Established in 1874, OAC is a founding college of the University of Guelph, ranked as Canada's top comprehensive research university. The college provides innovative life sciences education and research for agriculture, food, the environment and rural communities in Canada and around the world. Through our activities across a province-wide network of campuses and research facilities, OAC is known for its outstanding contributions to agriculture and food. OAC has six academic units on four campuses.
OAC education programs focus on preparing tomorrow's industry and policy leaders through a multi-disciplinary approach, with an emphasis on experiential learning. More than 3,000 students are enrolled in OAC's diploma, undergraduate and graduate programs led by award-winning faculty. OAC faculy and staff continually strive to improve the broad educational experiences of OAC students. OAC strengthens its programs through international opportunities and collaboration with partner institutions in Canada and around the world. Professional development and skills training through short courses, and continuing and distance education options round out the program roster.
OAC's research activities span a broad range of topics across our communities of interest, from food safety and biotechnology through international development and animal welfare. OAC hosts regional, national and international Research Centres and Institutes, and Canada Research Chairs.
OAC comprises more than 40% of the research funding at the University of Guelph, totalling more than $50 million annually. Under the Partnership Agreement with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, and the Ministry of Rural Affairs, and the University of Guelph, OAC is a primary contributor in the delivery of research, education and laboratory services on behalf of the provincial government, ensuring the long-term global competitiveness and sustainability of Ontario’s agriculture and food system. This partnership boasts an annual economic impact that exceeds $1.15 billion.
As part of the OMAF and MRA partnership, OAC assists in the management of a province-wide network of 13 Research Stations.