Students and Student Life

  • Early Classes
  • Famous Graduates
  • Sports
  • Greek Life
  • Publications: Campus Times, Interpres, The Campus, Croceus, Tower Times, etc

Early Classes

The University Archives has many photographs of pre-1900 classes. The earliest class photograph taken as a group is from 1853. Other photographs of the period are images of individuals, which have then been framed together. Images also exist in the photographic volumes which appeared alongside the Interpres. Printing processes of the time made it difficult, even impossible, to print both images and text in the same volume, on the same paper.
Here are some Class photographs and individual images from the Archives:

The Class of 1877.

The Men of 1904.

The Women of 1913.

Ella Salome Wilcoxen, the first woman to graduate from the University, in 1901.

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Greek Life

From the earliest beginnings of the University, there were social societies. These began as literary societies, and were organized as a way of adding culture through lectures, oratories, and debates. Not only did the students and professors speak, but outside lecturers also were invited, including such luminaries as Emerson, Beecher, William Lloyd Garrison, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Horace Greeley, and many others. Sometimes the societies produced leaflets, generally pleasing to the professors, except when they found themselves being satirized. 
The Greek fraternities at the University also began in the 1850s; students who transferred from Madison university brought their chapters along. The first two were Alpha Delta Phi and Delta Psi, and they were quickly joined by DKE and Psi Upsilon. While the influence of fraternities - for good or bad - at the University was always a matter for debate, we do have them to thank for the Interpres. The first fraternity chapter houses would be built in the 1890s.


Today's fraternities include Alpha Delta Phi, Alpha Phi Alpha, Chi Phi, Delta Kappa Epsilon, Delta Upsilon, Kappa Alpha Psi, Lambda Alpha Upsilon, Lambda Upsilon Lambda, Phi Delta Theta, Phi Kappa Tau, Psi Upsilon, Sigma Chi, Sigma Nu, Sigma Phi Epsilon, and Theta Chi.