« AnteriorContinuar »
BARNARD COLLEGE. So manifest became the public demand for collegiate and post collegiate instruction,- from graduates of the city Normal School (which had 1600 pupils), from the pupils of the best class of private schools, where, sometimes, not less than one fourth were preparing for admission to some college,* and from graduates of other colleges,—that a movement was made, in which the efforts of leading men and women in New York City were conspicuous both for their unflagging zeal and for their judicious methods, to secure necessary funds to found and, at the outset, to maintain a college for women whose professors and instructors should be those of Columbia, and upon whose graduates Columbia College should confer the same degrees as upon her own. The woman who first approached the Trustees of Columbia College with a plan to found an affiliated college for women was Mrs. Annie Nathan Meyer, who had been one of the first young women to take advantage of the course of examinations offered by Columbia College. After the appeal for an affiliated college was made it was discovered that had such a plan, supported by the proper persons, and bearing likelihood of success, been brought before the Board, it would have met with approval some years before. The former petitions had, however, asked for co-education, and at first there was considerable opposition to the “annex movement," as it was called, on the part of those whose battle-cry might have been almost said to have been “ Co-education or no education."
But the wiser policy prevailed, and it was acknowledged by the majority that “those co-educationalists who ignore the annex project are butting their heads against a stone wall when a nicely swarded path lies before them.” | Barnard College received official sanction from the Trustees of Columbia College, March, 1889, was chartered by the Regents of New York State, July, 1889, and formally opened October, 1889.
edgement that women could follow the collegiate course and the conferring of official sanction upon such a course.
The same Report goes on to say : “and offering suitable academic honors and distinctions to any who, on examination, shall be found to have pursued such courses of study with success.--En.
* See article by Mrs. Annie Nathan Meyer in The Nation, January 21, 1888. The petition to the Columbia Board for official sanction to open Barnard College was largely based on this article.
+ See article by Annie Nathan Meyer, in University, February 22, 1888. Barnard College was appropriately named in grateful tribute to the late President Barnard of Columbia College.
The great void that it was to fill appeared in many ways,among others in the fact that the botanical and chemical laboratories which it established were the only ones in the city open to women.
The trustees of Barnard, one half of whom are women, hope to find much of its usefulness in the encouragement and provision for graduate work which it will offer to the hundreds of women who are gathered in New York, in the pursuance of some profession.
VASSAR COLLEGE. The late Matthew Vassar, “recognizing in woman the same intellectual constitution as in man," resolved to give a fair chance to girls for a liberal education, under conditions in every way favorable to health. To this end he erected college and dormitory buildings in the midst of a lawn of two hundred acres, at Poughkeepsie, N. Y., with careful provision for pure air, good water, abundant sunshine, and good sewerage. He provided a gymnasium and provided for out of door sports. He instituted a professorship of physiology and hygiene, and made its incumbent “resident physician" and supervisor of sanitary arrangements.
In September, 1865, the institution received, upon examination, about 350 young women as students to a course of study and mode of life determined by the trustees, who believed that “the larger the stock of knowledge, and the more thorough the mental discipline a woman attains, the better she is fitted for any womanly position, and to perform any womanly duty of home and in society," a position which the subsequent experience of this and kindred institutions has abundantly illustrated.
Up to 1890, Vassar College has conferred the degree of A.B. upon between 800 and goo graduates.
It has included in its corps of professors several women of distinguished ability-of whom we may name the late Prof. Braislin of the department of mathematics, and the late Prof. Maria Mitchell, who had not only a national, but a European reputation, as an astronomer. From the opening of the institution till near the time of her death, in 1889, she was the head of the department of astronomy and in charge of the excellent observatory. Three women are serving on the Vassar board of trustees, and three on standing committees.
SMITH COLLEGE. Sinith College was founded in Northampton, Mass., by Miss Sophia Smith, of the neighboring town of Hatfield. Finding herself in possession of a large fortune to dispose of she took counsel with her pastor, Dr. John M. Green, as to the best use to make of it. He conferred, in her behalf, with the leading representatives of education, and the general opinion of the time was voiced by Dr. Edward Hitchcock. When Dr. Green asked him, in 1861, “ Would you dare to endow a college for women ?” he said, “No! The matter of woman's higher education is still an experiment.” Prudence seemed to compel further deliberation. Strong efforts were made to secure the fund for established colleges, and other schemes of beneficence were considered, but by 1868 Miss Smith and Dr. Green, to whom she had continuously turned for counsel, had come to the conviction that in no other way could the money be so well invested for the benefit of human kind, as in found. ing a college which should give young women opportunities for education equal to those which established colleges offered to young men. The plan was at once developed, and the college at Northampton is to-day Miss Smith's noble monument.
Its high aim has been well sustained, and more than five hundred students are named in the Annual Report of 1889.
