Art Gallery Exhibit – Leading & Learning: A Century of Women at Bentley

archival photo of women in the classroom
Now on display in the RSM Gallery is “Leading & Learning: A Century of Women at Bentley.” This exhibit, curated by the Bentley University Archives, explores over one hundred years of women’s achievements at our institution. It is on view in the library from 3/14/2018 – 4/22/2018.

Please also join us for an exhibit reception on Wednesday, March 21st from 2:00-3:30 p.m. Enjoy snacks and refreshments, make a commemorative button, and discuss women’s history at Bentley.  No RSVP needed, drop in as you are able.

About the Exhibit

In 1918, women were first offered admission to Bentley as a response to the large number of college-aged men drafted to fight in WWI. After the war ended Bentley again became a single-sex institution, although many women were still working diligently in Bentley’s administration. Prompted by another war, admission of women resumed in 1942. Since then, women have been learning, working and teaching at Bentley and have made an immeasurable impact on our campus.

This exhibit presents a chronological narrative of some of the activities and achievements of women over the course of Bentley’s history. As you view the exhibit either in person or online, we encourage you to think critically about the context in which these events occurred. What opportunities did women of various backgrounds have in our country over the last century? How was this the same or different at Bentley?

We hope this exhibit will be the beginning of a campus-wide conversation about historical narratives and recorded memory. Traditionally, the accomplishments and opinions of women and members of other underrepresented groups have often gone unrecorded. It is partly because of this fact that any exhibit discussing women at Bentley cannot be all-encompassing. We have done our best to provide a broad overview of women’s progress at Bentley, but we acknowledge many archival silences as well.

To help us create a richer picture of Bentley history – and to ensure that records from our current time are similarly robust – please consider donating photographs, documents, and items of memorabilia to the Bentley Archives. Tell us about your unique experiences in the Bentley community, and suggest ideas for other groups whose histories you would like to explore further.

If you have comments, questions, or suggestions please email Jaimie Fritz, University Archivist, at archives@bentley.edu.

To view the online version of this exhibit and additional multimedia content, please visit blogs.bentley.edu/bentleyarchives.

On Display: Women’s History & Leadership

March is Women’s History Month and we are celebrating with a lobby display, guest curated by Bentley’s Center for Women and Business! Visit the library from 2/21/18– 4/2/18 to browse items in person, or see the list of display titles online. Many of these books, as well as additional women’s history and leadership titles, are available as eBooks and audiobooks via the library’s OverDrive digital collection.

This display encompasses many aspects of women’s history and empowering women’s advancement. Titles have been divided into two sections to help you browse and choose new books more easily.

  • Looking Back: Learn about inspiring, historical women and the ways that they have led and changed the world. Find out about the history of women’s suffrage, early female entrepreneurs, and more.
  • Looking Ahead: Get inspired to be a future leader by picking up titles that discuss current women’s issues and strategies for women at work. Titles in this section address the wage gap, leadership,  female mentorship, the state of women in politics, and more.

Check back on the display often – we will update the title list as new acquisitions arrive and checked-out titles return to the library. If a title you want to read is checked out, remember to place a hold! If you’d like more reading suggestions for Women’s History Month, please contact the Bentley Library. If you’re looking for resources on women’s leadership, please visit the Center for Women and Business website.

October 4th is #AskAnArchivist Day!

#AskAnArchivistIt’s that time of year again – October 4th is #AskAnArchivist Day! This is the day when archivists across the country (and the globe) tell everyone more about what kind of work they do, and the types of interesting material you can find in archives. Below are some FAQ’s with information about the Bentley Archives. If you want to know more about any of these topics, find us on social media and ask your question using #AskAnArchivist. You can also email your question to archives@bentley.edu.  Want to see photos of campus or students in a certain time period? Curious to find out more about Bentley’s early days in Boston? Ask us to find out!

What is an archive? What’s in the Bentley Archives?

There are lots of ways to describe archives but essentially they are repositories for items of historical value that relate to a common topic. The Bentley Archives preserves the historic records of (you guessed it) Bentley University! We have historical papers and objects documenting all 100 years of life and learning at Bentley. These items are preserved and organized so that people can use them for research – although archives material cannot be checked out like library books. You can find out more on our Archives LibGuide.

Can I use the collections in the Bentley Archives?

Yes! If you have a specific idea or project in mind, or if you know what kind of historical items you’d like to see, please email archives@bentley.edu. If you’d like to get a better sense of the types of material you can access, a good place to start is our Archives Subject Guide. We are always happy to help identify photos, documents, or objects that might be helpful in your work. You’ll need an appointment to view material in the Archives, so try to send in requests early and we can work with you to get history into your hands!

Where can I look at material from the Bentley Archives online?

