50th Reunion, class of 1963


This interview with members of the Pembroke College class of 1963 summarizes the undergraduate experiences of Martha Jean McCauley, Judith Margaret Watman, Jennifer Williams, Nancy C. Scull, Elaine Patterson Piller, Jean Amatneek, Carol Marcia Spindler, Linda Jane Brody, Judith Ann Neal, and Barbara Mae Smith, at their 50th reunion.

The interviewees begin by introducing themselves, their major, and their current professional lives. They go on to explain what attracted them to Pembroke. Reasons range from the academic rigor to the coeducational classrooms. They also discuss experiences that they found particularly beneficial such as trying out for the singing group the Chattertocks, studying abroad, and taking an architectural history course with Professor William Jordy.

The “loco parentis” rules – Latin for “in the place of a parent” that refers to the legal responsibility of Brown University to take on some of the functions and responsibilities of a parent – that were put in place for Pembrokers are mentioned along with a dialogue about the culture of women never questioning authority on campus or elsewhere. This leads to a larger conversation about the treatment and expectations of women after graduation and particularly in the workforce. The interviewees share conflicting stories about how supportive the advising faculty was in helping them pursue graduate school.

The interviewees also give their opinions of the Pembroke-Brown merger of 1971 and consider the impact this had on women at Brown University. They conclude by reflecting on the difference between Pembroke’s reputation when they graduated and Brown’s reputation today, and also explain that today Brown should accept more international financial-need blind applications.


Recorded on May 25, 2013
Interviewed by Wendy Korwin

Suggested Chicago style citation: 50th Reunion, class of 1963. Interview. By Wendy Korwin. Pembroke Center Oral History Project, Brown University. May 25, 2013.


The Pembroke College class of 1963 graduated under Brown University President Barnaby Keeney and Pembroke College Dean Rosemary Pierrel. During their senior year, President John F. Kennedy promised that a Civil Rights bill was on the horizon, while travel by United States Citizens to Cuba was made illegal. At the same time, Pembroke abolished the Forum for Civil Liberties and the Fair Play for Cuba Committee while it instituted the Socialist Discussion Group was instituted. Additionally, the Pembroke College newspaper, the Pembroke Record, continued to compete with Brown University’s Brown Daily Herald. However Pembrokers were thrilled to announce that one of their own finally became a member of the managing board of the Brown Daily Herald, though her name was never recorded. Pembroke hosted traditional events such as father-daughter, mother-daughter, and spring weekends. .