Mount Allison University
Motto Litterae, Religio, Scientia
Motto in English Writing, Divinity, Knowledge
Established June 1839
Type Public
Religious affiliation United Church of Canada
Endowment $86 million
Chancellor Peter Mansbridge
President Dr. Robert Campbell
Students 2,300
Location Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada
Campus Rural
Sport Teams Mount Allison Mounties
Colours Garnet Template:Color box & gold Template:Color box
Athletics CIS, AUS,
Nickname Mounties
Affiliations AUCC, IAU, ACU, CIS, CBIE, AUS, CUP

Mount Allison University (also Mount A or MTA) is a primarily undergraduate Canadian liberal arts and science university situated in Sackville, New Brunswick. It is located about a half hour from the regional city of Moncton and 20 minutes from the Greater Moncton International Airport. With a combination of historical architecture and modern facilities as well as its well-kept grounds, the campus is among the most beautiful in Canada.[1] It has been ranked first or second in the country for the last 20 years by Maclean's magazine (in the category of "primarily undergraduate" universities) and given top ratings in Maclean's annual alumni survey.

Mount Allison University was the first university in the British Empire to award a baccalaureate to a woman (Grace Annie Lockhart, B.Sc, 1875). Over the years, Mount Allison graduates have been awarded a total of 49 Rhodes Scholarships,[2] more than any other liberal arts university in North America.[3] Mount Allison is the wealthiest university in Canada on an endowment per student basis.[4][5] Mount Allison students and alumni are referred to as "Allisonians". In 2009, New Brunswick was selected as the host province for the 2011 Canon Envirothon and it was later announced that the competition would be held at Mount Allison in July.[6]


Mount Allison University is a United Church-affiliated, non-sectarian university established at Sackville, New Brunswick in 1862. Its origins were steeped in the Methodist faith. It was designed to prepare men for the ministry and to supply education for lay members.[7] The university's affiliation was transferred to the United Church of Canada following church union in 1925. Original components of the university included: the Mount Allison Wesleyan Academy for Boys (1840-1958), the Ladies' College (1854-1958), and Mount Allison College. Mount Allison College was established in 1862 with degree-granting powers on behalf of the other two.[8]


Mount Allison's origins go back to a boys' academy founded in June 1839 by a local Methodist merchant, Charles Frederick Allison. Charles Allison's grandfather had emigrated from Ireland to Canada in the late 18th century because of the after effects of a dinner with the local government tax collector. Wanting to impress the man, the family had set the table with their one valuable possession; silver spoons. After entertaining their guest, the Allisons were informed by the tax collector that if they could afford silver spoons, then they could certainly afford to pay more taxes. The Allisons left Ireland shortly thereafter. The offending spoons are now on display in the main university library.

In June 1839, Charles Allison proposed to the Wesleyan Methodists that a school of elementary and higher learning be built. He offered to purchase a site in Sackville, to erect a suitable building for an academy, and to contribute operating funds of £100 a year for 10 years. This offer was accepted and the Wesleyan Academy for boys subsequently opened in 1843.[9]

In 1854, a girls' institution (later known as the "Ladies College") was opened to complement the boys' academy.

In July 1862, the degree-granting Mount Allison College was organised. The first two students, Howard Sprague and Josiah Wood, graduated in May 1863. Mount Allison was the first university in the British Empire to confer a Bachelor's degree to a woman (Grace Annie Lockhart, B.Sc. 1875).[10] It was also the first university in Canada to grant a Bachelor of Arts to a woman (Harriet Starr Stewart).[11] For nearly a century, Mount Allison functioned as three distinct, mutually enriching parts: the College proper, the Boys' Academy and the Ladies College.

The governance was modelled on the provincial University of Toronto Act of 1906 which established a bicameral system of university government consisting of a senate (faculty), responsible for academic policy, and a board of governors (citizens) exercising exclusive control over financial policy and having formal authority in all other matters. The president, appointed by the board, was to provide a link between the 2 bodies and to perform institutional leadership.[7]

In the early part of the 20th century, professional education expanded beyond the traditional fields and graduate training based on the German-inspired American model of specialized course work and the completion of a research thesis was introduced.[7]

By 1920, Mount Allison University had three faculties: Arts, Theology, and Engineering. It awarded the degrees of Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Divinity (BD), and Master of Arts. It had 246 male students and 73 female students, as well as 28 academic staff, all male.[12]

The closure of the School for Girls in 1946 and the Boy's Academy in 1953 coincided with a period of expansion and provided much-needed space for the growing university. In 1958, a period of construction and acquisition of buildings began, easing the strain of overcrowding at the institution. At this time the university board and administration decided to reaffirm the traditional aims of Mount Allison in providing a high-quality undergraduate liberal arts education, along with continuing to offer professional programmes in already-established fields. As such, the university decided not to compete for new professional programs and generally avoided post-graduate course development.

