Converse College

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Short History

Although the doors of Converse opened October 1, 1890, the first step towards the founding of the college was taken in 1889 when a prominent attorney assembled a group of Spartanburg citizens to discuss the project. Among the 13 men was Dexter Edgar Converse, a native of Vermont who had settled in Spartanburg before the Civil War. His contributions to the college were so valuable it was given his name.

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Spartanburg, South Carolina

Points of pride

The Converse College commitment to creativity and the development of adaptable individuals with clear vision, wise decision and just action is guided by seven core values: excellence, integrity, exploration, diversity, respect, community and progress.

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1889

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Simmons University

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Simmons College was founded in 1899 by Boston businessman John Simmons, who had a revolutionary idea — that women should be able to earn independent livelihoods and lead meaningful lives. It was this same spirit of inclusion and empowerment that produced the first African-American Simmons graduate in 1914, and made Simmons one of the only private colleges that did not impose admission quotas on Jewish students during the first half of the 1900s.

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Location

Boston, Massachusetts

Points of pride

Located in the heart of Boston, Simmons is a private university, home to a respected women’s undergraduate program and coeducational graduate programs in fields that advance the common good. Simmons has established a model of higher education that other colleges and universities are only recently beginning to adapt: the combination of education for leadership in high-demand professional fields with the intellectual foundation of the liberal arts. The result is a Simmons graduate prepared not only to work, but to lead in professional, civic, and personal life - a vision of empowerment that Simmons calls preparation for life’s work.

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Art

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1899

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Wellesley College

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Wellesley College was founded in 1870 by Henry and Pauline Durant, who were passionate about the higher education of women. Wellesley’s first president, Ada Howard, and nearly all of the College’s early educators and administrators were women.

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Location

Wellesley, Massachusetts

Points of pride

Wellesley's motto is "Not to be ministered unto but to minister." Smart, serious women choose Wellesley because the college believes in making a difference; disciplined thinking; pragmatic leadership; valuing diversity; and service.

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1870

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Scripps College

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Educator, publisher, and philanthropist Ellen Browning Scripps dedicated her dreams as well as her resources to pioneering an innovative setting for women's education as an integral part of The Claremont Colleges. At ninety years of age, she still saw life in terms of possibility and spoke of the women's college that opened its doors in 1926 as her "new adventure."

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Location

Claremont, California

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An understanding and appreciation of diverse peoples, cultures, and perspectives informs the intellectual framework on which Scripps mission is based. The College is committed to demonstrating that respect of differences among people is a prerequisite to achieving institutional excellence. It means that virtually every conversation will have many more than two viewpoints; it means that the underlying assumptions of every question will be probed.

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1926

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Meredith College

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Meredith College has been educating strong, confident women for more than a century. Chartered in 1891, the College opened with 200 students and a mission to provide a first-rate course of female education. Today Meredith is one of the largest independent women’s colleges in the U.S., graduating nearly 500 students each year who come from across the country and around the world.

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Location

Raleigh, North Carolina

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Many colleges say they offer a personal education. Meredith College delivers on that promise. Rigorous academics and a commitment to experiential learning – offered in a personalized environment – challenge Meredith women to discover their individual strengths and then grow stronger. We promise you this: No matter how strong you think you are, you’re stronger. Come to Meredith and we’ll prove it.

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1891

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St. Catherine University

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St. Catherine University, or St. Kate’s as it’s commonly known, was founded in 1905. Grounded in the liberal arts and the Catholic traditions of intellectual inquiry and social teaching, St. Kate’s educates women to lead and influence. St. Kate’s offers associate, bachelor and advanced degree programs in four schools: the School of Business and Professional Studies; the School of Humanities, Arts and Sciences; the Henrietta Schmoll School of Health; and the School of Social Work. With more than 60 programs of study, the College for Women is among the largest private women’s colleges in the nation. The University also offers a range of programs for women and men in the Graduate College and College for Adults. At every degree level, St. Kate’s serves a diverse student population; developing ethical, reflective and socially responsible leaders. St. Kate’s president is ReBecca Koenig Roloff, a 1976 graduate of the University. 

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St. Paul, Minnesota

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St. Catherine University educates students to lead and influence. St. Catherine integrates liberal arts and professional education within the Catholic tradition, emphasizing intellectual inquiry and social teaching, and challenging students to transformational leadership.

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1905

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Spelman College

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Spelman was founded in 1881 as Atlanta Baptist Female Seminary by Sophia B. Packard and Harriet E. Giles. The name was changed in 1884 to Spelman Seminary in honor of Mrs. Laura Spelman Rockefeller and her parents Harvey Buel and Lucy Henry Spelman, longtime activists in the antislavery movement.

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Location

Atlanta, Georgia

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Spelman is America's oldest historically Black college for women and is a global leader in the education of women of African descent. The college is dedicated to academic excellence in the liberal arts and sciences and the intellectual, creative, ethical, and leadership development of its students. Spelman empowers the whole person to engage the many cultures of the world and inspires a commitment to positive social change.

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1881

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Saint Mary's College

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Saint Mary’s promotes a life of intellectual vigor, aesthetic appreciation, religious sensibility, and social responsibility. Founded in 1844 by the Sisters of the Holy Cross, Saint Mary’s College’s is a four-year, Catholic, residential, women’s liberal arts college offering five bachelor’s degrees and more than 30 major areas of study. Online and hybrid graduate programs are offered in several in-demand fields. 

 

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Location

Notre Dame, Indiana

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Saint Mary’s mission is to educate women, develop their talents, and prepare them to make a difference in the world. Our supportive community fosters confidence, ethical leadership, and strong academic success. With small class sizes and outstanding faculty, students establish mentor relationships with faculty and participate in research opportunities that aren’t typically found in undergraduate settings. In addition, our students spend four years making friendships that last a lifetime, and graduates join a significant network of alumnae across many industries, across the country, and across the globe.

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Mary Baldwin University

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Founded as Augusta Female Seminary in 1842 by Rufus W. Bailey, Mary Baldwin University is the oldest institution of higher education for women in the nation affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. Among its first students, totaling 57 young women (paying as much as $60 per semester to attend), was Mary Julia Baldwin.

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Location

Staunton, Virginia

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A Mary Baldwin University education is designed to empower students to take their places in the world as confident, compassionate changemakers. The university's historic location in Staunton and Augusta County, Virginia, is a strength and point of pride for Mary Baldwin University.

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1842

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Hollins University

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Initially established in 1842 as Valley Union Seminary, a coeducational college, Hollins became an institution for women in 1852. Three years later, it was renamed Hollins in recognition of benefactors John and Ann Halsey Hollins.

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Location

Roanoke, Virginia

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Hollins pursues an uncommon mission to provide women the opportunity to find their own voices and seek their own individual dreams and goals. We help them gain confidence to compete in a still-unequal world and give them the tools to make the world a better place for other women, children, and men. We seek out women with strong personalities and ambitious goals.

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1852

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