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Association of MIT Alumnae records

Identifier: MC-0065

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents of the Collection

This collection contains correspondence, bylaws, annual reports, minutes of meetings, directories and records that document the administration and activities of the Association of MIT Alumnae (AMITA). The collection includes documents from the 1907 incorporation of the Association in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

There are good records from the founding years of the organization, including minutes of association meetings and summary annual reports, from 1903 to 1936. Ellen Swallow Richards, the first woman to graduate from MIT was an active participant in the early years of the organization, and this collection documents her work. A folder of programs and souvenirs showing the MIT Women's Association part in MIT's June 1916 dedication of the Cambridge campus and reunion is in box 4. This includes a ribbon pin "MIT Women's Association" worn by celebration attendees. As part of the celebration, a directory of MIT women was published.

Part of the collection consists of completed questionnaires from several surveys of alumnae conducted between 1906 and 1972. Individual survey responses are closed for 75 years, but there are a number of responses from the 1906 survey open for use.

Later in 1964 and 1973, the Association sponsored two important symposium events and there is good documentation of planning and ideas behind the events. A “Symposium on American Women in Science and Engineering” was held in October 1964 to acquaint women with professional and career perspectives. Student delegates from over 200 colleges were invited to hear speakers from industry, education, and government.

There are also planning and program files created by AMITA members for the June 1973 Centennial Celebration honoring the 100th anniversary of the first woman to earn a degree at MIT, Ellen Swallow. An exhibit "100 Years of the 'New' Woman" was prepared by AMITA president, Susan Schur, was part of the celebration and there are biographical notes and files about the exhibit and the MIT alumnae featured.

The only born-digital files in the collection are related to an event held to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the “Ad Hoc Committee on the Role of Women Students at MIT report” in 2022 May. It consists of an MP4 video and PDF files.


  • Creation: 1900 - 2022


Access note

This collection is open.

Digital Access Note

Some parts of this collection are available online. Links to specific online digital items are found within their entry in this finding aid.

Conditions Governing Use

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Please see the MIT Libraries Permissions Policy for permission information. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the donor of the collection or MIT.

Historical note

The Association of M.I.T. Alumnae (AMITA) is an independent community group of MIT alumnae (any former woman student at MIT is eligible to join) committed to providing a means for former women students to maintain contact with each other and MIT.

Standing committees are a Nominating Committee, Program Committee, Membership Committee, Student Awards Committee, and Publication Relations/Newsletter Committee. AMITA holds events and programs throughout the year, and in June of each year holds an annual meeting. AMITA publishes a web site with current information about events, organizational structure, and long term programs. AMITA established a professorship at MIT for tenured women in honor of Ellen Swallow Richards, MIT's first female graduate. The Association also sponsors the Margaret MacVicar Memorial AMITA Oral History Project which documents the experiences of women who attended MIT. AMITA website:

A meeting to form an association to promote fellowship among Technology women was held June 2, 1899 in the Pierce Building, in Boston, where MIT was then located. The first Annual Meeting of the Association of Women of the Massachusett Institute of Technology was held on 29 December 1900, called to order by Association president Ellen S. Richards (the first woman to earn a degree from MIT). The group's stated goal was to promote education, unity, and good fellowship among women graduates and past students of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and to advance the cause of education and the general welfare of women undergraduates. The Association was formally incorporated in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts on March 9, 1907 as the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Women's Association. In 1966 the corporate name was legally changed to the Association of MIT Alumnae.


5.6 Cubic Feet (2 record cartons, 9 manuscript boxes, 3 flat boxes, 1 cassette box)

669.1 Megabytes (3 digital files)

Language of Materials



Materials are stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use.

Source of Acquisiton

Materials were given to the Department of Distinctive Collections (formerly the Institute Archives and Special Collections) in several groups beginning in 1980, by the the Association of MIT Alumnae, and also by the MIT Museum.

Related Materials

Margaret MacVicar Memorial AMITA Oral History Project records, collection MC 356, Department of Distinctive Collections, MIT Libraries.

Women and the Scientific Professions: the MIT Symposium on American Women in Science and Engineering, edited by Jacquelyn A. Mattfield and Carol G. Van Aken. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1965, 1967.

Processing Information note

Some collection descriptions are based on legacy data and may be incomplete or contain inaccuracies. Description may change pending verification. Please contact the MIT Department of Distinctive Collections if you notice any errors or discrepancies.

Inventory to the Records of the Association of MIT Alumnae
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2018-09-03: Edited by Rachel Van Unen to reflect the addition of accession 2019-020
  • 2022-11-30: Joe Carrano, digital archivist, edited collection level notes, extent, and file listing to reflect accesion 2023-020

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US