University of Akureyri

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University of Akureyri

The University of Akureyri (Icelandic: Háskólinn á Akureyri) was founded on September 5, 1987, in the city of Akureyri in the northeastern part of Iceland. It has grown since then, establishing a school of health sciences, humanities and social science, and a school of business and science. Over 2000 students attended the university in the autumn semester of 2014, around half of them through distance education, making the university the largest provider of distance education in the country. The University of Akureyri coordinates with other Icelandic Universities to operate the University Centre of the Westfjords (Háskólasetur Vestfjarða) located in Ísafjörður, which operates two master's degrees, one in Coastal and Marine Management and the other in Marine Innovation. Additionally, The University of Akureyri coordinates with other Nordic Universities for the West Nordic Studies and Polar Law Masters programs. The University was established in 1987 when the health sciences and industrial management studies began. The first rector was Haraldur Bessason. Staff were four people in total and the number of students 31. Two classrooms in the local sports center were used as classrooms. In 1988, the library was officially added to the school. Two months after the library was added, the Student Center opened. The first class to graduate was in 1989, and consisted of 10 industrial management students. On January 4, 1990, the Faculty of Fisheries was established. The first master's degree students graduated February 26, 2000. These students pursued a master's degree in nursing. A new chancellor took over from Þorsteinn Gunnarsson on July 1, 2009 after 15 years in office, Stefán B. Sigurðsson.