Firsts for Women at UNB

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This entry is currently under development. Please do not consider the entry authoritative until it has been completed.

Firsts for women at the University of New Brunswick include students, staff, and faculty.

Year Women's firsts at UNB Name
1829 be employed by King's College Charlotte Turner
1889 graduate from the University of New Brunswick Mary K. Tibbits win the Governor-General's Gold Medal (Stanley Gold Medal) Mary K. Tibbits work on the staff of the University Monthly (later known as The Brunswickan) Eliza B. Hunter
1892 enrol in the Saint John Law School (later the UNB Law School) Edith Leavitt Hanington receive the Douglas Gold Medal Ellen Peake
1893 receive the Alumni Gold Medal Frances Everett
1899 receive a Master of Arts degree from UNB Sara Hamilton (McKee) Baird
1905 ...first black woman to graduate from UNB Mary Matilda Winslow receive a Bachelor of Civil Law degree (Saint John Law School) Mabel Pricilla Penery French receive an [honorary degree] Lydia Jane (Gregory) Armstrong
1920 ...recipient of the Lord Beaverbrook Undergraduate Scholarship Dr. Florence T. Snodgrass
1923-24 enroll and graduate from the UNB Law School (in Saint John) Margaret Hanington Teed
1930? ...matron of the Men's Residence (Lady Beaverbrook Residence) Mary Green
1932 receive a Bachelor of Science (Chemistry) Ruth Anna C. Foster
1935 ...first Jewish woman to graduate from UNB Ethel Frances Singer
1938 ...first woman Vice-President of the Students' Representative Council (later known as the Student Union) Dorothy McC. Kydd
1939 give the Alumni Oration (both at UNB and in Canada) Mabel Sterling receive an honorary doctorate Mary K. Tibbits
1941 ...woman editor-in-chief of The Brunswickan Mary T. McMenamon
1944 be appointed to the university faculty (Department of Education and Philosophy) Dr. Louise M. Thompson
1945 be appointed University Registrar Edith "Edie" Gordon McLeod
1947 receive a Bachelor of Civil Engineering degree Helen J. Baxter
1948 receive a Bachelor of Science degree (Forestry) Mona Roy
1950 receive a Masters of Science degree (Forestry) Mona Roy
1952 manage the Bookstore Marjorie (Barberie) Logue
1956 graduate from UNB's Business Administration program Anne Christine Robertson receive a Ph.D at UNB (Organic chemistry) Mary S. Wheatley
1959 ...professional librarian at UNB Gertrude E. Gunn
1960 be appointed Dean of Women at UNB Fredericton Melinda H. Seaman receive Physical Education degrees Laureen E. MacElmon and M. Diane Smith
1963 be a branch manager of the Bank of Montreal in Canada Rebecca Watson
1968 be named Registrar Emerita Edith "Edie" Gordon McLeod
1970 receive a Ph.D in the Faculty of Arts (English) Marjorie Dunn Chapman
1973 be Treasurer of the Alumni Association Rebecca Watson
1974 be named Professor Emerita Dr. Florence T. Snodgrass receive Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degrees Ulrike Long and Lulu Touckley to receive a Masters of Computer Science Bonnie Lin Suen
1980 be Vice-President of the Alumni Association Rebecca Watson
1981 be President of the Alumni Association Rebecca Watson
1982 become Chancellor Lady Violet Aitken
1984 be appointed Director of Public Relations Susan Montague be named Governor Emerita Mary Louise Lynch
1987 be appointed Director of Development Susan Montague be elected President of the Student Union Jane Arnold
1988 be appointed Vice-President at UNB Saint John Doris Ryan graduate with a Minor in Women's Studies Barbara Buchanan, Karen Jean Braun, and Lisa Calhoun
1989 hold the Women in Engineering Chair at UNB Fredericton Monique Frize be employed as security officers at UNB Fredericton Linda Bragg and Judy Stephenson
1990 chair the Board of Governors Ilsa Greenblatt Shore
1992 hold the Mary Louise Lynch Chair in Women and the Law at UNB Fredericton Patricia Hughes be appointed Dean of Graduate Studies Janet Stoppard
1996 be appointed Dean of Law Anne Warner La Forest be appointed President and Vice-Chancellor of UNB Dr. Elizabeth Parr-Johnston
1998 be appointed Dean of Computer Science Jane Fritz
2002 be appointed Dean at UNB Saint John Shelley Rinehart
2003 hold honorary membership in the UNB Associated Alumni Susan Montague

Note(s): Names within parentheses indicate maiden names

See also: Early Women Faculty at UNB and Notable Women at UNB


  • Up the Hill, 1956
  • University Monthly, vol. 18, no. 8, May 1899, p.220.
  • UNB Scrapbook (UA RG 100), 1936-1943, [May] 1932.
  • Alumni Clippings, [Daily Gleaner], [May] 1956.
  • Up the Hill, 1939
  • The Brunswickan, vol. 60, no. 14, 7 February 1941, p. 1.
  • Alumni News, vol. 14, no. 2, June 1960, p. 3.
  • Montague, Susan. A Pictorial History of the University of New Brunswick. Fredericton: University of New Brunswick, 1992, p. 41.
  • University Monthly, vol. 10, no. 7, October 1890, p. 12.
  • UA RG 33; Box 1; Vouchers-Statements, 1827-29; Statement no. 6, Benjamin Gale.
  • [UNB Honorary Degrees Database]

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