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spring/summer 2008

emma willard school



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headlines

By Trudy E. Hall, Head of School

Education Without Borders I am thinking about a truly big idea, so big I cannot think about it alone. It is an idea I hope you are already contemplating: what does an education that embraces the world look like? You should see what I have seen: a multicultural girls dorm in Botswana, a Chinese recitation class in a Korean girls school, a school in Capetown connected through technology to four others in India, Mexico, Venezuela, and Indiana. I could go on, but it is stunningly clear: the idea of “school” and the possibilities of technology are irrevocably intertwined. As important, the word global is now old. So what is next? To educate responsibly, we must not only give students access to life well beyond Emma’s borders, we must let the world in as well. We must provide cross-cultural opportunities that enable our students to gain confidence in navigating unfaWe must not only miliar cultural territory and develop give students access the skills for responsible citizenship. Exposing students to life beyond to life well beyond Mount Ida is not new. Whether inviting speakers to address international Emma’s borders, issues, arranging for student pen pals at a sister school in Japan, or creating travel opportunities for students and teachers, Emma Willard has always been ahead of the curve in this regard. Indeed, international students have been a part of the Emma Willard community since the 1820s. Today we have girls from over 20 countries, and now that the Davis Scholars Program allows talented girls from around the world to come together, imagine the global tapestry that could exist here. We are just beginning to weave this tapestry—bold, compelling, necessary. A truly diverse student body is but one step in engaging the world.

we must let the world in as well.

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Emma Willard is fortunate to possess the Elizabeth Colton ’66 Fund for Global Women’s Issues, designed to expose students to the concerns of women around the world. Throughout the curriculum our students are exposed to diverse cultures and perspectives. Teacher exchanges (for example, two that occurred this year with schools in the United Kingdom and India) do the same for our faculty. Our rigorous language program now includes Chinese, and through our community service program Emma students reach people from the Capital Region to Darfur. So our challenge is not shifting our course toward globalization; rather, it requires that we move strategically along the course we have already set. I have many ideas, but I would like to hear yours as well. As the only school with the expertise that comes from 200 years of educating girls, how can we best ensure that our students develop a deeper understanding of other ways of life and other viewpoints? What is the right balance between classroom and experiential learning? What should a “global curriculum” look like? How can we better engage and utilize our alumnae around the world? Post graduation, I am experiencing a rare quiet moment on Mount Ida—the perfect time to contemplate a bold future for Emma Willard. Please consider yourself invited into this critical conversation. Toward that end, I have launched a blog which you can find at www.emmawillard.org/everywhere. Rest assured, even if you are not hearing from me, I am contemplating every comment you post. For those of you for whom blogging remains a foreign concept, know that your letters and emails are always welcome. I look forward to a lively exchange as we venture into new worlds of intellectual possibility. Just imagine Madame Willard’s remarkable vision writ globally!


Mark Van Wormer

Notice Something Different?

emma  everywhere

Yes, the bulletin has changed. We have redesigned, and we hope created a more visually exciting magazine that is easier to navigate and read. But the biggest change you can feel right in your hands—the paper. We have long desired to use a more ecologically responsible paper for this magazine—which, with a circulation of nearly 10,000, uses about 8,360 pounds of paper per issue. Enter Tom O’Connor, father of Eloise ’09 and Katherine ’05 and a former board member. Tom is also the president of Mohawk Paper, and he has helped educate us and support our switch to a 100% recycled paper. As the world has become a smaller place for all of us, it has become increasingly important to act as a responsible steward of the environment. Our change of paper has big repercussions: 80.26 trees not cut down 3,772 lbs. solid waste not generated 34,091 gallons wastewater flow saved 7,427 lbs. net greenhouse gases prevented 56,848,000 BTUs energy not consumed


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emma everywhere

International buzz Emma Willard was featured prominently in a major Korean magazine recently.

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Yes, that’s the Emma Willard campus, described glowingly in Korean as it appeared recently in a magazine described as “the Korean Vogue.” The school was also featured in a Korean newspaper and in many Korean guides to education. “The buzz in Korea and many other countries as well is phenomenal,” says Julie Bradley, who coordinates international admissions. “We are constantly touted as the ‘premiere’ girls’ school in the United States.” And it’s not just in Korea where Emma has experienced surging applications. Mainland China is a growing source of students, as are Taiwan and Hong Kong. Today, numbers of international students are increasing steadily. In the late ’90s there were about 50 international students each year, says Nina Fleishman ’72, international student advisor and ESL coordinator. Last year there were 64. This year, 77 are expected to enroll. So what about Emma Willard attracts the attention of parents from Asia and South America, Africa and Europe? Well, there’s the obvious attraction of a first-rate education. Parents outside the U.S. are looking for a way their daughters can “get a leg up on learning English and competing for spots in the top colleges,” says Fleishman. But it’s more than that. “I truly believe a great deal is based on trust,” says Bradley. “They believe we will provide a first-rate education. Parents trust their daughters will be safe and emotionally supported. I believe their expectations are exceeded.” International students bring diversity and vitality to campus, and at this point, the challenge for Emma Willard is to balance the numbers of qualified international students with numbers of students from the United States. “These girls are among our strongest students academically,” says Julie Bradley, “and are quickly becoming some of our most valued contributors to the life of the community.”


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Commencement photos by Mark Van Wormer; Spring Break photo by Linda McClusky

Endings & beginnings On Sunday, June 1, 2008, ninety-one of Emma Willard’s seniors gathered with family, friends, faculty, and fellow students to celebrate the school’s 194th Commencement exercises. Longtime faculty member Jack Easterling delivered the address. Sarah Fuhrman was the recipient of the Jameson Adkins Baxter Award, given to the senior class member who has shown the most growth during her years at Emma Willard and who embodies the integrity, discipline, and commitment to education of Ms. Baxter, and Nicole Heyman received the Clementine Miller Tangeman Award, presented by the Alumnae Association to the senior who best exemplifies the spirit of enthusiasm, dedication, and creativity that characterized Mrs. Tangeman’s involvement with Emma Willard. Brynn Taylor was chosen by her classmates to deliver the senior address.

Spring break in Mexico. If you’re thinking beaches and margaritas, think again. Ten students set off for Casa de los Angeles to help care for children of poor single working mothers. The girls worked every day; two girls were assigned to each of the five classrooms. “Girls became very attached to their charges early on,” said Pam Skripak ’80, director of seminar and one of the chaperones. “They developed wonderful connections with the little ones very quickly, and the children were happy to see them every day when they arrived.” The Casa, located in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, was started by an American woman. It serves 65 children, from infants to three years old. The mothers receive mentoring and meals, as do their other children. And though it is free, the mothers must work one hour for every day their child is in care. The money goes into a fund for them. The students from Emma lived in a modest house in a small neighborhood outside of town, where the girls—many of whom knew a little Spanish— got to know a very different kind of life. “The girls loved the entire experience,” says Skripak. “Many of them had never been out of the states, so a trip into the heart of Mexico was an undeniable eye-opener. Many hope to return in the future.”

