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The New Dormitories ; Residential Changes

In the spring of 1951 the trustees decided that replacement
of the nine village houses used as freshman residences could
no longer be postponed. Postwar plans for a new center were
developed, and in the fall of 1952 Bates and Freeman Halls
were opened. Each hall houses 137 students and has its own
living rooms and a separate dining hall served from a common
kitchen. At the same time a third dining hall, named in memory
of Professor Sophie Chantal Hart, was constructed. Eventually
to be part of the third and last dormitory in the new center, it,
too, is served from the new central kitchen, thus ensuring major
economies. Not since the original College Hall was erected
have so many dormitory quarters been constructed at Wellesley
at one time.

Shepley, Bulfinch, Richardson, and Abbott were the archi-
tects; George A. Fuller Company, the builder. Interior decora-
tion, which involved salvage or disposal of village furnishings
as well as purchase of many new items, was in the charge of two
members of the Board, both alumnae, Mrs. Theodore C. Haffen-
reffer and Mrs. Frank G. Allen, with the advice of Mr. Albert
R. Wadsworth of Courtright House. The College is indebted
to all of them for imaginative and cooperative work and to the
Committee on Buildings and Grounds of the trustees, especially
to the unflagging efforts of its chairman, Mr. Alexander C.


President's Report

Forbes. A most satisfying aspect of the planning period was
the use made of the experience of the people on the campus —
deans, the dietitian, business officers, heads of houses, and stu-
dents. Their interest and suggestions helped in important ways
to make the halls functional and attractive.

In 1952-1953 all resident students were housed on the
campus for the first time since 1881. What this could mean in
terms of utilizing the resources of the campus interested stu-
dents and faculty and gave impetus to the desire, noted above, to
examine the extracurricular aspects of life. Much discussion in
1951-1952 resulted in a decision to try four-class housing in all
large halls. This had been the original plan of the College, but
for many decades freshmen necessarily lived in small houses
in the town. Happy recollections made many people reluctant
to see the end of freshman dormitories; yet it was questionable
whether the values of an all-freshman group in a small house
could be retained in large residence halls. It was noted also that
in those halls where four-class housing had been in effect, there
was strong support for the system. One year's experience with
the four classes represented in the twelve large halls has been
wholly satisfactory, and everyone wishes to continue in this way
for a period of years before considering again this aspect of
residence arrangements.

What the new dormitories would mean in terms of effi-
cient, economical operation was evident in advance, though the
actual savings in the first year have been larger than anticipated.
Nine village houses were replaced by two campus houses. Be-
cause the halls were built for a total of 274 students, about
twenty-four more than the number residing in the town of
Wellesley, it was possible to discontinue use of Norumbega
Hall as a residence, thereby adding to savings. Furthermore, the
new, large central kitchen and the construction of Hart Dining
Hall permitted closing the kitchens in Navy and in Fiske.
Students in those houses took their meals in the new center, and
by replacing the dining-kitchen area in Navy with dormitory
rooms, the number of Navy residents was increased from 50 to
64. In summary, in 1952-1953 two dormitories replaced ten
houses, one kitchen replaced six kitchens; all students were safe-
ly housed on the campus; and annual savings in operations of
upwards of $70,000 were assured.

The disposition of the village houses is as yet undetermined.
Leases on four rented houses expired in June 1952. One small


Wellesley College

house is in temporary use as a residence for men employees.
The other college-owned houses are vacant, pending sale for
purposes in keeping with the character of the town of Wellesley.

On the campus, Norumbega, no longer needed for resi-
dence purposes, was assigned on a trial basis to the students as
a central headquarters for their organizations, thereby relieving
space in Green Hall for faculty and administrative use. The
value of the building to students and their intelligent handling
of it have surpassed expectation, and they plan to continue use
of the first two floors for extracurricular purposes. (A further
example of the desire to use resources for education rather than
for services might be noted here. This year the Board of Di-
rectors of the Alumnae Association, when meeting at the
College, accepted with excellent grace the new absence of fairly
comfortable guest rooms in dormitories and adopted the old,
battered third floor of Norumbega as "their" dormitory. The
campus community was cheered by the way the alumnae joined
in the economy efforts.)

