In May 2020, Yukon College officially transitioned to become Yukon University—the first university in the Canadian territories. YukonU will use its location to its advantage, applying northern expertise to examine and solve issues pertaining to the North. Encompassing 13 campuses, YukonU offers eight undergraduate degree programs in science, arts, business, education and social work, including the first made-in-the-Yukon degree: a bachelor of arts in Indigenous governance, developed in collaboration with 14 Yukon First Nations. The school is also developing a new B.A. in northern studies to launch in 2021.
“Students, faculty and researchers at Canada’s first university north of 60 are grappling with the real-world challenges facing the North—climate change adaptation, sustainable resource development, Indigenous governance capacity, business innovation and economic development,” says president Karen Barnes. “There is tremendous potential being unlocked here as we empower our graduates to make significant impacts across northern Canada in the coming decades.”
As a hybrid institution, YukonU will continue to offer certificates, diplomas, university preparation, skilled trades training and applied research opportunities along with its degree programs. Its Yukon Research Centre, equipped with a lab that features a growth chamber and an atomic absorption spectrometer, conducts research in mine reclamation, cold climate construction, climate change, community health and economic diversification.
The school’s main Ayamdigut campus in Whitehorse, which sits on a bluff overlooking the Yukon River valley, offers single and apartment-style residences. Tuition (including mandatory fees) for an undergraduate program costs $4,931.