3 x 4 = 200 Libby Schultz, a 3-sport athlete, all 4 years at Emma, hit the 200 mark in goals scored during her lacrosse career.

Spring/Summer 2008

emma everywhere

Spring break “por los niños”


emma everywhere

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eco-emma One hour

I feel a poem coming on…

said Major Jackson when experiencing campus for the first time. A poet and professor at UVM, Jackson spoke to English classes in March.

The campus was plunged into darkness on March 29. For one hour, from 8 pm to 9 pm, all lights went off, with only emergency lights in stairwells and on walkways. The student-run community service groups Emma Green and Sustainable led the school in its first annual Earth Hour—a global effort to raise awareness of environmental issues. Earth Hour originated in Sydney, Australia, where last year 2.2 million people and 2,100 businesses in the city turned off their lights for one hour. This effort reduced Sydney’s energy consumption by 10.2% for one hour—the equivalent effect of taking 48,000 cars off the road for a year. Inspired by the collective effort of millions from Sydney, many major global cities joined Earth Hour in 2008, turning a symbolic event into a global movement. Can one person really make a difference?

Davis Scholarship new in fall Starting this fall, nine Davis Scholars will receive scholarships as part of a ground-breaking new pilot program to create the leaders of tomorrow by providing an education for talented students from around the world. Just five boarding schools have been invited to join this initiative, which is modeled after the Davis World College Scholars program that includes 89 American colleges and provides financial support to more than 1,400 college students from 136 countries. Emma Willard has long shared the goals of this scholarship program: fostering cross-cultural understanding; educating a diverse population; and increasing awareness, tolerance, and sensitivity among young people. Gale Lansing Davis, of the sponsoring Shelby Cullom Davis family, is an Emma Willard graduate, class of 1963.

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Yes, individuals can indeed make a difference in the environment, stressed the three alumnae panelists speaking as part of the Serving and Shaping Her World Speakers Series. In addition to their presentations, Sierra Murdoch ’05, an environmental studies major at Middlebury College, Laurie Burt ’67, the commissioner of the department of environmental protection for Massachusetts, and Erin Crotty ’84, former commissioner of environmental conservation for New York State, offered these three simple, yet potentially significant, actions:

1 2 3 Turn off the faucet when brushing teeth

Recycle

Turn off computers when not in use


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Orchestra in Europe The Empire State Youth Orchestra traveled in Europe for a week this spring, and Hannah Christiansen ’10, Helen Rowe ’09, and Vivian Wang ’09 were with them. They performed four concerts in Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria. ¡Baillar en Mexico! The Emma Willard Dance Company toured Puebla,

Mexico, to see the sights, meet the people, taste the food, and interact as dancers with other dance lovers.  Nepalese nuns Psychologist Sarah LeVine spoke with

students about her experiences working with Theravada nuns in Nepal. She helped students understand how the nuns are recruited and ordained, and how their lives differ from Buddhist monks.

Changing cultural stereotypes, one pastry at a time

emma everywhere

emma worldwide

Cynthia Friedman Barcomi ’81 is an ambassador for American culture in Germany. And by culture, we mean food. Great food. She has two restaurants in Berlin—a coffee shop and a deli—and she has published two cookbooks and can be seen on a television cooking show. Her food was recently recommended in a New York Times style magazine. Living in Germany, much less dishing out New York deli and gorgeous pastries and coffee to the Germans, was far from her mind when she graduated from Columbia University in 1985 with a B.A. in theater and a minor in philosophy. In fact, Barcomi wanted to dance, and she moved to Berlin to join a dance company, where she worked for eight years. But life has a way of changing things. Barcomi married (an American) and started a family. In 1994, she became

Peace Corps report A special lunch of organic black eyed peas and rice from West Africa, sopa de quinoa from Ecuador, and sweet and spicy plantains from the West Indies was on the menu for a lunchtime presentation by houseparent Sabrina Putnam, seminar director Pamela Skripak ’80, and major gifts officer Suzanne Longley ’94, who shared with students their remarkable experiences in the Peace Corps. Costa Rican home stay Nikki Heyman ’08 and Yukiko Nagata ’08 described their adventures

last summer at EARTH University in Costa Rica as part of the Global Youth Leadership Institute. The girls completed their final year in the threeyear program with a home stay and work with local farmers in carefully planned community development projects.



interested in roasting her own specialty coffee beans. That, she says, was a revolutionary idea in Germany. She baked some pastries to go with the coffee, and “people just really took to the pastries more than the coffee at the time. It was like I had created a really hungry monster!” Her second restaurant, a deli, is housed in a courtyard and “is very upscale,” she says, “for better or worse.” The clientele tends to be artists, collectors, actors, writers, producers, tourists, “everyone who likes great food and coffee.” “Culture is reflected by many things—language, art, fashion, and food. I have become a kind of diplomat as far as American (food) culture goes. Europeans do not believe that Americans have any kind of culture, let alone a food culture. My businesses have changed that.”

Spring/Summer 2008

Cynthia Barcomi dishes out delicacies in Berlin.


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spoken word We’re All the Human Race, Right? By Charis Alexander ’09

No one wants to hear the black girl talk about how she’s always been discriminated against and how hard it is. I don’t want sympathy. Hurtful words may have seemed to disappear and been erased with an awkward laugh or silence, but they’ll always remain inside. They’re a part of my history and experience, and I can only hope that something can be learned by all.

I encourage you not to be offended when someone asks about your culture, nor to be afraid to ask someone about hers.

