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April 1, 1987

Celebrating Vassar’s 125th anniversary, history faculty, College Historian Elizabeth Daniels ’41 and President Fergusson participated in a history department forum on “The World in the 1860s.”

President Fergusson spoke of Matthew Vassar’s “educational vision,” saying, “In summary, one can say that Matthew Vassar purposely avoided compromises in the design of the curriculum, the hiring of faculty, and the construction of the structure that housed the College. He insisted on a strict course of study grounded in the liberal arts, which emphasized historical knowledge, familiarity with scientific methodology and the ability to be an effective voice in the present…Matthew Vassar issued a challenge to then current notions of a proper education for women.”

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