1952-1953 was a year of changes in residential life. The
new dormitories, the remodeling of Navy, the new use of Nor-
umbega, and the shift to four-class housing, occurring as ad-
ministrative reorganization of the Residence Office took place
and a new Director of Residence was appointed, responsible to
the Dean of Students, brought many unexpected as well as
expected problems and opportunities. The responses to suc-
cessive challenges were admirable at every point, and the speed
with which they came added zest to the year.

In addition to the changes noted above, Munger Hall
ceased to be a cooperative residence. Two factors led to the
change. One was the reduction in house staffs which was started
in 1952-1953 and is to be completed in 1953-1954. The decrease
in paid service is to be met by more use of student time for light
duties in the halls. This will inevitably reduce the differential
in cost and the possible earnings of students in a cooperative
house. The second and more important factor was a funda-
mental question concerning the educational value of coopera-
tive houses. The College seeks diversity in its student body. If
it then segregates many of the students with limited incomes,
it risks forfeiting for all students some of the democratic values
which it wishes to uphold and strengthen.

Therefore students were given equal opportunity in 1952-
1953 to live with their friends in any hall, and no student was


President's Report

deprived of financial aid because of the change. The Dean of
Students arranged more cooperative work scholarships in other
areas of the College, and the expectation is, when there has been
time to adjust to the many changes of the past year, that some
cooperative work scholarships can be established in all dormi-
tories, rather than concentrated in one as in the past, so that
some students who wish to reduce fees can do so by accepting
additional work in whatever hall they are living.

The Cost of Education

Salaries and Pensions. Between 1949 and 1952 the single fee for
resident undergraduate students was $1600. To this the College
added large sums each year from income on endowment funds.
But with mounting inflation total income proved inadequate, even
though endowment funds were increased during the Anniversary
Drive and thereafter by designated gifts and bequests through the
Development Fund. A small deficit would have been incurred
in 1950-1951, had gifts from alumnae through the Development
Fund not made possible a balance. In 1951-52 a balanced budget
was achieved only through the rigor of an economy drive and
an unexpected increase in income because of a larger enrollment
in the freshman class than was intended.

At the same time salaries were unsatisfactory. Replacement
of instructional equipment in some departments was behind
schedule. Further major economies in instruction and admin-
istrative budgets seemed impossible. Building maintenance
schedules were at a minimum consonant with long-range econo-
my. Redecoration programs were almost abandoned. The re-
serve fund for depreciation of buildings had been discontinued.
Except for savings through curtailment of domestic service,
which could not become effective until 1953-1954 when the em-
ployee pension agreement of 1947 would take effect, and savings
expected from operation of the new dormitories, no further
avenues to major economies were apparent which would not
jeopardize the academic standards of the College.

To help meet the inflation of 1950-1951, a faculty salary
bonus of four percent proved a useful but momentary gesture.
An Economy Committee, elected by the faculty, then surveyed
educational methods and costs in an eS^ort to curtail expenses,
with the understanding that any savings which might result
would be applied to salaries. The response of members of the
Academic Council deserves note. In spite of personal burdens


Wellesley College

they were not willing to countenance change in instructional
methods which might jeopardize Wellesley's educational stand-
ards. Departments did reexamine, and they continue to re-
examine their offerings and teaching loads. Though in no case
have major academic changes been introduced for economy
reasons, some cumulatively helpful savings have been effected
without hurting the quality of instruction. These savings, to-
gether with the assurance of continued support by alumnae,
parents, and friends of Wellesley, which stemmed from their
response to the Development Fund, made possible a six per-
cent salary increase in 1951-1952. Even so, salaries were still
inadequate in terms of cost of living and the quality of the

