April highlights in the history of the University of Regina

By Dale Johnson Posted: April 21, 2017 6:00 a.m.

Regina Campus in the 1960s had lots of room for growth, when plans for the second phase were announced in April 1963.
Regina Campus in the 1960s had lots of room for growth, when plans for the second phase were announced in April 1963. Photo 84-11 #50 courtesy Robert Taylor, University of Manitoba Archives, and U of R Archives and Special Collections.

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

1949:  University of Saskatchewan President James S. Thomson appeals to people in Regina and southern Saskatchewan to recognize the value of Regina College. In an editorial in the Leader-Post, President Thomson says: “The illusion that because Regina College is rated as a junior institution therefore its instruction must be of lesser quality ought to be dispelled. On the contrary, it should be understood that because classes are smaller and intimacy with members of the faculty more readily available, the educational opportunity at Regina College is even better than at the university. The staff are fully qualified, while library, laboratory and gymnasium facilities are excellent. The best proof of these assertions is the character of student produced.”

1955:  The question of allowing Regina College to grant degrees is discussed at a meeting of the League of Women Voters. G. H. Barr, chairman of the Regina College citizens’ committee, says the University of Saskatchewan was “breaking faith” with Regina when it did not permit Regina College to grant degrees, since the granting of degrees was the original “intent and purpose” of the board of governors of Regina College when the college was given to the University in 1934.

1963:  Plans are announced for the second phase of the new Regina Campus. The newest buildings will be a library, a residence and a physical education building, including a gymnasium and swimming pool. The announcement is made by Regina Campus Principal W. A. Riddell. Construction work is about to get underway on phase one of the new campus, which includes a classroom building, a laboratory building and a lecture theatre.  

1965:  Dr. Thomas H. McLeod is appointed the first vice-principal of the new Regina Campus. McLeod had previously served as dean of arts and science at Regina Campus, and before that he was dean of commerce at the Saskatoon Campus of the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. McLeod earned a BA from Brandon College, his master’s degree from Indiana University, and a PhD from Harvard. He also did international development work in Turkey with the Ford Foundation, in Iran with the Harvard Advisory Group, and in Nigeria with the World Bank.

1972:  Applications open for College West, the first residence operated by Regina Campus, which will open in September. Rental fees for a four-month semester range from $215 to $255 depending on the size of the suite. Meal plans and parking cost extra.

1975:  The new university budget is $19,094,061 for the 1975-76 fiscal year. That’s a 21 per cent increase over the previous year, including a 25 per cent increase from the provincial government, and no increase in tuition fees. But because of high inflation, university officials call it a “stand-pat” budget with the 21 per cent increase covering rising salaries, materials and supplies. University budget officer Jim Ayre tells the Leader-Post “It’s the first year of the last three that the university has not been subjected to serious cutbacks and curtailment of programs.”

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