Millicent C. McIntosh, President of Barnard College from 1946-62 and head of the all-girls’ Brearley School from 1930-46, spent her life championing the importance of women combining a successful career with a rewarding personal life. “It is the great problem of the college graduate to find in her personal life the fullest expression of her powers,” she once told The New York Herald Tribune. “This may or may not lie in a career … what is important is for each individual to order her life so that she becomes a happy, creative person … This is equally true of men.”
Upon her retirement from Barnard, McIntosh accepted the chairmanship of a committee on the Hill charged with examining the question of how Kirkland College would best serve the intellectual and personal needs of women. Under her leadership, the new institution set out to prepare them to be “intellectually alert and to handle with superior capability the multiple and overlapping phases of their lives — as an individual active in society, as a wife, mother, career professional … a woman who can continue her role as learner into adult life beyond college — a woman able to discriminate between unchanging values and ever-changing circumstances.”
McIntosh died in 2001 at the age of 102. A residence hall on the Kirkland campus was named in her honor in 1969.