I was proud and excited to be selected to attend Wellesley. And it's not that I didn't enjoy my classes, the friends I made, the leadership opportunities, the fine faculty, the stunning campus... I just missed having men around, in a casual way, to be at ease, to share the range of experiences… rather than suffering through the artificial and painful environment of mixers, blind dates…the waiting and wanting, and disappointments. For some time after graduation, I thought I might not even choose Wellesley, if I had it to do over again.

Over the years this view has changed radically and steadily. The confidence I feel in tackling challenges; the lack of shyness I experience in speaking my perspectives, regardless of what genders are present in the room; the capacity to enjoy and pursue a wide range of interests; the development of specific and general life skills; critical thinking and the ability to express myself clearly in written and verbal form… I attribute all these and more to my years and classes at Wellesley, under the patient, supportive, yet demanding eyes of my profs.

Recalling the glorious campus and the way it supported and nourished me though the seasons is in there as well.

Friends I made have lasted, and are another wonderful part of the Wellesley effect. Gathering again at reunions deepens these connections. It is gratifying to see how many of us are, now at last, comfortable with who we are, and in our own skins. Maybe this is the one manifestation of the maturing of the Wellesley Effect!