Paul Swain Havens



Paul Swain Havens


Wilson College Presidents


Born: Lawrenceville, New Jersey Sept. 19, 1903
Died: August 22, 1980
Inauguration: May 22, 1937 at age of 33 (one of the youngest college presidents in the country)
Resignation: 1970
Education: Princeton University (valedictorian), member of Phi Beta Kappa, Rhodes Scholar studied at Oxford from 1925-1928 and earned his doctorate there. Received honorary degrees from: Washington and Jefferson College, Dickinson College, Moore Institute of Arts, Lafayette College, and Wilson College. Taught at Princeton, assistant professor at Scripps College.
Mother Elizabeth Swain Havens was graduate of class of 1895 at Wilson
40% increase in faculty
Improvement of faculty benefits (tenure, pension)
Establishment of funds to bring distinguished visitors on campus
Establishment of president’s and other prizes to encourage and recognize high student scholastic achievement
Expansion of JSMLibrary
Increase of student body from 418 to 741 (all time high at that time)
Increase in number of courses offered (American Civilization, Asian Studies, Fine Arts, phys ed including dance, elementary education program)
Introduction of Parents Weekend in 1941
Appointment of students to administrative and faculty committees
Introduction of campus bookstore
Establishment of Placement Office
Increase in available financial aid
Establishment of Development Office
Tenfold increase in endowment
Addition of 15 buildings: Prentis, Davison, Disert, McElwain, and Rosenkrans dorms; Laird Hall; Sharpe House; French, German, and Spanish houses; 2 fine arts studios; JSML wing; storage buildings; Science Center
Acquisition of campus property for a total of 101 acres
Led through WWII
Establishment of Public Relations Office
Establishment of Phi Beta Kappa in 1950
Celebration of Wilson’s Centennial


VIP files


C. Elizabeth Boyd '33 Archives, Wilson College




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“Paul Swain Havens,” Hankey Center & C. Elizabeth Boyd '33 Archives, accessed March 30, 2020,