April 8, 1917|
Sioux City, Iowa
|Died||October 19, 2007
Poughkeepsie (town), New York
|Fields||Mathematics, computer science|
|Alma mater||Vassar College
University of Iowa
Winifred "Tim" Alice Asprey (April 8, 1917 – October 19, 2007) was an American mathematician and computer scientist. She was one of only around 200 women to earn PhDs in mathematics from American universities during the 1940s, a period of women's underrepresentation in mathematics at this level. She was involved in developing the close contact between Vassar College and IBM that led to the establishment of the first computer science lab at Vassar.
Asprey was born in Sioux City, Iowa; her parents were Gladys Brown Asprey, Vassar class of 1905, and Peter Asprey Jr. She had two brothers, actinide and fluorine chemist Larned B. Asprey (1919–2005), a signer of the Szilárd petition, and military historian and writer Robert B. Asprey (1923–2009) who dedicated several of his books to his sister Winifred.
Education and work
Asprey earned MS and PhD degrees from the University of Iowa in 1942 and 1945, respectively. She taught mathematics and computer science at Vassar for 38 years, chairing the mathematics department by 1957, until her retirement in 1982. In 1963, she started the computer science curriculum at Vassar and in 1967 helped Vassar become the second college in the nation to acquire an IBM System/360 computer.
- Margaret Anne Marie Murray (2001). Women Becoming Mathematicians: Creating a Professional Identity in Post-World War II America. MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-63246-2.
- "Winifred "Tim" Asprey, computer pioneer and longtime professor at Vassar College, dies at 90". Vassar Office of College Relations.
- "Dr. Larned "Larry" Brown Asprey". Obituaries. Albuquerque Journal. March 11, 2005.
- "New College Receives Gift from Estate of Robert B. Asprey". New College of Florida. June 15, 2009.
- "Winifred Asprey: Into the Future". Vassar Office of College Relations.
- "Scientists in the News". Science (American Association for the Advancement of Science) 125 (3257): 1080. 1957. doi:10.1126/science.125.3257.1077. JSTOR 1752434.
- Oral history interview at Computing Educators Oral History Project (CEOHP)
- Profile at Vassar College Innovators Gallery
- Winifred Asprey Papers at Vassar College Archives and Special Collections Library
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