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I grew up in the suburbs and was always considered a minority in schools. In elementary school I was as naïve and oblivious as everyone. The only difference was that I was one of four black kids in the whole school—two others were my brothers. It wasn’t abnormal to be asked if I watched “BET” or knew how to “crip walk” or do the “Harlem shake.” I always quietly responded “no” and continued on with my life. I was even asked if I lived in “the ghetto,” which surprised me seeing that it was a public school in the heart of the suburbs. Once in 5th grade we had to take the National Physical Fitness tests. I performed average at about every test, but couldn’t do a pull up to save my life. It just so happened that I excelled at sprinting and jumping. So a fairly chubby boy, Patrick, wobbled up to me and asked, “Do black people have extra muscles and ligaments, because I really think they do?” About to reply, “Is he crazy? Can’t he see that I’m built the same way as everyone else?” I realized the whole gym class was staring at me, and with no one willing to support my answer, my definite “no” came out as “I’m pretty sure we don’t, but maybe I’m wrong.” He yelled, “Yeah, you definitely do!” and ran away with his crowd. It bothered me that he made an excuse for the fact that he was out of shape, insinuating that I was built like a monster. So then middle school comes around. I was feeling slightly more comfortable because rather than four black kids in the school there were about 12 of us. We were reading To Kill a Mockingbird. I was very excited because I had heard so many wonderful things about the book. The next thing I know, the teacher asks, “Charis, does the word Nigger offend


9 spoken word

accomplishments doesn’t mean I don’t have any accomplishments—other than being born black. Not to be mistaken, white people are not the only ones that I have witnessed being racially offensive. I’ve been told, “You act white” or “You’re turning into one of them” by other black peers. I’ve also heard many words of hatred towards whites from black students. This hurts me just as much if not more than the words of the others. Racism can come from blacks, whites, Asians, Hispanics, and Indians. And you don’t have to be a racist to make a racist remark. By definition, racism is the idea of believing a specific race is inherently superior or inferior to another. It’s one thing to “believe in” equality, but it’s important not to have a secret assumption of superiority. I’ve done some thinking and have come to many conclusions. We come from different ethnicities, classes, and societies where impressions of a race may be offensive elsewhere. Especially after coming here, I’ve realized that people come from various backgrounds, and that sometimes ignorant People come from various backgrounds, thoughts come not from hatred but from misunderstanding or a lack of education. and that sometimes ignorant thoughts Not to say that some offensive thoughts are not out of hatred, because at times they come not from hatred but from are, but that they may be out of immaturity. We must understand that not all people are willing to change. But there’s nothing wrong with trying to help eliminate these feelings and bad impressions. I encourage you not to be offended when someone asks about your culture, nor to be afraid to ask someone about hers. We should learn to me as an “overachiever.” We are becoming better about these differences now while surrounded by so friends. One day we pass in the hall, and, full of angst much diversity rather than go out into the world and next to a friend, she shouts, “I’m never going to get continue to be as ignorant as we were before coming into college!” Being me, I try to comfort her saying to Emma Willard. It’s better to defy misconceptions how she will, has time to prepare, and is intelligent. I and have people share what they’ve learned. I no longer continue walking and she yells after me, “Well, you’re mind when people ask me about my scarf, hair, stereodefinitely getting into college because you’re a minortypes, food, or language. I’m happy to share a part of ity!” I turn the corner shocked. Is she serious? Is she me, as so many people here have done for me. I try to that insecure? Someone who I thought knows so much understand why people say offensive things and hope to about me knows so little. Of course I know affirmative help them learn. As one of my more outspoken classaction exists, but there is so much more to me than my mates once said, “We’re all the human race, right?” race and ethnicity. Just because I don’t brag about my you?” The word echoed throughout my head. I didn’t hear it often, and it was basically forbidden at home. I didn’t listen to vulgar rap but old school, jazz, and pop instead. I knew it existed but always avoided it, convinced it was a word of the past and that was where it should stay. As the echoing died out, I felt piercing stares. The class had become silent. I gulped and feeling obligated I squeaked “no.” Aah, time for high school. Finally, no one will care how I look, speak, or where I come from. I am taking my usual history notes. A familiar face from my class walks up to me and goes, “Wow, I’m surprised.” Curious, I respond, “Why?” She says, “Where I come from the black kids don’t care about school. I mean, not to say I thought you didn’t,” even though I know that is exactly what she is thinking. It’s time for junior year, all of us anxious about the work and college. I make a new friend, and we quickly learn the basics about each other, and she once refers



misunderstanding or a lack of education.

Spring/Summer 2008

To hear the complete speech go to www.emma willard.org/ audio/charis. mp3


action How a bike, my advisor, and a pair of pink shorts changed my life. By Sarah Gettman ’10

Previously, my idea of exercising was picking grass or watching other people play sports. I had no competitive spirit; I had no willpower to do anything that involved a team or a ball. I hated soccer, softball, basketball, lacrosse, and field hockey. I wanted nothing to do with a team. I also had no inclination to be healthy or do healthy activities. If given the option to take an elevator or take the stairs, I would not even think twice— I’d take the elevator. However, a few odd notions had crept into my imagination mysteriously. A few years earlier, I had made a life list of all things I wanted to do in my lifetime. It included skydiving, studying komodo dragons, and never eating McDonald’s again. One of them was riding my bike across the country. I decided to act and I started training for my ride across the country. To prepare, I set a goal of being able to ride 50 miles by March, 2008. Last summer, my mom received a flyer in the mail about a 50-mile bike race called the Tour de Habitat to raise money for Habitat for Humanity. When I mentioned the race to Nicole Hapeman, my advisor, she was very excited. I told her of course that there was no way I was doing a bike race. She exalted with great enthusiasm, “Yeah! We can do an advisor-advisee bike race.” How could I believe her? After a few weeks of her talking, and my remembering my life list, I finally agreed to enter. So I started training. It took me a while to realize what training really was. I thought that I would just automatically be ready on race day and that there wouldn’t be much work required. It would be like the rain coming, simple, easy, and expected. Every free moment I had, I was on that bike. I rode to church, to the store, even to the coffee shop across town. I started training, five miles one week, 10 the next, but I wasn’t taking it seriously, until three weeks before the race: then I rode 32 miles on one day.

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Robin Mackenzie Prout

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The most interesting thing about training turned out to be the obstacles. One morning, I got up to go for a 10 or 15 miler, but after 4 ½ miles it started to thunder and lightning. Two days earlier I had read that you are more likely to get hit by lightning when you are wearing an iPod. I took that iPod off and rode back to my house in the pouring rain. I was done for that day. I discovered a new way to get enthusiastic about biking. Pink shorts. Every day that I didn’t want to train or I was too tired, I put those shorts on and they got me going! They were a great motivator; that helped me overcome an obstacle, my own couch potato-ness. Then two weeks before the race, Nicole told me at an advisor meeting that she could not ride with me due to health problems. Because I was sad, my mom said she would ride with me, so I would not be lonely out in the middle of wherever it was. On race day, 14 miles in, I got a flat tire going down a huge hill, thankfully by my house. Then six miles before the halfway pit stop, we ran out of water. When we finally got to the pit stop, the organizers had already left, leaving us with no food or water. Thankfully, a kind neighbor filled up our bottles. Then there were the hills, which were four times the size of Hoosick Street. When those hills came up,

I yelled, “I love hills! I love them, they are my friends!” Remember we were out in the middle of nowhere, so no one could hear me. When it got hard, there was a little voice in my head that said “Sarah, do it for all those who can’t!” and so I kept going. When we got to the When those hills finish line, everyone had came up, I yelled, eaten all the food and had left. Well we didn’t exactly finish the race, I got to mile 40, it was dark, and my dad picked us up, and well… we “technically” finished they are my friends! by getting a ride back to the finish line. When I remember the race I don’t focus on the finish line; instead I remember all the obstacles I overcame and how great it felt to overcome them. I got so much out of this experience. My idea of exercise has definitely changed. And while I still don’t like team sports, I will put up with them for the sake of exercise. I have gotten healthier. I have lost 50 pounds and two jeans sizes. And I have a new outlook on life.

