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Pearson College welcomes the world

Pearson College is one of 18 United World Colleges (UWC), an international network of schools and programs with the aim of “making education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future”. The schools was named after the late Canadian Prime Minister and Canada’s only Nobel Peace Laureate, Lester B. Pearson, who initiated the work to found a United World College “of the Pacific” here in Victoria.

The school is located past Metchosin and Albert Head near Matheson Lake Regional Park in a beautiful forested waterfront setting. It’s fitting that peace and sustainability are cornerstones of the education at Pearson College, due to the school’s incredible natural environment and UWC affiliation.

Pearson College is for 16-19 year old students. The college acts as a stepping stone between high school and university, with a transformative 2-year pre-university program.


Pearson College & Race Rocks

Race Rocks is an ecological reserve home to Western Canada’s second oldest lighthouse. The lighthouse has been in operation since 1860, and the land itself (including the waters) has been an integral part of First Nations life since 500 AD. In order to preserve the ecosystem, birds, and mammals in the area, the lighthouse island isn’t open to human visitors.

Pearson College UWC has been the Ecological Guardian of Race Rocks since 1997. The unique location and diversity of the area make Race Rocks an ideal hands-on learning environment for Pearson’s Marine Science students.


Education at Pearson College

The approach to learning is a little different here at Pearson vs. other more recognizable post secondary institutions. Learning is experiential and place-based, which means you’ll find things rooted in the spirit of Vancouver Island and the Indigenous Coast Sallish. Students learn in a holistic, community-focused environment where learners and community members from different communities come together to share diverse ideas.

Pearson College was one of the first schools in the continent to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB), an internationally recognized high school diploma program. This program not only challenges students academically, but is specifically designed to develop critical thinking and conflict resolution skills.

Pearson launched a new IB program in the 2022-23 academic year called The Climate Action Leadership Diploma. This program is designed to tackle the pressing issue of climate change. A first of its kind and an alternative to their existing IB Diploma Program, this 2-year diploma is for 16-19 year old who want to specialize in climate leadership.


Student Facts

  • ~200 students are enrolled (all aged 16-19)
  • 160 nations and regions of Canada are represented
  • 75% of students benefit from scholarships


>> Read on about all of the colleges and universities in Victoria


Geoff McLean‘s insight:

We need more of this; places where people from all over can learn that we are more alike than we are different.  This is how we can achieve global peace.

Pearson College Welcomes the World

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