Since its inception, the Faculty of Science has seen constant growth and in a relatively short period of time established itself as a key figure in both national and global scientific research. From humble beginnings, a new centre for scientific research was born. The Act to incorporate York University was enacted by the Province of Ontario on March 16, 1959. York was officially opened on September 12, 1960 with an enrolment of 76 students and 19 staff, 10 of whom were faculty members. The first classes were held at Falconer Hall on the main campus of the University of Toronto. By September 1961, classes for 216 students were held on what is now the Glendon campus. Degree programs emphasized General Education as well as Interdisciplinarity through the divisions of Humanities, Natural Science and Social Science. Science faculty who were involved in providing support for the Natural Science (NatSci) courses were C. David Fowle, Peter Moens, O. Robert Lundell, and Harold Schiff.
On January 1965, approval was given by Senate for the undergraduate and graduate programs of the Faculty of Science, as well as the establishment of CRESS – the Centre for Research in Experimental Space Science – as an interdisciplinary research centre. In the same year, the Keele campus was opened on 475 acres on the north boundary of Toronto. The first science program was offered in the Farquharson Building on this campus in September 1965 by the departments of Biology, Chemistry and Physics, with a staff of 15 professors and a number of teaching and technical assistants. Interdisciplinarity was the most distinguishing feature of the program. The first Dean of the Faculty was Harold Schiff.
In 1989, The Faculty was looking ahead at the development of York and was renamed the Faculty of Pure and Applied Science as a result of the Task Force Report on Applied Science and Technology in that year. In the fall of 2001, the Faculty launched the Engineering Program (computer, geomatics and space engineering). As a testament to how quickly the engineering program became a full part of York a Faculty name change was in order. On June 21, 2004 the FPAS became the Faculty of Science & Engineering.
On May 1, 2013, with the creation of the separate Lassonde School of Engineering, the FSE was once again renamed returning to its original name as the Faculty of Science. Today, the Faculty has grown to approximately 80 staff members who provide quality administrative and technical support to our students and faculty. Our exceptional 140 full-time faculty members, from five departments, educate over 3300 undergraduate and 400 graduate students and secure over $20M in research funding annually, largely through the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council, the Canadian Institutes for Health Research, and the Canada Foundation for Innovation.