About Clark

Jonas Clark Hall

Historical Timeline

By decade
1880 | 1890 | 1900 | 1910 |1920 | 1930 | 1940 | 1950 | 1960 | 1970 | 1980 | 1990 | 2000 | 2010


1990 - 1999


The recycling center opens. Operated by student employees and volunteers, the recycling center diverts an average of 200 tons of material every year. In 2011, 29% of the University's waste stream was recycled as commodities, while 49% was diverted from landfills or incinerators.

Former President Gerald Ford addresses the Clark student body about the Iraqi crisis and global issues in Atwood Hall on September 12.


Higgins University Center, named for former Clark trustee and philanthropist Alice B. Higgins, opens. In addition to Tilton Hall, the Center contains a post office, lounge, dining and craft facilities, seven conference rooms, a game room with pool tables and video games, and a roof garden patio.

The Jacob Hiatt Center for Urban Education is established. The Hiatt center focuses on urban teacher preparation; professional learning and leadership development; curriculum, teaching and assessment practices that support learning for diverse children; and University-school collaborative research.

The George Perkin Marsh Institute is established to build on the results of the 1987 Clark Symposium "The Earth as Transformed by Human Action" by examining human-environment relationships across a wide range of themes, including the human dimensions of global environmental change and the development and application of geographic information systems.

The first annual Academic Spree Day is held. A showcase for undergraduate research and creative activities, Academic Spree day has since become the highlight of the academic year.


The Ph.D. program in Women's Studies is established. The first doctorates in Women's Studies are conferred in 1998.


Clark's Accelerated B.A./Master' Degree Fifth-Year-Free program begins, giving students the opportunity to earn a bachelor's and master's degree in five years with the fifth year tuition-free.

John F. Kennedy Jr., son of the late president Kennedy, addresses the student body on the topic of political involvement.

MIT linguistics professor Noam Chomsky addresses the Clark community on the subject of human rights.


The University's decade-long commitment to improving the quality of life for the residents of Main South is formalized under the University Park Partnership (UPP). Clark is awarded $2.4 million in federal grant money for the University Park Neighborhood Restoration Project. Since then, UPP has emerged as a national model for university/community partnerships working toward urban renewal, encompassing public safety, economic development, physical renovation, education and recreational activities.

James and Ada B. Bickman Fitness Center opens in the Kneller Athletic Center.

The first annual Salute to Faculty Scholars is held to celebrate faculty research and creative work.


Clark is named one of 40 colleges featured in Loren Pope's book, "Colleges That Change Lives."

Clark's College of Professional and Continuing Education establishes a graduate-level branch campus in Israel. Campuses in Poland (2004) and Russia (2008) follow.


The Francis A. Harrington house is dedicated, marking the removal of Clark's presidential residence back to campus and reaffirming Clark's commitment to the neighborhood.

Clark confers the first Fiat Lux awards on John Cardinal O'Connor, U.S. Representative Tom Lantos and Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel. The award, which takes its name from Clark's motto "let there be light," honors individuals who have shown exceptional leadership in increasing humankind's understanding of issues crucial to the 21st century. Fiat Lux awards would be presented to Nobel Peace Prize winner Jody Williams in 1998 and President Rexhep Meidani of the Republic of Albania in 2000.

Clark and the Worcester Public Schools partner to open the University Park Campus School (UPCS), a full-fledged, Worcester Public School for 7th–12th grade children in Clark's Main South neighborhood. UPCS graduates are eligible to attend the University tuition-free if they meet Clark admissions requirements.


The Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies opens, offering the first Ph.D. program in the United States for the study of the Holocaust and genocide. Cohen-Lasry House opens one year later as the Center’s permanent home. The House includes the Rose Library with its collection of Holocaust-related books. In 1994 David Strassler, Chairman of Clark University's Board of Trustees, had provided a generous gift to support scholarships. 1995, Ralph and Sidney Rose, had made a generous gift to establish the Rose professorship in Holocaust Studies and Modern Jewish History and Culture.


A refurbished Dana Commons opens. The building now houses a new student union and the Mary McLeod Bethune Intercultural Center.

Fun Facts


A statue of Sigmund Freud, commemorating the famous psychoanalyst's visit to Clark, is installed in Red Square. The sculpture was created by Robert Shure, whose works include the Boston Irish Famine Memorial, the Korean War Monument in the Charlestown Navy Yard and the giant teddy bear in front of the F.A.O. Schwarz store in Boston's Back Bay.