About the Anniversaries

2019 marks two major milestones in the university’s history: the 50th anniversary of the matriculation of women in Yale College and the 150th anniversary of  the first women  students  at the university who came to study at  the School of Art when it opened in 1869.

Every school and dozens of organizations at Yale are designing ways to contribute to the year-long commemoration that will start in September 2019 and continue into the fall of 2020.

The Steering Committee has been hard at work: the goals developed by the Committee include a range of objectives for the anniversary year, during which we will celebrate Yale women - and also much more.

The events, exhibitions, and projects for 2019-2020 are intended to showcase the depth of women’s contributions to Yale and to the world, to celebrate women at the university, and to inspire thoughtful conversation about the future of women at Yale and in the larger society.

A Celebration with Purpose: Goals as of April 2018

  • Commemorate 50 years of coeducation in Yale College and celebrate the trail-blazing women who entered in September 1969 and made it happen.
  • Capture the stories of those who matriculated in 1969 and more generally, research and disseminate the history of women at Yale.
  • Enlist every school at Yale to (i) undertake research about women in the school and devise ways to make the information known so that women’s contributions become a well-known facet of each school and (ii) showcase the contributions of women to the school and to the profession more broadly through anniversary year events.
  • Attract and inspire alumnae who have not been active at Yale or their school – and then help them stay engaged. To that end, we should use these anniversary events to better understand the ways that Yale and AYA might connect with alumnae going forward, and to promote and strengthen Yale’s networks in support of alumnae. In the future, we want to identify programs, events, and/or opportunities that meet alumnae “where they are” and that are meaningful to them.
  • Use this opportunity to showcase “Yale today” and tell the stories about Yale in 2019 and 2020 that the alumnae, faculty, and students should hear and that they can take back into their respective communities at Yale and beyond.
  • Use the anniversary year to draw more attention to the “unfinished agenda” for women in society and at Yale. (For example, SOM is considering an initiative for research on women’s issues, such as the pay gap and gender equity in the workplace). Encourage all schools to focus on their own unfinished agendas and those of their professional spheres.