The “Kaleidoscope”

Kudos on the Winter 2013 issue! I very much appreciated the mix of stories you brought us—from the stunning art of Maryann Kallison Friedman ’55 and her husband, to the examination of the hip-hop generation by professor Kiese Laymon, to the sampling of the latest Vassar alums working in film today.

It was a fascinating kaleidoscope of the many endeavors of Vassar and our alumni.

Jennifer Greenstein Altmann ’91
East Brunswick, NJ

Downside for Men’s Sports

The revolution in collegiate sports in the 40 years since 1972 has been dramatic and particularly advantageous for women’s roles in varsity competition [See “Title IX Turns 40,” Fall 2012]. But there have been some upsetting downsides for men’s participation in varsity collegiate sports.

While Vassar and other private colleges have maintained swimming and diving for men and women, many public universities have arbitrarily dropped non-revenue and Olympic sports for men, particularly swimming and diving. But these men’s swimming and diving teams had supplied an impressive number of Olympic champions over the years.

Some years ago, Elaine [Gail Elaine Burket Harwood’53] and I drove downstate to watch Northwestern’s football team play the University of Illinois. During the contest, there was an announcement about a varsity swimming and diving competition to be held later at their new aquatics center after the game. What they did not mention is that, due to Title IX, no male athletes, only female athletes, were going to compete.

William L. Harwood
Evanston, Illinois