About us

The Council of Ontario Universities promotes university education and research and their role in preparing both undergraduate and graduate students for success in life and careers. A membership organization consisting of Ontario’s 20 publicly assisted universities and one associate member, the Royal Military College of Canada, COU works with members to find consensus on a wide range of university issues and advances them with government and other stakeholders.

Patrick Deane headshot

Resilient and creative as they are different from each other, the universities of Ontario will find ongoing renewal in their negotiation with the changing currents of our society.

— Dr. Patrick Deane, Chair of COU
President and Vice-Chancellor, McMaster University

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Prof. Bonnie Patterson

Ontario universities are continuously adapting to the evolving needs of students and society, as well as the changing marketplace. As an organization that serves Ontario's universities, and ultimately their students, COU must be equally nimble.

— Professor Bonnie M. Patterson
President and Chief Executive Officer, COU

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Get to know COU

Members of Council

Learn about Council, which consists of two representatives from each member and associate member institution: the executive head (president or principal) and an academic colleague appointed by each institution’s senior academic governing body.


View COU’s standing committees, made up of appointed university officials who serve for two-year terms.


View the membership lists of COU’s affiliates. Affiliates are organized groups of university professionals who discuss sector-wide issues, address challenges and propose solutions, and share best practices.

Annual Reports

COU’s Annual Reports highlight achievements in the Ontario university sector and provide the organization’s financial statements.

Career Opportunities

Discover some of the careers available to you and apply to join the COU team.

Contact COU

Use this section to send us a question, or make a comment.

How COU Works