadia Advantage
In 1996, Acadia University pioneered the use of mobile computing technology in a post-secondary educational environment.
This academic initiative, named the Acadia Advantage, integrated the use of notebook computers into the undergraduate curriculum and featured innovations in teaching. By 2000, all full-time, undergraduate Acadia students were taking part in the initiative. The initiative went beyond leasing notebook computers to students during the academic year, and included training, user support and the use of course-specific applications at Acadia that arguably revolutionized learning at the Wolfville, N.S. campus and beyond.
Because of its pioneering efforts, Acadia is a laureate of Washington's Smithsonian Institution and a part of the permanent research collection of the National Museum of American History. It is the only Canadian university selected for inclusion in the Education and Academia category of the Computerworld Smithsonian Award.
In addition, Acadia University received the Pioneer Award for Ubiquitous Computing. In 2001, it achieved high rankings in the annual Maclean's University Rankings, including Best Overall for Primarily Undergraduate University in their opinion survey, and it received the Canadian Information Productivity Award in 1997 as the first university in Canada to fully utilize information technology in the undergraduate curriculum.
In October 2006, Dinter-Gottlieb established a commission to review the Acadia Advantage learning environment 10 years after inception. The mandate of the commission was to determine how well the current Advantage program meets the needs of students, faculty, and staff and to examine how the role of technology in the postsecondary environment has changed at Acadia, and elsewhere. The commission was asked to recommend changes and enhancements to the Acadia Advantage that would benefit the entire university community and ensure its sustainability.
Some of the recommendations coming from the Acadia Advantage Renewal Report included developing a choice of model specifications and moving from Acadia-issued, student-leased notebook computers to a student-owned computer model.
The university was also advised to unbundle its tuition structure so that the cost of an Acadia education is more detailed and students can understand how their investment in the future of the school is allotted. In September 2008, Acadia moved to a student-owned notebook computer version of the Acadia Advantage, now named Acadia Advantage 2.0.
In 2017, Acadia announced the Huestis Innovation Pavilion as part of its $22.25 million Science Complex renewal project. Named in honour of lead donors, Faye and David Huestis of Saint John, New Brunswick, the Pavilion is a connection between Elliott and Huggins Halls, providing research and commercialization space.
The new Agri-Technology Access Centre in the Innovation Pavilion provides companies and industry organizations with access to specialized technology, lab space, subject-matter expertise and commercialization support services. It also enables Acadia to advance its applied research strength in a priority sector – agriculture – and expand its technology transfer and commercialization activities. The Science Complex renewal project was supported by an investment of $15.98 million by the Federal and Provincial governments.
School spirit abounds with men's and women's varsity teams that have delivered more conference and national championships than any other institution in Atlantic University Sport. Routinely, more than one-third of Acadia's varsity athletes also achieve Academic All-Canadian designation through Canadian Interuniversity Sport by maintaining a minimum average of 80 per cent.
Expansion and modernization of Raymond Field was completed in the fall of 2007 and features the installation of an eight-lane all-weather running track and a move to the same premium artificial turf used by the New England Patriots of the National Football League for its main playing field. The Raymond Field modernization was a gift to the university by friends, alumni, and the province. War Memorial Gymnasium also saw the installation of a new playing floor to benefit its basketball and volleyball teams.
In September 2006, Acadia University announced its partnership with the Wolfville Tritons Swim Club and the Acadia Masters Swim Club to form the Acadia Swim Club and return competitive swimming to the university after a 14-year hiatus. On 26 September 2008, the university announced its intention to return swimming to a varsity status in September 2009.
Notable among a number of songs commonly played and sung at various events such as commencement, convocation, and athletic games are: Stand Up and Cheer, the Acadia University fight song. According to 'Songs of Acadia College' (Wolfville, NS 1902–3, 1907), the songs include: 'Acadia Centennial Song' (1938); 'The Acadia Clan Song'; 'Alma Mater - Acadia;' 'Alma Mater Acadia' (1938) and 'Alma Mater Song.'
In 1974, Acadia was granted a coat of arms designed by the College of Arms in London, England. The coat of arms is two-tone, with the school's official colours, garnet and blue, on the shield. The axes represent the school's origins in a rural setting, and the determination of its founders who cleared the land and built the school on donated items and labour. The open books represent the intellectual pursuits of a university, and the wolves heads are a whimsical representation of the university's location in Wolfville. "In pulvere vinces" (In dust you conquer) is the motto.
The university also uses a stylized "A" as a logo for its sports teams.
Notable among a number of fight songs commonly played and sung at various events such as commencement, convocation, and athletic games are: the Acadia University alma mater set to the tune of "Annie Lisle". The lyrics are:
- Far above the dykes of Fundy
- And its basin blue
- Stands our noble alma mater
- Glorious to view
- Lift the chorus
- Speed it onward
- Sing it loud and free
- Hail to thee our alma mater
- Acadia, hail to thee
- Far above the busy highway
- And the sleepy town
- Raised against the arch of heaven
- Looks she proudly down
Historic buildings at Acadia University
Seminary House, also known as just "Sem", is a Second Empire style-building constructed in 1878 as a home for women attending the university. It was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1997 as Canada's oldest facility associated with the higher education of women. The building now serves as a co-ed residence, and Whitman House on campus now serves as the women's only residence.
Carnegie Hall, built in 1909, is a large, two-storey, Neo-classical brick building. It was designated under the provincial Heritage Property Act in 1989 as its construction in 1909 signified Acadia's evolution from classical college to liberal university.
