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 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 [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

"Taught" by Marie Jean Lederman, 1973

In this piece of narrative nonfiction, Baruch College Professor Marie Jean Lederman reflects on her experience teaching remedial Freshman English at the University Center SEEK in the late 1960s.

"A Long-Range Plan for the City University of New York, 1961-1975"

New York City's Board of Higher Education appointed Thomas Holy as lead consultant to write this 424-page report 1962 on the future of the City University of New York. The report articulated three major goals: to build or acquire more community and [...]

Belle Zeller Memorial Video

Produced in 1998 by the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the union which represents CUNY faculty and staff, this short memorial video celebrates the professional achievements of Belle Zeller, a “one-of-a-kind figure” in the history of CUNY. [...]

CUNY SEEK and Open Admissions Oral Histories

This is a website of oral histories by CUNY students and teachers telling stories about the founding and early years of SEEK at City College. It also contains stories about teaching writing in the first decade of Open Admissions across CUNY.

Marvina White: An Oral History of the CCNY 1960s SEEK Program

In this interview, Marvina White recounts growing up on Dyckman Street in Upper Manhattan and entering City College as part of the first class of SEEK students in 1966. White also analyzes how SEEK-- especially SEEK teachers and counsellors Barbara [...]

Eugenia Wiltshire: An Oral History of the CCNY 1960s SEEK Program

In this oral history interview, Eugenia Wiltshire (nee Dorothy Robinson) recalls her time attending City College in 1966-70 as one of CUNY's first SEEK students. Short for "Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge," SEEK was established in [...]

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