CUNY Digital History Archive

CUNY Digital History Archive

A participatory project to collect and preserve the histories of the City University of New York — A work in progress
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"Free Speech Victory"

Published by the "Citizens Committee for Constitutional Liberties," this is a collection of news clippings featuring articles relating to free speech issues on CUNY college campuses in 1961. The committee had formed in opposition to the [...]

Press Release from Black and Puerto Rican Student Community

This press release, written by protesting black and Puerto Rican students at City College on April 26, 1969, offers insight into the group's motivation behind their protests in the preceding months. Arguing for CCNY to better serve its surrounding [...]

Newton Hall Statement

“We as white students, can either be a part of the solution or a part of the problem. At Huey P. Newton Hall of Political Action we are attempting to become a part of the solution.” In solidarity with black and Puerto Rican students, a group of [...]

Five Demands

This handout, created by a group of protesting City College students, offers insight into the motivations behind a campus-wide strike in April/May 1969. Black and Puerto Rican students, as well as white supporters, demanded the college meet these [...]

"A three-pronged experimental approach to the problem of undiscovered college potential among the young men and women of New York City"

This memorandum from Chancellor Bowker’s office called for three new forms of CUNY desegregation programs (pp. 1-2). This “three-pronged experiment” would be excused from CUNY’s general obligation to admit only students with the highest [...]

Minutes from 4/8/1965 CCNY Faculty Council Meeting

In these notes from a liberal arts and sciences faculty council meeting at City College, CCNY President Gallagher describes a tentative plan to admit 100 “disadvantaged” students into an experimental program in fall 1965. After discussion, the [...]

1967 - 1968 Annual Report of the SEEK Program

This is a CUNY-wide report for the SEEK program during the 1967-68 academic year. Included in the document is a cover letter from SEEK director Leslie Berger to CUNY Chancellor Albert Bowker, a table of contents, a list of SEEK administrators, and [...]

A New Role for Psychology: Working with Disadvantaged Persons in a College Setting

In this 10-page "position paper," Berger describes and offers a theoretical rationale for the central role of psychological counselors within SEEK. A handwritten note adds an additional source on page 10. Short for "Search for Education, Elevation, [...]

To Help Them Achieve: The Academic Talent Search Project 1966-68, Part II

In the Fall of 1964, (armed with a Rockefeller Foundation grant) Brooklyn College’s School of General Studies launched a 42 student pilot program using Bowker’s model, which it called the “Academic Talent Search Project” or “ATSP.” The [...]

The Pre Baccalaureate Program at the College

In this December 1966 City College Alumnus article, Leslie Berger publicly describes and advocates for the City College SEEK model and challenges all traditional college admissions criteria as incompetent measures of student potential. Short [...]

Statement of Professor John A. Davis

In this 1965 statement Professor John A. Davis demands that his colleagues at City College take action to increase minority representation at the school. He writes that two years had “passed since various units of City College have been [...]

Educational Opportunity Programs: Are They Academically Justifiable?

In this 22-page, July 1969 Milwaukee speech to the first annual conference on educational opportunity programs in higher education, Leslie Berger--director of CUNY's SEEK program--describes the birth and rapid growth of SEEK from 1965 to 1969; [...]

"Pre-Baccalaureate Program Student Statistics -- Fall Term 1965"

This early summary of the first semester of SEEK (then known as the Pre-Baccalaureate Program) details the courses, schedules and teachers for the 113 SEEK students in Fall 1965 at CCNY. These first SEEK students took a mix of mainstream and special [...]

"The Faculty Council Interim Report of the Committee on Enrollment Policy"

This April 1964 report shows the deep conflicts within the CCNY faculty with regards to expanding access to new students. Complaining about limited facilities and student unreadiness, the faculty committee resisted both loosening admissions [...]

United Federation of College Teachers: BMCC Chapter Newsletter, October 1966

This is the inaugural issue of the the newsletter of the BMCC chapter of the United Federation of College Teachers (UFCT), which would later be named The Gadfly. During the 1960s, the UFCT and the Legislative Conference were the two main [...]

The Gadfly, December 1966

This edition of  The Gadfly covers such topics as faculty compensation, "woefully inadequate" campus facilities, and BMCC's upcoming accreditation process. It also contains poetry, film reviews, and humorous pieces by faculty.The [...]

Medgar Evers College - The Pursuit of a Community's Dream

In this short book, Medgar Evers College: The Pursuit of a Community's Dream, CUNY retired professors Florence Tager and Zala Highsmith-Taylor tell the story of the founding of the college. As an institution born largely out of 1960s [...]

SEEK Matters, Spring 1969

SEEK Matters, a bilingual literary magazine produced by the SEEK University Center in 1969 published student essays, poems and illustrations that reflected their experiences. Short for "Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge," SEEK was [...]

"Open Letter to the Students and Faculty (Please Read Carefully)"

This is an open letter to Queens College students and faculty from the Ad Hoc Committee, a politically active group comprised of concerned faculty and student activists. The group, which held a multi-day sit-in in the Social Sciences Building in [...]

Student Coalition Rally & Peaceful Walk Through

Distributed by the Student Coalition, this handout demands that Queens College students be granted access to walk through the Social Sciences Building. The building, housing President McMurray's office, had been the site of student occupation since [...]

We Wont Take No For an Answer!!

Produced by the Ad Hoc Committee, a left group of student and faculty activists, this flier advertises a rally at Queens College's A Building on April 16, 1969. A New York Times article from the following day reported that 150 students took control [...]

Forum in the Dome

Created by the Ad Hoc Committee, a left group of student and faculty activists, this flier promotes a campus forum during Queens College's free hour on April 21, 1969. The group, protesting the administration's treatment of student and faculty [...]

42 QC Students Arrested on Campus

This flier calls for a rally on April 1st, 1969 against Queens College's decision to have city police clear a student demonstration on campus. Students from the college's Ad Hoc Committee and Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) chapter had led [...]

We Need Unity

Produced by the Ad Hoc Committee, a left-leaning student activist group at Queens College, this flier calls for a rally at the Dome on campus. Additionally, it calls for support at the Social Sciences (S.S.) Building. Just the day before this flier [...]

"Answer Back / Don't Strike"

Another anti-protest flier, this one again calls for students to attend class instead of striking. It features a quote from an "Ad Hoc 'Sympathizer'," a member of the group largely responsible for much of the ongoing disruption on campus.

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