Over the last decade, an average of 20% of each graduating class of Vivian Webb School has matriculated to a women’s college. This isn’t surprising news inside the Webb community. However, according to a recent in-house study completed by Wellesley College, Vivian Webb has the greatest percentage of girls matriculating to women’s colleges of any girls’ school in the United States.
Webb’s director of college guidance, Hector Martinez, is partly to blame, or better said to be applauded. Martinez requires every Vivian Webb student to consider at least one women’s college on their final college list. Why? “We are lucky in this country to have this remarkably robust and unique cadre of women’s college—Wellesley, Barnard, Bryn Mawr, Smith, Scripps, Mount Holyoke, and others—they are educating young women in the most dynamic and engaging ways. These colleges educate women inside the classroom and out for leadership roles in government, business, the professions and beyond—such women as Hillary Clinton, Madeleine Albright, Marian Wright Edelman, Gloria Steinem and so on. And they love Vivian Webb graduates for sure,” said Martinez.
According to the Women’s College Coalition (, member schools showed remarkably well in the 2017 U.S News & World Report Best College Rankings Report—29 of 39 within the membership ranked in the top tier of several national and regional categories: Wellesley #3, Smith #12, Scripps #23, Barnard #27, Bryn Mawr #31 among national liberal arts colleges.
“Just like our founder Thompson Webb, our trustee leadership has always asked and answered the right questions. In this case, in 1981 when Vivian Webb School was founded, they asked themselves how could we offer girls the best education possible. The answer wasn’t to make Webb School of California co-ed. It was to create a whole new and singular model—a coordinate structure where a single-gender to co-ed continuum would allow both boys and girls to grow and succeed in and out of the classroom. They created twice the leadership opportunities, and so much more,” said Taylor Stockdale, Head of Schools.
“Year after year I’m in touch with Vivian Webb graduates who have matriculated to women’s colleges and they are among the most engaged, ambitious and happiest of all our young alumni,” Martinez said.
Hoping to contribute to the future growth and advancement of all women’s colleges, Martinez has been invited to join a new Presidential Advisory Group led by Bryn Mawr President, Kimberly Wright Cassidy, in Pennsylvania.
Revisit our WEBB magazine feature here: “On Our Own: Women’s Colleges in the 21st Century.”

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