April 17, 1987
Vassar’s AIDS Education Committee—a newly formed coalition made up of CHOICE, the Listening Center, Gay People’s Alliance and the Lesbian Feminist League— held an “AIDS Education Week,” featuring lectures, panels and performances and discussions of William Hoffman’s As Is (1985). One of the first Broadway plays to address AIDS, the play depicted the effects of AIDS on a group of friends in New York.
As part of the week, Deborah May ’86, Mid-Hudson AIDS Task Force member, lectured in the Villard Room. Also, community members, including Associate Professor of English Everett K. Weedin, VSA President Richard Feldman ’87, Associate Professor of Biology E. Pinia Norrod and David Irvine, physician’s assistant in the health service, participated in a faculty discussion panel in the Aula.
President Fergusson said in a statement regarding AIDS: “The prognosis for the AIDS epidemic is bleak. In the next few years, the disease will prematurely end many fine lives. Only a very few of us will not have a friend or family member fatally stricken. Many of us already have. The heavy toll on our society will not be just in grief for loved ones. The effects on public health and social services will be devastating. Politically, fundamental issues of our rights and responsibilities as citizens are going to be raised.
“With no cure predicted for many years, education is the only means we now have for effective confrontation with AIDS. I applaud the efforts of those who are helping Vassar to increase our awareness of the disease. Only with the facts can we prepare ourselves to deal knowledgeably with the complex questions AIDS forces us to face.” The Miscellany News