List of Swarthmore College people

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The following is a list of notable people associated with Swarthmore College, a private, independent, liberal arts college located in the borough of Swarthmore, Pennsylvania.

Nobel laureates[edit]

Listed chronologically by year of the award.

Name Degree/year Award category/year Reason Nobel profile
Christian B. Anfinsen B.S., 1937, chemistry Chemistry, 1972 Ribonuclease/amino acid sequence research [1]
David Baltimore B.S., 1960, chemistry Physiology or Medicine, 1975 Discovery of reverse transcriptase [2]
Howard Martin Temin B.S., 1955, biology Medicine, 1975 Research on tumor viruses' effect on genetic cellular material [2]
Edward C. Prescott B.A., 1962, mathematics Economics, 2004 Real business cycle theory [3]
John C. Mather B.S., 1968, physics Physics, 2006 Discovery of the black body form and anisotropy of the cosmic microwave background radiation [4]

MacArthur Fellows[edit]

Listed chronologically by year of the grant.

Name Degree/year/major Field Year Work
Philip Curtin B.A., 1948, history History 1983 Johns Hopkins University professor; researcher of Caribbean/African history and comparative history
John J. Hopfield B.A., 1954, physics Molecular biology 1983 Princeton University professor; computational neurobiology, computing network researcher
Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot B.A., 1966, psychology Sociology/education 1984 Emily Hargroves Fisher Professor of Education at Harvard University; researches education, socialization; developed portraiture approach
Jane S. Richardson B.A., 1968, philosophy Biochemistry 1985 Duke University biochemistry professor; proteins researcher, especially three-dimensional structure and means of formation
Michael Schudson B.A., 1969 Journalism and Sociology 1990 Columbia University journalism professor
David Page B.A., 1978, chemistry Biology/medicine 1986 MIT biology professor; director of Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research; sequenced the Y-chromosome
Ellen M. Barry B.A., 1975 Criminology/penology 1998 Prison reform advocate; founder of Legal Services for Prisoners with Children and the National Network for Women in Prison
Rebecca J. Nelson B.A./B.S., 1982 Plant pathology 1998 Researcher of molecular genetics, crop disease, and crop management; professor of plant pathology at Cornell University
Christopher F. Chyba B.A., 1982, physics Science/international security 2001 Princeton University professor; co-director of Stanford University's Center for International Security and Cooperation; former science, technology, and national security adviser to the Clinton administration
Tara Zahra B.A., 1998, history and economics History 2014 University of Chicago professor; European history author; Harvard Society Fellow

List of alumni[edit]

Listed in alphabetical order by surname.


Arts, film, theatre, and broadcasting[edit]





Humanities and law[edit]

Natural science, medicine, and engineering[edit]

Politics and government[edit]




Writers, journalists, and publishers[edit]

College leadership[edit]


Notable professors[edit]

Current faculty[edit]

Former faculty[edit]

National awards and honors (since the 1970s)[edit]