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Quest University Canada

Quest University Canada, the country's first independent, not-for-profit, secular university, opened in Squamish on September 1, 2007. It represented the culmination of a vision first formed a decade earlier by Dr. David W. Strangway, OC, FRSC, former president of the Universities of Toronto and British Columbia: to design from scratch a university for the twenty-first century. The purpose-built campus, made possible through a generous donation from Dr. Stewart Blusson, occupies a 65-acre site in the Garibaldi Highlands.

From the architecture to the institutional structure, and from the faculty to the curriculum, Quest is designed with one goal: to provide the most effective and engaging undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences in order to produce graduates who are skilled in communication, imbued with quantitative reasoning skills, instinctively collaborative, inherently trans-disciplinary in their approach to problems and engaged in their local and global communities -- broadly educated individuals with an informed perspective on the problems of the 21st century and the integrative abilities to solve them.

All classes are seminars with a maximum of twenty students. The curriculum consists of a two-year Foundation program spanning the humanities, arts, social sciences, sciences and mathematics, followed by a two-year Concentration program in which each students defines an individualized Question on which he or she works, one-on-one, with a faculty member while taking classes to support the inquiry and engaging in mandatory experiential learning off campus. All courses are taught on the "Block plan" in which students take four courses per term, but take them in series rather than in parallel, concentrating on one class only each month. This unique program has led to Quest being ranked number one in North America by the National Survey of Student Engagement, the gold standard of undergraduate educational excellence.

Quest has be growing along with Squamish. From an opening day with 73 students, six faculty, and a support staff of eighteen, the University has expanded over six years to 550 students and a total staff of one hundred including 41 full-time PhD faculty. With the completion of its sixth student residence in 2014, Quest will reach its planned phase-one maximum enrolment of 650 students on campus. With students from forty countries represented on campus, Quest provides a rich internationally recognized contribution to the Squamish community of innovative educational institutions.

Quest University Canada website.