Fifty years ago, the first women entered the Huns as schoolgirls.

As a gift for such a memorable anniversary for the first time the use of a rarely presented pronoun seems appropriate – you go, girls!

Looks and sounds weird, right? Of course, the first students who appeared on the territory of the Princeton school did the same.

According to a publication on the Hun website, on February 15, 1971, the then principal, Dr. Paul Cesebro, proposed to the Hun School Board of Trustees to change school policy.

Dr. Chesebro wanted to start admitting girls, a move that will affect registration and lead to many changes in science, art and athletics.

Six months later, the first girls of the Hong School – thirty-five female students in four classes – came in to increase the number of students to record numbers.

Female and other gender identities are certainly part of the Hun school community, which has about 640 students in grades 6-12 and graduate students. Interestingly, according to the school’s website, women make up 52 percent of current teachers. And since 1974, 55 percent of Hong’s worshipers have been women.

While the original 35 were gaining strength and supporting each other, consider the achievement of Dr. Erna Funkhauser, who in September 1952 became the first hired female Hun teacher. Funkhauser enrolled in education twice – with a clear achievement at Princeton University.

While efforts to unite the Hoon School suggest, “you can call them pioneers, destroyers, agents of change, or the top thirty — we call them raiders — such a notice requires evolution.
Undoubtedly, the infusion of girls into a male-only student group has led to a public, private, and personal turn.

Positive change, especially change in society, which includes many genders, diversity, races, religions and ethnic groups, takes time to accept. As more children and young people take these first steps toward self-identification, other pioneers of the Huns will appear on many fronts.

Freedom was combined with opportunities almost always first. Without access, Faith Dixon ’75 would not have become Hun’s first black graduate.

Blacks and women in Hoon associate with the first Latin American, the first Asian, etc. Inclusion is unlikely to mean acceptance, as broken glass ceilings are handing out social shrapnel.

Name these first women exactly as they were – revolutionaries, party members, insurgents, etc. And hello. Now.

Even though students are getting to know the current student body, you know that the struggle for gender and racial equality continues. Much has been done, new challenges await.

Thank you to the Hun School for celebrating “She’s in the Hun,” which includes many stories about female transgressors. Access to cover the history of the Huns concerning female inclusion.

Hoon says that today’s girls at school find a variety of programs designed specifically for them; from leadership programs and conferences to athletics and clubs, there are many groups by means in which you can participate.

Outreach programs include the Young Women Leadership Program, a group of twenty-five girls who are nominated each fall by faculty and staff based on their leadership potential.

After nomination, cohort members participate in leadership trainings, skills development seminars, networking panels, and activities aimed at identifying and honing their personal leadership styles.

According to Hoon, the seminars and activities include topics such as counteracting toxic self-criticism, managing stress, practicing self-compassion and adopting different leadership philosophies.

Faculty advisor Dinah Gash notes online that one of the priorities of the cohort of young women leaders is to provide girls with the space to identify who they are leaders and be able to understand leadership through their own prism and experience.

“This year, student leaders plan to hold events that emphasize intersectoral feminism to emphasize the concept that gender equality is more than a general idea of ​​women’s rights,” said Alison Sims, faculty advisor.

The mission of the Gender Equity Matters (GEM) program is to teach students gender issues with a particular focus on the interrelationships with respect to gender identity, sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, physical and mental abilities, religion, socioeconomic status and background.

Hoon is preparing for the 2nd annual summit of “Women in the World” “Our Different Ways”, which is scheduled for March 26.

All of these initiatives help empower people and serve as a preparation for peace beyond the landscapes of the Hong School.

One can only imagine the lives of ’72 class students and scout students-scouts Deborah L. Farmer, Alison Fix Miller, Cynthia Geier, Helen L. Rand, Dani Stager-Bajos and Cheryl Wilson while on campus and after they moved further.

With the retirement of John Bruem at the end of the 2022-23 academic year, the search for his replacement will hopefully include a diverse list of qualified candidates.

You know what my mind was playing with. Go ahead – imagine.

L. A. Parker is a Trento columnist. Find it on Twitter @LAParker6 or email it at

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