McMaster University is founded in Toronto from a bequest of $900,000 from the estate of Senator William McMaster. The first three Faculties were Arts, Science and Divinity, as engraved in the stones of the Class of 1954 Oasis Garden on campus.
McMaster University moves from Toronto to Hamilton. The lands and new buildings are secured through gifts totaling $500,000 from alumni, members of the churches of the Baptist Convention of Ontario and Quebec, and citizens of Hamilton.
Originally founded as a Baptist university, McMaster becomes a publicly funded, non-denominational institution.
The McMaster Nuclear Reactor, the first university-based research reactor in the British Commonwealth, begins operations. Today, it is one of the world’s largest suppliers of the medical radioisotope iodine-125, used in the treatment of prostate cancer.
McMaster establishes a medical school and teaching hospital. The medical school goes on to pioneer “problem-based learning,” known around the world as the McMaster Model.
McMaster Divinity College continues under its existing arrangement, while the rest of McMaster University is organized into the Divisions of Arts, Science and Health Sciences, each headed by a vice-president (academic).
The Arts & Science Program is established, breaking new ground in self-directed, interdisciplinary undergraduate education.