I love hills! I love them,

Only Skin Deep At a concert in May, the Emma Willard Dance Company performed a dance called Skin Deep, choreographed by dance instructor Sue Lauther. Sue says:

Vivian Wang ‘09

“I was exploring the idea of beauty and how we do so much for the sake of ‘beauty’ that we do painful or harmful or silly things like wear tall high heels, shave our body hair, wear paint on our faces, and dress up in sexy ‘sequiny’ gowns to be attractive. We forget our beauty is in how we approach the world, how we look each other in the face, and how we communicate who we are and what we care about.”



Spring/Summer 2008


Emma Willard Magazine emma


illuminations

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Photos inspired by the old masters shed light on modern life

This has been quite a year for Jessica Todd Harper ’93. She had a solo show of her photographs at the prestigious Cohen Amador Gallery in New York, and several glowing reviews compared her work to paintings of Rembrandt, John Singer Sargent, and Mary Cassatt. She has a new book of photographs, Interior Exposure, published in the spring by Italian publisher Damiani. Oh, and she gave birth to twins boys in January.

Self Portrait with Christopher (Clementines), 2007. Art critic William Meyers wrote about this image: “The drama is the ambiguous tension between the two protagonists. . . He seems to be contemplating a criticism, and trying to decide whether or not to say it. Or maybe he already has, and is waiting for her rejoinder. At any rate, as the two finish their breakfast, there is something fraught between them.”


Above left: Self Portrait with Christopher, Papa and Ah-Choo, 2003. This is an example of my just setting up the camera and walking into the picture without giving anyone any instructions. I like the two dialogues going on here— one between the dog and my grandfather, and one between Chris and me. Above center: Becky and the Mountain, 2002. I saw the light first and then I found my sister [Becky, EW ’00] and brought her up there. I put a pillow under her bottom so the curve of her hip would better echo the curve of the mountain. Top right: Allison at Easter, 2005. This was taken the last year Allison was with us. [Allison Wenger ’93 died in August 2005.] I think she looks really strong and delicate at the same time. She demonstrated an enormous amount of fortitude and grace while she was sick. Bottom right: Meggan, 2006. This image was part of a show entitled Women Shooting Women, which ran this spring at the Roger Smith Hotel in New York City. Curated by Los Angeles-based photographer Karen Florek, the show included the work of 12 contemporary female photographers.

“The babies, the book, and the show weren’t supposed to happen at the same time! But sometimes when it rains, it pours,” she says. The children, Marshall and Nicholas, will undoubtedly be the subjects of a great many photographs during their lifetimes, for family and domestic interiors are the subject of Harper’s work and have been since she first picked up a camera at age 15. Harper has been creating art for as long as she can remember. She took art lessons and spent a lot of time in art museums, drawing and painting the works of the masters. “Mary Cassatt, John Singer Sargent, and Renoir were my heroes as a kid,” she writes in an artist’s statement. “When I went to college I…fell in love with Vermeer, Memling, Pieter de Hooch, and other Northern European artists…

whose charged, quiet domestic scenes haunted me.” She landed in her first photography class after learning that a painting and figure drawing course she wanted to take at an Albany junior college was full. “It was quite accidental, but I fell in love with it. The next year I went to Emma.” There, she continued her photography, taking classes with Mark Van Wormer, who was “encouraging and supportive of anything I wanted to do in photography.” Harper shot for Emma’s awardwinning art and literary magazine, Triangle, and she remembers that one year the magazine received a special commendation for her photography. “The school framed that and put it in the main hallway. I remember that moment. It’s one thing to have your parents recognize your


work, but quite another to have the school affirm it. It was very exciting for me.” Affirmation of Harper’s unique talent in photography has continued through her academic career (cum laude in art history from Bryn Mawr and an MFA at RIT); through a raft of exhibits and awards; and through her commercial work including magazines like O, Oprah Winfrey’s popular monthly, and Newsweek. She has most recently been teaching at Swarthmore and the International Center for Photography. Reviewing her Cohen Amador Gallery exhibit in the New York Sun, William Meyers spoke of the “ambiguous tension” between the characters in the photographs and the “rich sociological data” in the pictures’ details.

Those details are part of her interior tableaux evoking scenes of domesticity—a glance exchanged, a quiet moment between characters that feels natural, despite the artful composition and the extraordinary light. It is nearly impossible not to linger on those images and try to imagine the relationships between the people. Harper uses her family and friends as subjects, and she herself often appears in the frame, “because I am one of the characters in the story.” Though the images are all about the people in her life, Harper says her creative process begins with the light. “I start out with the light. That’s the principal thing I’m drawn to. Then I bring the characters in.” In her photographs, sunlight slants into a room, illuminating 

the life within. Her use of light is why she is so often likened to Renaissance painters. “They used this wonderful natural light. Interior spaces lit by this exterior light source. That way of working has a long tradition.” Traditions continued for Harper when several of her old friends from Emma, including Sierra Bainbridge, Abigail Feldman, Isabel Gunther, Bridghe McCracken, and Neelam Mehta, showed up for the opening of her New York exhibit. “It was the high point of the evening,” she says, an evening that she calls “a pinnacle of my career so far.” Hard to top a year like this, but Harper has already started photographing the new babies, and though she doesn’t know where it will lead, she’s got the light to guide her. Spring/Summer 2008


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Each of these girls was admitted to Emma Willard. Each of them is highly qualified, possessing considerable scholastic talent as well as an impressive array of extracurricular activities and interests. Each of them needed significant financial aid. Having already exceeded our financial aid budget by a considerable sum, we were unable to offer financial aid to any of them. There are 40 more just like them—bright, promising, in need of financial support. Each has her own compelling story. None of them will become Emma students this fall.

