Justo Sierra Méndez founded the National Autonomous University of Mexico (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, or UNAM; English language site) in 1910. As reflected in the University Foundational Act, issued on May 26, 1910, Sierra was clear that the university’s scientific purpose should be separate from politics. According to a history of the school’s origin, Sierra "insisted on the secular nature of the university that would strive to follow the scientific method in the pursuit of knowledge.” President Porfirio Diaz officially inaugurated the university on September 22, 1910.
Formal veterinary education in Mexico began in 1853, when the National College of Agriculture (Colegio Nacional de Agricultura) was founded. The college closed in 1856, and reopened in 1857 as the National Agriculture and Veterinary School (Escuela Nacional de Agricultura y Veterinaria). It closed again in 1914 due to the Mexican Revolution. Between 1853 and 1914, about 60 Mexican veterinarians were trained.
In 1916, the two schools (Agriculture and Veterinary) separated, and the National Veterinary School (Escuela Nacional de Veterinaria) opened. It closed in 1918 due to a student strike, but reopened in May of the same year with a slightly different name, the National School of Veterinary Medicine (Escuela Nacional de Medicina Veterinaria). Led by a student effort, the school joined UNAM in 1929. Forty years later, in 1969, the veterinary school took on its present name, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Husbandry (Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y Zootecnia, or FMVZ).
In March 2011, FMVZ became the first veterinary school in Mexico to be granted full accreditation status from the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education. Veterinary students graduate with a Medico Veterinario Zootecnista (MVZ) degree.
UNAM/FMVZ is located in Mexico City, Mexico’s capital and largest city. In 2016, the city’s estimated population was 8.9 million people. The Mexico City metropolitan area is the largest in the western hemisphere, with a population of 21.2 million people. The city’s origin dates back to 1325, when the Aztecs built Tenochtitlan on an island of Lake Texcoco. The Spaniards built Mexico City over Tenochtitlan.