Williams College: Wikis

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Williams College
Williams College Seal.png
Motto E liberalitate E. Williams, armigeri ("Through the Generosity of E. Williams, Esquire (or Soldier)")
Established 1793
Type Private
Endowment $1.4 Billion[1]
President Adam F. Falk (elect), William Wagner (interim)
Faculty 315
Undergraduates 2,124
Postgraduates 49
Location Williamstown, MA, USA
Campus Rural
Athletics Ephs
Colors Purple      Gold     
Mascot Purple cow
Website www.williams.edu

Williams College is a private liberal arts college located in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

Williams, situated at the foot of Mount Greylock in the Berkshires of northwestern Massachusetts, was established in 1793 with funds from the estate of Ephraim Williams. Originally a men's college, Williams became co-educational in 1970 following the elimination of fraternities. Fraternities were phased out beginning in 1962.[2] Today, Williams is ranked first among liberal arts colleges by U.S. News and World Report.[3] Williams forms part of the historic Little Three colleges, along with Wesleyan University and Amherst College.

There are three academic curricular divisions (humanities, sciences, and social sciences), 24 departments, 33 majors, and two master's degree programs in art history and development economics. There are 315 voting faculty members, with a student-to-faculty ratio of 7:1. As of 2009, the school has an enrollment of 2,124 undergraduate students and 49 graduate students.[4]

The academic year follows a 4-1-4 schedule of two four-course semesters plus a one-course "winter study" term in January. An intensive summer research schedule involves about 200 students on campus doing projects with professors.

Contents

History

Haystack monument

Colonel Ephraim Williams was an officer in the Massachusetts militia and a member of a prominent landowning family. His will included a bequest to support and maintain a free school to be established in the town of West Hoosac, Massachusetts, provided that the town change its name to Williamstown. Williams was killed at the Battle of Lake George on September 8, 1755.[5]

After Shays' Rebellion, the Williamstown Free School opened with 15 students on October 26, 1791. The first president was Ebenezer Fitch. Not long after its founding, the trustees of the school petitioned the Massachusetts legislature to convert the free school to a tuition-based college. The legislature agreed and on June 22, 1793, Williams College was chartered. It was the second college to be founded in Massachusetts.

In 1806, a student prayer meeting gave rise to the American Foreign Mission Movement. In August of that year, five students met in the maple grove of Sloan's Meadow to pray. A thunderstorm drove them to the shelter of a haystack, and the fervor of the ensuing meeting inspired them to take the Gospel abroad. The students went on to build the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions, the first American organization to send missionaries overseas. The Haystack Monument near Mission Park on the Williams Campus commemorates the historic "Haystack Prayer Meeting."

By 1815, Williams had only two buildings and 58 students and was in serious financial trouble, so the board voted to move the college to Amherst, Massachusetts. In 1821, the president of the college, Zephaniah Swift Moore, who had accepted his position believing that the college would move east, decided to proceed with the move. He took 15 students with him, and refounded the college under the name of Amherst College. Some students and professors decided to stay behind at Williams and were allowed to keep the land, which was at the time relatively worthless. According to legend, Moore also took portions of the Williams College library. Though plausible, the transfer of books is unsubstantiated. Moore died just two years later after founding Amherst, and was succeeded by Heman Humphrey, a trustee of Williams College.[6] Edward Dorr Griffin was appointed President of Williams and is widely credited with saving Williams during his 15-year tenure.

A Williams student, Gardner Cotrell Leonard, designed the gowns he and his classmates wore to graduation in 1887[7]. Seven years later he advised the Inter-Collegiate Commission on Academic Costume, which met at Columbia University, and established the current system of U.S. academic dress.[8] One reason gowns were adopted in the late nineteenth century was to eliminate the differences in apparel between rich and poor students.[9] However, contrary to claims made by Williams College[7], its students were not the first to wear cap and gown in the United States. Princeton University required them of all students in 1752[10], and Columbia students wore them to graduation in 1760.[11]

In the last decade, construction has changed the look of the college. The addition of the $38 million Unified Science Center to the campus in 2001 set a tone of style and comprehensiveness for renovations and additions to campus buildings in the 21st century. This building unifies the formerly separate lab spaces of the physics, chemistry, and biology departments. In addition, it houses Schow Science Library, notable for its unified science materials holdings and architecture. It features vaulted ceilings and an atrium with windows into laboratories on the second through fourth floors of the science center.

