The University’s first athletic programs consisted exclusively of men’s varsity and junior varsity teams. However in the fall of 1922, Lillias MacDonald, the newly appointed Dean of Women, helped to established a physical education program for women at UB which included the Women’s Athletic Association (WAA). The WAA, run by a student governing council, developed a foundation for UB women’s athletics that “would be strong enough to stand the test of time” (1923 Iris yearbook).
In 1923 Gretchen Lee became Director of the Clark Gymnasium and Physical Education Instructor often coaching women’s athletics.
In the 1940’s women around Clark Hall–the University’s main gymnasium at the time–were known as “PEWs,” or Physical Education Women.