Clara Cynthia Benson, 1875-1964

Clara Cynthia Benson, 1875-1964

First Woman Chemistry Graduate

BSc 1899, PHD 1903

Second in her graduation procession, waving, Benson was the first woman to graduate in Chemistry with a BSc in 1899 and then in 1903, was one of the first of two women to earn a PhD (Chemistry) from the University of Toronto.  She served as professor and head of the Department of Food Chemistry, Faculty of Household Science 1926-45.  Benson was honoured by a scholarship in her name.

The Benson Building was named after her in recognition of her efforts to obtain better athletic facilities for women students.  Its construction in 1959 marked the first women's gymnasium at the University.

Engineering and Applied Science
Clara Cynthia Benson, 1875-1964