Why Lyons?

Paws Mount Holyoke's nickname, the Lyons, is in tribute to the College's founder, Mary Lyon. In 1837, Mary Lyon founded the Mount Holyoke Female Seminary, which has since become Mount Holyoke College. Lyon created a worldwide model of higher education for women that set Mount Holyoke apart from other female seminaries of the time. She instituted a curriculum equivalent to those at men's colleges, kept the cost of tuition low, and maintained independence from religious affiliations or wealthy sponsors, instead forming a board of trustees to help Mount Holyoke succeed and endure. In 1834, before founding Mount Holyoke, Lyon was a consultant and visiting instructor at the Wheaton Female Seminary, now known as Wheaton College. Wheaton, which is also a member of the NEWMAC, uses Lyon's name for its nickname, as well. Mount Holyoke's mascot is named Paws.