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It opened in and closed in Mary-of-the-Woods Collegefounded inwas originally the only women's college in the Terre Haute area. However, during an industrial boom of the s and s, several new collegesmostly targeted at male studentsopened in Terre Haute, including Indiana State Normal School in and the Rose Polytechnic Institute in Recognizing that women were also in need of higher education, and also wanting to put a particular emphasis on the teaching of ChristianityJane B.
The college opened that October to three students, with Rev. Laurence G. Hay of Indianapolis serving as president.
Coates aimed to be the " Wellesley of the Midwest " and modeled its curriculum after those of Wellesley and Vassar College. Eventually, three separate Bachelor's degree programs were offered. The college quickly gained a reputation for attracting excellent students, and many Coates graduates began to pursue graduate education at some of the most esteemed universities in the United States, including the University of Chicago.
Although Coates was nondenominational by de, the college's bylaws required at least two-thirds of the trustees to be Presbyterian. It also required that the Bible be used as "the chief textbook " in classes. All commencements were held at local Presbyterian churches.
A "religious census" of Presbyterian colleges in noted that of the eleven students enrolled, seven were Presbyterian, two were Methodistone was Baptistand one was affiliated with the Disciples of Christ. This included board, tuitionfuel, light and gymnasium privileges.
Music classes were extra. Enrollment grew quickly and had surpassed students byeven though the college had only three faculty members at its start. With its rapid growth, the need for more land was recognized.
Jane Coates financed more purchasing and construction and also brought in more instructors, including noted sculptor Janet Scudder. After the death of Jane Coates inhowever, the college's main source of funding became no longer available. Like many other colleges, Coates was severely impacted by the Panic of The founder's will became legally disputed by her heirsmaking it even more difficult for the college to receive any funding.
Enrollment also declined dramatically in the college's final years. As a result, Coates College closed after the conclusion of the - academic year. : disestablishments in Indiana Educational institutions established in Defunct private universities and colleges in Indiana Former women's universities and colleges in the United States Education in Terre Haute, Indiana establishments in Indiana Educational institutions disestablished in Hidden : Coordinates on Wikidata.
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