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Women's athletics and Title IX oral histories

Identifier: C-181

Scope and Contents

From the Collection:

Collection includes oral history interviews conducted under the auspices of Special Collections. Interviewees include Middlebury College students, alumni, faculty, staff and administrators. As of 2020, the vast majority of the interviews are one-on-one, and more group recording sessions are being conducted and added.


  • Creation: 1970-

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research without restriction.

Biographical / Historical

Oral histories for this project were conducted by Special Collections Oral History Intern Beatrice Donovan, Class of 2023.5 during the spring of 2023.

This oral history project focuses on documenting the evolution of women’s athletics at Middlebury College using the passage of Title IX in 1972 as a reference point. A variety of points of view were covered in the project, including former athletes dating back to the 1970s, more recent student-athletes, former coaches, current coaches, and members of the Middlebury Athletics Administration. By including diverse points of views, this project aims to use individual voices and perspectives to form a larger narrative about how women’s sports have changed over time at Middlebury. Those interviewed reflected upon a combination of their experience playing a women’s sport at Middlebury, coaching a women’s sport at Middlebury, working in athletics at Middlebury, and the general access that they had to sports growing up. Members of team sports as well as individual sports are included in the scope of this project. These histories generally produce a narrative of increased equity between men’s and women’s sports at Middlebury over time, with the 1980s and 1990s marking a shift in the administration’s willingness to make systematic changes to increase the opportunities afforded to female athletes. There were varying perspectives on how responsive the administration was to initial changes in the 1970s, though most people reflected that initial opportunities for female athletes were connected to their success, rather than an inherent desire for equal access. More recent graduates noted a difference in social attitudes toward women’s and men’s teams from the student body, but reinforced that resources as provided by the administration are equally accessible. Those interviewed also generally reflected that there remains room for improvement, though they are optimistic that the upward trend will continue. --Beatrice Donovan


5 Digital files

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English

Repository Details

Part of the Middlebury College Special Collections & Archives Repository

Middlebury College
Davis Family Library
110 Storrs Avenue
Middlebury Vermont 05753 United States