A snapshot of our academic history

1818 George Ramsay, the ninth Earl of Dalhousie, founds Dalhousie College on principles of religious toleration. The campus faces the Grand Parade where Halifax’s City Hall now stands.
1866 The first arts degree is awarded.
1869 The Dalhousie Gazette, Canada’s first college newspaper, is founded.
1881 Women are admitted to Dalhousie with equal access to scholarships and awards.
1887 Dalhousie moves to the Forrest Building on what is today Carleton Campus.
1894 Annie Isabella Hamilton, first woman to earn a medical degree from Dalhousie.
1896 James Robinson Johnston becomes the university’s first black graduate, earning his law degree in 1898.
1911 Dalhousie moves from Forrest to the Studley Campus, where the buildings are constructed from ironstone quarried across the Northwest Arm to campus.
1949 The Faculty of Graduate Studies is established, strengthening Dalhousie’s capacity for advanced education.
1966 The great support of Dorothy J. Killam, in recognition of Izaak Walton Killam, creates an endowment to further graduate studies. In honor of her philanthropy, the Dorothy J. Killam Memorial Lecture Series brings great minds to campus every year.
1957 C.D. Howe is named Dalhousie’s first chancellor.
1967 Queen Elizabeth, consort of King George VI, officially opens the Sir Charles Tupper Medical Building and receives an honorary degree.
1968 Lady Beaverbrook (formerly Lady Dunn), one of the university’s most generous patrons, becomes its second chancellor.
1968 Expansion along University Avenue includes the new Student Union Building and excavation and construction for the Killam Memorial Library and the Dalhousie Arts Centre.
1979 After years of planning – including a dispute between Dal and the City of Halifax over zoning that was heard by the Supreme Court of Canada – Dalplex, the university’s new recreation facility, is opened with an innovative “air structure” roof.
1985 CKDU, Dalhousie’s community radio station, hits the airwaves.
1989 Four years after the previous law library was destroyed in a fire, the Sir James Dunn Library opens in the Weldon Law Building.
1997 The Technical University of Nova Scotia and Dalhousie University merge.
2001 The Marion McCain Arts and Social Sciences Building creates a united home for faculty, staff and students in the Faculty of Arts.
2005 The Kenneth C. Rowe Faculty of Management Building opens, capping the $25-million Management Without Borders campaign and uniting Business Administration, Public Administration, Library and Information Studies and Resource and Environmental Studies.
2010 A $20-million donation from Seymour Schulich is the largest gift of its kind ever made to a Canadian law school. The gift funds 40 new annual scholarships, creating greater student accessibility.
2012 The Nova Scotia Agricultural College and Dalhousie University merge.
2013 The Steele Ocean Sciences Building is added to the west end of the Life Sciences Centre, connected by an atrium with the oceanography wing.
2015 The Collaborative Health Education Building opens and provides an integrated learning experience for the university's 3,700 Medicine, Dentistry and Health students.
2016 The Mi’kmaq Grand Council Flag is permanently installed on the Agricultural Campus in June and on Studley Campus and Sexton Campus in October.
2018 The IDEA Project's (which stands for Innovation and Design in Engineering and Architecture) $64-million transformation of the downtown campus ushers in a new era in engineering, architecture and planning education.
2020 Deep Saini, Dalhousie’s 12th president, begins his first term in office.
2023 On August 14th, Kim Brooks began her first term as the 13th president of Dalhousie.
Did you know?

George Munro, a New York-based penny publisher, made generous contributions when the university was struggling financially in the late 1800s. An annual holiday in February is named for him. Learn more about Munro Day.