The University of Western Ontario, commonly referred to as Western, is a public research university located in London, Ontario, Canada. The university's main campus covers 455 hectares (1,120 acres) of land, with the Thames River cutting through the eastern portion of the main campus. Western administers a wide variety of academic programs between 12 faculties, professional schools and three affiliated university colleges. The university was founded as The Western University of London Ontario, a denomimational school of the Church of England, by Bishop Isaac Hellmuth and the Anglican Diocese of Huron. The university became secular in 1908 and was renamed "The University of Western Ontario" in 1923. The university has over 23,000 undergraduate and over 5,000 graduate students. More than 220,000 alumni and former students of Western can be found in over 100 countries around the world. The Western varsity athletic teams are known as the Western Mustangs, and are members of the Canadian Interuniversity Sport. The university was founded on 7 March 1878 by Bishop Isaac Hellmuth (1817–1901) of the Anglican Diocese of Huron as "The Western University of London Ontario."
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