Goucher College seniors cheered as they reached the graduation milestone in their lives, and most were quite aware that the college itself was reaching a milestone.
At yesterday's 100th commencement exercise, 212 people received degrees, several of them men -- the first to attend four years of classes at the school which went coeducational in 1987. Six men graduated last year after transferring from other colleges.
Matthew Brosco, who hopes to attend Duquesne Law School in the fall, said he will miss Goucher's warm, friendly climate -- but he remembers a time when it wasn't so inviting.
Specifically he remembers 1987, the first year men were accepted into the school since its beginning in 1865.
"The underclasswomen were fine," Brosco said, "but some of the upperclasswomen resented us being here."
Brosco said some of the upperclasswomen did everything in their power to make him and other men uncomfortable, although he never experienced blatant discrimination.
"They didn't do anything to us . . . because the administration watched the situation carefully. But they did let us know that they resented us being here. It was a very tense environment."
"We just chose Goucher because of the reputation of its programs," Brosco said. "We didn't think of how it would affect people who were already there."
Leslie Judge, a business and management major, said that she had no problems with the admission of men, but that she was disturbed to see female students relinquishing their leadership roles to the men.
"I saw men just rising to the top," said Judge, who is president of the campus Black Students Association. "It seemed like when the men came, the women just moved out and let them take over. I didn't like it. I didn't like it at all."
The commencement address was delivered by Virginia Dondy Green, a 1965 graduate who works for a Washington law firm. Honorary degrees were presented to 1961 graduate Alice Kessler-Harris, who is director of women's studies and a history professor at Rutgers University; Bernice Sandler, of the Association of American Colleges; and Floyd M. Riddick, a parliamentarian for the U.S. Senate.