Convocation of 10th Dean of Douglass

Douglass Residential College Celebrates Convocation of Jacquelyn Litt, Ph.D., 10th Dean of Douglass


March 29, 2011

New Brunswick, NJ – Hundreds of Rutgers University officials and faculty, Douglass College alumnae and students, representatives of women’s colleges throughout the United States, members of the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs and others will gather at Voorhees Chapel on the Douglass College Campus on April 6 for the Convocation of Dr. Jacquelyn Litt, the 10th Dean of Douglass.


Douglass is the only public women’s residential college within a major research university in the United States. Douglass students receive both the resources of Rutgers and the counseling, requirements, special opportunities, and community of a women’s College. Douglass students must meet both the requirements of their academic major course of study and the additional requirements and opportunities offered through Douglass.


The Convocation is being held in conjunction with Founders Day, an event marked each spring by the Associate Alumnae of Douglass College to celebrate the establishment of the New Jersey College for Women (NJC) in 1918.


Dean Litt officially began as Dean of Douglass with the beginning of the academic year. She continues a long line of distinguished women who have led New Jersey College for Women and Douglass College, beginning with the founding Dean, Mabel Smith Douglass, after whom the college was renamed in 1955. The College was founded as a result of the work of the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs, who maintain a close alliance with Douglass today.


“I hope to build on the success and traditions of Douglass’ rich history and to move our education into the 21st century and the new challenges it presents for women,” stated Dean Litt, pointing specifically to learning how to work and live in a global and globalizing economy and dealing with environmental issues.


“Anyone who wants to be successful in future leadership roles must grasp the opportunities in globalization,” she added. “It is also my hope that Douglass students graduate with an understanding of their roles as stewards of the environment and a greater capacity to be leaders for all of us.”


A graduate of William Smith College, Dean Litt earned her master’s and doctoral degrees in sociology from the University of Pennsylvania. An award-winning sociologist, prior to her appointment as the Dean of Douglass, she was the founding chair of the women’s and gender studies department at the University of Missouri and also has directed women’s studies programs at Iowa State University and Allegheny College.


As principal investigator for the National Science Foundation ADVANCE grant administered at Missouri, Dr. Litt has been responsible for establishing practices to promote gender equity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics as well as providing support for women in senior faculty positions in the same fields. At Iowa State, Professor Litt earned the “Distinguished Faculty Award” from the American Association of University Women, Iowa Chapter, for her distinguished contribution toward gender equity in education. The American Sociological Association awarded Dr. Litt the “Outstanding Achievement in Scholarship” award on race, class and gender for her book Medicalized Motherhood: Perspectives from the Lives of African-American and Jewish Women. Professor Litt is also the co-author of Global Dimensions of Gender and Carework.



The Convocation is sponsored by the Associate Alumnae of Douglass College, established in 1922 for graduates of the New Jersey College for Women. Some 36,000 alumnae comprise the organization, whose mission is to provide ongoing financial, programming and communications support to Douglass College, her students and alumnae; and to encourage and promote the unique educational experience and leadership opportunities at Douglass College that are inherent in a women’s college. Currently, the AADC is conducting The Campaign for Douglass, an initiative to raise $35 million to endow programs and build an new residence hall.

About The Associate Alumnae of Douglass College (AADC)

Established by the Class of 1922, the college’s first graduating class, the AADC today represents the interests of more than 36,000 graduates of Douglass College and the former New Jersey College for Women. With support from alumnae and friends, the Associate Alumnae provides exciting educational opportunities for Douglass students, as well as programs and outreach opportunities that foster connections between Douglass alumnae, students, faculty, staff and friends. For additional information, please visit

About Douglass Residential College

Douglass Residential College boasts 1,816 students from more than 24 states and 14 countries and recently welcomed Jacquelyn Litt, Ph.D. as the tenth dean. Founded in 1918 as the New Jersey College for Women (NJC),and later named Douglass College in honor founder Mabel Smith Douglass, the College was renamed Douglass Residential College, following the reorganization of undergraduate education at Rutgers in 2006. Throughout its history Douglass has been at the forefront of education for women, and continues to support women’s development in all arenas, including research, education, business, public policy, communication and community service. For further information, visit


For more information, contact Tina Gordon, Douglass Class of 1972, President, AADC, at To arrange an interview with Dean Litt, please call her office and speak with Maria DePina, Executive Assistant, at phone: 732) 932-2900 ext 112.






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