Introduction to Royal Roads University

This page gives you a brief overview of RRU and links you through to further resources to explore RRU at greater depth.

Brief History

Royal Roads University sits on the ancestral homelands of the Coast Salish people; the Xwsepsum (Esquimalt) and Lkwungen (Songhees) nations. 

Now a National Historic Site known as Hatley Park, this beautiful land has a rich history of learning and living, built on a strong connection with the natural environment. 

In 1940 the Canadian government purchased the buildings and grounds at Hatley Park from the Dunsmuir estate and created a military college for training officer cadets. The college continued to operate under various names over 55 years, educating officer cadets in the various services. In 1975 Royal Roads Military College received permission to grant degrees and continued to do so until the college was closed by the federal government in 1995. 

Establishment of Royal Roads University

In June 1995, Royal Roads University was created as a public university in British Columbia with a special mandate to focus on applied and professional programs. Royal Roads University, guided by our mission and vision, seeks to provide personal and professional transformation. Our mission is focused on responding to the needs of a rapidly changing world and workplace in a real and hands-on way. The strategic directions of the University have been articulated to reflect this.

RRU pioneered the “blended learning” model in Canada, combining the strengths of team-based, applied and experiential practices. Our combination of intense and rewarding on-campus residencies with a richly collaborative online environment provides an educational experience like no other. We have carefully and purposefully built a suite of high-quality, interdisciplinary undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs as well as lifelong learning opportunities targeted to be accessible and meet the needs of busy professionals. The key attribute is accessibility. We invite people to live their lives while continuing their education, so that success is evident in both their careers and personal growth.

Learn more about RRU.

Vision, Goals, & Values

2020 marks RRU's 25th anniversary and the launch of its new vision to guide the university going forward into its next 25 years: Inspiring people with the courage to transform the world.

RRU's Programs

RRU's programs are unique in that they are entirely interdisciplinary. Some are delivered online with on-campus residencies (called "blended ", with residencies of one, two, or three week duration), others are entirely online, and some are offered full-time on campus. Most of our programs do not run according to a typical academic calendar - they each have their own schedule.

Our programs are organized within interdisciplinary Schools.

Indigenous Relations

RRU is committed to furthering its reconciliation and decolonization efforts and Indigenous relations. Our Indigenous Education and Student Services are housed in Sneq’wa (Blue Heron) e’lun (House), a "home away from home " for Indigenous students, faculty and staff.


RRU is committed to diversity and inclusion, as articulated in our Diversity Statement.

RRU Proud offers a supportive network for LGBTTQQ individuals and allies.


At Royal Roads University, changemaking is part of our DNA.

RRU's role as a leader for change and social innovation has been recognized with its designation as an Ashoka U Changemaker Campus.


Last modified: Tuesday, 15 September 2020, 10:26 AM