The University of Fribourg (French: Universite de Fribourg; German: Universitat Freiburg) is a university in the city of Fribourg, Switzerland. It was founded in 1889 by local businessman Georges Python, although the origins of the university can be traced to 1580 with the foundation of the Jesuit Seminary of St. Michel. Courses in this University are given in the French language and German language. Except for certain departments (such as history and law) where curricula are available in both languages, students are normally expected to understand both languages. Students number about 10,000. Traditionally, the university also attracts a strong contingent of students from Italian-speaking Ticino. The Misericorde Campus, constructed between 1939 - 42 was designed by the architects Honegger and Dumas, students of the famous Swiss architect Le Corbusier and as such is deemed to be of major architectural importance. There are five faculties: Catholic theology, law, natural sciences, arts, and economics & social sciences.
The University of Fribourg is the bilingual university "par excellence" in Switzerland. Fribourg is a typical university town, with a high quality of life and excellent conditions for progressing in one's studies. At the crossroads of Germanic and Roman languages, it constitutes a cultural bridge between the German and French traditions, as well as between northern and southern Europe. The university itself reflects this situation: 50% of the students speak German as their mother tongue, 30% French, and 7% Italian. Created in 1889, the university embodies a living dynamic interaction among around 215 professors and 10,000 students from over 100 countries. Students often choose Fribourg because its programs can be followed in German and French. Students can obtain a diploma with a specific "bilingual" certification which gives them a competitive advantage on the job market. However, bilingual study is not mandatory. English is compulsory at the masters level in sciences. Lectures in English are available in the major disciplines. The University of Fribourg has established a number of collaborative partnerships with leading universities around the world to promote exchanges, joint teaching programs, and research projects. Research at the University of Fribourg is based on teamwork, interdisciplinary strategies, ethical responsibility, and an open dialogue with the commercial world. 200 research groups work on some 650 projects, many of which find an immediate industrial application.