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Leadership

Welcome to Barnard.

In 1887, a small group of determined women decided to create a college for women in New York City—a goal they described as being akin to "an enchanting castle-in-Spain … at once utterly desirable and tragically impossible." They were inexperienced, but smart and fearless and, as such, succeeded in founding a truly unique and special place—a premiere liberal arts college for the best and brightest young women around.

That is Barnard and there’s really nothing quite like it. I invite you to enter the gates at 117th Street & Broadway and experience it for yourselves—our green four-acre campus in the heart of Manhattan; Columbia University, with all its resources, just steps away; the incredible mix of students, hailing from nearly every state and dozens of countries, studying everything from American history to invertebrate zoology, from Buddhist Ethics to environmental law; and the diversity of ideas and culture that imbue it all.

Please return to the Web site often to learn about our vast array of lectures and public events, our performances in dance and music and theatre, the latest news of our distinguished faculty and, of course, the accomplishments of our stellar students and the amazing alumnae they go on to become. Read what’s happening with the Athena Center for Leadership Studies, in our many global initiatives, and throughout the award-winning pages of Barnard Magazine. Follow the wins, and occasional losses, of our athletes, and the spirited activities of our many student groups and clubs. It’s all part of what makes this College great.

Being Barnard’s president is truly a joy and a privilege, and I can’t imagine a better job—joining forces with committed faculty and staff to ensure that the women who come to Barnard leave here even stronger and more resolute than they were before, ready to tackle the world and change the world and choose excellence in all that they do.

Debora Spar