School's Back In Session: Women's Fight For Educational Inclusion

Aug 28, 2019

As students get back into the swing of classes, we remember women's educational opportunities in the 19th Century were few and far between. Finishing schools focused on women's socialization and skills like art, music and French, rather than a rigorous academic curriculum.


The Lucy Cobb Institute in Athens aimed to change that. It opened in 1859 and taught women finishing school skills alongside math and science classes. The institute cemented Athens as a place for women's education in the South.

Fran Teague is a professor of theater, film studies and English at the University of Georgia. She, along with UGA student Kristen Gragg, joined "On Second Thought" to discuss their research on the Lucy Cobb Institute and the history of women's education in Athens.

We should note, although the first white women were allowed into the University of Georgia about 100 years ago, women of color were not able to attend the school until the early ‘60s. 

We’ve interviewed the first black student to earn a degree from the school on this show.  Find our conversation with Mary Francis Early on our website.

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