Two thirds of the faculty are women, to whom, however, the title of professor is not accorded. This is not thought to imply lack of competency to fill the positions usually so designated. Neither can the current report be credited, that the President does not consider it altogether womanly to bear such title, since Smith College conferred upon Dr. Amelia B. Edwards, the English Egyptologist, the honorary degree of LL.D., and only the highest courtesy could be intended.
WELLESLEY COLLEGE. Wellesley College, Wellesley, Mass., fifteen miles from Boston, was founded in 1875 by the benefaction of Henry F. Durant. The purpose of the trustees was “the establishment of a college in which girls should have as good opportunities for higher education as the best institutions afforded to young men, and to do so with due regard to health.” They held that “it is not hard study but violation of law that injures health."
The college is beautiful for situation, with extensive grounds, like an English park, varied by oak woods and elm-shaded avenues, and including Lake Waban, which furnishes ample facilities for rowing and skating. Thousands of rhododendrons and other flowering shrubs have been set to brighten the grounds, and the spring turf blossoms in crocuses and snowdrops.
Amid all this seductive beauty, suggestive of dreaming, rise noble structures, of solid and elegant proportions, dedicated to successful work. Within them the practical and the aesthetic are charmingly combined. Music has its temple, art has its ministry, science its every facility, and the air of a happy home life broods over all.
Thoroughness and system are manifest everywhere. This is not a college of yesterday. Nowhere are the latest methods and the best facilities more promptly welcomed. One wanders charmed and glad through its fine library, its extensive laboratories, its dining-roon, where a special grace of living comes with the refined service of the students themselves, its dainty parlors and reception-rooms, and, seeking some flaw to prove it real, finds it, at last, in the fact that only half the youth of the land-only girls are admitted to it.
From the opening of the college it has been under the presidency of women. Miss Ada Howard, a graduate of Mount Holyoke Seminary, was succeeded by Miss Alice Free , man, who received the degree of “ Doctor of Philosophy," from her alma mater, the University of Michigan, and that of Doctor of Literature from Columbia College. In 1887 Miss Palmer resigned the presidency of Wellesley College, but as Mrs. Alice Freeman Palmer continues to serve it as a member of the board of trustees, which out of twenty-five members has one third women members. Miss Freeman was succeeded by the present President, Miss Helen A. Schafer, a graduate of Oberlin College.
CORNELL UNIVERSITY. . Cornell University is one of the national colleges founded upon the land-grant of 1862. The share of New York was. nearly a million acres, and, by act of the Legislature of New York, passed in 1865, the university was incorporated, and the income from the sale of this land was given it for its maintenance. There were certain conditions, the principal one being the donation of $500,000 to the university by Ezra Cornell. This was made, together with 200 acres of land. In simple and comprehensive phrase, Mr. Cornell said ::“ I would found an institution where any person can find instruction in any. study.'
The act of incorporation provides for instruction "in order to promote the liberal and practical education of the industrial classes in the several pursuits and professions of life.” Thus thrice bound to the general service, by employment of the people's resources, by acceptance at once of the gift and of the intent of the broad-minded donor, and again by provision of its own act, it would seem to go without saying that the State should see to it that there should be no discrimination against any class.
The university was opened, October, 1868, and, happily, it goes with saying, that by act of the trustees, passed in April, 1872, “Women are admitted to the university on the same terms as men, except that they must be at least seventeen years old.”
On the authority of the Dean of the faculty, Mr. H. S. White, August, 1890 : “As to the status of young women at Cornell, they enjoy all the advantages which are open to young men, including the university scholarship and fellowships. We have eight fellowships which are open to graduate students, awarded by vote of the faculty, not only to our own graduates, but to graduates of other institutions. In 1888–89, three of these fellowships were secured by young women : one in botany ; one in architecture; and one in mathematics. The present year the Fellows happen to be all young men ; but this is a mere accident, and the question of sex cannot be said to be considered in the award. There were established, a few years ago, three Sage scholarships, set apart exclusively for the young women who attended the university ; they were also eligible for the six university scholarships ; so that at times four or five out of the nine scholarships might be held by young women. These Sage scholarships have recently been converted into university scholarships, open to all applicants without distinction of sex. Sage College was built and endowed by Hon. Henry W. Sage, in 1875, at a cost of $250,00o, and was given to Cornell University as a place of residence for young women students. The gift had but one condition, that "instruction shall be afforded to young women by Cornell University, as broad and thorough as that afforded to young men.”
Up to the present time no professorship or offices of instruction in this university have been held by women.
SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY. Syracuse University, Syracuse, N. Y., embraces a college of liberal arts, a college of medicine, and a college of fine arts. Said the Chancellor, Dr. Sims, “Syracuse throws open the