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 [...]

"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 [...]

"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 [...]

Anthony Penale as a Young Man

Anthony Penale was a City College lecturer and writing teacher in 1965 when he was appointed by English Chair Edmund Volpe as the first SEEK English coordinator/director. Penale became ill in the summer of 1967 and Volpe then appointed Mina [...]

"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 [...]

"Will Everyman Destroy the University?"

In this article, CUNY’s new Vice Chancellor Timothy Healy writes of SEEK as both a practical and theoretical model for open admissions. He cites the success of the program--intended to improve higher education access for the underserved--as proof [...]

"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 [...]

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 [...]

"Political Suppression - You Can't Sit on This One...Strike!"

Created by the Ad Hoc Committee, a left-wing group comprised of student and faculty activists, this handout advertises an April 22, 1969 protest against the Queens College administration. The flier provides a brief summation of the group's most [...]

Special meeting of the Faculty Council- Agenda

This agenda from a "special meeting of the Faculty Council" features three proposed "emergency" committees designed to handle the rampant student unrest that ensnared Queens College during its spring 1969 semester. Each of the committees was [...]

Student Representative Meeting Notes

These handwritten notes were taken during a meeting between Queens College student body representatives and President McMurray and other college administrators. Among those items discussed were the college's options regarding security/police [...]

Faculty Referendum Press Release

This press release summarizes the results of a faculty-wide referendum held on whether the Queens College administration should have granted amnesty to the 39 people arrested on April 1, 1969 for occupying the Social Sciences Building. With 800 of [...]

Faculty Committee Meeting Notes

These handwritten notes were taken during a Faculty Committee meeting held on May 3, 1969. A large segment of the meeting was devoted to handling issues with Queens College's SEEK program. Short for "Search for Education, Elevation, and Knowledge," [...]

"Concerned Faculty Statement"

This is a statement presented by concerned Queens College faculty at a meeting of the college's Personnel and Budget Committee. Agreed upon by approximately 150 faculty members, the paper expresses concern over the college's handling of ongoing [...]

Queens College Dean's Report

Produced by the office of Queens College Dean George A. Pierson, this report summarizes campus events from March 1969 that resulted in student unrest and protest that would continue into May. As the report describes, the initial cause of the [...]

CUNY AAUP Resolution

Adopted by the City University of New York Council of the American Association of University Professors, this resolution outlines a commitment to academic freedom and provides a promise to "protect the university from tactics which undermine the [...]

The Gadfly, April 1968

This issue of The Gadfly includes announcements of upcoming union chapter meetings as well as a response, from BMCC Professor Mayer Rossabi, to the piece "On A Revolutionary Purpose for the Union," published in the May 1967 issue.The [...]

The Gadfly, February 1967

This issue of The Gadfly contains editorials, a message from the president of the UFCT's New York Local, a continued critique of the accreditation process (part one found in December 1966 issue), and short fiction by faculty. The Gadfly was the [...]

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