Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, a leading women’s rights activist and the District of Columbia’s first female Representative, spoke at Vassar’s 126th Commencement.

 “Your national legislature,” Representative Norton told the 630 members of the Class of 1992, “the Congress of the United States, of which I am a member, is down in the dumps and down in the polls. I came this morning to look on the face of a new generation to renew my faith that this country still has the capacity for self-generation….  Vassar is known as a college that looks as a college ought to look.  Vassar also is known for graduates set on making the world look like it ought to look.”

Congresswoman Norton spoke at the 1971 Commencement, and during her speech, she compared the two occasions: “At Vassar in 1971, I spoke to a college generation that graduated in the midst of social ferment and change. At Vassar in 1992, I look to a college generation to help make change happen again.”     The Poughkeepsie Journal, Press & Information Office, News