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Slessor Hall

Named for Mary Slessor, a missionary to Nigeria, this building was originally Fuller Seminary's first women’s dormitory. A variety of offices have been under this roof over the decades, and it currently houses the Fuller Leadership Platform and the office of the president.

“I wanted to share a perhaps trivial memory, but one that has stayed with me in the 30-odd years since I graduated from Fuller and went on to become professor of Old Testament and Biblical Languages at the McAfee School of Theology at Mercer University, following in the footsteps of the beloved Fred Bush. I cannot remember the names of the streets, but at the point where the two intersected on the campus stood a house. On its top floor, those of us graduate assistants who taught Hebrew and Greek gathered and prepared our lectures and commiserated. It was pre-computer days, so we used electric typewriters and changed out the ‘typing balls’ to suit our needs for Hebrew and Greek fonts. How far we have come! But those were memorable days, days that cemented in me a great desire to serve the church by encouraging students to love Hebrew and the Old Testament. I shall miss visiting the Pasadena campus when I am in Southern California, as I often have when I have passed through.”
– Nancy (MAT '85)

“June 1973 - I arrived on campus ready to take Summer Greek with Dr. William LaSor. I hadn't given it much thought but I would be one of 12 women students living on campus that year. Being the first to arrive well before the fall quarter, I had my choice of rooms in Mary Slessor Hall. I chose the room facing front with the bay window on the second floor, with a lovely view of workers tearing up Oakland Avenue in order to create a lovely mall for students to walk without traffic streaming right through the middle of campus.

The room had a visible layer of dust and dirt and since I had the time, I started washing and eventually painting the walls a lovely sage green. Then I convinced a local store to give me a remnant of bright turquoise carpet for the floor. Yes, it was the 70s and crazy colors were still acceptable. There were no cooking facilities in Slessor; I was given a key to Payton Hall so that I could store and prepare some food if need be. I was thrilled when the Refectory opened in the fall.

I felt quite resourceful about making my room at Slessor feel like home. We eventually had more women move in to the building and enjoyed good fellowship there. We were a mere dozen single ladies among the 800 male students. We would prank each other quite a bit. My claim to fame was organizing a break-in through a first-story window of a guy friend's room across Oakland Avenue, and moving his furniture to the locked foyer of Payton Hall. That key came in very handy! I can still see his face when he saw his bed, nightstand, and chest of drawers on display like an IKEA setup under the spotlights.”
– Luisa Segato Johnson (’82)

“In the summer of 1972 I was enrolled in the 12-week summer Greek class. Women students (even the 23 year olds!) were not ‘allowed’ to live off campus. I took up residence in a large room with no access to kitchen facilities. I prepared food in a toaster oven, washed dishes in the bathroom, and had access to a fridge in the stairwell. I ate so many Subway sandwiches that I cannot face them to this day. When Pasadena was sweltering, I carried a pad of blankets to the fire escape and slept there.

I lived in that space for one academic year before moving across I-210 for shared rent with Beth Frykberg. By then I had painted the room a very hard-to-paint-over blue in a passive aggressive message to the administration that women students should be treated equally to their male counterparts.

That space would become Paul Jewett's office with his fantastic octagonal desk. Dr. Jewett was a great advocate for women students (there were three in my class!). Had I known what a problem that blue paint would be and the match-up with Paul, I might have made a different decision. I was delighted to come back in 2012 and visit with Dr. Shuster in another office in that building, one of the other women in the class of 1975.”
– Cinda Gorman (’75)

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As you share your memory, be as specific as possible: What building were you in? Who were you with? What geographic details still stick with you today? The more concrete and descriptive the memory you share, the more the Fuller community can enjoy this moment with you.