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Home Economics at Oregon State

Notable Students

  • Home Economics field trip to Baby's Boudoir retail storeDorothy Sherill Miller (c. 1920):  Formerly on Home Management staff at Oregon State, serving as an Assistant Professor of Home Management from 1954-1964 and 1966-1968.


  • LeVelle Wood (Bachelor of Science in Home Economics, 1921):  Instructor at the Oregon Normal School in Monmouth, Oregon, Assistant Professor of Institutional Home Economics at Kansas State College, member of the Red Cross, and retired as Professor and Chairman of the Division of Institutional Management in the School of Home Economics at the Ohio State University in1966.


  • Gladys Miller (Bachelors of Science in Home Economics, 1922):  Senior Honor student and future nationally recognized authority on home furnishings.


  • Vera Haskell Brandon (Bachelors of Science in Home Economics and Vocational Education, 1927; Masters of Science in Household Administration, 1929): After completing her master's thesis, "Survey of the Children's Woman riding exercise bikefarm home of the Oregon Woman's Christian temperance union, located near Corvallis, Oregon," she went on to be an instructor, and eventually dean of Home Economics at Oregon State.  She worked at Oregon State from 1928-1956.


  • Mabel Mack (Bachelor of Science in Home Economics, 1928; Master of Science in Home Management with minors in Foods and Nutrition and Home Economics Extension, 1940):  When she completed her Bachelors, she became a home demonstration agent.  She later returned to Oregon State to complete her studies with a thesis entitled: "A study of the kitchen sink center in relation to home management."  In 1943, she took a leave of absence to work with the Federal Cooperative Nutrition project during the World War Two, and was made Assistant State Supervisor a year later.  In 1945, she transferred back to the extension project in home management, where she supervised the activity of emergency assistants.  She was appointed to the instructional staff of the School of Home Economics in 1956 on a part-time basis to assist in teaching coursework on home economics extension. In 1963, she announced her retirement. Her friends and colleagues declared this date an “important one in the history of the Extension service as it marks the termination of a distinguished career in Extension from both state and national standpoints.” 


  • Pauline Paul (Bachelors of Arts in Home Economics, 1935):  After graduating as a Senior Honor student, Paul went on to complete a doctor of philosophy at Iowa State and work for Swift and Company in their home economics research department.Home Economics Students


  • Mercedes Bates (Food and Nutrition, 1936): In 1967, Bates was appointed the Vice President of the General Mills Betty Crocker Division, becoming the first female corporate officer of General Mills. Bates created the Mercedes A. Bates Family Study Center in 1992, the first center to study entire lifespans of families. She received the Distinguished Service Award and Distinguished Alumni Award.


  • E. Soon Choi (Masters of Household Administration, 1938):  Dean of Women and Professor of Home Economics at Yon Sei University in Korea.


  • Jean Starker Roth (Home Economics, 1942):  She worked for seven years as a teacher and Extension staffer, and also supported the war effort at Camp Adair and elsewhere. In 1948 she married Kermit Roth.  After Kermit's death in 1979, Jean assumed control of the family's business activities while also giving back generously to the community and to her alma mater.  We have an oral history interview with Jean Roth available online.


Food preparation class

  • Ellen "Roxie" Howlett (1945):  Accounting Director of Infoplan in San Francisco.  She co-founded the Howlett and Gaines Public Relations firm in Portland.



  • Karen Johnson Pardoe (Bachelor of Science in Home Economics, 1961):  Personnel manager at Neiman-Marcus and named one of the "Outstanding Young Women in America" in 1967.  She would go on to serve as administrator for the planning and design division for construction of new stores and remodeling.



  • Tritia Toyota (Home Economics and Communications, 1969): After graduating from OSU, Toyota went on to complete a masters of journalism from UCLA in 1970.  She became a reporter-anchor with KNBC in Los Angeles and a local favorite.