The Wellesley Effect (SOLC 21 of 31)

Sitting on my counter is a fundraising appeal from my alma mater, Wellesley College. The envelope that it came in, and the gift giving card are smartly labeled, “The Wellesley Effect.” I’m not going to lie, it hooked me. Yes, I had been part it – the Wellesley Effect.

Wellesley wasn’t my first choice. As a High School Senior going to an all girls college didn’t seem to be what I thought I should want.  But it was the best school that I got into and from the moment I was accepted, they made me feel wanted. Every letter, every new student reception, every person I met, made me feel safe and supported and hand-picked to be part of the Wellesley Effect.

I had a fall back plan – I’d transfer to Cornell sophomore year (that’s where my Dad and brother went). But, I didn’t need to. After freshman year Wellesley had cast it’s magic on me and I was staying. I stayed all four years on campus – even  though I thought for sure that I’d go abroad.  Once Junior year came, I couldn’t bear the thought of leaving the idyllic campus or of interrupting the leadership opportunities that I had worked towards.

My college years absolutely helped me find myself and my passion.  As the fundraising letter says, “…Wellesley teachers you how to learn, how to determine what is relevant and true and how to be agile and resourceful in your thinking…” – yes, yes, it did.

This summer, my daughter will spend 3 weeks at Wellesley in the EXPLO camp on campus. I am so thrilled for her and hope that the finds the same feelings of safety and passion and ways to find the leader in her that I felt 20+ years ago.

Usually, I have to admit, I toss the fundraising letters in the trash (they come so often!). But, today, it sits on my kitchen counter a bit longer and I’m thinking about sending off a check to support the continuing the spirit of the Wellesley effect, because, there is no doubt that Wellesley had an effect on me.



  1. Lisa C said,

    March 21, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    What a lovely experience! I found myself at college too, so I can relate. I didn’t live on campus for most of time as a student though. Good luck to your daughter!

  2. rosecappelli said,

    March 21, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    A wonderful reflection on how much your college experience affected you. I’m sure your monetary support will help, but writing about it publicly is another way to offer thanks and support. I hope your daughter enjoys her experience!

    • Ramona said,

      March 27, 2017 at 6:17 pm

      We looked at Wellesley with our daughter. It didn’t end up being her choice, but I still remember the beautiful campus. So fun that your daughter will spend some of her summer there.

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