UBC’s Vancouver campus contains approximately 500 buildings and covers 402 hectares (993 acres) of land.
The cyclotron particle accelerator at TRIUMF is the largest in the world, accelerating 1,000 trillion particles per second to speeds of 224,000 km/s.
The UBC Engineers have hung a Volkswagen Beetle off three different bridges and put one on top of the Ladner Clock Tower twice.
The Nitobe Memorial Garden follows traditional principles of yin and yang, and its layout conforms to the map of the Milky Way.
UBC is home to Greater Vancouver’s first multi-family residential compost program.
UBC Thunderbird teams have won a total of 98 Canadian Inter university Sport Championships –the best record of any university in Canada.
Coincident with the introduction of U-Pass daily transit trips to and from the Point Grey campus increased by 263% from 2002 to 2013.
The design of the Chan Centre’s concert hall was inspired by the cello.
The CIRS Building (Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability)‘s water is 100% supplied by rainwater; also sequesters 600 tons of carbon dioxide in its structure; reduces campus energy by 275 megawatt-hours per year; and reduces campus carbon dioxide emissions by 150 tons each year.
Among current or former faculty and alumni UBC has 10 3M National Teaching Fellows.
The world-renowned mathematical physicist, Roger Penrose, who discovered black holes, recently visited UBC in 2014 for a Peter Wall Exploratory workshop with UBC’s theoretical physicist, Philip Stamp, and microbiologist, Brett Finlay?
In 1926, Hen #6, a Faculty of Agriculture research hen, set a new record by laying 351 eggs in 365 days.
When UBC’s sports teams were deciding on a name, students’ suggestions included Seagulls, Golden Eagle, and Sea Slugs.
MOA has three house posts from the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) First Nation.
UBC was Canada’s first Fair Trade campus. The amount of fair trade coffee consumed on campus each year is 8,975 kg or about 583,375 cups.
The Okanagan Campus is heated and cooled by a geothermal system making the campus virtually emissions free.
The Charles E. Fipke Centre on the Okanagan campus was the first laboratory building in Canada to earn five Green Globes for sustainability which is equivalent to a LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) Platinum rating.
Among current or former faculty and Alumni, UBC has been home to 69 Rhodes Scholars.
UBC has 241 Olympians and 65 medal winners.
The Allard School of Law graduate Alfred Scow was the first Aboriginal person to graduate from a B.C. law school, and the first Aboriginal lawyer in B.C. to be called to the Bar
UBC was the first Canadian university to achieve targets set out in the Kyoto protocol.
UBC has hosted international students from a total of 149 different countries (and counting).
In 2010 UBC Okanagan campus doubled its land area with purchase of 103.6 hectares (256 acres) of land from the City of Kelowna.
The Museum of Anthropology is home to a First Nations carving “Raven and the First Man” created by Bill Reid. It was featured on the old Canadian $20 bill.
The Ladner clock tower was constructed in 1968 with funds from Dr. Leon Ladner and his family. The clock tower honours the history of pioneering families in British Columbia, including the Ladner family, after whom the town of Ladner, an area of Delta, British Columbia, is named. The tower is 123 feet high, has four seven-foot wide faces, and houses a 330-bell carillion
Tennessee Williams was an artist in residence at UBC, circa 1980. He was, by all accounts, very brilliant and often inebriated.
The UBC Thunderbird sports teams were nearly called the Seagulls? Back in 1933, when UBC’s teams still had no name, the student paper, the Ubyssey, ran a name-the-team contest and the winner, as voted on by the students, was Seagulls! The paper’s sports editor decided this was a ridiculous name (though there are lots of seagulls in Vancouver) and so another contest was held. The premise seems to have been that the students should keep voting until they picked the right candidate.
Among current or former faculty and alumni there are 195 Royal Society of Canada members.
Kim Campbell, who became Canada’s 19th (and first female) Prime Minister in 1993, is a UBC alumna.
The UBC Skatepark is the first university campus skatepark in North America.
In 2 years, from 2012-2013 UBC Okanagan Campus opened 29,916 sq m of new facilities.
In 1968 Associate Professor of Zoology, David Suzuki, led the lobby for the first campus bar, The Pit Pub.
Psychology was initially introduced as a single course and was offered by the Department of Philosophy in 1915. The most popular undergraduate Major at UBC, Psychology currently has over 1700 students working toward their BA degree and over 120 studying for their BSc. During the 2013 academic year, more than 13,500 UBC undergraduates took at least one of our 52 courses.
UBC has 7 Nobel laureates: five current or former faculty members and two alumni.
UBC’s Vancouver campus is undergoing one of the largest steam to hot water conversions in North America; once completed, the Academic District Energy System will heat approximately 130 buildings on campus; lower the University’s carbon footprint by 22%; and decrease operational and energy costs by $5.5 million per year.
UBC was the first Canadian institution to sign the International Sustainable Campus Network Charter.
UBC Point Grey campus holds the honour of being the only venue in the world to host the Olympics, Paralympics, and Special Olympics.
In 2011, two new student residences in Totem Park were named after nearby Musqueam heritage sites: q̓ələχən was a strategic war fortification site and həm̓ləsəm̓ was a site of transformation, where it is said a greedy individual was turned to rock.
The Thunderbirds basketball team took on the Harlem Globetrotters in January 1946, and won.
The xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) house post outside of Allard Hall depicts qiyəplenəxʷ (Capilano), who was recognized for leading the Musqueam people in defending their territory, laws and customs.
The Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies is one of only 30 similar institutes worldwide, which make up the University-Based Institutes for Advanced Study (UBIAS) network? UBIAS are associated with or embedded within a university, and actively contribute to the academic culture and the scientific achievements of their home university. By offering various fellowship programs on different academic levels (junior and senior researchers), UBIAS institutes bring together outstanding researchers from different disciplines, nationalities and academic backgrounds, creating a productive environment for innovative research.
The recently constructed Hangar Fitness & Wellness Centre on the Okanagan campus resembles the curved wing of an aircraft.