Kansas State University


Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies

Dick and Sandra Haines establish new fund


The Haines Daughters Women’s Studies Pioneering Excellence Fund honors the memory of three of Dick Haines’ great-aunts, who came to Kansas as children with their parents as part of the battle to bring Kansas into the Union as a free rather than a slave state. During the Civil War, the sisters were in the first enrolling classes at Kansas State Agricultural College: Isabella (Belle) Mary Haines (left) was a teacher in the Preparatory Department as well as a student, earning a Bachelor of Arts in 1867 and a Master of Arts in 1871; Laura Emma Haines began at age 14 and also graduated in 1867, and earned her Master’s degree in 1871; Theophania Maria Haines Huntington graduated in 1872; and Phoebe Ellen (Eva) Haines McKeen graduated in 1883, and earned a Master’s degree in 1887. Generations of Haines descendants followed these women in graduating from Kansas State University.

Mr. Haines says that he wanted to name the fund after his great-aunts “because of their foresight in obtaining an education and other rights at a time when women were denied these rights. Emma in particular, in her address given at the Semi-Centennial Address of the College (in October 1913) talked about getting Lucy Stone, Susan B. Anthony, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton to talk at Kansas State University. I admired them!” The decision to benefit the department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies was based on the Haines’ conviction that the department “is at the forefront of educating people about things that are important. It is a great place to invest in the future.”  Dick Haines says, “I was interested to learn there are men in women’s studies. The department doesn’t have a sex. “

Dick Haines graduated from K-State in Journalism in 1958, and was editor of the K-Stater Magazine, and Director of University Publications from 1967-1978. Sandra Smerchek Haines graduated in 1958 with a B.S. in music and went on to earn master’s degrees in music, and psychology and guidance.

Our department is deeply appreciative of this gift. Because it is unrestricted, it allows the department to direct funds where there is greatest need. Particularly in the context of university and departmental budgets cut over the past four years, gifts like this one that support student and faculty needs are an amazing boon.  The Haines are endowing the fund over five years, and income will soon be available for departmental use.


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