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Colvin Hall - Caroline Colvin

This article is reprinted from the October 1930 issue of The Maine Alumnus

Dr. Caroline Colvin Honored
by Dr. Ava Harriet Chadbourne ’15

Caroline Colvin

It is with a peculiar pleasure, a feeling of great satisfaction, and a lively sense of the fitness of things that the faculty, graduates and undergraduates of the University of Maine learn the name of the new women’s dormitory which is being opened this Fall—Colvin Hall.

For to them the name stands for a long period of faithful service well performed, for high standards of scholarship worked for and attained, for fine ideals of personal conduct inculcated, for loyal devotion to an institution, and for inspiration and counsel in the lives of young men and women.

Dr. Caroline Colvin, in whose honor the building is named, came to the University in 1902, having at that time the distinction of being the first woman on the university faculty and the first teacher of a distinct department of history. Later she became the first dean of women of the institution.

The splendid type of work which she has always maintained opened the way for other women to become members of the faculty and has in a great measure been responsible for the more nearly equal opportunities for faculty women that is enjoyed at Maine than is found in most co-educational institutions.

Those who have been privileged to carry on their college work under her supervision and guidance have been inspired by her thorough knowledge and presentation of subject matter and the continued expansion of the department of history, always maintaining its high quality of scholarship, attests Dr. Colvin’s greatest achievement upon the campus.

As the first dean of women, Dr. Colvin made use of the same thorough methods and standards which she employs in her teaching, to develop personal and social standards of conduct among the women undergraduates. Women’s Student Government had her hearty support and girls’ athletics were encouraged. Perhaps one of the honors which Dr. Colvin has appreciated most was her election by the All Maine Women as their first honorary member.

Dr. Colvin has received recognition outside the University as a member of many scholarly organizations, among which are the American Historical Society, the American Academy of Political and Social Science and the American Association of University Professors. She is also a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Kappa Phi.

But it is above all for her long and conscientious service as a teacher in the department of history that Dr. Colvin is best known and loved. Her interest in students, the wonderfully fine inspiration and valuable advice which she offers to them, her well-known capacity of dependableness and rare loyalty, her high standards and ideals, her fairness in dealing with both students and her fellow members of the faculty are the outstanding reasons why it is most fitting that the new dormitory should be named as it is—Colvin Hall.


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