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1879: The "Harvard Annex" opens on Appian Way, marking the first formal attempt to give women a Harvard education.

1882: Elizabeth Cary Agassiz is named the first president of the Annex, which incorporates as the Society for the Collegiate Instruction of Women.


1894: Under Agassiz's direction the Annex becomes a separate college, named after Ann Radcliffe, the first female donor to Harvard. University President Charles W. Eliot, Class of 1853, agrees to co-sign diplomas granted by Radcliffe.

1934: The Radcliffe Graduate School is established to offer masters and doctoral degrees.

1943: Harvard's classrooms empty as men head off to World War II, leaving Faculty members grumbling about still having to duplicate their lectures in Radcliffe Yard. Harvard and Radcliffe agree to share responsibility for female undergraduates.

1947: Harvard finishes phasing in mixed-sex classrooms, although Radcliffe maintains separate residential housing.

1949: Lamont Library is built, although female undergraduates are not allowed to study there.


1960: Mary I. Bunting becomes president of Radcliffe. During her tenure she develops what will be later called the Bunting Institute.

1963: Harvard begins to confer its degrees on undergraduate women, signed by both presidents. The Harvard Graduate School of Arts and Sciences admits women, and the Radcliffe Graduate School is closed.

1971: A landmark "non-merger merger" gives Harvard control of Radcliffe's daily operations, including the housing of female undergraduates. Under the agreement, Radcliffe also cedes to Harvard all of the income collected from tuition and its endowment.

1972: Bunting steps down; 32-year-old Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology Matina S. Horner is named Radcliffe's new president.


1975: A joint Harvard-Radcliffe Office of Admissions begins to admit male and female undergraduates.

1976: The Murray Research Center is established in Radcliffe Yard.

1977: Horner and University President Derek C. Bok strike a new deal under which Radcliffe preserves its legal independence and regains fiscal control from Harvard.

1989: Linda S. Wilson becomes the seventh president of Radcliffe College.

1993: The Radcliffe Public Policy Institute (RPPI) is established by the college's trustees.

1995: Radcliffe restructured: Wilson divides the college into two administrative categories, educational programs and institutes for advanced studies. The position of dean of Radcliffe College is also eliminated, prompting protests from students angered by the firing of Philippa A. Bovet, who served as dean for 17 years.

1996: Radcliffe Vice President Barbara J. Nelson steps down; the post is eliminated.

April 1998: News emerges that Radcliffe and Harvard are involved in secret negotiations.

October 1998: Wilson conducts a national tour, asking alumnae what they would like Radcliffe to look like in the 21st century.

December 1998: Vice President for Finance and Administration Nancy J. Dunn steps down.


January 1999: Director of Communications Lyn Chamberlin and RPPI Administrative Director Susan Shefte resign within a week of one another.

April 20, 1999: Harvard and Radcliffe announce their intent to establish the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. Radcliffe's 'College' days end after 105 years.

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