Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Bringing it all Together: State and Federal Funding

Dear Readers,

A multitude of federal laws were passed pertaining to the development of higher education. The number of public laws regarding higher education is equally overwhelming. Despite the fact that this galaxy relevant documents exists- I have documented some of which I believe to be the most significant. Rather than the acts themselves, I found the common themes of the decades to be more insightful. I also found the reaction to federal laws equally fascinating.

A general trend emerged through examining the relationship between the federal government, state government, and higher education institutions. After Sputnik- the federal government was the driving force behind the development of higher education institutions. Access to higher education was expanded as well by means of federal grants. The Higher Education Act of 1965 exemplifies this type of federal support. However, this resulted in what many consider the over-regulation of institutions. This issue arose most notably in the mid 1970s. Government grants were given to universities but with a flawed administrative system. These universities had lost a great deal of autonomy due to the fact that the funds granted to them by the federal government were geared towards specific programs. A bureaucracy emerged that overpowered the needs of particular universities. A significant shift emerged by 1980 when the state government- particularly the governor- became the central source of authority with respect to the regulation/funding of public universities.

This lack of federal support and bureaucracy increased the power of the university president. For example; Arizona State University President Russell Nelson had to compensate for this lack of federal support by making significant policy changes. A large part of that had to do with his capabilities as a leader. This represents the relationship of philanthropy to higher education in America as a whole. The foundations of public universities were built by private gifts that were either given by a single individual or organization. As the federal government invested itself- a bureaucracy resulted. Economic circumstances (especially in the 1980s) redeemed a more individualistic and local authority and influence.

Bringing it All Together- Creative Philanthropy

Greetings Readers

Over the past few weeks I've been examining the various sources I've acquired which pertain to philanthropic history of each research university of focus. This has been a bitter-sweet process due to vast range of private funding each university has received. Funding not only goes to the universities themselves, but also towards specific areas of either curriculum or infrastructure. One of the key questions I had at the beginning of the semester was how philanthropy effected each major research university that Biz Ed will focus on. Through examining various private gifts and examining their effect on each university, I've found a multitude of names, organizations, effects, and financial figures. However, certain instances of philanthropic acts stand out as particularly innovative.

The Moorehead Foundation's impact on the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill serves as a perfect example of how a moderate gift (monetarily speaking) can make a tremendous impact. John Motley Moorehead III headed the foundation and his primary mission was developing the institution in any way shape or form. Several of his donations lead to the physical growth of the university- including the construction of a planetarium in 1949. However, his most significant contribution was the development of the Moorehead Scholarship Program in 1951, which was the first undergraduate scholarship program (applicable to non-athletes) at a public institution. This program caused the university's enrollment figures to skyrocket, which transformed the campus and student body to an incredible degree.

Arizona State University was the very first public university to develop an honors college of its kind. Barrett College was innovative in that it had its own residence halls (in addition to its independent faculty, administration, and facilities). In essence it was a university within a university. It was founded by the then CEO of Intel Craig Barrett, who firmly believed that honors programs could only develop to their maxim if they had their own distinct cutting edge facilities and technology. A crucial aspect of this was the development of residence halls which exclusively held students that were enrolled in ASU's Barrett College. Barrett felt that having a common living space for the honors students would foster an environment of intellectual interaction. In order to actualize this idea- he engaged in a public-private partnership with the American Campus Communities organization. This was a bold move due to the fact that this 140 million dollar plan was developed in the mid 1980s during an economic recession. Barrett himself donated ten million dollars to the development of the honors college. The Barrett Honors College of Arizona State University was established in 1988 and was the largest and most sophisticated honors college of its time. To this day it remains a national standard.

