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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Oral History Interview with Stuart Schaar

This interview with Stuart Schaar, Professor Emeritus of Middle East History at Brooklyn College, was conducted by Douglas Medina for his research on Open Admissions at CUNY. Stuart Schaar was raised in the Bronx and attended the City College of [...]

Oral History Interview with Khadija DeLoache

Khadija DeLoache entered City College in the fall of 1966 with support from the CUNY Seek program. In this oral history, DeLoache discusses growing up in Harlem, her experience as a student activist, and the development of the Black Studies [...]

Oral History Interview with Henry Arce

In this interview conducted about CUNY’s Open Admissions program, Arce describes his journey from the NYC Public School system to graduating from college. He credits his mother, who raised him alone in a Puerto Rican, immigrant community, for [...]

Oral History Interview with Allen Ballard

This oral history interview was conducted on April 4, 2014 at SUNY Albany. Allen Ballard grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and arrived at the City College of New York in 1960 as an assistant professor of Political Science. He was one of the [...]

Oral History Interview with Blanche Wiesen Cook

Blanche Wiesen Cook, Eleanor Roosevelt biographer, grew up in the Bronx and Queens, and attended Hunter College as an undergraduate when it was an all female school. She treasured her time learning from Ruth Weintraub and Mina Rees, whom she [...]

Statement of Policy by the Board of Higher Education

This "statement of policy", attached to the minutes from a meeting of the Board of Higher Education on July 9, 1969, reflects the culmination of negotiations between college officials and protesting City College students. The students, most of whom [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

A Proposal for the Establishment of Community College Number Seven

This proposal for the founding of Community College Number Seven (later named Medgar Evers College) was put forward by the Board of Higher Education in November 1967. In this excerpt (pages 11-15), the Board establishes their desire to place a new [...]

Minutes of Proceedings: Establishing Community College Number Seven

In these minutes of proceedings from a January 22, 1968 meeting of the Board of Higher Education, the Board resolves to create the "Committee to Seek Presidents for Community Colleges Seven and Eight." The committee is first tasked with filling the [...]

Press Release – A New Experimental College

In this press release, The City University of New York's Office of University Relations announces the creation of a new, experimental, two-year college to be "established on a community-oriented basis in central Brooklyn." The press release [...]

"Julius Edelstein, 93, Dies; Devised CUNY's Open Admissions"

This New York Times obituary describes the career of former Vice-Chancellor Julius C. C. Edelstein, one of the primary architects of the open admissions policy at CUNY.

Proposal to Plan and Implement Departmental Programs for Community College No. 7

This document describes previous authorizations regarding the creation of Community College No. 7 (Medgar Evers College) and three additional community colleges. It goes on to detail one of the more unique features of the college: a community [...]

Minutes of the Board of Higher Education - November 25, 1968

These minutes of proceedings from the November 25, 1968 meeting of the Board of Higher Education record the establishment of new admissions criteria for CUNY four-year institutions as well as university-wide budget requests for the following year. [...]

Oral History Interview with Irwin Yellowitz

This oral history interview was conducted by Bill Friedheim on November 5, 2014 at the offices of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC). Irwin Yellowitz discusses his experience as a professor of history at City College of New York, events [...]

The First Student to Register for BMCC

This 1964 photograph depicts the first student to register at the newly-created Borough of Manhattan Community College.

Report of the Citizens' Commission on the Future of the City University of New York

In November 1969, CUNY's Board of Higher Education formed and tasked the Citizens' Commission to "study the future of the University in all its aspects." Their analysis resulted in the creation of an extensive report in 1971 that detailed the [...]

Crisis at CUNY

As the 1970s wore on, students and faculty at CUNY found themselves faced with an ominous environment. While the open admissions struggle of the late 1960s represented a signal achievement in the struggle to secure democratic access to quality [...]

Oral History Interview with Former CUNY Chancellor Albert Bowker (Tapes 2-4)

In this oral history interview, conducted in May 1985, Julius C. C. Edelstein interviews former CUNY Chancellor Albert Bowker. Both men were administrative architects of CUNY's Open Admissions policy. This transcript was compiled from tapes 2-4 of [...]

"Brooklyn College Defends Actions"

In May 1968, 42 demonstrators were arrested following a 16-hour sit-in at the Brooklyn College registrar's office. Their goal was to secure the admission of greater numbers of black and Puerto Rican students to the mostly-white college. In this New [...]

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