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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"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 [...]

Letter from Samuel B. Gould to John H. Hughes

In this letter to New York State Senator Hughes, SUNY Chancellor Gould describes the new SUNY SEEK Program. Gould had shown copies to CUNY’s Chancellor Bowker and Julius Edelstein, CUNY’s “Coordinator of Urban Studies,” who had forwarded 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 [...]

Open Admissions Fact Sheet

This trifold pamphlet created by SLAM! debunks myths about remedial classes at CUNY's senior colleges and puts forward arguments for keeping CUNY's open admissions program. It educated students about the history and importance of open admissions at [...]

SLAM! Programs Brochure

This 5-page brochure includes a brief overview of SLAM's history up to the 1999-2000 school year, SLAM!'s 10-point program, and details on three campaigns SLAM! was organizing that year: the High School Organizing Committee, which worked with high [...]

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 [...]

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 [...]

Save Open Admissions Teach-in - Cultural Festival

This flier by Brooklyn College SLAM! members promoted an event on campus celebrating the diversity of the student body with a cultural festival and teach-in about open admissions. The event was planned to mobilize and educate students on campus and [...]

"CUNY Task Force Chief Accused of 'Ethnic Cleansing'"

This New York Post article reports on a City Council Committee on Higher Education hearing at which council members remarked on the racism inherent in the effort of Mayor Giuliani's task force on CUNY to end open admissions.

"Bad Man Badillo: Butcher of CUNY"

This article by SLAM! member Sandra Barros for the Hunter Envoy investigates the role of CUNY Board of Trustees Vice Chair Herman Badillo in the plan to end open admissions at CUNY. This issue of the Envoy also includes an article about Hunter's [...]

SLAM! Program Working Document

SLAM!'s 10-Point Program outlines the organization's vision for transformation of the university and society, from access for all to free quality higher education to democratic governance by students, workers and faculty; education for liberation; [...]

Do You and Your Friends Want to Go to College?

This flier was created by SLAM!'s High School Organizing Committee in 1999 to attempt to recruit high school students to organize to save open admissions at CUNY. Members of the committee passed out these fliers in the morning before school outside [...]

"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 Community College Examines Its Community"

This article penned by Fern Khan examines LaGuardia Community College's efforts "to become more responsive to the varied needs of its community." This project consisted of an in-depth examination of social and economic characteristics of the [...]

"Education for Deaf Students at LaGuardia Community College"

This article from the CUNY Research Foundation's Annual Report of 1985 highlights the achievements of LaGuardia's programs for Deaf students.

Division of Continuing Education: Annual Report, 1979-80

The Division of Continuing Education at LaGuardia Community College produced this Annual Report for 1979-80. It describes the Division's accomplishments, and the range of programs aimed at the diverse communities served by the college, and makes the [...]

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