FLASHBACK: March highlights in the history of the University of Regina

By Dale Johnson Posted: March 8, 2017 6:00 a.m.

When enrolment grew at Regina College after the Second World War, there was a suggestion for a new medical school in Regina.
When enrolment grew at Regina College after the Second World War, there was a suggestion for a new medical school in Regina. Photo: U of R Archives and Special Collections

Among the historical highlights at the University of Regina and its forerunners during the month of March:

1910:  “MASSEY ESTATE GIVES $100,000 TOWARDS METHODIST COLLEGE IN REGINA” is a front-page headline in the Regina Leader. The gift of $100,000 is about one-third of the total money raised. Massey Manufacturing (later Massey-Harris and then Massey-Ferguson) began in 1847; by 1906 about $5 million worth of farm equipment is shipped out of Regina, making it the largest farm implement distribution centre in the world. Massey owes much of its success to the farmers of Saskatchewan who have bought their products. The Massey family has a history of contributing to the fields of arts and education, including Hart House at the University of Toronto; Massey College at the U of T; and Massey Hall, a performing arts centre in Toronto. As well, the Masseys are prominent Toronto Methodists – and Regina College is started as a Methodist college.


More than 100 years ago, plans were unveiled for the new Regina College.

Photo: U of R Archives and Special Collections

1911:  Plans are unveiled for the new Regina College. The Leader newspaper reports on March 11, 1911, “Yesterday evening a special meeting of the board (of governors) was held and architects’ plans for a very imposing building were accepted...Stone and brick, similar to that employed in the construction of the land titles office, will be used in the construction of the college.”

1949:  A medical school for Regina is suggested in an editorial in the Sheaf, the University of Saskatchewan’s student newspaper. The editorial says there is more clinical space in Regina, and that facilities for advanced medical instruction are more available in Regina than in Saskatoon. “The editorial questioned the feasibility of making the large outlay involved in constructing a medical building at the University of Saskatchewan,” the Leader-Post reports.

1954:  A group of Regina residents meets at city hall and creates a resolution calling on the provincial government to allow Regina College to give students a four-year course leading to a bachelor of arts degree.

1962:  In addressing the Regina branch of the University of Saskatchewan Alumni Association, Dr. W. A. Riddell, principal of Regina Campus, outlines the growth expected during the next several decades. “Logically early establishment can be expected of colleges of education and commerce, he said. Others will follow as the need arises, with the exception of agriculture and medicine,” the Leader-Post reports. Riddell predicts enrolment will reach 8,000 by the early 1990s, saying, “as both campuses approach 8,000 students, another campus will have to be developed in the province.”

1965:  Plans are announced for a college of public and business administration at Regina Campus. The announcement is made by University of Saskatchewan President, Dr. J. W. T. Spinks, who says the first step will be appointing a dean who will be responsible for planning the program and hiring staff.

1966:  A college of engineering is approved for Regina Campus. A new dean will be appointed and second-year engineering classes will be offered; third- and fourth-year classes will be offered later. First-year classes have been offered at Regina Campus since 1945. Fields of specialization offered in Regina will complement rather than duplicate programs offered in Saskatoon. Engineering becomes the third professional college established at Regina Campus – after education and administration.

1970:  There are calls for a nursing program at Regina Campus. The Saskatchewan Registered Nurses Association and the Regina branch of the association present briefs to a committee studying the role of the university in the community. Both groups call for the establishment of a bachelor of nursing program at Regina Campus.   

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