1885: Originally a preparatory school, Macalester begins offering college-level classes.
1900: An early mission program of the Presbyterian Church sends Macalester students around the world.
1915: Catharine Deaver Lealtad becomes Macalester's first African American graduate, earning a double major degree in chemistry and history with highest honors. Commissioned a major in the U.S. Army, she supervises a medical clinic for displaced persons in war-torn Germany. By the time she dies at age 93, she has practiced in Harlem, Mexico City, China and Puerto Rico.
1939: Charles Turck becomes Macalester's ninth president, emphasizing a commitment to internationalism. The following year, Turck hires G. Theodore Mitau '40, a Jewish refugee from Nazi Germany, to head the Political Science Department, despite a rule barring non-Christians from such an office.
1942: Esther Torii Suzuki is released from a Japanese detention camp in Portland, Ore., specifically to attend Macalester. Although her sister Eunice joins her in 1944, the rest of their Japanese American family remains in an Idaho internment camp. Suzuki becomes a social worker, writer, storyteller and human rights activist. In 2002, the Lealtad-Suzuki Center is founded at Macalester to "provide multicultural and diversity training and development to Macalester faculty, staff and students."
1943: The Macalester Intercultural Forum discussion group is formed to "encourage discussion of problems relating to the divergent cultural groups that make up the people of the United States."
1946: Yahya Armajani, a historian from Teheran, Iran, joins the faculty. An authority on Middle East history, Armajani promotes international understanding during his 28 years at Macalester. Also that year, The International Studies Program is founded.
1950: President Turck raises the flag of the newly formed United Nations in the center of campus. The flag still flies today. Also that year, Sociology Professor Paul M. Berry sends his race relations class out to do practical investigation of race relations in the Twin Cities.
1950s: The Cosmopolitan Club, a group of international and
U.S. students, starts organizing International Weekends that draw
college students from throughout the region.
1961: Macalester opens its International Center, providing a central location for study away information and advising for both international and U.S. students. The same year, the college founds the World Press Institute program designed to increase international understanding of the United States by offering journalists around the world an intensive introduction to the country and its people.
1962: An exchange program with predominantly black colleges is established at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga., and Knoxville College in Knoxville, Tenn. Also that year, Student Action for Human Rights recruits students to participate in Project Awareness, a summer recreation program on Indian reservations.
1967: The first of 36 international students from Europe, Asia, Latin America and the Middle East come to Macalester's International Leader Scholars and Wallace International Scholars programs, designed to identify and support people with leadership potential in their country.
1968: The Hubert H. Humphrey Professorship in International Affairs is endowed to bring international scholars of the highest caliber to teach at Macalester. Humphrey teaches political science at Macalester from 1943-44 and from 1969-70.
1969: The new Expanded Educational Opportunities program brings 75 freshmen students of color to Macalester. Also that year, the first Indian Week is celebrated with a pow-wow, bilingual chapel service, speakers on Indian education and welfare and a Buffy Sainte-Marie concert. And the Macalester College Black Choir is founded, seeking "to glorify God by uplifting people of all nationalities through African American music," founder Gary Hines '74 explains. The group changes its name in 1971 to the Sounds of Blackness and goes on to win a Grammy Award.
1980: Earl Bowman, an African American student who graduated in 1950 and became Dean of Students in 1973, is one of 12 charter members inducted into the Macalester Athletic Hall of Fame. Co-captain of the 1949 football team and holder of numerous gridiron records, as captain of the 1950 track team Bowman breaks the state pole vault record which he set the previous year.
1987: Macalester hosts a conference on the emerging policy of openness in what was the Soviet Union.
1988: Macalester's Community Service Office is established to foster an ethic of lifelong service within all members of the Macalester community.
1992: Macalester's long-term mission reinforces the college's emphasis on internationalism, diversity and community service by setting goals to attract students and faculty from an even greater diversity of nations, strengthening the International Studies program, making study-away opportunities available to even more students and faculty and having students volunteer their time in the community.
1993: Walter F. Mondale '50, newly named U.S. ambassador to Japan, speaks at Macalester, accompanied by former President Jimmy Carter, for whom Mondale served as vice president.
1994: Ahmed Samatar is appointed to the newly created position of Dean of International Studies and Programming and initiates Macalester's International Roundtable. The Roundtable is established as an annual fall event in which world scholars come to campus to discuss pressing global issues such as ethnicity and identity, the environment and the role of literature, the arts and culture in an era of globalization.
1995: The biennial Faculty Development International Seminars, which engage up to 15 Macalester faculty in a three-week intensive seminar and research with overseas colleagues, are founded. Faculty travel to Hungary, 1995; Brazil, 1997; South Africa, 2000; Malaysia, 2002; Turkey 2004 and PRC/Taiwan, 2006.
1998: U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan '61 returns to the Macalester campus to deliver the keynote address at Macalester's 109th commencement exercises.
2002: Macalester hires its first Dean of Multicultural Life to help "integrate the ethos and values of historically under-represented peoples, discourses, thoughts, and ideas as a catalyst for transforming the traditional ways of doing the work of the college into a more inclusive model."
2003: Macalester's faculty approve the creation of a new Department of American Studies: Comparative Racial Formations which connects programs of African American Studies and Comparative North American Studies. Also that year, Macalester becomes a founding member of and holds its inaugural event for Project Pericles, a not-for-profit organization that encourages commitments by colleges and universities to include social responsibility and participatory citizenship as an essential part of their educational programs, on campus and in the community.
2004: Macalester students contribute more than 50,000 hours to the community working at Habitat for Humanity, human service organizations, environmental and arts organizations and shelters. Students, staff and alumni also have "reading lunch buddies" at Linwood A+ Elementary School in St. Paul. Over the course of their college careers, 92 percent of Macalester students are involved in the community.
2005: President Brian Rosenberg announces the creation of an Institute for Global Citizenship after receiving a recommendation from a campus-wide committee which suggests creating a single, well-supported institutional unit to promote rigorous learning that prepares students for lives as "global citizen-leaders;" innovative scholarship that enriches the public and academic discourse on questions of global significance; and service that enhances such learning and scholarship while enriching the communities within which Macalester is embedded. Ahmed Samatar, James Wallace Professor and dean of International Studies and Programming is named dean, and Andrew Latham, associate professor, political science and Karin Trail-Johnson, assistant dean of students and director of the Community Service Office, are both named associate deans.
- During the past five years, more than half of Macalester students study abroad for a semester or more in over 63 countries.
- Nearly 200 students receive academic credit for supervised internships with local, national and international businesses and organizations each year.
- Macalester's U.S. students are from 49 states plus the District of Columbia. Of U.S. students, 18 percent are students of color. In all, 12 percent of Macalester students are international students from 78 countries.
- The college hires Jane Rhodes, the first Dean for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, whose charge is to play a major role in engaging the campus community as a whole in the exploration of race and ethnicity in the history and structure of U.S. society. In addition, the Dean attends to issues of race and ethnicity throughout the campus and curriculum.
In January, 21 students and seven staff members from Macalester
travel to Gulfport, Miss., to assist with hurricane relief efforts.
Later that year, New York Times columnist and Pulitzer Prize-winning
author Thomas L. Friedman and United Nations Secretary-General (Kofi)
Annan ('61) speak at Macalester as part of the inaugural events
of the Institute for Global Citizenship.