About Emerald Rose McKenzie ’52
Emerald Rose McKenzie was one of the first African American women to graduate from Bard. Originally from Nassau in the British West Indies, McKenzie grew up in Brooklyn and went to a school for the blind. She attended Bard College on a full scholarship, majoring in sociology and anthropology. She is remembered by her fellow students as being a beacon of courage and ambition in the face of adversity and for her selfless concern for others. McKenzie became a senior caseworker at the Jewish Guild for the Blind. McKenzie and her Seeing Eye dog, Karen, were a familiar sight on campus during the early 1950s, and her legacy lives on in the annual Emerald Rose McKenzie ’52 Scholarship. The scholarship, established by classmates as part of the 1998 celebration of “Fifty Years of Women at Bard College,” is awarded to students who display a strong commitment to humanitarian ideals.
About David Ungvary
His research centers on intersections of religion, reading, and writing during the Dark Ages, with a special focus on the ways Romans used spiritual literature to reckon with the fall of the Roman Empire. He earned his BA from Duke; MSt from Corpus Christi College, Oxford; and a PhD in medieval Latin from Harvard.
From the Archives
McKenzie, seen here with her seeing-eye dog, Karen, lost her vision as a young girl. Gross acted as McKenzie’s “reader” throughout their shared time at Bard. Photograph by David Brook.