The year 1895 saw the inauguration of the two new schools to which lay students would be admitted, the School of Philosophy and the School of Social Sciences. Three African American male students from the District of Columbia were admitted to the new programs. One of these students, William Tecumseh Sherman Jackson, had earned his baccalaureate degree at Amherst College. He was the first student to be awarded the degree of Bachelor of Social Science on December 8, 1896. Along with his fellow students, Jackson is reported to have played football here at the old athletic field.
Jackson went on to teach at the M Street School, later renamed Paul Laurence Dunbar High School after the African American poet and playwright. Jackson taught mathematics and coached sports at the school for 38 years, serving as principal at the school from 1906-1909.