There will be many opportunities during the September 2019 – November 2020 anniversary year for alumni and the entire Yale community to celebrate the 50th anniversary of coeducation in Yale College. This milestone will be recognized through an array of activities on the Yale campus and beyond – in student forums, academic lectures, museum exhibitions, at local Yale clubs, in Shared Interest Group chapters around the country and elsewhere, as well as in the culminating celebration weekend in November 2020. We hope all alumni will take advantage of these opportunities. Please check the events calendar for updates.
The 50th Anniversary Committee was charged with planning a special commemorative event for September 19-22, 2019 - a first-ever gathering of women in the classes of 1971, 1972 and 1973 and those who matriculated in the fall of 1969. This weekend was a way for the university to honor the trail-blazing women in these three classes and to engage with them in a series of thoughtful discussions about their role in transforming Yale College.
The Committee hoped to inspire all alumnae in the classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973 to return to campus for what promised to be an historic weekend. Classmates were warmly invited to bring a pre-registered guest to Thursday’s tours, “Movie Night: Films from the Archives”, Friday dinner and late Saturday afternoon, reception, dinner, and evening programming. The special nature of this weekend – designed to bring women in the first three classes together as one group for the very first time, to connect, reconnect and share their stories with each other – coupled with space limitations in some venues, meant that not all sessions could be open more broadly. Guests were welcome to explore Yale’s museums, participate in tours, and enjoy other campus activities before joining the festivities on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
Remembering classmates who have passed away: Read rememberances of women in the classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973.
Mailings, contact information, questions: We are not quite finishted yet! If you are a woman in the classes of 1971, 1972, or 1973 and have not received the general mailings and notifications about the weekend event and/or the 50th projects…or have other questions, please contact the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Weekend in Review!
Projects to Preserve Our History
The 50th Committee has undertaken a number of initiatives to preserve the history of coeducation in Yale College - through oral histories, written histories, and collection of archival materials - as well as participating in other work with Sterling Memorial Library and various partners.
The projects listed below depend on involvement by classmates. We hope you will take a moment to read about these efforts – and consider participating.
The Oral History Project
This project seeks to record, make available to researchers and others, and preserve an archive of high-quality audio-visual accounts of the early years of coeducation at Yale, as experienced by the women who lived it. The project will record individual and group first-person narratives, with a primary focus on the first three classes of undergraduate women - in the Classes of ’71, ’72, and ’73 – who arrived at Yale in September 1969.
- Information about the Oral History Project
- Prompts to help spark memories
- Oral History Project release form
The Written History Project
This initiative – a companion project to the oral histories – sought to capture in writing the experiences of as many women in the classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973 as possible and in so doing, provide as wide a perspective on the history of undergraduate coeducation at Yale. These written submissions, along with the oral histories will be archived in Sterling Memorial Library. We hope these efforts will provide future generations with an accurate and compelling picture of this transformative era in the university’s history.
Women in the Classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973 will receive the second digital volume of the Written History Project this winter – and a printed version of volumes 1 and 2 in spring 2020. Written History Project submissions are now closed.
The Archives Project
Over the years, many classmates have collected historical material that should be preserved. The University Archives is seeking to collect records and documentation on student life and the Yale community – including material from the early years of coeducation. Photos, diaries, correspondence, and more are welcome. Learn more about the kinds of materials the Library is seeking and how to donate items.