Women at William & Mary

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The first female students were admitted to the [College of William and Mary] for the fall term in [1918].

An African American woman with a Bachelor of Science in Education from Temple University was admitted on September 20, [1955], and was the first African American woman to attend the College, but she withdrew at end of that academic year. The first female undergraduate [African American students], also the first black residential students, were Karen Ely, Lynn Briley, and Janet Brown, who arrived as freshmen in fall 1967. The women roomed together. At that time, there were three black male undergraduate students, all part-time, and one black male graduate student, who all lived off campus. All three women graduated from the College of William and Mary. (Flat Hat, 20 October 1967, p 16)

Lillian Poe, a doctoral candidate in history, was hired as assistant dean of admissions in summer 1970, becoming the College’s first black administrator.

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