The UWC global movement is comprised of 17 schools, including Canada's most international school, Pearson College. Students are selected to attend from over 150 countries. Following a merit-based selection process, UWC aspires to meet the demonstrated financial need of all students, and we offer more financial aid than other international schools. This helps ensure our schools are diverse in every sense, which is key to fulfilling our mission to make education a force for peace and sustainability in the world. — Visit school website
United World College (UWC) was founded by Kurt Hahn in 1962, inspired by his experience as a German Jew during the war years. He had had a front row seat to all the ways in which societies can fail, often principally, he felt, by being too insular. As an educator, he hoped to play a role in changing that. The goals of the school are as grand as they are affective, including, says David Hawley, past head of UWC Canada, that of “preventing what happened with World War II from ever happening in the future." Hahn hoped to educate people about their place in the world, to appreciate the diversity of the global population through direct experience, and to understand the power of their voices within a multitude of voices. The first school was founded in Wales, the second being Pearson College in 1974 and named to honor Lester Pearson’s leadership. There are now 17 UWC schools dotting the globe, and in all the goal is to bring people from around the world together, including those from cultures and countries that may be in conflict. Students arrive very consciously bringing their experience with them, and they enter a community of like-minded individuals who, like them, are interested in taking a leadership role in their communities, whatever they may posit them to be. The ideal student is one who is able to thrive in an engaging, diverse, challenging academic and social environment.