Thompson Chapel, Lasell Bell Tower

In 2003, Williams began the first of three massive construction projects. The $60 million '62 Center for Theatre and Dance was the first project to be successfully completed in the spring of 2005. The $44 million student center, called Paresky Center, opened in February 2007.

Construction has already begun on the third project, called the Stetson-Sawyer project, but economic uncertainty has led to its indefinite delay. College trustees initially balked at the cost of the Stetson-Sawyer project and revisited the idea of renovating Sawyer in its current location, an idea which proved not to be cost-effective.[12] The entire project calls for two new academic buildings, the removal of the Sawyer Library from its current location, and the construction of a new library at the rear of a renovated Stetson Hall. The academic buildings, temporarily named North Academic Building and South Academic building, were completed in fall 2008. In the spring of 2009, South Academic Building was re-named Schapiro Hall in honor of former President Morton O. Schapiro.

After several years of planning, the college decided to group undergraduates starting with the Class of 2010 into four geographically coherent clusters, or "Neighborhoods".[13] Since the fall of 2006, first-years have been housed in Sage Hall, Williams Hall and Mission Park, while the former first-year dormitories East College, Lehman Hall, Fayerweather, and Morgan, joined the remaining residential buildings as upperclass housing. A student vote on the names of the four "neighborhoods" selected "Currier", "Wood", "Spencer" and "Dodd" by a simple majority. Incoming first-years, who live in groups of approximately 20, together with two junior advisors, are assigned to clusters based on their entries. Rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors have the opportunity to change neighborhoods each spring if they so choose. The system is an attempt to integrate all undergraduates more successfully than was previously possible, mixing students representing a variety of interests and ethnicities, as well as to foster student-faculty interaction and to de-centralize event planning. During the spring 2009 semester, a committee formed to evaluate the neighborhood system, and released a report the following fall.[14]

Williams recently ended one of the largest capital campaigns ever undertaken by a liberal arts college, with a goal of raising $400 million by September 2008. The college reached $400 million at the end of June 2007, a year and a half ahead of schedule. At the close of the campaign, $500.2 million had been raised.[15]

As of the 2008-09 school year, the College eliminated student loans from all financial aid packages in favor of grants. The College is the fourth institution in the United States to do so, following Princeton University, Amherst College, and Davidson College.[16]

In January 2007 the board voted unanimously to reduce college CO2 emissions 10% below 1990 levels by 2020, or roughly 50% below 2006 levels.[17] To meet those goals, the college has set up the Zilkha Center for Environmental Initiatives and undertaken an energy audit and efficiency timeline. Williams received an 'A-' on the 2010 College Sustainability Report Card, following 'B+' grades on both the 2008 and 2009 report cards.[18]

In December 2008, President Morton O. Schapiro announced his departure from the college to become president of Northwestern University.[19]

On September 28, 2009, the presidential search committee announced the appointment of Adam F. Falk as the 17th president of Williams College. Falk, dean of the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences at Johns Hopkins University, began his term on April 1, 2009. [20] Dean of the Faculty William Wagner took the position of interim president beginning in June 2009, and will continue in that capacity until President-elect Falk takes office.

Academics

Williams is a small, four-year, highly selective Liberal arts college.[21] The four-year, full-time, undergraduate program is classified as "most selective, lower transfer-in" and has an arts and sciences focus. Williams is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.[22]

There are three academic curricular divisions (humanities, sciences, and social sciences), 24 departments, 33 majors, and two small master's degree programs in art history and development economics. The academic year follows a 4-1-4 schedule of two four-course semesters plus a one-course "winter study" term in January. During the winter study term, students study various courses outside of typical curriculum for 3 weeks. Past course offerings have included: Ski patrol, Learn to Play Chess, Accounting, Inside Jury Deliberations, and Creating a Life: Shaping Your Life After Williams, among many others. Williams students often take the winter study term to study abroad or work on intensive research projects.

