Simmons celebrates Women's History Month
March is Women's History Month, which is one of our favorite months because it recognizes the significant contributions of women to history and society.
In the U.S., women such as Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Blackwell, Margaret Sanger, and Rosa Parks paved the way for influential women like Gloria Steinem, Sandra Day O'Connor, and Hilary Clinton. This month, we celebrate the accomplishments of these extraordinary women, and many more throughout the world, for their activism, courage, and determination.
More than a century ago, Simmons was founded on a revolutionary idea: that women should be able to go to college and earn an independent livelihood. When we look back at our history, it's important to understand the social conditions and historical period in which these women lived. When Simmons first opened its doors, women weren't allowed to vote and many didn't work outside the home.
Ever wonder what it was like to attend college as a woman during the first half of the 20th century? The Notable Women of Simmons College project gives us an opportunity to look into the lives of early Simmons women through their old scrapbooks -- which have been lovingly digitized by students in the Library and Information Science program.
One of my favorite scrapbooks is Daisie M. Heylar's from 1906-1910. Check out her acceptance letter:
Also interesting is a newspaper clipping of an article entitled "Education of Women Urged" in which Dean Arnold discusses life's problems of women at the time.
To celebrate Women's History Month, Simmons has planned several events, including:
- International Women's Day Breakfast on March 8 at 7:30 a.m.
- Women's College Week: Piecing Together the Elements of Success held March 14-18
- What is a Feminist Reader? on March 16 at 5:30 p.m.
- LUNAFEST on March 29, all day, with LUNAFEST film showing at 7 p.m.
Want to learn more about Simmons' history? Visit the Library Archives or drop by the Beatley Library display to see their exhibit on women's history.
To see the complete collection of scrapbooks from early Simmons women, visit: Notable Women of Simmons College.
Have something to share? Let us know!