You can view all of our online exhibits on the archives website! If you’d like to see a collection of historic photographs from the Bentley Archives, you can view them online at Digital Commonwealth. If you need help searching through images, or if you have any other questions about our online material, please let us know.

Where else can I explore & interact with archival material online?

There are lots of great places to explore and contribute to archival research online. Many are linked in our Online Volunteering LibGuide, and a few highlihts are included below.

  • NYPL Labs is the homepage for digital projects from the New York Public Library. You can view and search through digitized material, or participate in research and information-gathering projects like “Building Inspector” – where you help to update and correct historic maps.
  • Online Exhibits from the U.S. National Archives can be a good place to start browsing through such a vast collection. You can also help transcribe and ID documents on their Citizen Archivist
  • The World Digital Library lets you search collections from over 190 different countries, and to browse featured items related to world history.
  • Beyond Words from the Library of Congress digital collections lets you explore historic newspapers while helping to identify and caption illustrations.
  • Lastly, the Knitting Reference Library from the University of Southampton. This quirky collection contains Victorian texts about knitting, historic knitting patterns, and more. This collection is hosted via the Internet Archive – where you can explore many other archival collections as well!

Can I donate material to the Bentley Archives?

Yes! Read our FAQs about donation. We’ll also be reaching out to faculty, staff, and students this year to identify and collect material for the Archives. If you have personal or family records (non-Bentley related) that you want to preserve, you may be interested in our page about Caring for Archival Material.

Don’t forget to send us your questions on Wednesday, October 4th, and of course you can always contact us year-round at archives@bentley.edu!

“Out in the Stacks”: Books & DVDs on Display for LGBT Pride Month

Many of you may already know that June is LGBT Pride Month! The month of June was chosen to commemorate the historic Stonewall Riots, which took place in NYC on June 28, 1969. Hundreds of Pride Parades & Marches will soon take place across the globe, including the Boston Pride Parade on June 10th. If you’re interested in marching with the Bentley PRIDE delegation, you can register online here, or contact coordinator Tony Martin at amartin@bentley.edu .

The library is celebrating Pride Month with a display of almost 170 titles related to the LGBTQIA+ community. We chose a mix of fiction (including many graphic novels!), non-fiction, movies, and documentaries to try to provide a wide variety of voices and perspectives. The titles in this display engage with gender and sexual identity in myriad ways – academic or personal, joyous or difficult, sometimes all at once.

Come browse the display in the library lobby – titles will rotate so please ask at the Reference Desk if you’d like to see all the books/movies that are currently available! You can also see the full list of titles in our online catalog. If you see an item you want to check out, hit the “Request It” button to place a hold. Keep an eye on our social media to get recommendations, and to find links to items you can read or watch online!

Now Showing: The Bentley Student Experience, a Bentley Centennial Exhibit

Now on view in the RSM Art Gallery is The Bentley Student Experience, the third and final Centennial year exhibit detailing the history of Bentley University. Please join us at the opening reception for this exhibit, which will include remarks by Vice President Andrew Shepardson, at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 26.

The Bentley Student Experience
Bentley Centennial Exhibit
April 25 – June 7, 2017 June 11, 2017

Opening Reception
Wednesday, April 26, 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
Remarks by Vice President Andrew Shepardson

Bentley Homecoming, 1975
Bentley Homecoming, 1975

Bentley was founded in response to a demand for more highly educated business professionals –especially accountants – in the first decades of the twentieth century. At this same point in the development of American higher education, what we now know as Student Affairs (a set of co-curricular offerings created and managed by educational specialists) began to emerge.

Student Affairs at Bentley evolved as they did at colleges and universities across the country, though perhaps a bit more slowly as a result of Bentley’s status as an urban, “street-car school” that offered the basics to students. Once Bentley relocated to its spacious Waltham campus, the student experience steadily began to resemble that of a traditional residential college.

The student experience at Bentley also reflects the distinctive philosophy that characterizes this institution in so many ways – a philosophy that embraces founder Harry Bentley’s belief in a real-world education. In the 21st century we talk about engagement, and Bentley prepares students to have full lives and careers by engaging them in innovative ways now, in the life of the campus and beyond.

The Bentley Student Experience exhibit is not limited to student life narrowly defined as activities and clubs; but is intended to showcase all aspects of what has contributed to being a student at Bentley for the past century – in the classroom, in the residence halls, commuting by streetcar or on Route 128, playing a sport, serving the community, meeting someone with a drastically different background, and more.

Today, fostering an engaged student experience is a key element of the university’s strategic direction, one that recognizes the educational value of comprehensive growth in and out of the classroom. Please enjoy this look at the way students have experienced Bentley for 100 years.

Also available for online viewing is the Bentley Student Experience online exhibit and a selection of videos from the Bentley archives dating back to the 1950s.

