The Miscellany News reported that Virginia B. Smith, founding director of the Federal Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), was to succeed Alan Simpson as Vassar’s eighth president.

A highly respected lawyer, economist and administrator, Smith was cited in 1975 by Change magazine, a publication associated with The Council of Colleges of Arts and Sciences (CCAS), as one of 44 most influential people in postsecondary education.