McMaster University Notable Alumni

McMaster University is proud of the accomplishments of its notable alumni, whose achievements are varied in fields ranging from entertainment and sports to business, politics, science, and more.

McMaster’s famed alumni serve as ambassadors for the university and provide a source of inspiration for generations of current and future McMaster students.

Here are some of McMaster’s celebrated alumni:

Renowned actor, filmmaker, and comedian Eugene Levy earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and went on to have a long career in Hollywood working on numerous projects, including American Pie and Schitt’s Creek. In 2020 he won two Emmy Awards on the same night for his work as an actor and producer of Schitt’s Creek. Levy is truly a testament to McMaster University as he has used his education to emulate success through hard work, ambition, and dedication.

Gordon Guyatt has made a significant contribution to public health and health care education. His career as an epidemiologist and Professor of Medicine at McMaster has seen the development of evidence-based clinical practice guidelines – something that has enhanced the quality of healthcare throughout the world. He is also widely recognized for his expertise in conducting randomized trials and meta-analyses which are used to assess the benefits, risks and harms of medical interventions. Professor Guyatt’s work was honored with numerous awards throughout his prestigious career, including the Order of Canada in 2010 for his commitment to healthcare improvement.

Donna Strickland is one of McMaster University’s most notable alumni. Her achievements over the past few decades have earned her worldwide recognition, including being awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2018. Dr. Strickland’s accolades began when she completed a Doctor of Philosophy at McMaster, majoring in physics and specializing in laser physics. Since then, her research and initiatives on the principles of lasers has opened many possibilities for technological advancements. As an educator and mentor, she has inspired countless individuals to pursue STEM fields and make their own lasting contributions to society.

Ron Joyce left his mark on the McMaster community through his generous contributions to the institution. As a successful businessman and philanthropist, Joyce was named honorary Doctor of Laws at McMaster’s Convocation Ceremony in 1995. His extensive donations gave rise to the Ron Joyce Centre for Business Studies, which offers graduate level business courses, as well as facilitating mentorships and hands-on learning experiences for students. Thanks to Joyce, many current and future alumni have been able to benefit from his endowment of learning resources on campus.

Myron Scholes graduated in 1962 with a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Mathematics. His career spanned multiple areas, including investment banking and academia, with him achieving recognition as a professor at MIT and later becoming the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences laureate in 1997. Scholes also notably co-authored the Black–Scholes–Merton option valuation model with Fischer Black and Robert Merton. For his accomplishments, Scholes has received many accolades from prestigious institutions all over the world.

Lincoln Alexander was the first African-Canadian to serve in the federal Cabinet and become Lieutenant Governor of Ontario. His commitment to public service throughout his lifetime was exemplary, having served two terms in Hamilton’s civic politics before being elected as a Member of Parliament. His dedication to increasing representation from minority groups in politics made him a prominent leader and a shining example for Canadians across the country. Throughout his career, he worked tirelessly for social justice and equal opportunity for all Canadians.

Ivan Reitman has become highly recognizable in the movie industry. After four years at McMaster, Reitman attended the Yale School of Drama before moving to Los Angeles to continue pursuing his dream of making movies. Shortly after his move, he began producing short films and documentaries but then eventually moved into full length movies like “Stripes,” “Ghostbusters,” and “Kindergarten Cop.” His notable works have made an entertaining impact on pop-culture icons and earned him numerous awards including two Saturn Awards from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films. As a testament to his career success, he also received an Honorary Degree from McMaster in 2013.

After graduating from McMaster with a Bachelor of Arts in Labour Studies and Education, Andrea Horwath pursued her career towards advocacy for working individuals and families. She went on to become the Member of Provincial Parliament for Hamilton Centre in 2004 and by 2018, Horwath was elected leader of the Ontario NDP. As the leader, she works with Ontarians from all walks of life to form solutions that create opportunity for everyone, no matter the differences between them. Even from the steps of McMaster University, Horwarth had what it takes to be an unrivaled leader and an advocate for justice.

Lionel Sanders attended the school from 2004 to 2007. As one of McMaster’s most successful graduates, Sanders is well known for his remarkable talent in triathlons. A 4-time Ironman Champion, Sanders also achieved the Ironman World Record in 2018 with an astonishing 7 hour and 44-minute finish time! In addition to dominating in triathlons, Sanders has held numerous world records over the years and won many competitions such as The Championship Race Series event in 2019.

Canadian astronaut Roberta Bondar stands as one of McMaster University’s most celebrated and distinguished alumni. After earning her Bachelor’s and Doctorate of Medicine from the University, she went on to become the first Canadian woman and neurologist in space aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery mission in 1992. Bondar was awarded an honorary doctorate at McMaster for her countless contributions to science, education and equity for women. She has been inducted into various elite committees around the world and continues to uphold the sciences with integrity, professionalism and passion. The work of Roberta Bondar has been an incredible inspiration not only to McMaster but all around the world

Collectively, these prominent personalities represent only a fraction of McMaster University’s illustrious network of alumni who have made lasting impacts on the global stage.

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