The

Girls who

Michaela

A self-described “Latina who lives in one of the poorest rural counties in the State of New York,” Michaela learned at a tender age what it was like to be different. A fan of Shakespeare and Jane Austen—and biology and “hard core rock bands”—she struggled to find her identity. Her “loud, vibrant” Spanish home culture beckoned but so did the desire “to be accepted” by those in school. Chosen as the 8th Grader of the Year, Michaela is bright, self-motivated, and “tackles challenges head on.” Her English teacher believes “she would thrive if surrounded by others with such ability.” Interested in the sciences, Michaela plays violin and enjoys ballet, jazz, and modern dance. She’s a member of a traveling dance team. Her guidance counselor defines her as a “girl who has a great deal of self-respect” which shows “in the way she presents herself and her classroom assignments.” Michaela also applied to Phillips Exeter.

got away

Money is the only reason these great girls won’t be coming to Emma this fall In the interest of confidentiality, names have been changed.

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Dianne

Dianne “loves to box” and finds that boxing helps her maintain focus on her goals. An 8th grader from New York City by way of Ecuador, she aspires to be a surgeon and envisioned Emma Willard’s “academically challenging environment” as the route to that dream. Described by her humanities teacher as “a deft leader in the classroom,” Dianne’s writing reflects a “profound understanding” of the content. Her math teacher declares her “one of the most impressive students I have taught in my 10 years of teaching math.” “Second to none” is how her Spanish teacher describes her determination to succeed. Gifted, meticulous, independent, analytical, and extraordinary are only a handful of the adjectives used in her letters of reference. Miss Porter’s, Dana Hall, or Westover is likely to benefit from our inability to offer her aid.

Alison

Described by her English teacher as “nothing short of a star,” this 9th grader from Connecticut landed a leading role in the school play, serves as captain for both her baseball and volleyball teams, writes “with power and poignancy,” and is “wise beyond her years.” Her classroom performance is exceptional, and her references describe her as among the top few students they have ever taught. Her personal insights reveal a keen sense of self, her activities and interests are varied and impressive, and this description in particular suggests how strong a fit Emma would be: “She will take a string of a thought from the previous night’s reading and run with it until the class is talking about something else entirely—and the voyage is always worth it.” We lost Alison to Miss Porter’s, which “offered an exceptional amount of financial aid.”

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Campaign

FACULTY EXCELLENCE $16 of $20 million raised

$20

Progress Report

$16

We’re meeting three out of our four goals

$10

With gifts and pledges totaling $60 million, The Emma Willard Idea Campaign has already raised more dollars than any five-year campaign undertaken by a girls’ boarding school—and its impact already has been considerable: 1. FACULTY EXCELLENCE Four new endowed faculty chairs and significantly increased faculty compensation have placed Emma in a far better position to recruit and retain the best teachers.

UNRESTRICTED PURPOSES $25.2 of $25.3 million raised

$25.2

2. UNRESTRICTED PURPOSES Almost $25 million in contributions to unrestricted endowment have given Emma Willard the fiscal agility to innovate, seize new opportunities, and meet its most pressing needs. 3. ANNUAL GIVING An increasingly robust Annual Fund is creating day-today excellence in teaching, student life, and every other aspect of each girl’s Emma Willard experience. But there is much more to be done before the campaign meets its $75 million goal. Nowhere is this more true than in the area of scholarship assistance.

ANNUAL GIVING

$7 of $10 million raised

$10 $7

4. SCHOLARSHIPS Fewer than 4 percent of American families can afford to pay Emma Willard’s full tuition. We are increasingly competing for students against top tier coeducational schools whose endowments allow them to offer larger scholarships. Too often, Emma Willard is the first choice of an exceptional student who goes elsewhere because we cannot offer her sufficient financial aid. To create diversity across the socioeconomic spectrum, and also to ensure middle class access, we must build our scholarship resources. Support for scholarships, including the landmark Davis Scholars Program, enhances Emma Willard’s capacity to enroll talented and motivated girls from around the world. Learning in such a community sharpens our students’ ability to live and lead in an increasingly interdependent world.

Scholarships

$9.1 of $20 million raised

$20

$10 $9.1

—Larry Lichtenstein, Director of Advancement OTHER PRIORITIES $3 million raised

Spring/Summer 2008


Students who receive scholarships are critical to Emma Willard’s excellence. Last year students on scholarships represented 44 percent of the total student body, yet they composed 57 percent of cum laude graduates, 60 percent of our proctors, and 83 percent of our class officers. Students like Annie Hudson and alumnae like Vanessa George are the inspiring examples of how an Emma Willard education can change a life.

The

got Girls we

“Today in every part of the world there are girls with bold dreams who long for an education that teaches them to be independent thinkers,” wrote Mariana Stroock Leighton ’55, our recently deceased Chair of the Board of Trustees. “They want to make a difference, but they need our help. “Let’s pledge that any deserving and wellqualified candidate will be able to consider Emma Willard. And when she does, let’s be ready with the best teachers and staff, financial wherewithal, and facilities. “If we care about the world we live in, we will empower our girls.”

emma

The Door is

Wide Open

for Annie

In seventh grade, Annie Hudson decided she wanted to better herself. She was living at home in Rochester, New York, with her mother, a day care provider, and her four siblings. It was her grandmother who pointed her in the direction of Emma, and after she went to her first Revels performance, she was sold. “I came on campus and thought, ‘This is the place for me. I love it!’” She applied in 8th grade and received a letter of financial assistance. She was the recipient of a named scholarship, and in this case the name was a familiar one—Jane Fonda. The Jane Fonda ’55 Scholarship Fund was endowed with a gift of nearly $1 million in the mid nineties, and scholarships are awarded annually to boarding students. Annie enrolled as a ninth grader, and on her second day at Emma, she had the chance to meet her scholarship benefactor when Jane Fonda visited campus. “I was excited and surprised,” says Annie of the meeting. “I’ve watched her movie, Monster in Law.” From her first day on campus, Annie has taken advantage of much that Emma offers. She was MVP on the junior varsity basketball team and also plays volleyball and runs track. She took a ceramics class, and one of her works won a certificate in a Capital Region competition. Then she decided to try acting since she’s shy, hoping it would “help me break out of my shell.” Well, she loved it and is doing more of it next year. However, Jane Fonda will probably not see Annie in Hollywood anytime soon. She has other goals. “I want to become a plastic surgeon,” she says. Even though she’s just out of 10th grade, she seems sure about her future direction. “I want to help children born with defects. To make their life easier. Surgery is a great way to help others.” This summer she’ll do an internship at the University of Rochester for high school students interested in entering the medical profession. That


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is, right after she gets back from Costa Rica, where she’ll spend a month improving her Spanish and doing volunteer work with children. The sky’s the limit for Annie, and she’s taking advantage of every opportunity she can find.

