Harvard Medical School's First Coeducational Class, 1945

First class of women accepted to Harvard Medical School, 1945.Front row: Ladislas Dolores Wojcik; Doris Ruth Rubin; Ellen Ann Schwartz; Martha Joan Kern Caires; and Marjorie Jane Kirk. Second row: JoAnn Tanner; Shirley Marilyn Gallup; Edith Louise Stone; Marcia Laura Gordon; Dora Benedict; Raquel Eidelman; and Idolene Hegeman.  

In 1943, Harvard Medical School faculty voted to recommend the admission of women to Harvard Medical School because the World War II draft had depleted applications from qualified male students.

The Harvard Corporation voted against the recommendation. Curiously, Harvard Medical School received 153 applications from qualified women in 1944, leading to a second recommendation from the faculty to accept women students. On June 4, 1944, the Harvard Corporation voted to accept women in the 1945 medical school freshman class.

Eighty-eight women applied to the Harvard Medical Class of 1949. Twelve women were accepted and matriculated in the Class of 1949.

Women students were initially accepted on a ten-year trial basis. Gender parity was reached among incoming Harvard Medical School classes in 1994.

Harvard Medical School's First Coeducational Class, 1945