Fencing was introduced in 1949 by Madeleine Fried, then director of women's physical education. She organized the first fencing clinic in the Midwest, which continued annually. In the December 7, 1951 issue of the Chips, Jane Johnson the fencing chairman stated that the purpose of the fencing clinic was "to promote interest and further knowledge of foil fencing to this section of the Midwest." The 1951 clinic included lectures on "The History of Fencing," "Why Fencing Should Be Included in the Curriculum," "Basic Techniques of Fencing," and "Care and Selection of Equipment." Speakers from the University of Illinois and the Fencer's Club of Chicago were also part of the 1951 program. The 1952 clinic included delegations from Grinnell College, Gustavus Adolphus College, La Crosse State College, Waldorf Junior College, the state universities of Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa, and even high schools from Anamosa, Elkader, Zumbrota, and Decorah.