Bertha Hendricks & Minerva Weinberger

With the 13th commencement, Hendricks and Weinberger made their mark in Bear history, becoming the first female graduates.

Bertha Hendricks (pictured) and Minerva Weinberger were two of 10 students who graduated from Ursinus College in June 1884. Hendricks was admitted one year after Weinberger; however, the two graduated together. Weinberger was the class valedictorian, and she delivered the valedictory address titled “Dreams” at their commencement ceremony.  

But I believe that the real purpose of the college today is to train students to meet with intelligence the problems of their world, just as my Alma Mater, many decades ago, prepared me for the world in which I have been living. 

— Bertha (Hendricks) Wehler


Excerpt from “Commencement Day” in Ursinus College Bulletin, July 1960


For alma mater let us cheer,

Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!

Ursinus, alma mater, dear,

Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!

She reigns supreme without a peer,

Where Perkiomen flows so clear,

Queen over all the valley, here,

Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah!

— Minerva Weinberger

Excerpt from Ursinus Song “Queen of the Valley” in  Ursinus College Bulletin, May 1888