The University of Patras was founded in the city of Patras on 11 November 1964 as a self-governed Academic Institution under the supervision of the Greek Government. The University was initially established with the intention to focus on natural sciences, technology, economics, business administration and social sciences.
The role of the University of Patras was to set an example of a highly qualified Higher Education Institution, thus serving as a stimulus for the modernization of the entire Greek Higher Education System, with priority given to the fields where highly trained personnel would be able to contribute to the economic development of the country. In the course of time, the above objectives had to be adapted to the new prospects arising from the recognition of the key role of knowledge and technology in social and cultural growth and of the contribution the University was expected to make towards addressing major regional, national and even international challenges.
The inauguration of the University of Patras took place on 30 November 1966, on the same day as the celebration of Saint Andrew, the patron Saint of the city of Patras. For this reason, the emblem of the University is an X-shaped cross symbolizing the one on which St. Andrew was crucified.
Initially, the administration of the University was assigned to a Steering Committee. The main purpose of this Committee was to organize the Departments of the University, to determine their operating procedures and to supervise the formation of the organizational structure of the University. The initial Steering Committee was appointed on 9 January 1965 and had its seat in Athens. After a short period of time, the seat of the Committee was transferred to Patras. This Committee ceased to operate its functions in 1974, when new policies concerning the administration of higher education institutions were established, resulting in the formation of the first Senate of the University of Patras which consisted of Professors elected by the University for a one-year term of office.
In the last 50 years since the establishment of the University of Patras, many distinguished Academics have served as members of the Rectorate Authorities. Presently, the University of Patras remains one of most prominent Universities in Greece with an excellent reputation among the International and European Scientific Community, in line with the vision that led to its establishment.