Mount Holyoke’s mid-century student exchange program with Bennett College

Vincent S. D’Addario/Courtesy MHC Archives and Special

Students from Bennett College, a historically Black women’s college in Greensboro, North Carolina, and Mount Holyoke participated in a two-week exchange program each February from 1958 through 1963. Students attended classes together, lived in dorm rooms with host-school roommates, ate in the dining halls and took part in student clubs and social activities. The exchange program offered each community the opportunity to observe, engage and interrogate differences perceived and experienced between the campuses, courses and cultures. During the years of this exchange program, national news was made local as the student-led Greensboro Sit-Ins to protest the segregationist practices in public spaces took place in February 1960.

In the photo shown here Anita Duckett, left, of Bennett College, and Pauline Ham Johnson, MHC class of 1960, share a dorm room in Mead Hall, February 1959.

This article appeared as “Readily Welcomed” in the spring 2019 issue of the Alumnae Quarterly.

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