Williams granted 510 bachelor's degrees and 35 master's degrees in 2008.[23] The cost of tuition and fees for 2009-2010 was $37,640; 50% of students were given need-based financial aid, which averaged $37,857.[23]

Williams sponsors the Williams-Mystic program at Mystic Seaport; the Williams-Exeter Programme at Exeter College of Oxford University;[24] and Williams in Africa.

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Rankings

Williams was ranked first in U.S. News and World Report's 2009 ranking of the top liberal arts colleges in America,[3] maintaining a streak of seven consecutive years in the top spot. Williams has been first eight times since 1989, and has been first ten times since US News started the rankings. Williams was ranked # 8 in the 2007 Washington Monthly rankings[25], which focus on key academic outputs such as research, scientific grants won in the natural and social sciences and the number of B.A. graduates earning PhDs. The survey also measures public service contributions. Williams ranked fifth, after Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and Stanford, in a 2004 Wall Street Journal survey of the "feeder schools" to the top fifteen business, law, and medical schools in the country.[26] Williams ranked third, after Princeton and Caltech, in Forbes' 2009 ranking of America's Best Private Colleges, followed by Harvard and Wellesley. Williams is ranked first by the National Collegiate Scouting Association, which ranks colleges based on student-athlete graduation rates, academic strength, and athletic prowess. Rounding out the top five are Amherst College, Middlebury College, Washington University in St. Louis, and Stanford University.[27]

Oxbridge-style tutorials

Chapin Hall

One of the distinctive features of a Williams education is modeled after the tutorial systems at Oxford and the Cambridge, which are rare in American higher education. Although tutorials at Williams were originally aimed at upperclassmen, the faculty voted in 2001 to expand the signature tutorial program.[28] There is now a diverse offering of tutorials, spanning many disciplines, including math and the sciences, that cater to students of all class years. In 2009-2010 alone, 62 tutorials are offered in 21 departments.[29] Enrollment for tutorials is capped at 10 students, who are then divided into five pairs that meet separately with the professor once a week. Each week, one of the students writes and presents a 5-7 page paper while the other student critiques it. The same pair reverses roles for the next week. The professor takes a more limited role than in a traditional lecture class, and usually allows students to steer and guide the direction of the conversation.

Student course evaluations for tutorials are typically very high. In a survey of alumni who had taken tutorials, more than 80% found their tutorials to be "the most valuable of my courses" at Williams.[30]

Organization and administration

The Board of Trustees of Williams College has 25 members and is the governing authority of the College.[31] The President of the College serves on the Board ex officio. There are five Alumni Trustees, each of whom serves for a five year term. There are five Term Trustees, each elected by the Board for five year terms. The remaining 14 members are Regular Trustees, also elected by the Board but serving up 15 years, although not beyond their seventieth birthday.

The Board appoints as senior executive officer of the college a President who is also a member of and the presiding officer of the faculty. Nine senior administrators report to the President including the Dean of the Faculty, Provost, and Dean of the College. Adam F. Falk was recently elected the 17th president of Williams, and will take office on April 1, 2009.

College Council (CC) is the student government of Williams College. Its members are elected to represent each neighborhood, each class, the first-year dorms, and the student body at large. CC allocates funds from the Student Activities Fee, appoints students to the faculty-student committees that oversee most aspects of college life, and debates issues of concern to the entire campus community. College Council is the forum through which students address concerns and make changes around campus. CC is led by two co-Presidents.

Campus

Old Hopkins Observatory

Williams is situated on a 450-acre (1.8 km2) campus in Williamstown, Massachusetts, located in the Berkshires in rural northwestern Massachusetts. The campus contains more than 100 academic, athletic, and residential buildings.[32]

Williams College is the site of the Hopkins Observatory, the oldest extant astronomical observatory in the United States.[33] Erected in 1836–1838, it now contains the Mehlin Museum of Astronomy, including Alvan Clark's first telescope (from 1852),[33] as well as the Milham Planetarium, which uses a Zeiss Skymaster ZKP3/B optomechanical projector and an Ansible digital projector, both installed in 2005. The Hopkins Observatory's 0.6-m DFM reflecting telescope (1991) is installed elsewhere on the campus.[34] Williams joins with Wellesley, Wesleyan, Middlebury, Colgate, Vassar, Swarthmore, and Haverford/Bryn Mawr to form the Keck Northeast Astronomy Consortium, sponsored for over a decade by the Keck Foundation and now with its student research programs sponsored by the National Science Foundation.[35]

Hopkins Hall serves as the administration building on campus, housing the offices of the president, dean of the faculty, registrar, and provost, among others.

