Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 65.djvu/359

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355
THREE DECADES OF COLLEGE WOMEN.

The average of those doing graduate work for the whole thirty years is 12.05 per cent. The large proportion in the last decade is due, not so much to increase of scholarly ambition among the alumnae of Vassar as to the fact that men's universities in America did not afford postgraduate study to women until the nineties. The first Ph.D. received from a great university by a Vassar woman came from Yale in 1894. The two women in the first decade who are Ph.D.'s did not attain that degree till about twenty years after graduation.

Next to imparting and acquiring knowledge from the teacher's desk the greatest desire among Vassar women appears to be to inform the public through the medium of printers' ink. The contributors to periodicals number 23 in the first decade, 25 in the second and 31 in the third, a total of 79. The writers of miscellaneous publications are 6, 20 and 22 for their respective decades, a total of 48; and the authors are five, four and five for the same periods, a total of 14. The combined lists make 141, or 10.83 per cent, of the whole number of graduates. In this entire register there is no name that would be instantly recognized by the general public, but the publications in the mass represent a very considerable amount of creditable and successful work. The periodicals to which so many contribute include journals of various rank. There is no important magazine or paper in this country, popular, literary, critical, political, scientific or religious, except possibly some technical journal of very limited scope, which does not number Vassar women among its contributors. Their names have appeared in some foreign periodicals as well.

In the next department surprise may be expressed at the lack of quantity. It seems strange that the medical profession does not attract more college women. As medicine is the only one of the so-called learned professions which women have entered in considerable numbers, and as it is a most honorable and lucrative one, it would be expected to appeal strongly to women graduates who are looking for a career. The only explanation seems to be that women who are attracted toward the healing art may not have the time and money for a preliminary college course. As the medical schools are constantly raising their requirements, this condition will probably be changed in time.

In the first decade twelve Vassar women have taken the degree of M.D., two of them at foreign universities. Of these nine are registered as physicians. In the second decade fourteen graduates have taken the degree of M.D., two at foreign universities. Of these twelve are registered as physicians. In the third decade there are so far twelve M.D. 's, ten of whom are announced as physicians, one being a missionary physician to China. There is also one medical student.

The total number of those taking a medical degree is 38, or a little less than three per cent, of the whole number of graduates. The num