1. The Cayuga Connection
Dr. Peter Wilson, Class of 1844 and a member of the Cayuga Nation, was the First Native American graduate of Geneva Medical College and is thought to be the first Native American to earn a medical degree. He practiced medicine, served as an interpreter and was a noted orator, arguing before the New York Legislature on behalf of the Cayugas to demand restitution for their land. I have much more to learn about Dr. Wilson and the Colleges' own complicated history with the Seneca people. Look for more in the next issue of the Pulteney Street Survey.

2. Geneva and the Finger Lakes
As an economist, I'm very interested in the role that the Colleges play in the Geneva and regional area. According to a 2019 analysis by the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities, HWS' state economic impact totals more than $254 million. The region's impact on the Colleges, however, is immeasurable. Through the Geneva Partnership, Geneva 2020, the Finger Lakes Institute and community-engaged scholarship in individual classes, the Colleges' curriculum intersects with the region in multiple and profound ways.

3. Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell
Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell is a childhood hero. I vividly recall being inspired by her biography, part of a collection of biographies of women at my local library. When I discovered she was an alumna (an 1849 graduate of Geneva Medical College), I was thrilled. On my first official day on campus, I was shown Dr. Blackwell's lab table in the Blackwell Room, which I've since moved to my office (pictured left). The Elizabeth Blackwell Award, established on William Smith's 50th anniversary, is a tribute to women who, like Blackwell, were "firsts" in their fields.

4. Traditions
I'm looking forward to attending our many time-honored annual events like Moving Up Day, Founder's Day, the William Smith Welcome, Charter Day, Ben Hale Dinner and the Hobart Launch, which offer each College the opportunity to celebrate unique, historic traditions, creating an arc of experiences between the very first graduates and today's students.


Mr. Butters

The Pulteney Street Podcast
Join President Jacobsen as she explores the Colleges through interviews with some of the fascinating people who make HWS such a vibrant place. New episodes are added every three weeks.

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