Students and alumnae profiles and statistics collection
Scope and Contents
The Mount Holyoke College Students and Alumnae Profiles and Statistics Collection primarily consists of articles, press releases, brochures, directories, notes, lists, citations for awards, audio cassettes, video recordings, and photographs dating from 1882 to the present which document the backgrounds, occupations, and experiences of women who have attended the school from 1837 to the present. Of particular note are materials concerning African American students and alumnae or those from countries outside of the United States. Materials are arranged in nine series: Biographical and Historical Notes, Statistics, and Lists; Alumnae in States, Regions, and Countries; Alumnae Occupations and Professions; Alumnae Awards, Programs, and Honors; Native American Students and Alumnae; African American Students and Alumnae; International Students and Alumnae; Audiocassettes and Video Recordings; and Photographs.
Biographicaland Historical Notes, Brochures, Statistics, and Lists date from 1906 to the present. The materials include a newspaper article from about 1910 entitled "The Colleges and Motherhood," a typescript copy of an article about "Mount Holyoke's Tradition in Community Service" (circa 1960), and a fact sheet about the Alumnae Association (1980). The statistics include a detailed "Alumnae Census" prepared by students in a statistics class at the College in 1937, a report on the information about alumnae gathered from a 1960 questionnaire, and summaries prepared by the Alumnae Association from 1976-2004 which give numbers of alumnae by class, state, foreign country, and Alumnae Club areas. The series also includes lists and articles about "alumnae daughters" and other family relationships among alumnae and brochures about "minority" students at the College.
Alumnae in States, Regions, and Countries materials (1882-present) chiefly consist of lists and notes about alumnae from different areas of the United States or other countries. A compilation of "Alumnae Regional Profiles" prepared by the Alumnae Association in 1989 provides a wide variety of information about alumnae in the United States including their employment, interests, marital status, and number of children. Also of note is an extensive collection of materials about alumnae from the southern region of the United States compiled by alumna Gail Sullivan Fleming (1950) in between 1988-1990. In addition, there are articles, notes and lists about some of the women from Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Vermont who have attended Mount Holyoke.
Alumnae Occupations and Professions materials (1888-present) consist of lists, statistics, articles, and directories primarily concerning alumnae artists, authors, editors, journalists, lawyers, fundraisers, educators, members of the clergy, doctors, nurses, and scientists. There is also information about alumnae affiliated with international organizations (including the Peace Corps and Vista) and those with careers in radio or television broadcasting. The materials include a copy of MHC Woman in Science: a Directory of Alumnae in Chemistry and Biochemistry (1991) which provides information about the work of these women.
Alumnae Awards, Programs, and Honors materials (1937-present) consist of articles, press releases, announcements, lists, notes, programs, and citations for awards. Most of these materials concern awards presented by the Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College such as the Alumnae Medal of Honor recognizing "eminent service in promoting the effectiveness of the Alumnae Association, signal service in completing definite projects undertaken by the College, or other noteworthy services which strengthen the position of the College" and the Mary Lyon Award honoring "a young alumna who has been out of the College fifteen years or less, who demonstrates promise or sustained achievement in her life, profession, or community consistent with the humane values which Mary Lyon exemplified in her life and inspired in others." There are also articles concerning Virginia Apgar (1929), Ella Grasso (1940), Frances Perkins (1902) and other alumnae elected to the National Women's Hall of Fame in Seneca Falls, New York or honored by United States postage stamps. In addition, the series includes information about Mary McHenry (1954) and Dorothy Semenow (1951) as participants in the Alumnae-in-Residence program at the College in 1974.
Native American Students and Alumnae materials date from 1982 and consist of lists of the few Native American women at the College between the 1840s-1930s and in the 1980s. There is also a brief reference to a scholarship established in 1932 for Native American students at Mount Holyoke.
African American Students and Alumnae Materials (1947-present) chiefly consist of articles, press releases, lists, notes, correspondence, brochures, programs, announcements, and invitations documenting the College's history of enrolling and supporting African American students and the activities and experiences of these women. An article by Linda M. Perkins discusses "The African American Female Elite: The Early History of African American Women in the Seven Sister Colleges, 1880-1960" (1997). Many newspaper articles from 1958-1969 concern the admission of increasing numbers of African American students to private colleges in the United States. There is also an article by Clara R. Ludwig, Director of Admissions at the College, entitled "The Goal of Equal Opportunities: Mount Holyoke's Response" (1968); notes by faculty members Sarah Montgomery and Jean Grossholtz about "Possible Responses to the Racial and Urban Revolution Open to Mount Holyoke College" (1968), a recommendation and article describing the Black Culture Center (later called the Betty Shabazz House) established at the College in 1968; and a 1971 description of "The Black Experience at Mount Holyoke" written by Gloria Maxwell, an African American woman in the Class of 1972. The takeover of several buildings at Mount Holyoke, Amherst College, and the University of Massachusetts in Amherst by African American students in the spring of 1970 is documented by articles, notes, memoranda, and a copy of "A Proposal for the W.E.B. DuBois Department of Afro-American Studies" at the University of Massachusetts. In addition, the materials include an illustrated brochure entitled "The Black Student on the White Campus" (1967); brochures prepared by the College in an effort to recruit African American students (1978-present), and a copy of the Black Alumnae Network Directory published by the Alumnae Association in 1994.
