University of Manitoba

Archives & Special Collections

History and Archival Collections

Changing Roles of Women as Educators and Researchers in Post-Secondary Institutions

The University of Manitoba was established in 1877. Initially both students and staff were male. The first woman was admitted to the university examination in 1886. This student was Miss Jessie Holmes who graduated in 1889. In the early days of the university it was mainly an institution to train clergymen. Its graduates were granted a Bachelor of Arts. Gradually other faculties in the professions and vocations were created. In 1900, a School of Domestic Science was approved. It was funded by the Winnipeg Council of Women. By 1914, enrolment at the university was 974 students. 155 were women, 142 in Arts, six in medicine, six in law and one in pharmacy.

A Dean of Women was installed in 1921. From that point on women began to play a more significant role in the University’s affairs. In 1936, Eva Clare became the first Director of Music. Gradually women were hired as professors and later began to take more prominent roles at the administrative level. These included Isabel Auld who served as Chancellor of the University from 1977 to 1986, Pamela Boldus, Chair of the Board of Governors from 1995 to 1997 and Emoke Szathmary, President of the university from 1996 to today.

Helen Glass fonds

Jennifer Shay fonds

Archives & Special Collections
University of Manitoba Libraries
Room 331, Elizabeth Dafoe Library
University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB  R3T 2N2 Canada
Tel 204-474-9986  Fax 204-474-7913  Email