The policy of university education initiated in the 1960s responded to population pressure and the belief that higher education was a key to social justice and economic productivity for individuals and for society.[13] Mount Allison University was established by the Mount Allison University Act, 1993.[14]

Mount Allison University's Arms and Badge were registered with the Canadian Heraldic Authority on November 15, 2007.[15]


In December 2010, Mount Allison University was ranked the #1 university in Canada for the 15th time in the primarily undergraduate university category, as rated by Maclean's magazine.[16] Mount Allison has also produced 49 Rhodes Scholars, the highest number per capita of any university in the Commonwealth.[17][18]

The mission statement of Mount Allison University promotes "the creation and dissemination of knowledge in a community of higher learning, centred on the undergraduate student and delivered in an intimate and harmonious environment". Mount Allison currently offers Bachelor's degrees in Arts, Science, Commerce, Fine Arts and Music, as well as Master's degrees in Biology and Chemistry and Certificates in Bilingualism.[19] A Bachelor's degree in Aviation has recently been developed in conjunction with the Moncton Flight College.

The university has a controlled full time enrollment of about 2,250 students.[20] The student body at Mount Allison comes from every province in Canada and there is a large proportion of international students as well.

Faculties and departmentsEdit

File:Owens Art Gallery, Mount A.jpg
File:Colville House, Mount A.jpg
  • Faculty of Arts (B.A, B.Mus.,B.F.A.)
    • Classics
    • English
    • Fine Arts
    • History
    • Modern Languages & Literatures
    • Music
    • Philosophy
    • Psychology
    • Religious Studies
    • American Studies
    • Canadian Studies
    • Drama
    • Women's Studies
  • Faculty of Social Sciences (B.A., B.Comm.)
    • Anthropology
    • Commerce
    • Economics
    • Geography & Environment
    • Political Science
    • Sociology
    • Environmental Studies
    • International Relations
  • Faculty of Science (B.Sc., M.Sc.)
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Mathematics & Computer Science
    • Physics
    • Psychology
    • Aviation (in conjunction with Moncton Flight College)
    • Biochemistry
    • Environmental Science
    • Cognitive Science



Mount Allison has housing facilities available for approximately 50 percent of its student population. More than 90 percent of first-year students choose to live in residence. On-campus accommodations are guaranteed to all first-year students who meet admission and deposit deadlines. All rooms come with high speed wired as well as wireless Internet.

All buildings are co-ed with wing to wing or integrated bathrooms. Sixty percent of rooms are either single or ensuite style and 40 percent are double accommodation. Campbell Hall, a newly built residence and winner of CBIP Award for incorporation of environment features, offers large single rooms with ensuite bathrooms.[21] For students wishing to immerse themselves in French language and culture, based on student interest, the university offers students the opportunity to live together. In addition, Mount Allison also offers students a chance to live in one of five satellite residences (Pavillon Bousquet, Bermuda, Carriage, Cuthebertson, and The Anchorage), which are smaller in size, ranging from eleven residents to 26. Four of these offer specific themes, Bermuda as the international house (housing a mix of students from around the world), Carriage as the animal house (taking care of animals for the Moncton SPCA), Cuthbertson as the environmentally-friendly house, and Anchorage as the healthy living house.

The following halls are open for new and returning students:

  • Campbell Hall
  • Harper Hall
  • Windsor Hall
  • Bigelow House
  • Bennett House
  • Hunton House
  • Thornton House (Upper-year students, Transfer and International Students)
  • Edwards House
  • Bermuda House (International Residence)
  • Pavilion Bousquet
  • Cuthbertson (Sustainable Residence)
  • Carriage House (Animal House)
  • Anchorage (Healthy Living)

Social lifeEdit

Social life at Mount Allison tends to focus on extracurricular activities. Mount Allison students also socialize at places like Ducky's, Joey's, and the Bridge Street Café.

