She’s been on life support before, but now her survival is in serious jeopardy. Molly Curley O’Brien has this Perspective.
We lost a Bay Area legend last week. Benicia born and Oakland raised, a critical thinker, a leader, a feminist, a social justice warrior, and committed to the pursuit of knowledge. Mills College, as we know it, died of COVID-19 related complications. She was 169 years old.
Or did we?
What is happening with Mills College is not unprecedented. Women’s colleges have suffered from declining enrollment in recent years, with several forced to close or start admitting men in order to survive. There are just 34 women’s colleges left in this country, down from 230 about 60 years ago.
As an alumna of Mills, this is a shame. I sat next to classmates who were encouraged to bring their children to lecture with them when childcare fell through. I learned in a classroom racially and economically diverse. And I learned from the Oakland community, because the pedagogy of Mills and Oakland are interconnected deeply.