There is a Newman Center on campus; the Reverend Father Gary C. Caster, from the Diocese of Peoria, Illinois, is chaplain.

Chapin Library

The Chapin Library supports the liberal arts curriculum of the college by allowing students close access to a number of rare books and documents of interest. The library opened on June 18, 1923, with an initial collection of 9,000 volumes contributed by alumnus Alfred Clark Chapin, Class of 1869. Over the years, Chapin Library has grown to include over 50,000 volumes (including 3,000 more given by Chapin) as well as 100,000 other artifacts such as prints, photographs, maps, and bookplates.[36]

The most famous items in the library's collection include first printings of the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, United States Constitution, and Bill of Rights, as well as George Washington's personal copy of the Federalist Papers. Other notable objects include a range of books, letters, and miscellaneous items relating to Theodore Roosevelt, who was a friend and, at one point, colleague of Chapin in the New York State Assembly.[37]

The Chapin Library's science collection includes a first edition of Nicolaus Copernicus's De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, as well as first editions of books by Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, Galileo, Isaac Newton, and other major figures.[37]

The Ironic Columns, Williams College Museum of Art

The Williams College Museum of Art (WCMA), with over 12,000 works (only a fraction of which are displayed at any one time) in its permanent collection, serves as an educational resource for both undergraduates and students in the graduate art history program.[38]

Notable works include Morning in a City by Edward Hopper,[39] a commissioned wall painting by Sol LeWitt,[40] and a commissioned outdoor sculpture and landscape work by Louise Bourgeois entitled Eyes.[41]

Though often overshadowed by the neighboring and much larger Clark Art Institute and Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, WCMA remains one of the premier attractions of the Berkshires. Because the museum is intended primarily for educational purposes, admission is free for all.[38]

Located in front of the West College dormitory, the Hopkins gate serves as a memorial to brothers Mark and Albert Hopkins. Both made lasting contributions to the Williams College community. Mark was appointed as president of the college in 1836 [42] , while Albert was elected a professor in 1829. [43] The Hopkins gate is inscribed with an inspirational motto that is familiar to all in the Williams College community.

Climb High, Climb Far
Your Goal the Sky, Your Aim the Star.

Student activities and traditions

Student media

The longest running independent newspaper at Williams is the Williams Record, a weekly broadsheet paper published on Wednesdays. The newspaper was founded in 1885, and now has a weekly circulation of 3,000 copies distributed in Williamstown, in addition to more than 600 subscribers across the country. The newspaper does not receive financial support from the college or from the student government and relies on revenue generated by local and national ad sales, subscriptions, and voluntary contributions for use of its website. Both Sawyer Library and the College Archives maintain more than a century's worth of publicly accessible, bound volumes of the Record. The newspaper provides access free of charge to a searchable database of articles stretching back to 1998 on its website.

The student yearbook is called The Gulielmensian, which means "Williams Thing" in Greek.[44] It was published irregularly in the 1990s, but has been annual for the past several years and dates back to the mid-19th century.[44]

Numerous smaller campus publications are also produced each year, including The Telos, a journal of Christian thought, The Mad Cow, a humor magazine, and the Literary Review, a literary magazine.

91.9 WCFM

WCFM is a college-owned, student-run, non-commercial radio station broadcasting from the basement of Prospect House at 91.9 MHz.[45] Featuring 85 hours per week of original programming, the station features a wide variety of musical genres, in addition to sports and talk radio.[46] The station may also be heard on the Internet via Shoutcast.com. Members of the surrounding communities above the age of 18 are allowed to DJ on the station, which, as part of its mission, seeks to serve the surrounding community with news and announcements of public interest.[47] The board of the radio station holds a concert every semester.[48]

Williams Trivia Contest

At the end of every semester but one since 1966, WCFM has hosted an all-night, eight-hour trivia contest. Teams of students, alumni, professors, friends, and others compete to answer questions on a variety of subjects, while simultaneously identifying songs and performing designated tasks. The winning team's only prize is the obligation to create and host the following semester's contest.[49]