Mount Allison's campus paper, The Argosy, is produced weekly by Argosy Publications Inc., an independent organization funded by the students through an annual fee. The publication dates from 1875, making it one of the oldest continuous publications in Atlantic Canada. Its community radio station, CHMA 106.9 FM, is owned and operated by the members of Attic Broadcasting Company Ltd., a non-profit organization with its offices on the university campus.

Tintamarre theatre company was founded at Mount Allison by Professor Alex Fancy and produces a bilingual collective each year, staged at the Windsor Theatre and later presented at junior and senior high schools throughout the Maritime provinces. There is a performing arts series staged at Convocation Hall (one of the largest concert halls east of Montreal) during the school year. A Shakespearean "Festival by the Marsh" is traditionally staged by the Swan Pond in the summer.

Student government Edit

The Students' Administrative Council (S.A.C.) is the representative council which governs the Mount Allison Students' Union Inc.

The Mount Allison Students' Union aims to foster a community where the quality of student life (educational, social and personal) is constantly improving.[22]
The S.A.C. acts as both a representative governing body and provides students with services. Services include: Funding for academic enrichment, assistance to 157 clubs and societies, scholarships, grad class events, used book sales, yearbooks, orientation, shinerama, a student housing directory, delivery condom service, entertainment, an exam database, ISIC cards, faxing and photocopying.

Notable alumni Edit

Mount Allison has produced more Rhodes Scholars (noted by RS in the list below) per capita than any other university in the Commonwealth.


The school's team name in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) is the Mount Allison Mounties. The football team has appeared in the Vanier Cup twice (1984 & 1991). They finished second in the Atlantic University Sport conference in 2010 and the Mount Allison football team has made playoffs appearances in 2007, 2008 and 2010. Mount Allison is also home to a CIS-level women's hockey team, as well as swim, badminton and soccer teams. Basketball and volleyball teams compete against colleges and other smaller universities. Mount Allison is also the winner of the first ever ACAA men's rugby championship in 2007.[24] In both 2008 and 2009 the men's and women's Mounties remained undefeated throughout the regular season and became ACAA champions.[24] The university women's hockey team plays at the Tantramar Civic Centre.

See also Edit



  • Dr. Marie Hammond Callaghan, Ed. 'We Were Here: Women's History at Mount Allison University' (Sackville: © Mount Allison University Press, 2006);
  • J.W. Falconer and W.G. Watson 'A Brief History of Pine Hill Divinity Hall and the Theological Department of Mount Allison University' (Halifax: Pine Hill Divinity Hall, 1946 Pamphlet)
  • John G. Reid, 'Mount Allison University: A History to 1963' (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984);
  • John G. Reid, 'The Mount Allison Ladies College: A Short History, 1984. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1984);


  1. University Navigator - Mount Allison
  2. Kelly O'Connor is Mount Allison's 49th Rhodes Scholar
  3. More Rhodes Scholars
  4. They're in the money
  5. Mount Allison University, Search Universities & Colleges Campus Starter
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 http://* PgNm=TCE&Params=A1ARTA0008242
  8. Mount Allison University
  9. The Project Gutenberg EBook #6466 of 'The Intellectual Development of the Canadian People, A historical review' by John George Bourinot, House of Commons, Ottawa, February 17th, 1881
  10. Mount Allison University. (n.d.). About Mount Allison. Retrieved on July 29, 2008 from
  11. Semple, N. (1996). The Lord's Dominion: The History of Canadian Methodism. McGill-Queen's Press, p. 253.
  12. Dominion Bureau of Statistics, Canada Year Book 1921, Ottawa, 1922
  13. *http://* PgNm=TCE&Params=A1ARTA0008242
  14. Mount Allison University Act
  15. Arms and Badge
  16. Primarily Undergraduate University Rankings
  17. "Mount A. student receives Rhodes Scholarship". New Brunswick Business Journal. 1 December 2010. Retrieved 21 December 2010. 
  18. Mount Allison University News and Events
  19. Future Students - Academics
  20. The Directory of Canadian Universities
  21. Mount Allison receives Federal Energy Award
  24. 24.0 24.1

External linksEdit

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