The colleges are key to delivering on the components necessary for global leadership in the post-secondary environment, creating opportunities to further our core teaching and research mission. The university's new college structure — with its smaller number of larger academic units of similar size and broadly shared disciplinary interests — opens up significant opportunities to take advantage of economies of scale and advance interdisciplinary teaching and research. This more streamlined and balanced leadership structure leaves us all better equipped to advance university-wide strategic priorities, in contrast to many academic units operating as silos of widely varying size and scale. The colleges give us unifying platforms to focus our efforts and achieve even more significant global impact. This model increases our ability to deliver a consistent student experience and will help expand our reach to new and lifelong learners across Alberta, Canada and the world.

The colleges bring together 13 faculties organized around shared disciplinary concerns:

Stand-alone faculties

Our vision of One University embraces the vital contributions of our three stand-alone faculties who serve the needs of distinct communities. They bring those communities and their perspectives into connection and collaboration with our entire university, expanding options for students, opening access to underserved populations, and deepening community-engaged research and teaching.

Each college is a coordinated team of college, faculty and department staff that is led by a college dean/vice-provost who reports to the provost. The college dean/vice-provost has the authority and decision-making power to implement all aspects of the college, such as providing common administrative, professional and academic services and driving the alignment of resources, such as budget, space, strategic hiring, research and education program planning, and enrolment planning.

Key to the success of the college model is the expanded responsibility of the faculty dean to seek opportunities to synergize faculty-level initiatives and priorities with those of the other faculties within the college. The college dean/vice-provost will support the success of the faculties by coordinating cross-faculty services and by ensuring that resources are appropriately aligned across the college to support both the common and unique needs of the faculties.

Administrative and academic services within the colleges

The colleges will provide common academic services for their respective faculties, and where specialized services and administrative needs are integral to academic programming, colleges and faculties will provide these services under the direction of a general manager who works closely with the college and faculty deans to provide strategic advice and operational leadership. 

College Offices of Education

The Office of Education in each college will offer a coordinated approach to enrolment planning, recruitment, program administration and interdisciplinary program offerings for both graduate and undergraduate students, acting as a conduit for collaboration with centers of expertise and partner networks designed to support these functions across the entire institution. It will foster and achieve a new level of interdisciplinary teaching and work towards a more consistent delivery of high-quality student services.

College Offices of Research

The Office of Research in each college will play an essential role in the end-to-end support of research and creative activity, innovation and entrepreneurship at the university. By working closely with VPRI and research leadership in each faculty, they will build on our record of research excellence, aiming to attract more than $600 million annually in research revenues. The Office of Research will support research performance and grant application, capitalizing on major provincial and federal funding opportunities and advancing interdisciplinary approaches. Coordination and consolidation of research administration processes will enhance interdisciplinary partnership opportunities and engagement in a way that was not easily facilitated with multiple faculty research offices.

College Strategic Initiatives

The colleges will have a significant facilitation and leadership role in advancing critical strategic initiatives. Examples include Indigenous Initiatives, EDI, workplace safety, international initiatives, and space and facility optimization. Leaders in strategic initiatives will work with the college leadership and the offices of Education and Research to advance institutional strategy.