“I am so appreciative of coming here. I know if I hadn’t I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I am able to open up and be myself. I don’t have to worry what others are going to think about me. Emma helps you strive to be yourself and reach your goals.”

Annie Hudson

Vanessa Wants to

Annie Hudson photo by Mark Van Wormer

Share the Legacy Vanessa George ’83 says Emma Willard opened doors for her and she wants to do the same for other girls. Daughter of Panamanian immigrants, Vanessa was recently featured in Money magazine about her ambitious plans to create a permanent endowment to provide scholarships for financially needy African-American girls at Emma Willard. “Emma opened my eyes and my mind. I met girls from all over the world, including from Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa. It was a phenomenal experience that challenged my assumptions and taught me new ways of looking at the world.” The broadening of her world view led her to continue her education far from her New York home. Vanessa went on to get a BA in English from Stanford and an MBA in marketing from Georgetown University. “The message that was communicated to us was that we young women were capable of doing literally anything we set our minds to. I felt that we were given a terrific education and then given a mandate to go out and

make the world a better place. And the expectation was that we would be able to truly transform the world if we wanted to.” So Vanessa is doing her part to make a difference in the world and significantly enhance the lives of women by creating a scholarship that involves a yearly donation on her part, plus substantial fundraising, which is right up Vanessa’s alley—she is the director of development at UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco. “I tell people all the time that despite having gone to Stanford and Georgetown, it is really Emma Willard that helped make me into who I am today. And that is the reason I now want to share that legacy through the Kayla George scholarship fund.” So far she has raised about $4,500 through donations from family, friends, and alumnae. “Personally I’ve given $1,000 to the fund so far, and I hope to start my fundraising full steam in the fall. All I need to raise is $50,000 to open the fund and start distributing scholarships.”

Vanessa George

Spring/Summer 2008


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reluctant ICON 



Emma Willard simply could not honor the wishes of Jack Easterling. After 40 years, Jack is retiring and he’d like to exit quietly, stage left. He hates a fuss. He is embarrassed by accolades and praise.

Kathleen Dooher

“I wish I could just put a ring on my finger and disappear, like Bilbo Baggins does in The Fellowship of the Ring,” he says with perfect seriousness. But it was not to be.

To hear Jack’s commencement address go to www.emma willard.org/ commencement/ video.php

In early May, as the final days of his final semester approached, tributes were planned, toasts written, gifts bought, and parties orchestrated. The school was finding it impossible not to celebrate the career of Jack Easterling. His impact on the community was enormous, and the community needed a public acknowledgment and a heartfelt send-off. So he was quailing a bit in the anticipation of all “the fuss,” though he knew, back in the fall when he decided this was going to be his final year, that there was bound to be something. He’d thought about retirement from time to time, but never felt ready; he was still vitally engaged with the subjects he taught, the students he met year to year, his colleagues, and the rich intellectual, cultural, and athletic life of the school. Easterling’s wife, Marcia, had retired in 2005 and they were putting a lot of work into their home on Cape Cod, where they planned to spend their retirement. His children

by Rachel Morton

Spring/Summer 2008


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were established in their own academic careers. The twin girls—Heather ’87 and Allison ’87— became teachers like their parents—one teaches literature at Gonzaga University, the other teaches history at Lawrenceville School. So surely the time was drawing closer, but he just wasn’t ready. Then during this fall, he began to get the feeling that this might indeed be the year. There were certain signs. Students began looking at him differently, he says—as if he were “some old, legendary, and venerable thing. A sort of Mr. Chips who hasn’t yet run out of gas.” The old part didn’t bother him. He’s still healthy and hale at 70 years old with a thick head of hair, a sparkle in his eye, and a bounce in his step. He still plays tennis, is an avid exerciser, and coaches. It was the veneration that bothered him. He says he began to think that he wanted to be “freed up while I was still healthy.” He’d known people who’d waited too long to retire, and he didn’t want to be in that place. Also for the first time, “I just suddenly felt all of this was getting old. Even though I was still doing it with vigor, I didn’t think it was giving me anything new.” His enduring legacy For surprising as it will surely be the might be, Jack Easterling has felt excited by his curriculum that he work for every one of the helped create—one 40 years he has spent at that resurrected high Emma Willard. There’s been a lot of variety in scholastic standards his career. He has taught English literature and with the addition economics, history and of athletics and arts art history. He’s coached sports and debate. He’s and culture. been academic dean. And throughout it all, he has been fascinated by opening up the world of ideas, of literature, and art to young people. And it has kept him young in turn. Now he is turning his thoughts to the next phase of life—a life away from Emma Willard. “I want to see what else I can do for the remainder of my life. As long as I’m here, this place will absorb me. It’s very dramatic,” he says of his impending departure. “Perhaps shockingly so. We’ll see how I recover from it.” The Quintessential Boarding School Man Born in Kansas City, Missouri, Easterling came east for college at Amherst and has basically stayed in New England since then. He began his teaching career at St. Johnsbury Academy in Vermont, 35 miles from the

emma

Canadian border. Then he went to graduate school and taught at the University of Minnesota, but he felt dissatisfied with college education. “I wanted to get to know the students better, to understand why they weren’t writing better. But everything seemed to impede this.” So he went back to St. Johnsbury Academy, where he and his wife spent most of the sixties. He loved the work, getting to actually know the students and participate in the life of the school, plus there was an allure to the remote setting. But then in 1968, Emma Willard Head William Dietel, his former dean at Amherst College, enticed him to Mount Ida. “We came down expecting to spend two or three years here. First year we were here, my wife gave birth to twins. Girls. That made me look at the place a little differently.” Dietel has called Jack “the quintessential boarding school man,” and said that Jack’s legacy in shaping the teaching, curriculum, and classrooms has been “Emma Willard’s bounty.” “It was strange then and it’s stranger now,” Easterling says of a residential, girls’ boarding school. “For you to come to an all-girls school is to basically drop out of teenage life. It’s for a girl who thinks, ‘There’s got to be more to life than being a cheerleader.’ “And you only do that if you have a real bee in your bonnet. You or your parents. You’re not just walking through teenage life. And that’s what I’ve loved about these students.” Classrooms with “Stir” Go into one of Easterling’s classrooms today, and you’ll see a room that’s percolating. “I want the room to have that stir,” he says, and he means by that a room where students are questioning the material, engaging with him, and bringing each other forward with their ideas. Called a master teacher by many, Jack admits that his teaching methods are unsystematic. He plays it by ear, always responding to what he is encountering in a particular classroom with particular students. “You’re always adapting. I will force, by one means or the other, something to happen. If I have to prime the pump, I will. I keep them on the spot. I call on those that volunteer, and those who don’t. I have to get them engaged. There are a lot of tricks to it, but no one is going to be allowed to sit back.” Though Jack doesn’t lecture, neither does he give the students free range to explore a topic in their own way. His classes feel comfortable and studentcentered, yet Jack controls a room like a conductor controls an orchestra.