International Students and Alumnae materials (1893-present) concern women from countries other than the United States who have attended Mount Holyoke. These materials primarily consist of articles, press releases, handbooks, brochures, correspondence, lists, and notes. There are several articles about the history of international students at Mount Holyoke, including one written in 1986 by Mary Jacob, the Dean of International Students. Some of these materials concern Chinese alumnae and alumnae in China. Editions of the International Student Handbook (1982-1987) provide information about many aspects of life at Mount Holyoke and United States such as common terms and idioms, temperature conversions, and women's clothing size conversions. There are also brochures prepared by the College (1978-present) as a means of recruiting international students and informing them about policies that would help them with financing their education. In addition, the materials include memoranda, articles, and invitations (1980-1988) concerning the Host Family Program which allowed local residents to help international students adjust to both college life and life in the United States.
Audiocassettes and video recordings (1984-present) documents events at the College involving African American or international students and alumnae as well as alumnae recipients of awards. These materials include audiocassettes of ceremonies for winners of the Mary Lyon Award in 1984, 1988, and 1989; a video recording of the "Africa Day Cultural Show" on February 22, 1992; and a video recording of the proceedings of the Alumnae Association's Black Alumnae Conference in November, 1994.
Photographs (1893-present) primarily show groups of African American or international students or alumnae. Some photographs are of African American students at the Betty Shabazz House or Black Alumnae Conferences and there are many photographs of international students wearing the clothing of their home countries. Other photographs are of several alumnae living in Canton, China in the 1930s and recipients of the Alumnae Medal of Honor (1937-1987).
Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Use
Use of the collection is governed by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S.C.).
Mount Holyoke Female Seminary opened on November 8, 1837 with 116 students. The first graduating class of three students received diplomas on August 23, 1838. Initially, homemaking, teaching and missionary work were the only occupations open to alumnae. By the middle of the nineteenth century, however, increasing numbers of alumnae had entered professions such as social work, librarianship, journalism, medicine, and law. Notable alumnae include poet Emily Dickinson; women's rights advocate Lucy Stone; Olympia Brown, the first woman to become a full-time ordained minister; physician and anesthesiologist Virginia Apgar; playwrights Wendy Wasserstein and Suzan-Lori Parks; Frances Perkins, the first woman to serve as a member of the cabinet of a United States President; and Ella Grasso, the first woman elected a state governor in her own right (not as the successor of her husband). A number of these women have been honored on United States postage stamps or with induction into the National Women's Hall of Fame. The Alumnae Association of Mount Holyoke College has also recognized the achievements and contributions of alumnae with a variety of awards including the Alumnae Medal of Honor and the Mary Lyon Award.
Although Mount Holyoke was established as a non-denominational school, most students during the nineteenth century were affiliated with Protestant denominations and the student body was not geographically, racially or ethnically diverse until the mid-twentieth century. The first Native American students, Elinor S. and Mary H. Boudinot (also spelled Boudinott), attended Mount Holyoke in the 1840s and were the daughters of an assimilated Cherokee father. The first known African American student at Mount Holyoke was Hortense Parker, Class of 1883. The first students born outside the United States came to Mount Holyoke from Canada or the Sandwich Islands (now Hawaii) in the 1840s. The first student from Japan, Toshi Miyagawa enrolled in 1889 and the first students from China, Chi Nyok Wang and Ysu Tsit Law, graduated in 1916. Latina and Asian American women began attending Mount Holyoke in the 1930s. In 2010, Mount Holyoke enrolled students from 48 states and nearly 70 countries. On average, approximately one in every three undergraduates is an international citizen or an African American, Asian American, Latina, Native American, or multiracial student.
3.55 Linear Feet (8 full Hollinger and 1 half Hollinger boxes)
Language of Materials
The Mount Holyoke College Students and Alumnae Profiles and Statistics Collection primarily consists of articles, press releases, brochures, directories, notes, lists, citations for awards, audio cassettes, video recordings and photographs concerning women who have attended the school from 1837 to the present. The collection includes information about the occupations and professions of alumnae and the enrollment and experiences of African American students and alumnae as well as those from countries other than the United States.
This collection is organized into nine series:
- Biographical and Historical Notes, Brochures, Statistics, and Lists (1906-present)
- Alumnae in States, Regions, and Countries (1882-present)
- Alumnae Occupations and Professions (1888-present)
- Alumnae Awards, Programs, and Honors (1937-present)
- Native American Students and Alumnae (1982)
- African American Students and Alumnae (1947-present)
- International Students and Alumnae (1893-present)
- Audiocassettes and Video Recordings (1984-present)
- Photographs (1893-present)
Processed by Patricia J. Albright and Martha H. Brundage, 2010.
- African American college students -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- African American women -- United States Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Asian American college students -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Awards -- United States -- Women Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- College students -- Massachusetts -- Political activity Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Foreign study -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Hispanic American college students -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Indians of North America -- Education (Higher) -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Minority college students -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Mount Holyoke College -- Administration Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Mount Holyoke College -- Alumni and alumnae -- Statistics Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College -- Description Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College -- Handbooks, manuals, etc. Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College -- Registers Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College -- Students Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Mount Holyoke College -- Students -- Political activity Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College -- Students -- Statistics Subject Source: Local sources
- Mount Holyoke College Record Groups Subject Source: Local sources
- Multiculturalism -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Universities and colleges -- United States -- Statistics Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Women -- China Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Women -- Employment Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- Women college students -- Massachusetts -- South Hadley Subject Source: Library of Congress Subject Headings
- audiocassettes Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- brochures Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- directories Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- photographs Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- video recordings (physical artifacts) Subject Source: Art & Architecture Thesaurus
- Students and Alumnae Profiles and Statistics Collection, 1882-present
- Finding Aid
- Finding aid prepared by Patricia J. Albright and Martha H. Brundage.
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note
Part of the Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections Repository
50 College Street
8 Dwight Hall
South Hadley MA 01075-6425 USA