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Thematic History
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In this section:     The Westfield Way  

> Thematic History

> 1850-1901:
Education for Women

- Victorian Ideals

- Woman Physician
- Ladies College

> 1902-1913:
Education & Vocation

- Learning at ELC
- The Westfield Way

> 1914-1945:
War & Circumstance

- The Great War
- WWII Evacuation
- Learning & Leisure

> 1946-1959:
Peace & Acceptance

- Restoration
- Medicine & Dentistry

> 1960-present:
Change & Opportunity

- Women in Science
- Creativity & Diversity
- Then & Now


The subjects available for study at Westfield College went beyond those traditionally thought to be useful for young middle-class women. The early concentration on arts subject, including Art, History, Greek and Latin, did represent a generally traditional approach. However, Mathematics and Botany, subjects not traditionally offered to women, were also taught.

Caroline Skeel, c1920.
Caroline Skeel, c1920.
Caroline Skeel joined Westfield College in 1896 and took sole responsibility for the embryonic History Department.
Courtesy of Queen Mary, University of London Archives.

Ellen Delf-Smith, c1915.
llen Delf-Smith was appointed Lecturer in Botany in 1906, as part of the developments at Westfield to increase its profile and offer degree-level science teaching.
Courtesy of Queen Mary, University of London Archives.

Botany in particular was a new and thriving area of research and teaching. In 1906, Ellen Delf-Smith (1883-1980) was appointed as part of a deliberate attempt by the College to upgrade its offerings in at least one scientific subject. The introduction of Botany had an enormous impact on women students who were given the opportunity to work in laboratories and carry out field work.

Besides academic study, student life at Westfield was diverse and stimulating. Activities ranged from drama and music, to hockey and boating. More...

Westfield students as the cast of the play
Westfield students as the cast of the play
"Trial by Jury", 1912.

Westfield College Hockey Team, 1902-1903.
Westfield College Hockey Team, 1902-1903.


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