UW–Madison Firsts

Updated November 2012

Year Event
1875 Nation’s first Scandinavian studies department
1890 First test of butterfat content in milk
1913 Discovery of vitamin A
1914 First American speech clinic
1916 Discovery of vitamin B
1919 First educational radio station
1924 Discovery of methods to enrich food with vitamin D
1926 First university dance program
1928 First university union art gallery
1929 Nation’s first graduate program in public utilities
1930s Discovery of methods to iodize salt
1932 Nation’s first monkey-breeding colony
1936 First artist-in-residence program at a university
1939 First university department of wildlife management
1959 First space-based weather camera
1963 Country’s first formal glass-working course
1968 Nation’s first graduate program in arts administration
1968 First bone-marrow transplant
1970 First creation of synthetic gene
1972 First graduation program in health-care fiscal administration
1973 Nation’s only on-campus blood donation center
1981 First medical physics department developed within a medical school
1987 Development of the Wisconsin Solution, used in transplant surgery
1998 First cultivation of embryonic stem cells in a lab
2007 First “naming gift” given to a U.S. business school to preserve school’s name