Because of the nature, extent and quality of its networks, endowments and reputation, the university provides for its staff, students and visiting scholars a point of significant connection to the region as well as a conduit to the nation and a springboard to the world.
This, combined with the quality of lifestyle, facilities and education on offer at UC, is what proves to be attractive to so many.
The University of Canterbury is a place where scholarship is valued, where teaching and learning are strongly linked to research and where staff, students and visiting scholars work within a strong research culture.
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Historically, Christchurch was a significant player in the original land-based economy and society of New Zealand.
At the time when provincial government was ending in New Zealand, Canterbury College was endowed with significant tracts of land in the South Island's high country.
This land passed in due course to the university and provided an ongoing focus for research and teaching related to the nature and sustainable use of high country land.
Complementing this historical legacy, key aspects of UC's distinctiveness also derive from its location.
Christchurch is New Zealand's oldest city and the South Island's largest.
The Canterbury region contains half of the population of the South Island and will be its major growth area for the foreseeable future both in population and economic terms.
Christchurch is thus large enough to be a significant player regionally and nationally in business, commerce, politics and the arts and yet not so large that staff and students of the university cannot feature prominently in these.
Canterbury is unique in this regard among New Zealand universities.
The special character of the University of Canterbury (UC) is reflected most clearly in its sense of history and place, its strong research culture and its single, multi-purpose city campus.
Reflecting historical Oxbridge roots, UC is a traditional university that embraces and emphasises academic excellence and takes pride in its strong research culture and in the inspirational output of many of its research staff and students.
Proud of its past, the university nevertheless looks to the future with vision and resolve to blend the best of Canterbury tradition with the innovation and creativity necessary for success and relevance in a changing world.