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Abstract provided by interviewer Madeline Hunt.

Dana Pemberton attended Abilene Christian University from 1977-1981 and received two masters degrees, one in education and the other in ministry. She left after graduation to pursue life goals that were not ideally expected of her. In doing so she found herself back at ACU and worked her way up to being the department chair of the Education Department here at ACU. The social environment shifted from what it was like in the 1970/80s to be more inclusive and tackle the hard questions being presented by the student body and student policy handbook. Dr. Pemberton highlights what gender roles were like in her time as a student and how she dealt with the differences and conformities and now how her students have adapted to the changing social roles.

This interview serves as a primary source of what the ACU atmosphere was like in the early 1980s for a young woman attending in hopes of pursuing her career. The interview focuses on subjects such as gender roles, social roles, marriage, sexuality, inclusivity, and difficult questions.


The ACC/ACU Gender and Sexuality Project preserves firsthand accounts of alumni of Abilene Christian College (later Abilene Christian University), with particular attention to how students, faculty, and staff have experienced issues of gender and sexuality during their time at the institution. The collection began in Fall 2019 as a class project in HIST 340, Historical Perspectives on Gender and Sexualities.