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Are Women's Colleges Still Relevant?


Sweet Briar College, a small women’s school in Virginia, announced last week that it will close in August. Students, faculty, staff and alumnae were caught by surprise. The college’s president, James Jones, announced that enrollment was down and the college couldn’t cover its expenses.

Fifty years ago there were 230 women’s colleges in the United States. Today there are only about 40. Does Sweet Briar’s closing add to the notion that women’s colleges are no longer relevant?

Here & Now’s Robin Young talks to Frances Belliveau, who graduated from Sweet Briar College in 1982, and her daughter, Anna Belliveau, who is a freshman at the college.


  • Anna Belliveau, freshman at Sweet Briar College.
  • Frances Belliveau, alumna of Sweet Briar College.

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