The precise date of the debut contest is uncertain. Most spring contests occur in early May, but during its first decade, Williams Trivia was sometimes held in March or February. Assuming a May date, Lawrence University's 50-hour-long Great Midwest Trivia Contest, first held on April 29, 1966, would be the oldest continuous competition of its sort in the United States, but if the first Williams contest was held earlier, it would be the oldest. The distinction is appropriately trivial.[50]

While other college-based trivia contests in the United States emphasize marathon endurance and revel in the obscurity of their arcana, the aim of the Williams contest is to cram as much evocative and entertaining material into as concentrated a space as possible. Lasting just eight hours, a typical Williams Trivia contest will demand between 900 and 1,200 separate "bits" of trivial information[49], delivering twice as much content as its "competitors" in a fraction of the time. No discernible rivalry exists between any of the various contests. The contest has occasionally received outside media coverage, including in the Sunday New York Times.

Student music

Music ensembles at Williams include Berkshire Symphony, Symphonic Winds, Student Symphony, Brass Ensemble, Clarinet Choir, Concert and Chamber Choirs, Handbell Choir, Gospel Choir, Jazz Ensemble, Kusika and the Zambezi Marimba Band, Percussion Ensemble, and Marching Band.[51] Both music majors and non-majors are welcome to participate in all groups.

The Berkshire Symphony is conducted by Ronald Feldman, a former Boston Symphony Orchestra cellist. Half of the orchestra consists of students, while the principal players and many section players are area professionals.

Williams Symphonic Winds, led by Steven Dennis Bodner, is a leading proponent of new music on campus. In recent years, the group has evolved to include strings and premieres and performs works by prominent contemporary composers, including members of the faculty.

Student Symphony is an entirely student-run, student-conducted group. Student Symphony rehearses weekly and performs once per semester.

Under the direction of Bradley Wells, the Concert and Chamber Choirs perform a wide range of repertoire at a variety of concerts. A choral highlight is always the Festival of Lessons and Carols held just prior to the holidays in the Thompson Memorial Chapel.

The Williams Jazz program includes academic courses, ensembles (both traditional big band, by audition, and several small ensembles), and applied lessons on primary jazz instruments.

In the Shona language of Zimbabwe, Kusika means "to create." Founded in 1989 at Williams College, Kusika performs traditional African music, dance, and storytelling from Ghana, Zimbabwe, and Senegal. The Zambezi Marimba Band, founded in 1992, was the first African marimba band to be established in the Eastern United States. The ensemble plays marimba music from Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, and from the African diaspora around the world.

Williams' coed hip hop dance group "Nuttin' But Cuties", usually shortened to NBC, is one of the more prominent groups on campus with well-attended shows in the fall and spring semesters.

The Williams Percussion Ensemble, led by Matthew Gold, explores the masterworks of twentieth century percussion music, experimental music, music of many of the world's traditions, and the most up-to-date works by contemporary composers for percussion instruments.

The Marching Band, named "The Moocho Macho Moocow Military Marching Band", serves as a cheering section at the football games, as well as an entertainment show for halftime.

Williams also hosts seven student-organized a cappella singing groups. There are two all-female groups, the Accidentals and Ephoria. The two all-male groups are Octet and the Springstreeters, and the two co-ed pop groups are Ephlats and Good Question. The seventh group, the Elizabethans, are a mixed-voice Renaissance ensemble.

The Williams Gospel Choir has served the college since 1986. Their performances are usually at the end of the semester, right before finals start, and serve to provide a spiritual and emotional courage to students during this difficult time of the semester.

School colors and mascot

The college sign

Williams's school colors are purple and gold, with purple as the primary school color.[52] A story explaining the origin of purple as a school color says that at the Williams-Harvard baseball game in 1869, spectators watching from carriages had trouble telling the teams apart because there were no uniforms. One of the onlookers bought ribbons from a nearby millinery store to pin on Williams' players, and the only color available was purple. The buyer was Jennie Jerome (later Winston Churchill's mother) whose family summered in Williamstown.[53]

The Williams college mascot is a purple cow.[53] The mascot's name, Ephelia, was submitted in a radio contest in October 1952 by Theodore W. Friend, a senior at Williams.[54] The origins of the cow mascot are unknown, but one possibility is that it was inspired by the Purple Cow humor magazine, a student publication begun in 1907, which used the college color along with a cow.[54] The title of the humor magazine was in reference to Gelett Burgess's nonsense poem:

I never saw a purple cow
I never hope to see one;
But I can tell you, anyhow,
I'd rather see than be one!

