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Friday, September 24th. Early this month in 1837, the Oberlin Collegiate Institute in Ohio became the first college in the country to grant equal status to men and women in degree programs.

Now known as Oberlin College, its leadership reasoned that many mothers and sisters often served as the only teachers available on the nation’s frontier — so better educated women would make superior teachers. During its history, Oberlin was the first to routinely admit African Americans, granted the first degree to a black woman, and was one of the first to have coeducational dormitories.

Today, coeducational schools are the norm. Of the 40.9 percent of the population ages 18 to 24 enrolled in college, 55.7 percent of the students are women.

You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at

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Joseph Nathan Kane, Kane’s Famous First Facts, Fifth Edition, H.W. Wilson Co., New York, NY 1997, # 2943

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