Chatham University

Mission and History

Chatham University was founded in 1869 when lack of access to higher education for women was a pressing social concern. While access to higher education in the United States is not as pressing an issue for the majority of women today, women still face social inequality and challenges on many fronts, including in the workforce and business, in politics and government, and in health professions at the leadership level.

In keeping with Chatham University's leadership and historic commitment to women's education and women's issues, Chatham established the Chatham University Women's Institute in 2014. The mission of the Institute is to help overcome and eradicate the social inequalities facing women, and to advance women's excellence through education, research and outreach in areas of modern-day social concerns. Its purpose on campus is to ensure the thoughtful continuation of the resources Chatham has - and will continue to have - in enhancing education for women and gender equality in all aspects of campus curriculum and campus life.

The Women's Institute helps support and coordinate Chatham's existing Center for Women's Entrepreneurship and Pennsylvania Center for Women & Politics, and Chatham's Women and Gender Studies Department as well as providing a range of activities and opportunities for students, faculty, alumnae, and the community.