What can gown do for town?

The word campus suggests an inward-looking community, set apart. That may have made sense several generations ago. But a modern university campus must be deeply engaged with both the local and the global.

One of the great strengths of Toronto is U of T, and likewise, the GTA is a great strength of all three U of T campuses.

UTSC and the eastern GTA are inextricably tied—physically, economically and emotionally. We draw upon its people, culture and environment for our students, research and learning, and we accept a responsibility to contribute to its intellectual, economic, cultural and athletic vibrancy, and quality of life.

What we do—or fail to do—has an enormous impact on the city/region around us and on the world we inhabit.

That’s why the extent to which we are not just “in” a city but also “of” it is critical to our academic enterprise. We are not “hidden behind the trees.” And we’re not a satellite located in a community of bedrooms. We’re an internationally recognized, research-intensive university committed to a rapidly maturing area of the GTA. We offer exceptional experiential and Co-op education so that students can gain first-hand knowledge of the issues they study, at home and abroad.

As thought leaders we conduct research, teach and advise on challenges like building sustainable, affordable transit; planning and financing infrastructure that attracts and supports business, artists and creative professionals; and creating a sustainable environment. We contribute to a better-prepared workforce, increased employment, smarter local develop- ment and inclusive, humane citizenship. UTSC’s interdisciplinary programs enable us to foster innovative collaboration among departments and disciplines, addressing universal problems such as poverty, inadequate schools and poor health care, whether these problems are manifested near or far.

The university of the future looks a lot like UTSC today.

Bruce Kidd, OC, PhD, LLD
Vice-President, University of Toronto, and Principal, UTSC

We are most grateful for the contributions of Professor Rick Halpern, who has stepped down as dean and remains a tenured U of T professor. Rick brought progressive leadership to our academic program over the past six years, leading significant enrolment growth and helping to make UTSC a destination for innovative programming that is engaged with the community.