Interviews by Decade: 1960s

Interviews from the women who attended Pembroke College in 1960s include discussions of the changing social expectations of the times; the Civil Rights movement; institutional inequalities between men and women; social culture on campus; attitudes toward sex, birth control, and abortion; creation of the Pembroke Pandas women's ice hockey team in 1964; the effect of national student movements; and political action on campus. The women also share stories about their families, local communities, and their lives before and after college. 

Image: Black Student Walkout, 1968. In December 1968, women from Pembroke College led a walk-out in which 65 of the 85 African American students then enrolled at Brown University marched down College Hill to the Congdon Street Baptist Church, where they stayed for three days. For more about this event, see the videos from the 2009 alumni reunion forum "The 1968 Walkout: A Turning Point in Brown's History"  and the short documentary "1968 Walk Out." Image source: University Archives Photograph Collection.

This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1963 summarizes the undergraduate experiences of Nancy Scull, Linda Brody Lyons, Jean Dowdall, Judy Neal Murray, Martha Macaulay Anderson, Barbara Langworthy, Elaine Piller Congress, Carol Spindler Duncan, Jennifer Williams Ketay Brock, and Judy Blockman Bernstein, at their 50th reunion.

This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1967 documents the undergraduate experiences of Carol Lemlein, Susan Haas, Brenda Hubbard, Karen Wolk, Sharon Drager, and Judith Minno, at their 50th reunion.

Rosemary Pierrel, class of 1953

In this interview, Dr. Rosemary Pierrel Sorrentino describes her leadership as Dean of Pembroke from 1961 through 1972. Dr. Sorrentino, or Dean Pierrel as she was known to Pembrokers, reviews the rapidly changing societal norms, her perceptions of the demands upon Pembroke and upon her role as Dean, and the failure of leadership that led to the abrupt end of Pembroke College as an administrative unit within Brown University. She is quite candid about her opinions and her colleagues. She notes that shared values began to erode after 1966-67.

50th Reunion, class of 1960

This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1960 focuses on the undergraduate experiences of Barbara Ruth Little, Joanne Phyllis Tenedine, Rosemary Ann Smith, Carolyn Marie Hanson, Minna Claire Saxe, Suzanne Elaine Werber, Joan Caryll Hoost, Linda June Blackman, Barbara Jane Hajjar, Jane Marilyn Doane, and Carol Maclennan at their 50th reunion.

Joan Caryll Hoost, class of 1960

In Part 1 of this interview recorded the week of her 55th reunion, Joan Caryll Hoost describes her experiences at Pembroke College and her work as an advocate for women's causes. She shares stories about Freshman Week and her participation in the Pembroke Double Quartet, teaching fourth grade in Greensboro, North Carolina after graduation, and the Brown Alumnae Club of Kent County, RI.

50th Reunion, class of 1961

This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1961 captures the undergraduate experiences of Emily Arnold, Margaret Katherine Ellickson, Elizabeth Francis Diggs, Sandy Barnell, Wendy Friedman Brest, Chelsea Remington, Ann Dolores Matteodo, Carol Gotes Moreland, Beth Arlene Burwell, and Ellen Jane Shaffer, at their 50th reunion.

Cynthia Lee Jenner, class of 1961

In Part 1 of this interview, Cynthia Lee Jenner begins by describing her family background. She talks about the contemporary stigma against a middle class wife with a career and the effect of this on her mother and herself. From this context, she attended an all-girls boarding school and Pembroke College, both of which sought (though failed) to prepare her for “gracious living.” She goes on to discuss deciding to attend Pembroke, her tour guide, living at 87 Prospect Street (now Machado House), and her advanced discussion-based coursework.

50th Reunion, class of 1962

This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1962 spotlights the undergraduate experiences of Letha Brooks Smenton, Diana Lee Wilkoc, Jane Alice DeCourcy, Roberta Jean Adams, Dale Ronda Burg, Joan Ferris Baker, Helene Enid Schwarts, and Joyce Klaber, at their 50th reunion.

Carol Ann Markovitz, class of 1962

In this interview, Carol Ann Markovitz begins by describing her involvement at Pembroke outside the classroom, at Brown Youth Guidance—an outreach organization, at the Pendleton-Bradley Hospital, and at the Pembroke College school newspaper, the Pembroke Record. She then tells of her dissatisfaction with the social life on campus, her very close group of friends and their importance to her, the norms of dating, and her decision to study abroad junior year at the Sorbonne, as one of only three women to go abroad.

Katharine Curtis Pierce, class of 1962

On the occasion of her 50th Reunion, Katharine Curtis Pierce looks back on the highlights of her time at Pembroke College. She begins by explaining her expectations for Pembroke and the “finishing school for Episcopal girls” that she found in its stead. Pierce talks about dorm life, her dissatisfaction with that atmosphere, her time pursuing social work, as well as her work resettling refugees in Vietnam at the National Council of Churches.

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