Skidmore History

PalamountainJoseph C. Palamountain, Jr.

Joseph C. Palamountain Jr., Skidmore's fourth president, took office in 1965. A political scientist with a doctorate from Harvard, Dr. Palamountain came to Skidmore from Wesleyan University, where he was provost. He guided Skidmore through a period of dynamic growth and change. Under his leadership, the development of the College's new physical plant progressed rapidly.

Dr. Palamountain's 22-year presidency was characterized by impressive growth in the academic and financial areas of the College. Skidmore experienced the doubling of the student body and major increases in applications; the near doubling of the faculty; the transition from a women's college to a coeducational institution; and the creation of one of the first external degree program in New York State, the University Without Walls.

During Dr. Palamountain's presidency there were two innovative curriculum changes and the chartering of a Phi Beta Kappa chapter. The financial health of Skidmore was bolstered by growth in the endowment and in the College's net worth, due in part to the launching of the $25-million Celebration Campaign in 1985.

Palamountain Hall is named in his honor.

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