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Haverford College

Marian E. Koshland Integrated Natural Sciences Center

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About Marian E. Koshland

The Marian E. Koshland Integrated Science Center is named for Marian Elliott Koshland, a distinguished immunologist, and former member of the Board of Managers of Haverford College. Marian (Bunny) Koshland’s involvement with Haverford College began with the enrollment of two of her five children, James and Douglas, at Haverford in the 1970’s. James is currently a lawyer in San Francisco and Doug followed the family tradition and majored in the sciences. He is now a Howard Hughes Investigator and a well-respected geneticist at the Carnegie Institute. Both brothers met their future wives while studying at Haverford. Catherine Koshland, who is currently Chair of Haverford’s Board of Managers, majored in Fine Arts at Haverford. After Haverford, she studied Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, where she became the Wood-Calvert Professor of Engineering and the Vice Provost for Academic Planning & Facilities in the School of Public Health. Mary Porter, Doug’s wife was a Bryn Mawr student and, like Doug, majored in biology. She later switched to Landscape Architecture and directs capital improvement programs for Baltimore’s Parks and Recreation Department.

In 1982, Marian Koshland was elected to Haverford’s Board of Managers, on which she served for 14 years. A graduate of Vassar College, Marian Koshland was a proponent of the close faculty:student interactions and the opportunities for serious student research that accrue to young people enrolled at high quality liberal arts college. For much of her term on the Board of Managers, she was first a Member, and then the Chair of the Board’s Educational Affairs Committee. Professor Koshland was always a clear-eyed advocate of a serious research experience for every student at Haverford, and a wise and early proponent of blurring inter-disciplinary boundaries, particularly in the sciences. She was deeply involved in the educational activities of the institution and was admired and respected by those members of the faculty fortunate to know her. Professor Koshland was as interested and passionate about the arts and literature as she was about her beloved sciences. In 1995, Haverford College bestowed on her an honorary Doctor of Science degree.

At a Board meeting in the early 1990’s, Professor Koshland arranged to meet with a group of science faculty interested in promoting inter-disciplinary scientific research and education at Haverford. She invited them to argue for a new building which would house all of the sciences, and facilitate interactions among all of the science faculty and students. In this way, the concept of the KINSC was born and presented to the Koshland family, who responded with the key gifts enabling the construction of the building which proudly bears the Koshland name. Marian Koshland died in 1997. Her memory was still fresh in the minds of most science faculty at Haverford when, on September 28th 2001, Haverford College proudly celebrated the opening of the Koshland Integrated Science Center and honored the brilliant and thoughtful woman for whom it was named.