Monday, June 12, 2000
Houston, Texas
Volume 65, Issue 150

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Preserving history

By Miriam A. Garcia
Daily Cougar Staff

WASHINGTON -- Buildings that once served as educational sites for women who were denied a public education will be restored to serve as historic landmarks, under a recently approved congressional bill.

The bill will fund restoration of facilities built between 1884 and 1908 at seven historically women's colleges. The colleges provided industrial and vocational education for women who were often denied the same formal education as men.

The women did not have a place to go to school, so they began their own campuses, said Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., who introduced the bill last month.

"We can't lose these historic campuses to age and neglect," Sessions said.

The Department of the Interior will give schools five-year, $10 million grants that require a 20 percent matching fund from the private sector.

Texas Women's University in Denton is among the schools that will use the grants to restore and preserve the first classrooms where women received formal college education.

"Public funds can and should be combined with the private efforts to save these buildings," Sessions said.

Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison was a co-sponsor of the bill.

The schools are now coeducational, but retain historic and academic features of their pioneering efforts to educate women.

In addition to TWU, the schools that will receive the federal grants are the Mississippi University for Women in Columbus, Miss.; the Georgia College and State University in Milledgeville, Ga.; the University of North Carolina at Greensboro; Winthrop University in Rock Hill, S.C.; the University of Montevallo in Montevallo, Ala.; and the University of Science and Arts in Chickasha, Okla.

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