Webster University was founded in part to provide Catholic higher education to women who in the early 1900s were excluded from many Catholic universities. By the 1960s, many Catholic universities were now open to women and men had begun to express an interest in Webster's fine arts programs. Thus in 1962, Webster began a gradual transformation from a women's college to a coeducational institution.


Several significant events and milestones occurred during the transition:


  • 1962: The first male student at Webster took courses during the summer of 1962. Initially males were only allowed to take courses in art, music, and theatre. The remaining courses (e.g. general education) had to be taken at another institution, such as St. Louis University.
  • 1964: Men majoring in fine arts were allowed to take all of their courses at Webster beginning in January 1964.
  • 1964: The first male students graduate from Webster.
  • 1965: The Webster College Board of Trustees voted on November 19, 1965 to recommend that the college move ahead gradually toward coeducation.
  • 1968: Men were admitted to all programs starting in Fall 1968.

For more information, see the coeducation collection page.



Board approves study toward co-education. (1965, December 10). The Web, vol. 42, no. 6, p. 1.

Boys to join math, english. (1967, February 3). The Ster, vol. 1, no. 7, p. 1.

College admits male fine arts students for all class work. (1963, November). Webster Alumnac, vol. 3, no. 1, p. 4.

College extends full-time status to male students. (1963, November 8). The Web, vol. 40, no. 4, p. 1.

Faculty decision urges Webster coeducation. (1965, November 19). The Web, vol. 42, no. 5, p. 1.

Farrell, Blair K. (1969, January 31). Report on coeducation status of the college. [University report]. Webster University, St. Louis, MO. (read the report)

The new look at Webster. (1963, September). Webster Alumnac, vol. 2, no. 6, p. 5.

Webster graduates largest class; sets other outstanding records. (1964, May). Webster Alumnac, vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 1-2.

Webster-St. Louis U. collaborate in fine arts. (1962, May). Webster Alumnac, vol. 1, no. 4, p. 4.

Webster widens male admission policy to cover all departments. (1968, February 16). The Web, vol. 45, no. 8, p. 1.

Wilson, Barbara. (1965, April 30). First man on campus. The Web, vol. 41, no. 9, p. 3.