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Past Women Educating Today

JANET GUAN
Copy Editor

Women have come far in their efforts to be treated as equals to the opposite gender. Decades ago, women still did not have the most basic rights. Yet, even with these roadblocks, females of the past still shaped our experiences in education. Some major women who have shaped education today include Elizabeth Blackwell.

Raised under feminist ideals from her father, Elizabeth Blackwell eventually realized that the occupation opportunities women had during her time were limited to teaching. Despite living in a male chauvinistic era, she ventured into the medical field. Boarding with the families of two male physicians, she practiced under them as well as studied textbooks. Many medical schools refused her application until Geneva College in New York accepted her. Excluded at first, Blackwell gradually gained the respect of her peers and teachers and graduated first in her class in 1849, the first woman to receive a medical degree. Despite facing opposition, Blackwell continually insisted on treating patients and encouraging other women to earn medical degrees by establishing medical societies, institutions and schools.

Women throughout centuries worked in their own era to give women the basic rights they deserved. Their efforts disproved societal expectations and eliminated limitations imposed upon females.

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