Alma Mater

Williams claims the first alma mater song written by an undergraduate, "The Mountains," was by Washington Gladden of the class of 1859.[55]

Mountain Day

On one of the first three Fridays in October, the president of the college cancels classes and declares it Mountain Day. The bells ring, announcing the event, and students hike up Stony Ledge.

The first known mention of Mountain Day was made by Williams president Edward Dorr Griffin in his notebook on college business. He wrote, under 'Holidays': "About the 24th of June a day to go to the mountain. If not then about the 14th of July. Prayers at night."[56]

In 2009, with the threat of bad weather for each of the first three Fridays of the month, Interim-president Wagner declared "Siberian Mountain Day." Students hiked Pine Cobble and continued the tradition.[57]

Athletics

The school's athletic teams are called the Ephs, a shortening of the first name of founder Ephraim Williams. They participate in the NCAA's Division III and the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC). Williams also competes in skiing and squash at the Division I level. Williams is ranked first among Division III schools for athletic spending per student.[58]

Williams has a traditional rivalry with Amherst College and Wesleyan University. The "Little Three," a subset of NESCAC, comprises the three schools. Williams and Amherst participate in notably intense competition, dating back more than a century.[59] Although Williams College typically sports purple and gold as their school colors, purple is in fact the only school color. The gold was added in order to differentiate its colors from that of rival school Amherst's purple and white uniforms. On May 3, 2009, Williams and Amherst alumni played a game of vintage baseball at Wahconah Park according to 1859-rules to commemorate the 150th-anniversary of the first college baseball game played on July 2, 1859 between the two schools. Amherst-almnus Dan Duquette was instrumental in organizing the event.[60]

Traditionally, Williams varsity teams sing the song "Yard By Yard" on the eve of every game.[citation needed]

   Yard by yard we'll fight our way 
   Thro' Amherst's line, 
   Every man on every play, 
   Striving all the time. 
   Cheer on cheer will rend the air, 
   All behind our men. 
   And we'll fight for dear old Williams 
   And we'll win and win again.

Until 1994, Williams was not permitted, by NESCAC rules, to compete in team NCAA competition. The Williams women's swimming and diving team won the school's first national title in 1981, and claimed the title in 1982 as well. Williams played in the 2003 and 2004 men's basketball Division III national championship games, winning the title in March 2003. Men's basketball also played in the 1997, 1998, and 2010 Final Fours. Williams was the first New England basketball team to have won a Division III championship, and since they have been eligible to compete in the NCAA tournament, no team in the country has played in more Final Fours.

Williams teams to win national titles since Williams began participating in NCAA tournaments in 1994 include women's crew (five titles), men's tennis (three), women's tennis (two), men's cross country (two), women's cross country (two), men's basketball, women's indoor track and field, and men's soccer. Other perennial contenders in NCAA tournaments include women's lacrosse, women's volleyball, women's soccer, women's field hockey, men's golf, men's and women's swimming and diving and men's track and field.

Williams also has had success winning the NACDA Director's Cup, presented to the institution within each NCAA division that has the greatest overall success in NCAA sanctioned-championships. Williams has won the NACDA Director's Cup 12 of the 13 years since its inception.

In 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009 the college achieved #1 rankings in both academics and athletics within its peer groups (liberal arts colleges as ranked by U.S. News and World Report and NCAA Division III institutions as ranked by the Director's Cup calculations, respectively). Dual #1 rankings in any single year was an unprecedented achievement among the 1,053 NCAA member institutions.[61]

Williams has an active club and intramural sports program, offering 13 club sports including ultimate, rugby, horseback riding, cycling, fencing, volleyball, gymnastics, sailing, and water polo. Approximately 50% of Williams' students compete on at least one varsity, junior varsity, or formal club team.

