With its commitment to the ideals of love, leadership and service, and the development of need breed of leaders, who are morally upright and spiritually inspired, the University of the Visayas operates and maintains educational programs which are nationalistic and democratic, and attuned to nationally and internationally accepted standards. While it nurtures academic excellence, it also works for the enhancement of high-level professions and middle level careers relevant to community development and the socioeconomic needs of the country.
The University of the Visayas was founded by the late Don Vicente Gullas in 1919 as the Visayan Institute (V.I.) in Cebu City. It was not until 1935 that the Visayan Institute moved to its present site in Colon St. The Second World War, however, razed to the ground the physical facilities of the VI but undaunted by adversities, Don Vicente Gullas reopened classes in Argao, Cebu in 1946. A year later the VI moved back to its present site in Colon Street where the buidings of its main campus now stand as a historical landmark in the City of Cebu.
In 1948, the Visayan Institute was conferred a University status by the then Bureau of Private Schools, the first to become a University in Cebu. The VI was renamed as the University of the Visayas. From that time on, the expansion in its baccalaureate and post graduate course offerings and its physical facilities has been phenomenal. From an initial enrollment of 37 students and only a high school department the VI evolved into a University with an enrollment which at one time in the 1980’s peaked at 29, 000 distributed throughout its various campuses.
There are two campuses in Cebu City, the main University campus in the downtown Cebu City area and a laboratory high school in Pardo. The main campus in Cebu City, with a six multi-story building including a gymnasium, occupies almost one city block bounced by Colon, D. Jakosalem and Sanciangko Streets. The College of Dentistry and Nursing are located in a separate campus in Banilad, Mandaue City at the site of Vicente Gullas Memorial Hospital and the Gullas College of Medicine. The University of the Visayas Mandaue Campus (formerly Mandaue Academy) is located in downtown Cambaro, Mandaue City.
The University currently offers 24 Bachelor’s degree programs, most of which start with ladderized Associate degree courses, a post graduate Bachelor of Laws, seven Masters Degree programs, and four doctoral programs in various fields.