“For some people it’s very big to have students find their voice. I would say finding their voice is fine if it gives them insight into the subject. When class is over I don’t think, ‘Oh dear, I didn’t let them run the class as they wished.’ They obviously had a teacher who directed them.” And to judge from the students in the class, they have been very happy for that. Current students are well aware of their luck in being able to take a class with this Emma icon during his last year. Natalie Alexander, a senior who has taken several classes with him, described the Easterling effect: “It’s like someone unclogged a spigot in my brain. . . He shows us how the world is so endlessly fascinating on every level, and helps us make sense of it all. He represents everything good about Emma Willard.” Alumnae tributes are pouring in, now that word of his retirement is out. Alice Gibson Richardson ’01 said he made “a lasting impression on my life.” Lise Pfau Ciolino ’81 wrote, “I will forever remember you as the person who taught me how to write.” Stephanie Sides ’73 says a German literature class she took with him pointed her in the direction of her future career. Leta Davis ’77 called him a role model. This is, of course, what every teacher dreams of achieving in the classroom, though he’s the first to admit he hasn’t actually been trying to do anything noble. “It would be nice to say I came here and stayed all these years because of my burning zeal to do something for the education of girls,” he said during the celebration honoring him later in the month. “Or because there was something mystical that has reached me and held me from these walls. But the truth is, I have really, really enjoyed it. A lot. I had an enormous amount of fun. The things I’ve done, I’ve done out of sheer exuberance and joy.” A Night to Remember On May 16, the long anticipated ( Jack might say, long-dreaded) night arrived as trustees, special guests, and colleagues, family, and friends gathered for a gala dinner in his honor. In keeping with the mood of the night—a tribute and a roast—a beautiful feast was served on linen-clad tables, each with a centerpiece of Jack bobble-head dolls. Head Trudy Hall admitted that she knew he wanted no fanfare, no extravagant farewell. “But tonight you won’t get your way,” she said to much laughter and applause. “Tonight we intend to do everything in our power to ensure that you know you are revered on Mount Ida.” Colleagues spoke about Jack’s wide-ranging intellect and encyclopedic knowledge. Jack Pasanen, a faculty

member from 1967 to 1984, called Jack the best-read person he knew. “He can talk about quantum theory and aesthetic theory, art of the Quattrocento and the results of the Wimbledon quarter-finals. Working with Jack, sharing an office with him before computers and the Internet, Jack Easterling was my Internet.” But in spite of his intellect, what is exceptional about him, says Trudy Hanmer, associate head of school, was that “not ever, not even for one second, has he ever been smug, or supercilious, or dismissive of people who are less brilliant than he is. He will work just as hard with a kid who after endless revisions of a paper will be able to write a decent paragraph, as with the one who is going to win a writing prize.” His abilities as a teacher have been matched with his accomplishments as an administrator, colleagues say. His enduring legacy will surely be the curriculum that he helped create—one that resurrected high scholastic standards with the addition of athletics and arts and culture. He brought the orchestra onto campus,” says Hanmer. “He was the reason we have a track team and track facility.” She laughs as she remembers Jack from that time, “running around the track in one of those white undershirts like my dad used to wear, with straps, looking like Chariots of Fire.” There was lots of good-natured ribbing, as well, about Jack’s idiosyncrasies. “Jack’s quirks are well known,” says Hanmer. “He’s a rumpled dresser at best. He talks to himself. He’s been known to eat out of the salad bar. He leaves rooms in the middle of conversations because he’s got something else on his mind.” Famous Jack stories have entered the mythology of Emma. There’s the one about how he was so absorbed in a lecture, that as he paced around the classroom, he stepped into a trashcan and just kept pacing, with the can on his foot. (Apocryphal, says Jack.) Or the time when Scent of a Woman was being filmed on campus, and Jack walked onto a set and picked up a prop (an old baseball), necessitating reshooting a scene. After all the laughter and the moving tributes—the remarks by both his daughters left barely a dry eye in the house—Jack struggled to find words to express his feeling on that night. “I feel an enormous gratitude,” he said and thanked many in the room with whom he had worked over the years. “And I want to thank the students who have been my opportunity. On a good day with them, I’d come out of the classroom, and think, “Huh! To think I’m paid to do this!” Trudy Hall had begun the night, begging Jack to “be a good soldier and let us have our way, as it will make us feel good.” And the evening did make everyone feel good. Even Jack.

Spring/Summer 2008

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connections Alumnae get together Greetings! I’m excited to report that the Alumnae Association Council (AAC) has been busy over the past year helping connect students, recent graduates, and alumnae to each other and to Emma Willard. The AAC works closely with the Alumnae Relations Office to establish or maintain an EW presence anywhere there are two or more alumnae in an area. EmmaLink does this on a personal scale, pairing just-graduated alumnae with older alums in their new college town or city. Now three years old, the program is informal, but it gives the young alumna a resource and a friendly face as she adjusts to her new environment. On a regional scale the AAC runs and supports regional Emmies clubs. Such groups exist in the Capital District, Boston/Eastern Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, and are forming in New York City and Denver. These groups sponsor a range of activities: they run the Komen for the Cure race, host happy hours, visit museums and exhibits, head to outdoor concerts, and gather for book discussions. In fact, this summer the Boston, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C. Emmies are all reading Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson, which is also on the summer reading list for all Emma Willard faculty members. If you are interested in being a part of EmmaLink or if you want to join one of the existing Emmies groups or start your own, please be in touch with the AAC by email at alumnae@emmawillard.org. Erin Crotty ’84 President, Alumnae Association Council

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1

2

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25 connections

42 1

Kimberly Jones ’84 and Valerie Gonyea ’82 at an alumnae event in San Francisco. Rebecca Hou ’08, Sarah Lee ’11, Tiffany Lee ’10, Vivian Wang ’09, and Lucy Kuo ’08 in Taipei, Taiwan. Over spring break, Head of School Trudy Hall and Director of Alumnae Relations Molly Price visited Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong to meet with alumnae, parents, and current students.