People

Student body

Student body composition of Williams College [23]
Undergraduate U.S. Census[62]
White American 63.7% 65.8%
African American 9.8% 12.1%
Asian American 10.7% 4.3%
Hispanic American 8.6% 14.5%
Native American 0.3% 0.9%
International student 6.7% (N/A)

Williams enrolled 2,124 undergraduate students and 49 graduate students in 2007.[23] In 2007, women constituted 50.1% of undergraduate students and 63% percent of graduate students.[23] Although 50% of students receive need-based financial aid, only 273 students (14%) of students qualify to receive Pell Grants.[63] Williams has a 97% freshman retention rate and a 91% four-year graduation rate.[64]

Williams is classified as "most selective" by U.S. News and World Report[65] and "more selective" by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.[66] Williams College received 6,478 applications, admitted 1,194 (18.4%), and enrolled 540 students (45.2%) for the Class of 2011 (enrolling fall 2007).[23] 89% of students graduated in the top tenth of their high school graduating class and the inter-quartile range on the SAT was 670-760 for reading, 670-760 for math, and 660-760 for writing.[23]

Faculty

Williams has 315 voting faculty, 96% of whom possess a doctorate or the terminal degree in their field.[67] Students fill out course surveys at the end of each semester, which play a large role in determining faculty tenure decisions. Recently, there has been controversy over popular teachers being denied tenure based on other factors, including publication rates.[68] Williams offers Olmsted awards to four secondary teachers nominated by the graduating class.

Notable former and present faculty include:

Alumni

The Society of Alumni of Williams College is the oldest existing alumni society of any academic institution in the United States.[75] The Society of Alumni was founded during the "Amherst crisis" in 1821, when Williams College President Zephaniah Swift Moore left Williams. Graduates of Williams formed the Society to ensure that Williams would not have to close, and raised enough money to ensure the future survival of the school.

Not affiliated with the Society of Alumni, but also serving the college's alumni is the Williams Club in New York City. Located at 24 East 39th Street in Manhattan, the club is open to the paying public as a hotel and restaurant, and operates as a meeting space for Williams alumni living in and visiting the city.[75]

Williams has produced 37 Rhodes Scholars, the most of any liberal arts college in the country.[76]

See also

External links

References

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "Elimination of fraternities". http://wso.williams.edu/wiki/index.php/Elimination_of_fraternities. Retrieved 2007-09-19. 
  3. ^ a b "Liberal Arts Rankings". U.S. News and World Report. http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/liberal-arts-rankings. Retrieved 2009-11-14. 
  4. ^ "Williams College: At a Glance". The College Board. http://collegesearch.collegeboard.com/search/CollegeDetail.jsp?collegeId=4118&profileId=0. Retrieved 2008-03-08. 
  5. ^ Heyes, Michael. "Cycling in the Berkshires". http://3rvs.com/features/berkshires/berkshires.html. Retrieved 2007-09-13. 
  6. ^ "Williams College Presidents". Williams College. http://www.williams.edu/home/presidents/. Retrieved 2007-09-15. 
  7. ^ a b "Academic Garb". Williams College. http://www.williams.edu/home/focus/robes/. Retrieved 2009-04-16. 
  8. ^ Walters, Helen. "The Story of Caps and Gowns," p. 9. Chicago: E. R. Moore, 1939.
  9. ^ Leonard, Gardner Cotrell. "The Cap and Gown in America; Reprinted from the University Magazine of 1893; To Which is Added: An Illustrated Sketch of the Intercollegiate System of Academic Costume," p. 9. Albany, New York: Cotrell & Leonard, 1896.
  10. ^ Drakeman, Donald. "Peculiar Habits: Academic Costume at Princeton University." Unpublished manuscript submission to the Burgon Society.
  11. ^ New-York Mercury, June 30, 1760, in Thomas, Milton Halsey, ed., "King's College Commencement in the Newspapers," p. 228. New York: Columbia University Press, 1930.
  12. ^ Richardson, Chris. "Costs are still a concern, but project gains support". Williams Record Archive. http://www.williamsrecord.com/wr/?sawContrib=yes&view=article&section=news&id=7423. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  13. ^ "Williams College: Neighborhood System 2006-2007". Williams College. http://www.williams.edu/dean/campus_life/neighborhoodsystem.html. Retrieved 2007-09-20. 
  14. ^ "Williams College: Neighborhood Review Committee Interim Report". Williams College. http://www.williams.edu/dean/nrc/. Retrieved 2009-11-09. 
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