The Katharine Houghton Hepburn Center challenges women to lead publicly engaged lives and to take on important and timely issues affecting women. The Center honors four-time-Oscar-winning actress Katharine Hepburn and her mother, an early feminist activist, both Bryn Mawr College alumnae who defied conventions. Drawing its focus from the life work of its namesakes—film and theater, civic engagement and women's health—the Center inspires Bryn Mawr students and graduates to make a meaningful impact on the world.
Bryn Mawr College was named the only organization authorized to commemorate the life and achievements of screen legend Katharine Hepburn, Class of 1928, by her family and the executors of her estate. In keeping with Miss Hepburn's wishes, the Center also recognizes her mother, Katharine Houghton Hepburn, Class of 1900, an early suffragist and family-planning advocate.
The Katharine Houghton Hepburn Center at Bryn Mawr College was established to honor the adventurous and bold spirit of the Houghton Hepburn women and to inspire future generations of women to challenge conventions, just as they did.
The Center's launch was celebrated with a series of special events at Bryn Mawr and the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, Philadelphia, on Sept. 8 and 9, 2006.
The center includes three programming elements: the Hepburn Fellows Program, which will bring to Bryn Mawr's campus individuals who bridge academics and practice in nontraditional ways in any of the three thematic areas; the Hepburn Summer Internships, enabling students to obtain practical experience in one of the Center's mission areas; and the Hepburn Medal, which recognizes women whose lives, work and contributions embody the intelligence, drive and independence of the four-time-Oscar-winning actress.