BMSC Overview


The Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre is a not-for-profit, registered Canadian charity,
and a shared campus of the
Universities of Victoria, British Columbia, Alberta, Calgary, and Simon Fraser University.

Perched on the outer west coast of Vancouver Island, BMSC provides access to a remarkable diversity of marine, terrestrial, freshwater and cultural sites of the North East Pacific basin. With 3000 sq m of modern laboratory space it can support research in almost any field of study.

Situated in the town of Bamfield, within the traditional territory of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations in Barkley Sound, and adjacent the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, BMSC offers unparalleled access to a wide array of environments – including unique coastal, marine and rainforest habitats and exceptional species diversity.


Our Vision:

Life changing exploration and discovery in coastal and marine environments

Our Values:

Partnership: Partnership built on respectful communication and cooperation is our key catalyst for success.
We will pursue common goal through collaboration with all our partners – staff, instructors, researchers, students, university partners, First Nations, local community – that engender mutual respect and benefit.

Scholarship Grounded in Experience: Our students grow through active learning in the natural world.
Our ocean-side campus offers unparalleled access and support for scholars to discover and gather evidence based knowledge. Connecting researchers and learners at BMSC creates unique scholarship opportunity.

Stewardship: We respect how the traditional values of stewardship relate directly to sustainability of our environment. As a sentinel of the environment BMSC supports stewardship from evidence
based knowledge. We instill in our students and researchers a sense of respect and responsibility
for our environment.

Our Mission:

Building on 50 years of success in coastal and marine research and education, we will:

    1. Develop and provide the research capacity and services that enable
      innovative approaches to ocean exploration and discovery, and
    2. Enhance our field based education programs with a research experience.

We will accomplish these goals and build momentum towards our vision by
establishing a sustainable financial base and utilizing the strengths of our unique
Bamfield/BMSC culture.

BMSC was established in 1972 by the Western Canadian Universities Marine Sciences Society (WCUMSS) in order to provide a permanent base for marine and coastal-oriented field operations on the west coast of Canada.

WCUMSS has a mandate to:

  • Provide world-class research infrastructure for marine and coastal scientists from the member universities and from other Canadian and International institutes
  • Offer senior undergraduate and graduate courses and programs in marine and coastal sciences
  • Provide training for graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and technicians in practical aspects of marine and coastal research
  • Offer in-residence programs in marine biology and general science to schools, colleges, First Nations and other public groups

BMSC’s 2019 Management Council:

Drs. Sean Rogers (BMSC Director, U of Calgary), Jon Driver (WCUMSS President, SFU), Isabelle Côté (SFU), Frank Marsiglio (U of Alberta), Leslie Rigg (U of Calgary), Barbara Hawkins (U of Victoria), David Coltman (U of Alberta), Michael Caldwell (U of Alberta), Cathy Ryan (U of Calgary), Meigan Aronson (UBC), Ray McNichol (UBC).