Ryerson Polytechnical University

Ryerson University was founded in 1948 as Ryerson Institute of Technology. It is named after Egerton Ryerson, the founder of public education in Ontario.1803Egerton Ryerson is born into a United Empire Loyalist family in Norfolk County, Upper Canada. As superintendent of Education from 1844 to 1876, Ryerson initiated free elementary schools, standard textbooks, and a standard quality of secondary school education.1850Under Ryersons supervision, a parcel of semi-rural land known as St. James Square was purchased in Toronto for the site of the Normal School, the first training facility for teachers in Canada, and the property on which Ryerson University now sits. Among the other facilities housed there was a museum the forerunner of the Royal Ontario Museum.1882An art school, later to become the Ontario College of Art, is located at St. James Square.1941Activities in the Normal School are moved and the building is used as a training facility for the Royal Canadian Air Force during the Second World War. St. James Square also becomes headquarters for training in war industry, and for teaching service personnel trades, under the leadership of Howard H. Kerr.1945The Training and Re-establishment Institute opens to train ex-service personnel for re-entry into civilian life. More than 16,500 graduated from the Institute.1948Ryerson opens. Veteran retraining phased out, and the Ryerson Institute of Technology is officially opened by Premier George Drew. Howard Kerr is the first principal of the Institute, which has an enrolment of 225. Courses are one and two years in length.1953All trade courses at Ryerson are transferred to the Provincial Institute of Trades, later George Brown College.1958Construction begins on what is now Kerr Hall. The face of the original Normal School Building remains in the quadrangle.1963Ryerson Polytechnical Institute name is designated. Kerr Hall officially opens.1966Ryerson purchases the OKeefe Brewery and offices on Victoria and Bond Sts., premises that later become the Photography and Business buildings.1971Ryerson given permission to grant Bachelor of Technology and Bachelor of Applied Arts degrees. Interior Design is the first program to be given approval to grant degrees. Jorgenson Hall is officially opened.1972First degrees awarded.1977Approval given to grant Bachelor of Business Management degrees.1978Oakham House, a historic building on Gould St., is renovated and re-opened as a community centre for students, staff, and faculty.1981New Architectural Science Building on Church St. opens.1987The uniquely designed Recreation and Athletics Centre opens, with the historic Normal School facade providing a gateway to one of its entrances1991Ryerson opens its first major student residence, with accommodation for 550. The $25-million Rogers Communications Centre, a state-of-the-art facility for the Schools of Journalism, Radio and Television, and Computer Science, is opened. Approval is granted to award Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Social Work degrees.1992Ryerson becomes Torontos second school of engineering following accreditation from the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board. A flag bearing the Ryerson crest is carried aboard the space shuttle Columbia, signifying Ryersons collaboration in research with Canadian astronaut Roberta Bondar. Research funding tops $9 million for the period 1986-92.1993Full university status. Ryerson Polytechnic University is established by an act of the provincial legislature, which grants Ryerson a fully-funded research role and the power to develop graduate programs.1994David Crombie, a teacher and administrator at Ryerson in the 1960s, is named the Universitys first chancellor, a post created with university status.1995Dr. Claude Lajeunesse is installed as the seventh president of Ryerson.1996The University awards its first honorary doctorate to the Right Honourable Romeo LeBlanc, Governor General of Canada. Since then, Ryerson has bestowed honorary doctorates to, among others, Oscar-winning filmmaker James Cameron, former mayor of Toronto Barbara Hall, broadcast executive Ivan Fecan, Toronto Blue Jays president Paul Godfrey, former premier of New Brunswick Frank McKenna, and television producer Lorne Michaels.1998Ryerson celebrates its 50th anniversary and its fifth as a university. The University launches Canadas first degree program in Retail Management.1999The University launches two new programs in Information Technology Management and in Disability Studies. John Craig Eaton is named Ryersons second chancellor. Full-time enrollment at the University tops 14,000. For the sixth year in a row, Ryerson places first in the Leaders of Tomorrow reputational category in Macleans annual ranking of primarily undergraduate Canadian universities. The University also places second in the Most Innovative category, fourth in Highest Quality, and second in Best Overall.2000Ryerson launches its first three graduate programs, Communication and Culture, Spatial Analysis, and Environmental Applied Science and Management. Ted and Loretta Rogers donate $10 million to establish the Edward S. Rogers Sr. Graduate School for Advanced Communications. Plans are in place for the largest expansion of the campus in 30 years, including a 235,000-square-foot Centre for Computing and Engineering.2001Awards first graduate degrees. Graduate programs in Engineering are launched.2002The name Ryerson University is made official by an act of the provincial legislature. 2003First doctoral students admitted.2004Official launch of Invest in Futures Campaign.2005Sheldon Levy is installed as the eighth president of Ryerson.Student Testimonials: Windows Media Player: Hi bandwidth, Low bandwidth QuickTime: Hi bandwidth, Low bandwidthThe History: Mission Chronology Quick FactsMore Information: Campus Movie Downtown LocationRyerson offers both professionally targeted programs - an area in which we lead among Canadian Universities and contemporary arts and science degrees. You’ll benefit from a real-world, relevant curriculum that lets you practice while you learn and that prepares you to hit the ground running when you graduate.



350 Victoria Street

Toronto, CA

Main 416.979.5000

Fax 416.979.5227