3

6

The Chicago Emmies hosted an Emma Hart Willard Birthday Party at The Palette and Chisel. Back row (left to right): Ann Preston Hoffman ’61, Maxine Mitchell ’67, Anne Epstein Brody ’72, Jameson Adkins Baxter ’67, Carla Carstens Herr ’69, Rachel Crow Dose ’61, Paula Johnson ’73 Front row (left to right): Rachel Goodstein ’70, Caroline Marchand ’02, Elizabeth Frye ’84, Dena Kirkbride Bellows ’69, Lauren Johnson ’72, Jessica Tampas ’81

4

Yoon-Joo Han ’04, Seung-Eun Lee ’02, Trudy Hall, Yeon-Ah Lee ’04, Ji-In Lee ’03, Gisele Morey ’00, and Molly Price (left to right) in Seoul, Korea.

5

5

Rashida Sykes ’91, Isabel Gunther ’93, and Associate Head of School Trudy Hanmer P’05 (left to right) at an event in New York hosted by Kelsey MacMillan Banfield ’95 and husband Duncan. Head of School Trudy Hall led a discussion, The Global View from Mount Ida.

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Louise Rouner van Kesteren ’50 and Sir John van Kesteren at an event in Hobe Sound, Florida, hosted by Bonnie Richardson White ’55. Matt and Prue Kielland Pecorella ’57, P’79, GP’02 and Maureen Melcer ’00 and her parents Stephen and Linda also hosted gatherings with Trudy Hall in Florida in April.

7

Sue Blackwell McNamara ’57, Mary Lynn Bass ’73, Stephanie Sides ’73 (left to right) at an event in Pasadena.

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Elizabeth Aldrich Atcheson ’70, Pepper Litterst Schenne ’78, and Diana Fairbank ’79 (left to right) in Seattle where Associate Head of School Trudy Hanmer P’05 presented her latest research on the history of Emma Willard School.

Spring/Summer 2008


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back in the day

By Nancy Iannucci

Letters to the Front While strolling through the bustling streets of downtown Troy on a warm day in the spring of 1865, Mary B. Canfield, a student at the Troy Female Seminary, stopped to look at an advertisement. “Correspond with a Union Soldier,” it read. From a list of soldiers, Canfield selected Lt. B.B. Owens stationed at Fort Delaware, member of the 11th Maryland Infantry. Two letters survive this pen pal correspondence. In the first, dated April 5, 1865, Canfield explained her presumption in answering an ad in a paper: “For my part I can say with a clear conscience that I never answered one before, as I do not approve of it—as for inserting one in a paper I would not be guilty of such a thing. I consider it extremely unladylike, as it is also to reply to one. But the very “spirit” and “mischief ” possessed me the afternoon the note was mailed. I am very partial to fun, love it dearly, always ready to join in anything for sport.” It was not until the very end of this letter that Canfield addressed the events of the day: “Oh! Such glorious news! Is ‘Richmond’ really taken? Monday morning teachers, scholars were summoned to the second hall; when all had assembled, a teacher mounted the stairs flag in hand exclaiming—‘now young ladies we will give three good cheers because ‘Richmond’ is taken! Weren’t we surprised? And then three cheers such rousing cheers went up, as would have done credit to a regiment of boys—the ‘Star Spangled Banner’ was started, followed by the ‘Red, White, and Blue’. The excitement was intense throughout the city—Bells ringing—cannons roaring—fireworks rushing through the air—and a grand illumination, in which even the Seminary shared.” Such monumental news of the impending April 9 surrender of General Lee quickly switched to the subject of photos. Lt. Owens desired a photo of Canfield. Despite many written expressions of hesitation in sending an image of her to a complete “stranger,” she ultimately

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delivered one to him. Her partiality for fun and “sport” won over any further vacillation. Canfield’s last surviving letter of April 25, 1865, opened with an expression of relief that “Lt. Willie” (They had pseudonyms for one another: Canfield was “Mabel,” and Lt. Owens was “Lt. Willie.”) was “very pleased with” her ‘ferrotype,’ and went on to admit how worried she was “that it might meet with a very indifferent reception, and perhaps be cast aside after a passing glance.” Though 11 days prior to the writing of this letter Abraham Lincoln had been shot at the Ford Theatre in Washington, D.C., Canfield devotes merely three sentences to this national crisis. “Truly the death of our President was a deplorable event… The whole ‘Country’ mourns. Noble Lincoln he deserved a better fate than dying at the hands of a dastardly assassin.” The remaining pages of the letter were devoted to a more important subject: boys. Mrs. Willard had invited the Glee Club to come and sing for the Seminary girls and Canfield was delighted: “Tis so seldom we see a gent here that they are quite objects of curiosity,” Canfield writes. “They sang beautifully two exquisite pieces—one a ‘drinking song’—then they departed as they came, and we ‘poor mortals’ kept guard over by our teachers on all sides —dared not say a word. A sly flirtation would have been delightful but it was utterly impossible.” Canfield ended her letter fearing that “such nonsense will hardly prove interesting to you—if not forgive me. But now Adieu—Ever your friend, “Mabel.” It is unknown whether or not Mary Canfield met Lt. Owens years after the war. She eventually married Charles C. Alger of Pittsburgh in 1868, proving that no true romance developed between the two pen pals.


come back to

reunion 2008

september 26-28

Enjoy the beauty of fall on Mt. Ida and reconnect with old friends. Highlights include:

Friday, September 26 Welcome Home Dinner for 3s and 8s Saturday, September 27 Symposium: Women, Power, and Possibility How do young women use the power of their intellect and the energy of their passion to make positive change in today’s world? How can we equip Emma Willard students to join our alumnae and many other dedicated women in this vital effort?

Organ Recital

Internationally acclaimed concert organist Gail Archer performs on the newly restored Noack pipe organ in Alumnae Chapel. Built in 1970, the organ was recently rebuilt, and it now looks and sounds like new.

Jack Easterling Tribute

Toast Mr. Easterling as he ends his 40-year tenure at Emma Willard.

Sunday, September 28 Alumnae Memorial Chapel Service For more information or to RSVP call 866-833-1814 or visit www.emmawillard.org/alumnae Emma Willard Magazine Spring/Summer 2008


THANK YOU We’d like to thank our alumnae, parents, and friends for their generous contributions to Emma Willard’s 2007–2008 Annual Fund. Donations to the Annual Fund ensure that the life-changing power of an Emma Willard education will continue from year to year. Through your gifts, you are helping to empower a girl and transform the world.

emma willard school 285 Pawling Avenue Troy, NY 12180


emma: spring ansd summer 2008