Interviews by Topic: Sororities

Alita Dorothy Bosworth, class of 1914

In Part 1 of this interview, classmates Alita Dorothy Bosworth and Rowena Albro Sherman discuss how they came to attend Brown University; restrictions and expectations of behavior; and traditions of the Women's College, including school songs, class colors, sophomore masque and the class mascot. They then discuss fraternities and their abolition by Dean King; the cafeteria on the women's campus; physical education instructors Miss Bates and Miss Payne; their impressions of Dean King, and their social life with men and other class members.

Alpha Kappa Alpha, class of 1976-1977

In this interview recorded during the 2018 Black Alumni Reunion, Arlean Leland and Lavdena Adams Orr, class of 1976, and Robyn Jones and Patricia Darlene Elliot, class of 1977, discuss their membership in the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority and how it impacted their lives during and after their time at Brown.

Anita L. Schell, class of 1979

In this interview, Anita L. Schell begins by discussing her family and the support she had from her parents to attend college. She then talks about her initial attraction to Brown University and her fond memories of the choir, which she participated in for all four years, and her group trip to India. Schell then discusses dormitory life and her various experiences at Brown both inside and outside the classroom, highlighting her involvement with St. Stephen’s Church, and religion on campus.

Beatrice Elizabeth Coleman, class of 1925

In this interview, Beatrice Elizabeth Coleman discusses her career as a teacher in normal schools in North Carolina and Pennsylvania; the Black communities in Providence and at Brown and Pembroke in the early twentieth century; and her sorority, Alpha Kappa Alpha. At the time of the interview she was 102 years old.

Delores A. Bennett, class of 1997

In this interview conducted as a result of the 2018 all-class Black Alumni Reunion, Delores A. Bennett, Brown University class of 1997, discusses her path to becoming Vice President of Cloud Sales at Oracle.

Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, class of 1979

In this interview recorded during the 2018 Black Alumni Reunion, Teresa Cheeks, Renee Hill, and Lori Hollins, members of the Brown University class of 1979, discuss their membership in the historically Black Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and how it impacted their lives during and after their time at Brown.

Dorothy Ann Haus, class of 1964

Dorothy Ann Haus begins this interview by talking about her life before Pembroke College, growing up as a “Pollyanna” in Brattleboro, Vermont. Haus discusses many different aspects of life as a Pembroker including the rules and regulations, the gym requirement, dorm life, dating, freshman orientation, formal dinners and demitasse, and playing varsity sports. Haus recalls celebrations such as Father-Daughter Weekend, May Day, and Campus Dance.

Karona Monica Mason, class of 1982

In this interview recorded during the 2018 All-class Black Alumni Reunion, Karona Monica Mason, Brown University class of 1982, discusses her experiences as a student on the Brown University campus. Mason begins by describing her childhood and early education in Washington, D.C. She emphasizes always having Black role models, including her mother and father who worked for the federal government and Howard University respectively.

Katherine May Hazard, class of 1933

In Part 1 of this interview, Katherine May Hazard begins by discussing daily life at Pembroke College. For her, this meant commuting to campus and becoming used to the regimented life at Pembroke. She explains some of the requirements, what it was like to date mathematicians, and her involvement on campus. Outside of class, there were a variety of activities and, oftentimes, formal dances. She remembers Dean Margaret Shove Morris telling them that Pembrokers were not preparing for a specific career, but for life.

Lynn Nottage, class of 1986, and Ruby Aiyo Gerber, class of 2020

In this interview, Lynn Nottage, Pulitzer-prize winning playwright and Brown University class of 1986, and her daughter, Ruby Aiyo Gerber, Brown University class of 2020, discuss their experiences at Brown, living through the COVID-19 global pandemic, and processing the death of George Floyd by Minneapolis police.

Marguerite Appleton, class of 1914

In this interview, Marguerite Appleton discusses her father, John Howard Appleton, a Brown chemistry professor; her reasons for choosing Brown; the abolition of the sorority system by Dean Lida Shaw King and the role of the Student Government Association in it.  Her sisters’ sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta; athletics including bowling; traditions such as Sophomore Masque, Ivy Day, and Commencement; other social activities, including dances and Komian plays; Her life after college includes teaching at the Lincoln School and Wheaton College; returning to Brown for a Ph.D.

Marjorie Phillips Wood, class of 1911

Marjorie Phillips Wood entered Pembroke College in 1907. In Part 1 of this interview, she remembers being disciplined as a freshman for the fun she had with her friends; Lida Shaw King, Dean of the Women's College; expectations for dress and behavior at Pembroke; the language courses she took at Pembroke and at Brown; becoming a librarian at Harvard; basketball, bowling, dances, sororities, and other extracurricular activities; and being a tomboy. 

Marva E. Dates, class of 1957 and Karen E. Dates, class of 1986

In this interview recorded as a result of the 2018 Black Alumni Reunion, Marva E. Dates, Pembroke College class of 1957, and her niece Karen E. Dates, Brown University class of 1986, share the similarities and differences of their times on campus.

Rowena Albro Sherman, class of 1914

In Part 1 of this interview, classmates Alita Dorothy Bosworth and Rowena Albro Sherman discuss how they came to attend Brown University; restrictions and expectations of behavior; and traditions of the Women's College, including school songs, class colors, sophomore masque and the class mascot. They then discuss fraternities and their abolition by Dean King; the cafeteria on the women's campus; physical education instructors Miss Bates and Miss Payne; their impressions of Dean King, and their social life with men and other class members.

Tanya C. Lumpkins, class of 1985 and Sarah Marion, class of 2019

In this interview recorded during the 2018 Black Alumni Reunion, Tanya Lumpkins, class of 1985, and her daughter, Sarah Marion, class of 2019, share their thoughts on a Brown University family legacy and current events as they compare their experiences on campus.