Girton College

college of the University of Cambridge

Girton College is one of the 31 constituent colleges of the University of Cambridge. The college was established in 1869 by Emily Davies, Barbara Bodichon, and Lady Stanley of Alderley as the first women's college in Cambridge. In 1948, it was granted full college status by the university, marking the official admittance of women to the university. In 1976, it was the first Cambridge women's college to become coeducational. The main College site, situated on the outskirts of the village of Girton, about 2.5 miles (4 km) northwest of the university town, comprises 33 acres (13.4 ha) of land. In a typical Victorian red brick design, most was built by architect Alfred Waterhouse between 1872 and 1887. It provides extensive sports facilities, an indoor swimming pool, an award-winning library and a chapel with two organs. There is an accommodation annexe, known as Swirles Court, situated in the Eddington neighborhood of the North West Cambridge development. Swirles opened in 2017 and provides up to 325 en-suite single rooms for graduates, and for second-year undergraduates and above. The College's formal governance is led by a Mistress, Susan J. Smith, who has held the position since 2009. The College has several equal-access admittance schemes. It has a reputation for musical talent. Several art collections are held on the main site, including People's Portraits, the millennial exhibition of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, and an Egyptian collection containing the world's most reproduced portrait mummy. Among Girton's notable alumni are Queen Margrethe II of Denmark, UK Supreme Court President Lady Hale, HuffPost co-founder Arianna Huffington, the comedian/author Sandi Toksvig, the comedian/broadcaster/GP Phil Hammond, the economist Joan Robinson, and the anthropologist Marilyn Strathern, also Mistress from 1998 to 2009. Its sister college is Somerville College, one of the first two women's colleges of Oxford.
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