Birthday Celebration! Time Capsule Viewing & Letter-Writing: Tues. 2/28, 12-4

By now you probably know that Bentley is celebrating its historic centennial year. But you may not know that we have some important milestones coming up– this week marks the official founding of Bentley University, and the birthday our founder Harry C. Bentley!

Harry C. Bentley was born on February 28th, 1877 in Connecticut. He discovered a passion for business in his youth, and by the time he reached his 30’s he was a successful teacher, writer, and businessman. On February 26th, 1917 he held the first class at what would soon be called the “Bentley School of Accounting and Finance.” Turning 40 and starting your own school in the same week – quite an accomplishment!

To honor both of these historic dates, we’re planning an all-day birthday celebration across campus on Tuesday, February 28th.  At the library, we’ll be using the day to honor and explore Bentley’s past. From 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday you can visit Room 101 on the main level to see the contents of the 1992 time capsule, and the video that students produced to go along with it. There are letters from student organizations, t-shirts, memorabilia, photos, and more to browse through. While you’re here, you can also write a letter to your future self that will be stored in the Archives and given to you at a future Bentley Reunion!

If you’d like to learn more about the early history of Bentley, and even get to hear Mr. Bentley’s voice, see our new Archives Birthday Wishes web exhibit.

In this video, you can hear remarks delivered by Harry Bentley at Commencement in 1950.

Join the Transcribe-a-thon for Black History Month, Tues. 2/14, 12-4pm

Volunteer to help bring history into the 21st century!

Colored Conventions Project Transcribe-a-thon for Black History Month

Tuesday, February 142017
Drop-in hours 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
live stream from University of Delaware’s event, 12:00 p.m. -2:00 p.m.
Research Instruction Center (RIC), Room 11, lower level

The Bentley Library is happy to be partnering with the University of Delaware’s Colored Conventions Project for a Black History Month volunteer Transcribe-a-thon! In honor of Frederick Douglass’ birthday, volunteers will gather at libraries across the country to help with a digital transcription project.

Never heard of digital transcription? No problem! All you have to do is read and type!

About the projectTranscribe-a-thon poster

The University of Delaware has digitized hundreds of historic documents from “Colored Conventions” – political strategy meetings held by free and fugitive black citizens both before and after the Civil War. Documents from these meetings tell us about how participants strategized to “achieve educational, labor and legal justice at a moment when Black rights were constricting national and locally.”

Digital versions of these documents are publicly available on the Colored Conventions Project website, but they are difficult to browse. By transcribing the documents into plain text, volunteers help to make the documents text searchable, which allows researchers to read documents on tablets or phones, to conduct keyword searches, and to index terms.

What will I be doing as a transcription volunteer?

Volunteering is simple, and you can help out even if you only have a few minutes to spare. Drop-in to the library’s Transcribe-a-thon in the Research Instruction Center on Tuesday, February 14, from 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Library staff members will be on hand to show you how to submit transcriptions and how to make note of illegible words or other oddities.

A live stream from the University of Delaware from 12:00 p.m – 2:00 p.m will include speakers, a happy birthday song for Frederick Douglass, and more.

Stay for a few minutes or a few hours!  Snacks will be provided.

If you are able, please visit http://coloredconventions.org/welcome-to-transcribe before the event to familiarize yourself with transcription and sign up for an account. For more information, please contact Jaimie Fritz, Project Archivist.

Now Showing: “The Bentley Campus: From Boston to Waltham”

The Bentley Campus: From Boston to Waltham
Bentley University Centennial Exhibit
January 17 – March 5,  March 2, 2017 [Note new closing date]

Opening Reception
Wednesday, January 18 at 12:30 p.m.
Remarks by trustee emeritus and Centennial Committee chairman George Fantini ‘64

The Historical Subcommittee is proud to present the second in a series of three Centennial exhibits in the RSM Art Gallery. The Bentley Campus: From Boston to Waltham traces the university’s history from a small room in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood to the sprawling suburban campus we know today.

Find out more about what life was like for Bentley students in the early decades of the 20th century – the classrooms on Boylston Street, early dormitories on Commonwealth Avenue, and the ever-present sound of the Prudential Center being built! Discover how Bentley’s leaders made the bold decision to move to Waltham, and get a glimpse of “Cedar Hill” before our now iconic buildings were constructed.

This exhibit is now interactive, thanks to the addition of a video viewing tablet located in the gallery. Come see historic footage of our founder Harry C. Bentley and hear him give a speech! Watch as construction workers lay foundation for the Waltham campus, or see what dormitories looked like in the 1980’s. A wealth of new footage from the Bentley Archives will premiere with this exhibit.

George Fantini ’64, trustee emeritus and chairman of the Centennial Celebration, will offer brief remarks at an opening reception for the exhibit on Wednesday, January 18 at 12:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served. We hope you can join us!

To view an online version of this exhibit, please visit the Bentley Archives website.