Swarthmore College Archives: Auxiliary Departments

Click on the name of an individual department to view full finding aid (if one exists).

Career Services and Graduate Advising, RG6/I-002

Office of Career Services

Although informal vocational lectures were offered on campus as early as 1916, it was not until 1938 that a formalized vocational guidance and job placement program was instituted at Swarthmore College. Initially, support was provided to male students through the Alumni Office and to female students through the Women's Student Government Association. The gender-segregated programs were later consolidated into a single Career Planning and Placement Office, today known as the Office of Career Services. The Swarthmore College Career Counseling and Placement Office records, 1951-1985, consist mostly of senior surveys and reports arranged chronologically.
Call number: RG6/I-002/A

Health Sciences (Pre-Medical) Advising

Swarthmore College has never offered a formal “premed” major for students planning to pursue graduate degrees in medicine, but the college does provide other forms of guidance and support. A Pre-medical Advisory Committee was formed in 1945, replaced in the 1949/1950 school year by the  Faculty Committee on the Pre-Medical Program. As of 2015, the Health Sciences Advisory Committee is composed of faculty members, deans, and the Health Sciences Advisor (a staff position in the Health Sciences Office). The Faculty Committee on the Pre-Medical Program records, 1945-1967, includes annual reports and correspondence of the committee, information about medical schools, aggregate data about Swarthmore students pursuing medical careers, and more. Some materials are from the predecessor Pre-medical Advisory Committee (1945-1950). Note that this collection includes some files of individual students’ application materials, but access to these files is restricted.
Call number: RG6/I-002/B (These records are currently stored off-site. Allow at least two weeks for retrieval.)


Friends Historical Library

Friends Historical Library was established in 1871, separate from the general College library, to collect books and related materials concerning the Society of Friends and its concerns and activities. Originally known as the Anson Lapham Repository, it was installed in a fire-proof alcove of Parrish Hall and survived the 1881 fire largely intact. Its operations and acquisitions were supported by bequests and other donations from "Friends of the College."  Today, Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College  is the largest Quaker library in the world, collecting publications, family and organizational records, and visual materials, as well as serving as a depository for Quaker meeting records.
Call number: RG4/027

McCabe Library

A "Reading Room" was set aside in Parrish Hall as early as 1869 or 1870.  In 1871, a Librarian was appointed and the catalogue included over 1300 volumes.  The fire of 1881 destroyed almost the entire collection, but these books were quickly replaced. A separate library building was constructed in 1906 with funds from Andrew Carnegie, Clement M. Biddle, and other donors; the Thomas B. and Jeanette E. L. McCabe Library was built in 1967.  McCabe Library maintains its own archives; contact the College Librarian for further details.

Swarthmore College Peace Collection

In 1930, Jane Addams of Hull House in Chicago donated her library and archives to Friends Historical Library.  A part-time Curator, Ellen Starr Brinton, was appointed in 1935.  Renamed the Swarthmore College Peace Collection in 1946, its  mission continues "to gather, preserve, and make accessible material that documents non-governmental efforts for non-violent social change, disarmament, and conflict resolution between peoples and nations."  An inventory of its records is available in the Swarthmore College Peace Collection and on-line through its website.

Physical Education and Athletics

Some structured exercise program, physical education or "physical culture," has always been required of Swarthmore students as a condition of enrollment or graduation, from its earliest years into the 21st century. In 1888 Swarthmore College formed a Department of Physical Culture, now known as the Physical Education Department. The Swarthmore College Physical Education and Athletics Department records, 1921-1996, includes reports on the department, sports news releases, and other departmental-wide records; women's physical education logs and scorebooks from women's sports games; men's sports statistics; and programs, clippings, and score sheets from sports played by both genders.
Call number: RG6/I-001
Dance records are stored with RG 6/J02, Dance Program records, under Academic Departments
The Athletics Communications Office maintains historical materials relating to athletics at the College, including: photographs of teams and athletic events, circa 1930s to the present; pamphlets and publications; and yearly summaries of the Athletics Department, 1941 to present, consisting of meeting minutes, rosters, scores, statistics, and other information. Contact Athletics Communications Office to request access