Primarily to support improved salaries, wages, and retire-
ment provisions, the student fee for 1952-1953 was increased to
$1850, accompanied by a corresponding increase in appropria-
tions for scholarships, and the amount of dormitory work as-
signed to students was increased. It was heartening to have this
action met with understanding on the part of students and their
parents. In consequence, and assisted also by the decision not to
use college funds to subsidize summer use of college halls or for
other activities not directly related to the education of students
at Wellesley, salary scales for 1952-1953 were revised, with the
following actual results:

Average Salaries
1950-1951 1951-1952 1952-1953
Professor $5738 $6125 $6604

Associate Professor 4579 4927 5350

Assistant Professor 3692 3973 4263

Instructor 3034 3198 3350

This represents improvement, not achievement.

In 1950 the College entered Social Security and in 1951-
1952 revised its faculty pension plan. Under the new plan, in
addition to the contribution made to Social Security by the in-
dividual and the College, each contributes 5% on the first
$3600 earned, and 8% on income above $3600. Each individual
was given the option of having contributions invested with
T.I. A. A., as formerly, or with the College, which was able to
pay a higher return on funds than T.I.A.A. could. The new
plan, it was hoped, would make retiring pensions for long-time
members of the faculty more nearly fifty percent of final salary.
The following year, 1952-1953, the non-faculty pension plan


President's Report

was revised to take into account Social Security benefits and
length of service at Wellesley.

Buildings. Salaries, wages, and pensions constitute a major cost
of education. So also do rooms in which to teach and live. In
New England rooms need to be heated as well as lighted, and
at Wellesley the Power House, a gift of Mr. John D. Rocke-
feller, has supphed both heat and light to the entire campus for
fifty years. Use of electricity has increased in this period, stead-
ily placing heavier burdens on the aging machinery, until not
only was it impossible to meet new requests for electricity in
present buildings; the plant could not be expected to supply
heat and electricity for the new dormitory center. So in 1951-
1952 the College purchased electricity from the town of Wel-
lesley and at considerable cost revised its plant so that it could
supply heat to present and prospective buildings. Before long
an additional heavy expense must be incurred for new boilers
to replace the already over-age ones.

However, the immediate and pressing building expense
results from the new residential center, which had to be built
and which could be built only by borrowing large sums and
accepting for the College the largest debt in its history. The
savings which result from the center, described in an earlier
section of this report, are not sufficient to pay for the buildings.
They will help in servicing the loan, but repayment will have
to come primarily from gifts to the College. The terms of the
loan have appeared in reports of the Treasurer and will not be
repeated here. This, however, is an appropriate place to record
appreciation of the financing arranged by the Treasurer, which
made the new center possible. It is appropriate, also, to record
a few supplementary facts as examples of the conservatism of
the College and the generosity of its alumnae and friends.

Instead of costing the estimated $2,500,000, the entire cen-
ter, including all furnishings, cost $2,369,904. This includes
the dining room and the availability of utility lines for the
third dormitory which is eventually to be constructed. When
that time comes, if building costs continue as at present, the
architects estimate that the cost per student of the three-sec-
tioned center will have been $7,252.

The original plan was to borrow $2,250,000, trusting to gifts
to provide the additional one quarter million dollars. By the
time the loan was completed in November 1952, only $1,740,000
had to be borrowed, and by the summer of 1953 it was evident


Wellesley College

that instead of making the stated single repayment, eight re-
payments could be made and the debt could be reduced to
$1,276,000 in November 1953. Behind these figures is a tale
of alumnae club projects, of work by trustees and alumnae, of
quiet weighing by individuals of Wellesley's contribution to
society and of thoughtful generosity on their part. It is a tale
in which to take great pride and from which to receive great
confidence in Wellesley's future.

