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When Mary Lyon founded her school for girls in 1837, she avoided the word college because the "benevolent gentlemen" whose support she needed might not approve. Mount Holyoke "seminary" eventually did become a college, and several gentlemen became its president. Now, after 41 years, Holyoke is again to be headed by a woman: Elizabeth Kennan, 39, an associate professor of history and director of medieval and Byzantine studies at Catholic University in Washington, D.C. A Holyoke alumna, Kennan believes that only in women's colleges can women develop the strength to deal with the "crosscutting responsibilities of family life." As a wife...

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