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The Women’s College of the University of Denver celebrates 100 years

Monday, November 9, 2009

Focus on women’s education in the 21st century draws on strengths of past to build a stronger foundation for the future


The Women’s College (TWC) of the University of Denver is kicking off its year-long centennial celebration by reflecting on its rich history and building a strong foundation for the future.

Lynn M. Gangone, Ed.D., dean of The Women’s College, says the 21st century brings new opportunities for women. “In 2009, like in 1909, challenges for women remain. However, having access to education should not be one of them,” she says. “In this century, the empowerment of women and girls throughout the world must be our number one priority, and education is the key to that empowerment.”

Over the past 100 years, The Women’s College has developed an inclusive and innovative learning environment that builds on each student’s skills, competencies and personal experiences. Gangone says the Women’s College is committed to “advancing our world, one woman at a time.”

As an evening and weekend college, The Women’s College attracts students of all ages who are juggling careers and families. The College’s ability to offer evening, weekend, and online courses assist students as they negotiate their varied responsibilities. And, Gangone says, there are great benefits to female-only education. “Women do better when supported by other women.” Numerous studies have shown that women at single-sex colleges are more engaged than women at coeducational institutions and report higher levels of academic challenge, she notes.

As the only all-women college in the Rocky Mountain region, The Women’s College has a rich and varied history.  In 1909, The Women’s College—then known as the Colorado Women’s College (CWC)—opened its doors on the Park Hill campus as a two-year college serving 59 students.  By 1915, the enrollment had reached 178 students, and CWC became a four-year institution offering both bachelor of science and bachelor of arts degrees.  The 1930s were a period of growth.  After reverting to a two-year college, it was accredited by the North Central Association in 1932.  By 1939, enrollment had reached 358, and the school flourished throughout the 1940s. In the 1960s, CWC once again became a four-year college and enrollment reached an all-time high of 1,117 students in 1967.

The University of Denver acquired the Colorado Women’s College in 1982 as part of the College of Business.  In 1997, The Women’s College of the University of Denver became a separate academic unit within the University.  Students at TWC now earn a University of Denver degree by taking classes on weekends, evenings and in a blended-online format.

The Women’s College is housed on the DU campus in the Merle Catherine Chambers Center for the Advancement of Women.  It offers degrees in Business Administration, Law and Society, Information Technology Studies and Communication. The school also offers certificate programs in community-based research, conflict management studies, entrepreneurial studies, gender and women’s studies, information technology studies, leadership studies, philanthropic studies and writing.

A variety of programs and events are planned throughout the year to commemorate the school’s rich history and future, including an alumnae event held in October, the annual Hanging of the Greens holiday tradition in December, and a joint reunion of CWC and TWC alumnae in June 2010.


The Women’s College of the University of Denver provides women the opportunity to earn bachelor’s degrees and certificates by taking classes on weekends, evenings, and blended-online.

The Women’s College offers four baccalaureate degrees in Business Administration, Communication, Information Technology Studies, and Law and Society.  Certificates are also offered in Community-Based Research, Conflict Management Studies, Entrepreneurial Studies, Gender and Women’s Studies, Information Technology Studies, Leadership Studies, Philanthropic Studies, and Writing.

For more information about The Women’s College, or to set up a private appointment with an admissions counselor, visit or call 303-871-6848.



Contact:  Nancy Hemming
Phone: (303) 871-6221

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