The University of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro (UTAD) was born in March, 1986. However, its history dates back to the early 1970s, during a period of governmental openness aimed at correcting regional asymmetries and which resulted in the creation, in 1973, of the Polytechnic Institute of Vila Real (IPVR), whose first classes began in December 1975, with 40 students. In 1979, it was elevated to University Institute of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro (IUTAD), and, less than ten years later, in view of the universal recognition of its intense activity in the fields of education and scientific and technological research, prompted the Government to elevate the Institution to the category of University.
Currently, UTAD comprises 5 Schools, 4 University Schools and 1 Polytechnic School, which provide quality education to a universe of about 7,700 students, including 43 1st cycle and Integrated Master’s degree programs, 44 2nd cycle and 22 3rd cycle programs, as well as 4 CTeSP. It also comprises 6 Research Centers recognized and valued by the FCT, and is integrated in 5 Collaborative Laboratories, being the headquarters of two of them (CoLAB Vines&Wines and ForestWISE).
As a driving force for regional development, and investing heavily in its core areas, it has extensive and prolific links with the surrounding region, promoting its development in close collaboration with both municipalities and inter-municipal communities, as well as with its entire economic and social fabric.
As a public higher education institution, UTAD’s mission is i) to contribute to the construction of a better, more developed, free and just world, through the value of the knowledge it produces and provides to society, in perfect harmony with the planet; ii) to provide all students with the best overall learning experience, educating skilled professionals, human beings with a social conscience, integrated and autonomous, thanks to the quality of its teaching and in the light of the principles of active citizenship, respect for life and nature; iii) produce and disseminate innovative scientific knowledge, in line with the needs of society and businesses, as an accelerator of economic development and improvement in people’s quality of life, and an important factor for territorial cohesion.
This more mature UTAD will continue to assert itself as a hub of development, knowledge, recognition and investment, increasingly outward-looking, committed to improving its environment, with a crucial role in cohesion, attraction, mobilization and enhancement of talent, and providing a quality service.