March 17, 1912
In an article on the groundbreaking for Connecticut College for Women in New London, The New York Times noted the increase in the number of women seeking higher education. “In 1890 there were in the United States 10,761 women enrolled in college. At present there are 84,909—an increase of nearly 800 per cent. …this increase is about three times as great as that of men students in the same length of time.”
The article quoted a recent study by Oliver Gildersleeve, a trustee of the new college, showing that Vassar had 1,100 students, Smith had 1,617, Wellesley had 1,378 and Bryn Mawr had 530. Vassar had a “limit” of 1,000 students and Bryn Mawr’s student body was “limited” to 500.
The schools’ “overflow of applicants” were: Vassar, 500; Smith, 392; Wellesley, 400 and Bryn Mawr, 300. Altogether, the four institutions were rejecting over 1,500 applicants annually.