The Matriculation of Women at Harvard Medical School

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The Matriculation of Women at Harvard Medical School

A History of Conflict and Debate

The 50th anniversary of the matriculation of women at Harvard Medical School was in 1995. The anniversary was celebrated with commemorative events and a campaign to raise funds to increase the diversity of the faculty at all levels.

At the inaugural dinner on March 17, 1995, President Neil Rudenstine stated that "unlike most birthdays or anniversaries, we look back on this one and wonder, 'why aren't we older.'"

Indeed, it took 100 years for the Corporation and Faculty to reach consensus on the admission of women. This document is largely devoted to women's history at the medical school, including the first students, as well as the first researchers, scientists and staff. Pertinent events in world history have been included to give context (black text).

We celebrate the women and men whose persistence and determination led Harvard Medical School to offer "its women on equal terms with men."

Click on one of the links below to find out more about a particular timeframe.

1847 - 1870

1871 - 1920

1921 - 1947

1948 - 1970

1971 - 1994

Who We Are

A community of women and men who strive to make the working environment better for all.


The Joint Committee on the Status of Women

Harvard Medical School /
Harvard School of Dental Medicine
25 Shattuck Street, Room 206
Boston, MA 02115
Tel: 617.432.0719