Strict hours for "men guests" in female residence halls are listed in "Red Tape," a guidebook published by the Women's Student Government. "Men guests" could only be entertained in parlors and recreation rooms of female dormitories and were restricted from bedrooms. Hours for male visitors began at noon and ended at the hostesses curfew. All female students were instructed to use "good judgement" when entertaining male guests in the lounges and were cautioned that there should be "lady-like conduct at all times."
During the peak years of the Second World War it was a common trend that women did not apply to graduate schools even though the majority of the women attended school because they wanted to obtain a career. As explained by Ruth Murphy in her interview, "back then girls didn't apply like now", despite the fact that she, like other women on the Dickinson campus, eagerly wanted to attend gradute or law school after graduation.
The 1957 Microcosm noted that the women of Phi Mu "strive for the founder's ideals of high scholarship, close sisterhood and noble womanhood." The sisters aimed to follow these goals by volunteering at the Carlisle Hospital and Children's Home and through hosting social events such as pledge and senior formals and "parties in the rooms." The officers of Phi Mu were Pat Anderson, President; Jo Ann Rothermel, Vice President; Elizabeth Elderdice, Secretary; and Joyce Roberts, Treasurer.
According to the Microcosm, Chi Omega's activities in 1957 included "outings at Pine Grove, breakfasts in the rooms, and coffee hours with the faculty and other fraternities." Traditional formals and teas were also held. Like Pi Beta Phi and Zeta Tau Alpha, Chi Omega also listed their officers according to spring and fall semesters for the first time. Fall semester's leaders were Pat Eshelman, President; Joan Gallagher, Vice President; Mae Smethurst, Treasurer; and Betsy Reichle, Secretary. Spring semester's leaders were Inge Paul, President; Nancy A.
In 1957 the women of Pi Beta Phi continued their traditional social and service events. Christmas caroling and bridge tournaments were also popular sisterhood events. While in past years officers held their title for the full school year, in 1957, Pi Beta Phi had separate groups of officers for the spring and fall semester. In the fall, the leaders were Wendy Buckler, President; Lee Steinwald, Vice President; Virginia Burgess, Treasurer; and Nancy Carpenter, Secretary.
As explained in her interview, Kathleen Briner Meals class of '44 became the second editor-in-chief of the Dickinsonian. At the time this position which carried the title "Co-ed", partly because of theÂ lack of men around, was a title that was appointed by the school's administration.
The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees recommended to the Board the appointment of a "special committee of five" to look into the construction of a women's dormitory. They suggested the building be erected on Mooreland Campus and be adequate to house 150 women.
Dean Ernest A. Vuilleumier reports to the Board of Trustees that the college was operating four separate buildings--Metzger Hall, the Gibbs House, the Parker House, and the Phi Delta Theta House--as women's dormitories. The dean viewed this situation as unsatisfactory and argued for "the very great need for a new dormitory for women." He urged the Board to make plans for the construction of a women's dormitory as soon as possible.
In response to President Prettyman's call for coeducation "in the true sense of the term," the Board of Trustees did not take any action. They considered the recommendation to change the ratio of male and female students but chose to do nothing because "action had already been taken sufficient to cover the case." The minutes do not explain to which action this statement refers.
President Cornelius William Prettyman argues in a letter to the Board of Trustees that Dickinson College should become "a coeducational college in the true sense of the term." He points out that 163 of the 253 students at the college were women and that, in the future, this number would only continue to grow. He adds that women "are entering college in ever greater numbers." Thus, he recommends that Dickinson College educate both male and female students in equal numbers and wishes to enforce a 50-50 ratio of female to male students.
In President Boyd Lee Spahr's report to the Board of Trustees, he discusses the possible acquisition of the Shearer Property on the "northwest corner of College and Louther Streets" for the construction of a women's dormitory. A local real estate agent had tipped the college off to the sale of the property for an estimated $18,000. When the college offered the sum to the seller, however, it was declined, and the president explains that the property might not even be desirable as a location for a new women's dormitory.
On December 9, 1944, an Executive Committee meeting for the Board of Trustees voted to pass on President Boyd Lee Spahr's recommendations on the admission of women to Dickinson College to the entire Board of Trustees. They do not specify exactly which recommendation they adopted.
President Fred Pierce Corson reported to the Board of Trustees that the college would have a full enrollment of female students. However, he cautioned that increasing the number of women students would also increase costs for the college due to the need for new facilities and other additions. The college would lose money in the process unless it changed the quota policy for women. There is no indication in the minutes that this suggestion was accepted by the Board.
President Corson recommended to the Board of Trustees that the college give Josephine Brunyate Meredith "the honor of being the first woman elected to a full professorship at Dickinson College" in the English Department. Meredith had served as Dean of Women and an Associate Professor of English since 1922. The president added that offering the dean this position would not entail raising her salary or giving her a permament appointment as the head of this department.
Two female students were suspended by the Board of Deans upon approval by the faculty. The Deans suspended one student for drinking, for giving a false testimony to a college officer, and for violating the regulations of the college. They suspended another for "absenting herself without permission."
In October of 1972 the American Association of University Professors unanimously adopted the "Recommendations and Report on the Status of Women in the Academic Profession" at Dickinson College. The primary questions concerned the number of women in decision-making roles to serve as models for the women students and the salaries of women in comparison to those of men with equal qualifications and responsibilities.
The Faculty Minutes for the meeting of January 6, 1942 detailed the requirements and standards set for girls who wanted to enter into the Nurses Aides course on a voluntary basis. They had to prove, among other requirements, that they had the grade point average, leisure time, and permission necessary to complete the course. They also needed to complete the entire course.
- Gertrude Super Curtis, class of 1902, went on to teach French and English in the High School, Santa Ana, CA.
- Georgia M. Cranston, class of 1906, had to resign her position in the Yonkers High School because of ill health and spent the winter of 1925 in St. Augustine, FL.
- Mary S. Maust, class of 1910, and her husband Grathwohl C. Curran (of the same graduating class) left on a trip to Cuba on Feb. 3, 1926.
On May 24, 1883, the faculty discussed whether or not female students should be admitted to Dickinson College. Referencing the discussion regarding coeducation that took place two years earlier, the faculty decided that the conditions of the college grounds were now suitable for female students. Thus, the faculty decided to "recommend to the Board of Trustees that women be admitted to the classes of the college on the same conditions of men." Nearly all the faculty, with the exception of Professor Harman, voted in favor of coeducation.
Pi Beta Phi won the President's Cup as the outstanding fraternal organization in the first year sororities were able to enter. Their victory was announced during the Homecoming Football Game in October of 1972. At the same time, the women from Drayer basement pulled off the traditional Homecoming prank and kidnapping of the duplicate mermaid which was located on the cupola of Old West. Second floor of Malcolm Hall retaliated by taking the original from the May Morris room of the library.