There have been many opportunities during the past year for alumni as well as the entire Yale community to celebrate the 50th anniversary of coeducation in Yale College. This milestone was recognized through an array of activities on the Yale campus and beyond – in student forums, academic offerings, museum exhibitions, at local Yale clubs, in Shared Interest Groups, and much more. A selection of this material, including the panels recorded during the 50th anniversary weekend in September 2019 is available on this web page and elsewhere on the website. In addition, we hope you will log on for more virtual anniversary programming this summer. You can find events here.
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 who matriculated at Yale in 1969 as the university’s first undergraduate women. 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.
Program: View the full program for the September 19-22 weekend.
Who attended: View who came by graduation year or who’s coming in alphabetical order. View panelists and speakers.
Remembering classmates who have passed away: Read rememberances of women in the classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973.
Contact information, questions: If you are a woman in the classes of 1971, 1972, or 1973 and have not updated your contact information or have other questions, please contact us at email@example.com.
The Weekend in Review!
On September 19-22, 2019, women from the three classes who entered Yale College in 1969 assembled in New Haven for a historic weekend. The occasion was marked by a series of panels, presentations, exhibitions, and celebratory gatherings; it was also a time for attendees to connect, reconnect, and share their stories with each other.
Images: View a complete set of photos taken by a professional photographer during the weekend.
Videos: View panels and sessions from the 50th Anniversary weekend.
Projects to Preserve Our History
As part of the 50th anniversary celebration, the Committee launched several initiatives to preserve the history of coeducation in Yale College – oral histories, written histories, and an enlarged archive – as well as participating in projects with Sterling Memorial Library and other partners.
The Oral History Project
This project sought to record, preserve, and make available to researchers and others an archive of high-quality audio-visual accounts of the early years of coeducation at Yale as experienced by women in the classes of 1971, 1972, and 1973 who arrived on campus in September 1969 as Yale’s first women undergraduates. Filming has now ended but you can learn more about the project through the links below. For information about how to access the collection, please contact Michael Lotstein, University Archivist, at Manuscripts and Archives in the Yale University Library at (203) 432-4908 or via email.
- Information about the Oral History Project
- Prompts that were used 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 in order to provide wide 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.
You can read the collection of essays produced by the Written History Project, the First Women in Yale College: Reflections on Coeducation for the 50th Anniversary Celebration, by visiting the digital version of this book.
A spring 2021 update about the current digital version of the Reflections is available as a PDF.
The Archives Project
Over the years, many classmates have collected historical material that is important to preserve. The University Archives is seeking to collect records and documentation of 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.