The Chemical Engineering Department at Cairo University is considered the oldest Chemical Engineering department in Egypt and the Arab world. It was the pioneer of all  Chemical Engineering departments in the Middle East. The department was established following the elaborate efforts of the late Prof. Mahmoud Omar, who was the pioneer of Chemical Engineering in Egypt. Consequently, the University decided to take the first step toward establishing a Department of Industrial Chemistry in the Faculty of Engineering. In order to prepare staff, young faculty members were sent abroad to conduct postgraduate studies in this branch of Engineering.

Students were enrolled in the Department of Industrial Chemistry for the first time in 1942 and the first class was  graduated in 1946. Initially, the Chemical Engineering Department was temporarily located above the temporary location of the main faculty library. This continued until  1952 when the present building of  the Department was completed.

In the early years, the courses leading to a Bachelor Degree in Chemical Engineering were of technological nature. In the seventies, studies were developed to increase the content of the Chemical Engineering Courses such as plant design and economics, control, heat, mass and momentum transfer, mechanical unit operation, and pollution control engineering courses.

During the past 70 years, hundreds of chemical engineers graduated from this institute. They work in the fields of research, development, design and operation in the Industrial Chemical Processes either in Egypt or abroad.