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A Loyalist academy turns 225

Quick, what’s the oldest English-language university in Canada?


The answer: University of New Brunswick, celebrating its 225th anniversary this fall.

The school owes its existence to a petition for a new academy sent to the Governor of New Brunswick in 1785 by newly settled American Loyalists. The governor ordered that a charter be established “with all due speed” and by 1787 classes had begun in a two-storey wood-framed building in Fredericton. The university’s signature building and oldest permanent structure, King’s College, now known as Sir Douglas Howard Hall, was opened in 1829.

Among the various celebrations to mark the anniversary was a September gala in Toronto, hosted by alumni Anne Murray and Frank McKenna, and a book launch in October for Building a University, which showcases UNB architecture.

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