February 22, 1969
In an article entitled “Topics: Ask the Oracle About Coeducation,” Fred M. Hechinger, education editor for The New York Times, analyzed the growing interest in coeducation at previously single-sex colleges and universities. Calling the Vassar-Yale study “what turned out to be a 100 mile misunderstanding” and imagining a future when all single-sex schools had been coeducational for a time, Hechinger predicted that coeducational housing and other attempts to achieve “productive social interaction” would lead to rancor and, eventually, rebellion.
“After a violent confrontation in the parlor of Bryn Mawr’s coeducational dormitory, in which a Biedermeier vase and a shaving mug were shattered, a moderate Society for Newly Independent Girls (SNIG) will agree to a pilot exchange plan under which all Yale women will spend an all-girl week at Vassar, while all Vassar men will participate in a stag week at Yale.
“The experiment will be pronounced a success. Two years later, the first women’s college will be founded.”