Virginia Military Institute
Virginia Military Institute (VMI), at Lexington state supported chartered and opened 1839 as the first state military college in the United States. Although one of the leading U.S. military institutions, it grants degrees in engineering, science, and the liberal arts. During the Civil War, the institute's corps of cadets served as a unit in the Confederate army under Gen. T. J. (Stonewall) Jackson. VMI excluded women from the corps of cadets into the 1990s. In 1995, a state-sponsored Virginia Women's Institute for Leadership was opened at Mary Baldwin College in Staunton, Va., as a parallel program for women after their exclusion from VMI was challenged in the courts. The U.S. Supreme Court, however, ruled (1996) that VMI, as a state-supported school, had to admit women. VMI did so in 1997, and two years later its first female cadets graduated.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: Colleges, U.S.
Browse by Subject
- Earth and the Environment +-
- History +-
- Literature and the Arts +-
- Medicine +-
- People +-
- Philosophy and Religion +-
- Places +-
- Australia and Oceania
- Britain, Ireland, France, and the Low Countries
- Commonwealth of Independent States and the Baltic Nations
- Germany, Scandinavia, and Central Europe
- Latin America and the Caribbean
- Oceans, Continents, and Polar Regions
- Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece, and the Balkans
- United States, Canada, and Greenland
- Plants and Animals +-
- Science and Technology +-
- Social Sciences and the Law +-
- Sports and Everyday Life +-