Back to Home Page

The First Women Students
How Women Fared
A New Home
College Life: 1910-1919
Targets of Humor
Women's Space
For Women Only
Rites of Passage
Black Women at Pitt
The Twelfth Floor
The War Years
Women in Sports
Coming Into the 70's


A new phase in the history of women at Pitt began in the early 1970s. Although almost 40% of the undergraduates were women, the graduate and professional schools were still predominantly male. Moreover, women made only limited inroads into faculty positions since the first woman faculty member was hired in the college in 1918. With few exceptions, women were also excluded from decision-making positions in the university. In the late 1960s the Women's Movement became the driving force for change. Feminist activity began at the University of Pittsburgh in 1969.

Chancellor Wesley Posvar created the Advisory Committee on Women's Opportunities (ACWO) to address the agenda of the newly formed University Committee for Women's Rights (UCWR). As a result of the work done by the ACWO and others, several programs were established, including the Women's Center (1973), and a thriving Women's Studies Program, established in 1972.

The First Women | How Women Fared | A New Home | College Life | Targets of Humor | Women's Space | For Women Only
Rites of Passage | Black Women | The Twelfth Floor | The War Years | Women in Sports | Coming Into the 70's


Next: ???
Back to the Home Page

2003 University of Pittsburgh Office of the Provost

Pitt Home
Provost Web Site
Contact Us

"The University was Full of Men"
Henry was assistant professor of modern languages, and later associate professor, 1918-1955. When a reporter asked about Professor Henry's first impression of the university, she replied, "The university was full of men." She didn't know until she arrived that she would be the only woman on the college faculty. Chancellor McCormick hired Henry in January 1918, when men were off to war. The Chancellor told her "at least five times that the job was only temporary. He made it very clear that the only reason she got the job at all was that they could not find a man to fill the position." Photo 1944.

Blossom Henry, the first woman faculty member in the college.

Women's Studies Program brochure.