The debt is still large and its repayment must be foremost
in planning. Economy on the campus will continue to be es-
sential to help meet the debt, and not only to pay the debt but
to make sure that evidence of interest and pride in buildings
and grounds is more than matched by evidence of interest in
the faculty and the quality of instruction, without which plant
is unimportant. Economy will be necessary, also, in order to
be in condition to meet other building needs in their turn.

The library building is inadequate, and two of the liveliest
departments of the College work under serious handicaps be-
cause of their buildings, the Art and Music departments. In
time each of these building weaknesses will reach a crisis point
beyond which education cannot continue to be effective without
a new or remodeled building. It is impossible to set aside sums
from current income for projects of this magnitude. It becomes
a duty, therefore, to seek sizable help for these three academic
needs, through gifts and planned bequests.

We should also prepare ourselves psychologically for a
probable future necessity, once the cost of the new residence
center is under control, of supplementing gifts and bequests
that are designated for these buildings with borrowings, to be
repaid across the years. To one who thinks of debt as an evil
such a prospect is not easy to accept. Yet if viewed as the
College views loans to students, one finds justification in spread-
ing across many years what is essential to, but financially im-
possible for, education in any one year. If handled with
conservative realism, such an approach, which combines eco-
nomical management, excellence in education, and planning
for future needs, can illustrate the art of living which uses the
present so that it is filled with satisfactions while preparing
for the future so that when it becomes the present, it, too, will
have satisfactions.

Scholarships and Loans. The preceding sections have considered
some costs of education from an institutional view. The stu-


President's Report

dent with limited financial resources will understand it, but for
her the problem is to find means to pay the fee. This is a prob-
lem which the College shares. It is as important to Wellesley
that it have scholarship students as it is to such students to have
scholarships. Along with the transitional independence which
a residential college provides, the opportunity to know people
from backgrounds unlike one's own is perhaps the greatest
educational value in residential life.

Unlike most colleges, Wellesley has two separate organ-
izations concerned with financial aid to students. One is the
College itself which provided $264,523 in scholarships or 80.8%
of the total for student assistance in 1952-1953. The other is
the Wellesley College Students' Aid Society, incorporated by
alumnae early in the history of the College before the College
was able to offer direct help to its students. This Society pro-
vided $62,773 in scholarships, gifts, and loans in 1952-1953, or
19.2% of the total, and in addition made many gifts in kind.

Both organizations are doing important work in behalf of
students. Yet the fact that the two groups exist without clear
separation of function creates problems for them and for stu-
dents. This is in spite of the fact that working relations be-
tween the Students' Aid Society and the Scholarship Committee
are excellent. One problem relates to the time required for
necessary clearances between the two groups prior to the alloca-
tion of individual scholarships. Fortunately this is not serious
at present, owing to the long experience in working together
which the present Students' Aid and College scholarship offi-
cers have had, but it could be serious under other circumstances.

Another problem arises when prospective students inquire
about assistance. It takes time to explain how our two groups
are related; even then strangers are confused. Moreover, in
public statement Wellesley appears to have smaller resources
for scholarships than actually exist, if both College and Society
funds are considered, and seems to offer less than other institu-
tions which can release simple inclusive statements from a single
source. Recognizing the problem, the Students' Aid Society
gave a sum of money in advance in 1951-1952 and in 1952-1953
to the College Scholarship Committee to award to incoming
freshmen along with its own funds. This simplifies the schol-
arship work in a busy period and is very much appreciated. A
third problem has arisen with increasing frequency in alumnae
clubs. College officers are asked repeatedly to which the Col-


Wellesley College

lege wishes gifts for scholarships to be sent, to the College
through the Development Fund or to the Students' Aid Society.

Both means of aiding students are invaluable. Students'
Aid can and does perform certain services far better than the
College could. Gifts of clothing, room furnishings, books, and
sums of money to meet personal emergencies or to help a stu-
dent to participate in social events are important and are much
more happily and easily handled by volunteer alumnae than by
an administrative officer. On the other hand, college sources
of information about a student's need and her academic and
civic record at school or college are essential in making proper
allocations of scholarship awards.