These two instances epitomize how philanthropy can have a profound effect by creative thinking (rather than simply a certain sum of money). The Barrett College example illustrates a clear and definite sense of adaptability- an enormous sum of money was required to fund such a project and it was a resounding success. America was in the midst of a recession, and reshaping/creating a world renown institution that fosters intellectual progress epitomizes one of the key motives of philanthropy- progressing society. 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Dissertation Digging: Bittersweet

Dear Audience

Over the past few weeks I've been examining the footnotes of the various dissertations I've acquired. In doing so I have found a plethora of primary sources. However, accessibility is an issue in most cases because many primary sources are in the archives of each university that Biz Ed focuses on (including personal correspondence letters, administrative plans, autobiographies, etc..). This is rather irritating, but I documented these sources regardless. I also referred to the author's citations to understand what each primary document entails.

On a positive note- I've found a significant amount of secondary source literature through examining these footnotes. Most of these sources were accessible, despite the fact that nearly all of them pertain to the evolution of research universities as a whole. Many other sources pertain to the development of higher education in the United States as a whole.

Friday, March 29, 2013


The primary focus of this week was to continue on with the congressional hearings. This week went significantly more smoothly for two reasons; a useful shortcut I found and a nifty new database that I've been using.
I realized that using ProQuest Congressional would be much easier if I looked up a secondary source which discusses the legislative history of the federal government's role in funding higher education and simply enter the bills the source refers to into the ProQuest search engine. Though this seemed to be a good idea because nearly every time congress meets they do so to discuss a bill or amendment. But the database did not cooperate with every bill or amendment I entered into the search bar. However, I was able to refer to the date that the secondary sources noted for each bill/amendment and was able to find some manually by scrolling through the 2,500 hits that "higher education" lead me to after narrowing the search down to hearings. This is a rather inefficient way of searching though (not quite as inefficient as our current congress- but close).
My older brother is a law student and he suggested that I use the database that he uses (as well as other law students across the country). The database is called "WestLaw" and is superb. Not only is the search engine much more cooperative that either Lexus Nexis or ProQuest Congressional, WestLaw was also able to find the bills and amendments that ProQuest seemed to have difficulty with. The only drawback to this is that my brother lives in the suburbs and I live in Chicago. That being said- I was only able to use it once when he happened to be over at my apartment. Despite this inconvenience- both he and I will be back visiting with family over Easter weekend and I'll just have to get the most out of WestLaw as I can over the weekend (which should be a rather significant amount of work).
Overall I would say this week has been a success. I was not only able to adapt to the issues that the databases that Loyola offers- I was able to utilize a highly useful one that Loyola does not offer. I was also satisfied with my ability to think outside the box and use secondary sources to point me in the right direction with hearings. That may sound rather obvious but it as nice to see that it lead to a large amount of solid sources.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Frustration Mixed with a Small Amount of Reward

So the two main objectives for this past week have been to gather more books and congressional hearings which pertain to the development of the research universities in focus and as a whole. The result was a mixed bag of frustration, reward, and undeniable progress (as slight as it may be).
This week started on a solid note- I was at home at my parents house in the suburbs due to a family obligation and decided to check out my local public library to see if they had any books that would fit the bill for my internship. Luckily enough I found four or five (I come from a rather small suburb- hence the word "luckily"). These books were a good foot in the door. I found much more success as Loyola's Lewis Library. I found several books there and I can simply return to that particular section of the library to find a ton of other sources. So far- all of the books I've gathered pertain to higher education as a whole and lack any specific relevance to the five research universities that BizEd will cover. I sense that I'll need a bit more direction in this regard, and plan to bring the issue to the table during my next meeting with Dr. Shermer.
Despite the fact that the books pertain to higher education (and research universities as a whole)- I've examined the footnotes of these books looking for any reference to government documents. This was my starting point for researching congressional hearings and was mildly successful. I was able to find some hearings immediately on ProQuest Congressional or Lexus Nexus and will need some further assistance in locating a few other handy sources I've found.
The frustrating part of this week 100% pertains to finding congressional hearings on my own by the use of the two previously mentioned databases. Not only does it bring back highly frustrating memories from last semester's research pertaining to my Freedom of Information Act term paper- it frustrates me in there here and now as well. The only success I've achieved through using these two databases came from entering a general term into the search bar ("university", "higher education", "postsecondary school"). The search engines for these databases are brutally inefficient and fail to make sense to me on a very basic level. For example, after typing in "Higher Education" and "Aid" in an advanced search, hearings about the AIDS virus came up (which obviously have no use to me because I was hoping to find articles pertaining to federal financial aid). Another good example would be when I typed "higher education" (nice and general) into the search bar and tried to narrow down the search results (which were overwhelming) to the years between 1945 and 1970. ProQuest responded by stating that zero results fit this specification. This is ridiculous because prior to be narrowing down the search in such a way I could clearly see that hearings were found between the years 1945 and 1970. Either I'm being incredibly dense (a possibility I wouldn't necessarily rule out because as well all know research is much harder when one is frustrated) or I'm misusing these databases somehow. I'm voting on the second possibility, and have scheduled another appointment with Jamie (the government documents librarian at the IC) to see if we can get to the bottom of this issue.
Other than the hearings grinding my gears this week has been rather smooth. I have a feeling that things will go much smoother once I find out why I'm having such trouble with these databases.

