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Allisonian Firsts: Teruko Komyo

A virtual exhibition celebrating the bold Allisonians who became the "firsts" in their field.

Teruko Komyo

First Asian woman to graduate from Mount Allison University, 1937

Graduation portrait of Teruko Komyo.

Teruko Komyo, 1937

Taken from 1937 Allisonian yearbook. May only be reproduced with permission of the Mount Allison University Archives.

Teruko Komyo was originally from Azabu, Tokyo, Japan. Better known as “Terry” to her classmates, Komyo came to Mount Allison through United Church connections in the fall of 1934. While in attendance, she took an active part in campus life and was involved with the Women's Administrative Council and the Student Christian Movement, serving as its Vice-President in 1936-1937. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in 1937, becoming the first Asian woman to graduate from Mount Allison (and possibly the first woman of colour). Following further study at Columbia University in New York, Komyo returned to Japan to teach and went on to have a distinguished career in education. In 1954, she was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws (LLD) from Mount Allison University on the 100th anniversary of the education of women at Mount Allison.