Grant Charge

Marcia Grant, as a teacher, diplomat, educational administrator and college founder, you have, with extraordinary passion and wisdom, built deeper mutual understanding, wider embrace of fine education and firmer commitment to cooperative endeavor across a global world.

You graduated from Swarthmore with High Honors in Political Science in 1960, having already begun your international journey through research projects in Peru, Cuba and Cameroon. You went on to receive a Master of Arts and a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy at the Fletcher School of Tufts University in 1962 and a Ph.D. in African Studies from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 1975.

From 1971 through '78, you taught African, Latin American and International Politics at Oberlin College, while pursuing research on Mexican foreign policy. You then embarked on the next phase of your remarkable contribution to improved international understanding, serving in succession as foreign affairs consultant for the Departments of State, Justice, and Labor, as Director of the Fulbright Program in Mexico, as Assistant Cultural Attaché for the American Embassy in Paris, as Director of the Edward S. Mason Program for Mid-Career Fellows at the Kennedy School at Harvard, and as Executive Director of the Institute of North American Studies in Barcelona.

In 1999, at the invitation of Queen Effat of Saudi Arabia, and of her daughter Princess Lolowah, you went to Jeddah with a group of women educators to explore establishing that nation's first liberal arts college for women. Your letter of thanks to the Queen and Princess, resonant with your understanding of their vision for the school, opened the way to their invitation to you to become its Founding Dean. You built a curriculum that draws on the Swarthmore tradition of rigorous intellectual questioning and embraces the breadth of the liberal arts.

The first class of Effat College graduated in 2003, moving that society a step towards gender equality, and fulfilling your own and Queen Effat's dream.

You have served more recently as Dean of the American Graduate School of International Relations and Diplomacy in Paris and as a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellow, and now serve as Academic Planning Head of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at The Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan.

Throughout your period of teaching, consulting, and educational administration, you have generously credited your training here with the inspiration, analytic skills, imagination, and courage that empowered your success. And to the delight of your alma mater, you have remained close to Swarthmore, serving on the Alumni Council and as your Class President. Your daughter Alexandra graduated from here in 1994, and, empowered by her Swarthmore experience, has embarked on an already wonderfully successful career in the arts.

Marcia Grant, with great intelligence, sensitivity and determination, you have transformed visionary dreams into educational realities and have led in bridging some of the most difficult political, cultural and economic divides of our world. Your alma mater is deeply proud to see the values and habits of mind cultivated here vividly reflected in every aspect of your extraordinary accomplishment.

Upon the recommendation of the faculty, and by the power vested in me by the Board of Managers of Swarthmore College and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I have the honor to bestow upon you the degree of Doctor of Laws.

Read Marcia Grant's address.