The War Memorial House (more generally known as Barrax), which is a residence, and War Memorial Gymnasium are landmark buildings on the campus of Acadia University. The Memorial Hall and Gymnasium honours students who had enlisted and died in the First World War, and in the Second World War. Two granite shafts, which are part of the War Memorial Gymnasium complex at Acadia University, are dedicated to the university's war dead. The War Memorial House is dedicated to the war dead from Acadia University during the Second World War.
At Acadia University, students have access to the Student Union Building which serves as a hub for students and houses many Student Union organizations. The building houses The Axe Lounge, a convenience store, an information desk, two food outlets, and the Sexual Health Resource Centre. The university press, The Athenaeum is a member of CUP. There is a student-ran radio, available at https://www.axeradio.net/.
All students are represented by the Acadia Students' Union.
- Chase Court
- Chipman House
- Christofor Hall
- Crowell Tower (13 Story High-rise)
- Cutten House
- Dennis House - First floor houses student health services
- Eaton House
- Roy Jodrey Hall
- Seminary House - Also houses the School of Education in lower level
- War Memorial (Barrax) House
- Whitman House (Tully) - All female residence
- Willett House (former residence)
This section needs additional citations for verification. (April 2012)
List of presidents and vice chancellors
- John Pryor, 1846–1850
- John Cramp, 1851–1853 (and 1856–1869)
- Edmund Crawley, 1853–1856
- John Cramp, 1856–1869
- Artemas Wyman Sawyer, 1869–1896
- Thomas Trotter, 1897–1906
- W.B. Hutchinson, 1907–1909
- George Barton Cutten, 1910–1922
- Frederic Patterson, 1923–1948
- Watson Kirkconnell, 1948–1964
- James Beveridge, 1964–1978
- Allan Sinclair, 1978–1981
- James Perkin, 1981–1993
- Kelvin Ogilvie, 1993–2004
- Gail Dinter-Gottlieb, 2004–2008
- Tom Herman (Acting President), 2008–2009
- Ray Ivany, 2009 – 2017
- Peter J Ricketts, 2017 - 2023
- Jeffrey J Hennessy, 2023
List of chancellors
- Alex Colville, 1981–1991
- William Feindel, 1991–1996
- Arthur Irving, 1996–2010
- Libby Burnham, 2011–2018
- Bruce Galloway, 2018–present
- Edgar Archibald, scientist and politician
- Norman Atkins, Canadian senator
- Solomon Adeniyi Babalola - Veteran Nigerian Baptist Missionary/Evangelist, Church Pastor, Church Administrator, Denominational Leader, and Theological Educator
- Ron Barkhouse, MLA for Lunenburg East (Horton Academy)
- Gordon Lockhart Bennett, Lieutenant-Governor of Prince Edward Island
- Arthur Bourns, President of McMaster University
- Libby Burnham, lawyer, Chancellor of Acadia University
- Bob Cameron, football player
- Dalton Camp, journalist, politician and political strategist
- M. Elizabeth Cannon, University of Calgary's President & Vice-Chancellor
- Lillian Chase, physician
- Paul Corkum, physicist and F.R.S.
- John Wallace de Beque Farris, Canadian senator
- Mark Day, actor
- Michael Dick, CBC-TV Journalist
- Charles Aubrey Eaton (1868–1953), clergyman and politician
- William Feindel, neurosurgeon
- Dale Frail, astronomer
- Rob Ramsay, actor
- Alexandra Fuller, writer
- Gary Graham, musician, choral conductor
- Matthew Green, Member of Parliament
- Milton Fowler Gregg, VC laureate, politician
- Robbie Harrison, Nova Scotian politician and educator
- Richard Hatfield, Premier of New Brunswick
- Charles Brenton Huggins, Nobel Laureate
- Kenneth Colin Irving, industrialist
- Robert Irving, industrialist
- Ron James, Canadian comedian
- Lorie Kane, LPGA golfer
- Gerald Keddy, Member of Parliament
- Joanne Kelly, Actress
- Kenneth Komoski, Educator
- David H. Levy, astronomer
- Peter MacKay, lawyer, Canadian Minister of National Defense
- Henry Poole MacKeen, Lieutenant-Governor of Nova Scotia
- Paul Masotti, football player
- Harrison McCain, industrialist
- Donald Oliver, Canadian senator
- Henry Nicholas Paint (1830–1921), member of Parliament, merchant, landowner,
- Freeman Patterson, photographer, writer
- Robert Pope, Visual artist author,
- Keith R. Porter, Cell Biologist
- Heather Rankin, singer-songwriter, member of The Rankin Family
- Perry F. Rockwood, radio evangelist
- Erin Roger, scientist
- Jacob Gould Schurman, President of Cornell University
- Roger Tomlinson (1933–2014), geographer and "The Father of GIS"
- Rev. William A. White, noted black minister and missionary
- Rev. William Pearly Oliver, noted black minister and educator
- Lance Woolaver, playwright
- Jean Béliveau, professional hockey player and executive
- Rt. Hon. Kim Campbell, former Prime Minister of Canada
- Alex Colville, painter and former University Chancellor
- Rt. Hon. John Diefenbaker, former Prime Minister of Canada
- Rick Hansen, activist and Paralympic athlete
- Grace Hopper, computer scientist and United States Navy rear admiral
- Kyle Lowry, professional basketball player for the Miami Heat
- Alexa McDonough, politician and first woman to lead a major, recognized political party in Canada
- William Twaits, chairman and CEO of Imperial Oil Limited
- Rev. William A. White, noted black minister and missionary
- Acadia Divinity College
- Canadian government scientific research organizations
- Canadian industrial research and development organizations
- Canadian Interuniversity Sport
- Canadian university scientific research organizations
- Higher education in Nova Scotia
- List of universities in Nova Scotia
- List of National Historic Sites of Canada in Nova Scotia
- Shad (Summer Program)
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