It is to be hoped that the functions of Students' Aid and
the College Scholarship Committee can be restudied and a divi-
sion of labor be arranged while the present experienced officers
of both groups are in charge, so that each group can do better
what both wish to do: help students with maximum effective-
ness. Possibly all funds for emergency aids, loans, and gifts in
kind should be in the charge of Students' Aid and all funds for
scholarships (which are always applied to fees only) should be
in the charge of the Scholarship Committee. If some such plan
proves feasible, the problems noted above should disappear.

In 1950-1951 and in 1951-1952 interest on endowed college
funds for scholarships was almost sufficient to meet the scholar-
ship budgets. This is because $2,000,000 was added to the
funds as a result of the Anniversary Drive and, in round num-
bers, $710,000 more was added during the first three years of the
Development Fund. Then the college fee was increased and
it was necessary to use more than $70,000 from current funds.
No student in good standing had to withdraw because of the
higher fee in 1952-1953, and approximately the same proportion
of the entering class received financial assistance as in the pre-
ceding two years.

The percentage of a class receiving scholarship aid has
declined in the past decade from about one quarter to slightly
over one fifth of the members. In reporting this, the Dean of
Students notes that at the same time the average award has in-
creased from $200-$300 to $700-$800, the range being from
$100 to $1850, so that the total scholarship budget has risen
very substantially.

One further development in scholarship work should be
reported. Starting in 1950-1951, the Dean of Students has an-


President's Report

nually told each student the source of her scholarship and has
written to each donor to report on the use of his or her fund.
Although this has added to the administrative load, the project
appears to be worthwhile because of the interest which donors
have shown in it and because of the long-range educational
value in having students realize that scholarships come from
the action of thoughtful persons, not from a mythical abstrac-
tion unrelated to individual deeds.

The Alumnae, Friends of Wellesley, and the Development Fund

Every page of this report testifies to the close relation be-
tween alumnae and the College. The healthy state of admis-
sions, the confidence on the campus, the new dormitory center,
the increases in salaries and scholarships cannot be credited
entirely to any one group, but the almunae have most evidently
made an important contribution in every area. This is not a
new phenomenon at Wellesley, but it is of ever-fresh signifi-
cance. Their belief in "Wellesley precedes their support of
Wellesley, and their support in word and deed and gift is one
of its strengths.

In July 1950 the Anniversary Drive ended and the Develop-
ment Fund was started. The period covered by this report
includes, therefore, the first three years of the Development
Fund, which followed immediately upon three years of an in-
tensive financial campaign. Prior to the Drive, the Alumnae
Association had raised funds for many Wellesley needs and
interests. During the Drive the Association and the College
combined efforts, and before it was over agreed to try for two
more years a continued merging of college and alumnae fund-
raising efforts through the new Development Fund. By 1952
the success of the venture was so evident that the Board of
Trustees and the Alumnae Association agreed to continue in-
definitely their united efforts in behalf of the College, working
through a central committee composed of a representative of
the trustees, a representative of the Alumnae Association, other
alumnae, and college officers.

An alumna and trustee of the College, Mrs. Francis J.
Wright, served as chairman for the three year period. Her
steady leadership and unfailing emphasis on the central goals
of the Fund Committee established a solid foundation for sup-
port of the College that should be of inestimable value in the
decades ahead. Much of the organization which Mrs. Theo-


Wellesley College

dore C. Haffenreffer and her colleagues had created during the
Drive was continued and developed. Geographical represen-
tatives, Regional and District Chairmen appointed by the Col-
lege, and Class Representatives of the Alumnae Association
worked in steady cooperation with the Committee to set forth
the work and needs of the College and the role of the new
Development Fund, through which all giving to Wellesley is
now channeled.

The first task was to change the emphasis from the intensity
of a drive technique to a slower-paced, thorough effort to ex-
plain the importance of regular, unrestricted, annual giving,

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