History with Chuck: CHS’ Class of 1974 ‘tops in the nation’ | Two grads seeing professional success: Dr. Brenda Silver (1960) and Dr. Paul Spiewak (1997)

Pictured above are 16 of the 24 National Merit Finalist Scholars from Cheltenham High School’s 1974 graduating class.

According to local historian Chuck Langerman, the class also had 43 Letter of Commendation Winners for a total of 67 nationally recognized students, “tops in the nation in 1974 among all high schools,” according to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.

The Class of 1974’s Facebook Group can be found here.

Dr. Brenda Silver

Dr. Silver grew, a 1960 graduate, grew up on Woodlawn Avenue in the Melrose Park section of Cheltenham Township, according to Langerman.

She went on to major in English at the University of Pennsylvania, and is now the Mary Brinsmead Wheelock Professor of English Emerita at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.

At Dartmouth, Professor Silver was instrumental in the founding of the women and gender studies. She came to Dartmouth in 1972, the year women first matriculated as four-year students at the College.

She crafted the English Department course “Women and Literature: A Feminist Perspective” and was one of the founders of the women studies program. She also taught courses on 20th Century British Fiction, Postmodern Fiction, Popular Fiction, Cyberculture, and the author Virginia Woolf.

Dr. Silver has published widely on Virginia Woolf and on contemporary literary and cultural narratives.

Dr. Paul Spiewak

Dr. Spiewak, a 1997 graduate and Methacton High School’s (Collegeville) head baseball coach, saw his 300th career win last month and went on to coach the Warriors to the Pioneer Athletic Conference title.

He is also an assistant principal at the high school.

At Cheltenham High, he was named to the Philadelphia Inquirer’s All-Southeastern Pennsylvania Baseball First Team in 1996 and 1997. In his junior and senior seasons, Spiewak compiled a 15-2 pitching record. He was 7-1 in 1997 with a 1.20 ERA, according to Langerman.

For all the latest news, follow us on Facebook or sign up for Glenside Local’s “Daily Buzz” newsletter here.