The medical school at Western University was founded in 1881, with the first class beginning in October 1882. More than 130 years later, the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry is providing world-class education to medical and dental students, master and doctoral candidates, residents and postdoctoral trainees. Below is a collection of photos throughout the years, click on an image to see it larger.
Faculty of Medicine, Graduating Class of 1888
Dr. William Roche, pictured above, became the first graduate of the Faculty of Medicine at Western University. Roche graduated in 1883.
Victoria Hospital, 1875
In 1896, at St. Joeseph's Hospital, a group of interns gain hands-on experience.
Dr. Maurice Bucke, served as the longest Medical Superintendent at the former London Asylum for the Insane, revolutionizing the way patients were treated. He also wrote “Man’s Moral Nature” and “Cosmic Consciousness”. He is one of the founders of the Medical School at Western University.
The London Medical College was built on the corner of York and Waterloo Street in 1888. The building cost $9,500 to build at the time, and served as the home of the Faculty of Medicine until 1921.
N0. 10 Stationary Field Hospital, mobilized by faculty and students of the Faculty of Medicine at Western University during World War I. The hospital treated soldiers in both England and France.
Members of the No. 10 Stationary Field Hospital were made up of faculty and students of the Faculty of Medicine at Western University.
In 1919, Kathleen Sanborn (shown centre) became the first female student admitted to the Faculty of Medicine at Western University.
Sir Frederick Banting, was appointed to the medical faculty in 1921. While at Western University, Banting came up with his idea for insulin. He eventually went on to receive the Nobel Prize in Medicine for his discovery. He was also knighted for his contributions to the medical field, and named a member of The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
In 1921, a new building for the Faculty of Medicine at Western University was built on Ottaway Ave (South Street). This building was home to the Faculty until 1964.
The Hippocratic Society was formed in 1921, and made up of an elected executive including a class president. Initially, the Hippocratic Society was in charge of the extracurricular activities of the medical students, as well as organizing scientific meetings and lectures.
Students practice their skills in an early pharmacology lab in the Ottaway (South Street) building.
Dr. Kathleen B. Sanborn, the first female student in the Faculty of Medicine, graduates in 1924. Dr. Sanborn went on to open a successful practice in Windsor, Ontario with her husband, also a graduate of Western’s medical program.
Beginning in 1929, the Meds Merrymakers and Meds Merrymakers Orchestra provided entertainment including weekly sing-songs at lunch. The Orchestra also provided music at dances and after baseketball games.
Despite World War II, medical research at Western University continued. During this time, significant research on aviation medicine took place.
Dr. Edward Hall, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine from 1945-1947. Hall's research on the effects of high altitude on pilots led to the development of oxygen equipment and protective clothing for pilots.
Dr. Murray Barr and Dr. Ewart Bertram discovered the sex-chromatin, now known as the Barr body, while working at Western University. This breakthrough led to the ability to manage certain disorders associated with mental retardation and began a new era in the research and diagnosis of various genetic disorders. Dr. Barr is a member of The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
Dr. Charles Beer, alongside Dr. Robert Noble discover vincaleukoblastine in 1957. Extracted from the leaves of periwinkle plants, vinoblastine has a significant inhibitory effect on white blood cell counts. Considered a major advance in chemotherapy treatment, vinblastine is still widely used today in the management of certain forms of cancer. Dr. Beer is a member of The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
In 1958, Dr. Charles Drake pioneered a surgical prcedure to correct cerebral anurysms. He also served as Chief of Neurosurgery at London’s Victoria Hospital and University Hospital, and Chairman of the Department of Clinical Neurological Sciences at Western University. He is a member of The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
Dr. Ken Carrol became the first PhD graduate from the Faculty of Medicine and from Western University.
Construction on the new Medical Sciences Building in the early 1960s.
The Medical Sciences Building was completed in 1965 and is still used today as part of the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.
In 1968, The Dental Sciences Building officially opened. This photo is from the groundbreaking for the Dental Sciences Building.
Dr. Marilyn MacLaughlin becomes the first female graduate of the Faculty of Dentistry, formed in 1968.
Ariel view of the opening of University Hospital in 1972.
In 1978, Dr. Henry Barnett leads a Canadian study that demonstrates aspirin can prevent stroke. This discovery allowed for the use of aspirin to prevent heart disease. He is a member of The Canadian Medical Hall of Fame.
In 1982, Dr. Bill Wall, performed the first successful liver transplant in Canada. He was instrumental in building the Multi-Organ Transplant Program at University Hospital, which also performed the world’s first successful liver-bowel transplant and Canada’s first heart and lung transplant, and first pediatric liver-bowel transplant.