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Department of Nursing Timeline

Timeline of the Skidmore College
Department of Nursing

Compiled for the Scribner Library, Special Collections, Department of Nursing Records

A program supported by Skidmore College and the Mary McClellan Hospital in Cambridge, NY

1921-22, School of Arts changed its name to Skidmore College.

Foundation and Early Years

1922, first class of students were enrolled for four-year degree. The Nursing Program was established in affiliation with Mary McClelland Hospital in Cambridge, NY.

Dr. Clara Greenough, 1922-1928 (First chair at Mary McClellan Hospital) 

1925, Moore is Skidmore's second president. He remained president to 1957.

1927, first graduate: Edith Wills '27

1928, Agnes Gelinas was recruited by President Moore to serve as Dept. of Nursing Chair.

1931-32, a new tuition charge for clinical work at the hospital, but room and board remain free for students. Program includes community service in final two months of the program at the East Harlem Nursing and Health Service in NYC at 354 E. 116th St.

1934-40, the Rockefeller Foundation financed a rural PHNurse experience for the students in the Nursing Program.

1936, Public Health Nursing In Rural Areas added to the curriculum.

193?, Irene Carn hired for specialty in Public Health Nursing.

1938 (May), BS and RN degrees with students specializing in tuberculosis, and Nursing and Urban and Rural Public Health

1942, Skidmore is the first baccalaureate nursing program to be accredited for Public Health Nursing by the National Organization for Public Health Nursing. (see Erickson)

Move to NYC

1942 (Feb 1), the Nursing Program moved to New York City. It was associated with New York Post-Graduate Medical School and Hospital, 'The Post-Graduate Hospital." Students lived in Margaret Fahnstock Hall.

1942, a war program in nursing (3-yr. Program).

1943, during World War II the nursing program changed from five to four years.

1951, photo of a woman of African-American background in admission brochure, Oretta Davis '54.

1952, Erickson notes a trend in this period of integrating mental health concepts throughout the curriculum.

1953, the China Medical Board gave the nursing program $20,000.

1954, Doris Diller evaluation of cancer and nursing (faculty are recipients of grants from the National Cancer Institute)

195?, New York Post Graduate Medical School and Hospital ("Post-Graduate Hospital") was sold to New York University and the name changed to University Hospital.

1956, Alumnae Quarterly announces new nursing program for 1957-58. 

1957, Agnes Gelinas is on sabbatical and is a consultant in nursing education at the University of the Philippines.

1957 fall, Moore retires, succeeded by Wilson, Skidmore's third president up to the spring of 1964.

Program Is Housed in NYC Medical Center

1957 Nov, students are living in the "Hall of Residence" of the New York University Medical Center at 550 First Ave. (at East 30th Street.)

1958, Mrs. McClellan retires form the Board of Trustees.

1958, George Armstrong (director of NYU Medical Center at the time) became member of Skidmore College Board of Trustees. He was on the Board for eleven years and was a strong supporter of the Nursing Program.

1960 spring, the old P.G. Hospital moved into a new building as "University Hospital" with space in the building for the nursing program.

1961, fundraising for a new building to be completed in 1967 at cost of $2,900,000.

1963, Agnes Gelinas is honored by the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital.

1964 April, President Wilson dies. Josephine Case is Acting President for one year.

1964 May, the Nursing Department is named the Irene Ward McClelland Department of Nursing.

1965, Agnes Gelinas retired. Jean Campbell takes over as chairman of the Department of Nursing.

1965, a trustee committee, headed by Mrs. Everett Case, is formed to raise funds for the Nurses' Education and Residence Building in NYC.

1965 fall, Joseph Palamountain is the new president.

1965, Nursing Department sends out a questionnaire to alumnae.

1960's, the hospital no longer would provide office and student residential space in the hospital and offered the program the use of the Margaret Fahnstock building. [Carn] 1967 (Sept 6), Irene Ward McClelland died.

1966, Jean Campbell replaced Agnes Gelinas as Chairperson of the Nursing Department.

1967, Skidmore Nursing Newsletter begun.

1968, Nursing Newsletter debates strike.

1968 May, newsletter announces Gloria Caliandro is project director of a five-year curriculum improvement project supported by a grant from the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. The project goals are to vitalize and improve instruction through the use of multiple audio-visual media and develop effective ways to evaluate curriculum.

1968 Dec, the portrait of Agnes Gelinas by Everett Raymond Kinstler is presented.

1969, S.C. leased 325 E. 38th St. under a ten year lease, later purchased the property with HUD financing.

Move to 38th St.

1970, 38th St. building opened after renovations.

1971 May, dedication of Skidmore's new building at 325 East 38th St. in NYC.  Held under a ten year lease.

1971, UWW is established at Skidmore.

1971, UWW RN Program (for nurses who wanted a baccalaureate degree) started.

1972 (Nov 29), Fiftieth Anniversary celebration of the founding of the College and the Department of Nursing.

1979, last UWW RN student admitted.

Task Force Review and Closure of the Nursing Program

1981 (Feb 6), Honors Society of Nursing inducts 42 charter members.

1981 (April 3), Honors Society of Nursing established (Sigma Theta Tau).

1981, open house in the Skidmore College Department of Nursing at the Skidmore New York City Campus, 325 East 38th Street, between First and Second Avenues.

1981, first Agnes Gelinas Distinguished Alumni Award.

1981, faculty response to task force report.

1982 (Feb 13), closure voted and approved by Board. 

1982 (Feb 18), student rally on Saratoga campus.

1982 (Feb 26), Palamountain letter to parents and alumni.

1982 (Mar 5), faculty vote 75 to 9 against Trustee decision to close.

1982 (Mar 18), Special Board meeting to cease admissions to Program of Nursing.

1984, NYC building sold to government of Indonesia.

1985, last nursing students graduate.

2019, first interviews of Nursing Program alumni