Matilde Petra Montoya Lafragua (b. Mexico City, March 14, 1859 – d. Mexico City, January 26, 1939) was assumedly the first female physician in Mexico, who held an academic degree, although there are hints, that there was a further female student of medicine around 1877, named Zenaida Ucounkoff.
Montaya completed school education at the age of 12, and was not old enough for higher education, why her mother Soledad inspired her to start a midwifery and obstetrics training to lose no time. She worked in Mexico City, later in Cuernavaca, Puebla and Veracruz. Everywhere she was slandered and defamed by local doctors. Eventually she requested and received help from President Diaz to gain entry into medical school. Supported by President Diaz she was able to achieve a bachillerato in San Idelfonso, and to matriculate in 1880. On a further request of her, President Diaz supported her once more, to participate in the exam. When she received her M.D. degree of the Escuela de Medicina de México in 1887, today Faculty of Medicine of the National Autonomous University of Mexico, President Diaz and his wife appeared in person to congratulate.