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Women at Northwestern: Student Experience

Women students outside of University Hall

A page from Edith Sternfeld's scrapbook


Topic Guides to Women's Student Experiences at Northwestern

Learn more about women's student experiences at Northwestern by researching archival collections relating to academics, housing, student organizations, and athletics:

Here are additional research guides about student life at Northwestern University: 

Scrapbooks and Diaries

  • Elizabeth Blossom Boyd Diary (1903-1904). This diary documents a year in the life of Northwestern Music School student Elisabeth Blossom Boyd. 
  • Lenora Clark Diary (1906-1910) 
  • Genieve Doering Handbook and Diary (1925). Doering used the calendar supplied in the handbook as a diary, reflecting on different happenings during her freshman year at Northwestern. Common topics are the outcomes of athletic events, events with friends, and the stresses of academic life. 
  • Leila M. Foster Scrapbooks (1946-1949). At Northwestern, Foster was an active member of Alpha Phi sorority, the assistant business manager of the Pegasus literary magazine, and the press representative for the 1949 Waa-Mu Show. Her scrapbooks illuminate the life of a university student in the postwar era.
  • Alice King Garrison Scrapbook (1924-1928). This scrapbook documents the social and academic life of Alice King, an undergraduate at Northwestern University. Included are many newspaper clippings, photographs, dance cards, printed materials, and other memorabilia.
  • Daisy Girton Diaries (1901-1905). The diaries are replete with entries describing dances, parties, and recitals as well as Daisy's shopping excursions and trips to Chicago theatres.  
  • Lillian Hawley Scrapbook (1909-1912). The Lillian E. Hawley Scrapbook consists of several loose pages (perhaps removed from a larger scrapbook) that document her years at Northwestern, 1908-1912. 
  • Elizabeth Hobart Scrapbook (1909-1916).The Elizabeth Hobart scrapbook features a variety of materials relating principally to Hobart's social life and academic studies.
  • Iva Grace Howard Scrapbook (1917-1920).  Documents her social life at Northwestern University. 
  • Helen A. Paddock Scrapbook (1910-1915). Photographs, newspaper clippings, dance cards, and other memorabilia are included in this scrapbook documenting the social, academic, and family life of a Northwestern student. 
  • Eva Reynolds Scrapbook (1905-1908). Reynolds was a member of the Women's Union and attended Young Women's Christian Association meetings, among other activities on campus.  
  • Edith Sternfeld Scrapbook (1917-1921). This scrapbook documents the academic and social life of artist and art educator Edith Sternfeld while she was an undergraduate at Northwestern. 
  • Carrie Walkup Diaries (1861-1922). Walkup attended the Northwestern Female College in 1864. Her diaries document the life of a young woman during the Civil War. 
  • Frances E. Willard Journal Transcriptions (1855-1896). Willard kept journals continuously from the age of 16 to 31, and then from age 54 to 57.
  • Women's Self-Government Association Scrapbook (1926-1931). The WSGA set, enforced, and interpreted the rules that governed all aspects of women's lives on campus. All women students were automatically members of the Association and all of them were governed by its rules.