Friday, March 15, 2013

3/9 - 3/15

This past week went rather smoothly. I continued to find more useful journal articles and dissertations pertaining to the development of research universities in the United States. Early in the week I felt a significant degree of frustration in regard to finding useful books. However, an important clarification was made after Dr. Shermer and I met on Tuesday afternoon. I had apparently been too specific in my pursuit of books, and my search results in Loyola's Pegasus and Worldcat databases evinced that. Last Tuesday I was advised to acquire books on the development of research universities in the United States rather than simply the development of the five particular universities that Dr. Shermer's book will focus on. This clearly made things significantly easier in regard to finding books.
I was also given a several "buzzwords" to use in order to locate relevant books more efficiently. Key historical figures, terms, authors, and the titles of books themselves were given as a starting point. Subsequently, I was advised to look at the footnotes in various books which I find to lead me to even more sources. By doing this, a seemingly infinite chain of sources will emerge and the amount of sources in the Zotero program will increase drastically. I have already gotten my hands on a few useful books and have begun this process- which I am rather excited about.
My several secondary sources of emphasize the G.I. Bill of Rights (formally known as the Serviceman's Readjustment Act of 1944) with respect to the growth of practically all American colleges and universities. The bill significantly increased the access opportunities of veterans by means of federal grants. These grants only somewhat assisted research universities due to the fact that those who received said grants could simply attend any college of their choice. In this respect, research universities were indirectly helped to a moderate degree.
I also began taking a deeper look into congressional hearings pertaining to the role of government (both on the federal and state level) in the development of research universities in the U.S. I particularly find the response to Sputnik fascinating due to the fact that it ignited federal aid to universities out of the concern that the USSR had superior educational institutions (particularly pertaining to math and science). In this respect- research universities were given special attention and expanded dramatically. 
It appears that each week of this internship has become subsequently easier. I do not mean to use the term "easy" in a manner which implies that the research I am responsible for doing is free of frustrations or difficulties. By "easier" I meant clearer objectives, a more definite direction, and overall a greater familiarity with the programs and databases at my disposal. Though frustrations and roadblocks do seem to inevitably emerge- they are always triumphed.

Friday, March 8, 2013

3/4 to 3/8

This week was both exciting and frustrating. As with the previous weeks, the objective of this past week was to find more useful sources to categorize and enter into the Zotero program. I managed to find many more useful dissertations- which was actually quite joyful. I've gained a pretty solid familiarity with the Proquest database and I seem to always walk away from Proquest with (at least) a handful of new sources to put into Zotero. The only qualms that I have regarding the dissertations I've acquired is that some of them seem to be either too specific to one particular subject or (to the opposite) rather general. Regardless- I've entered anything that I felt "iffy" about into the program in the event that it does provide some benefit.
This week I also started searching for relevant journal articles. This experience had its ups and downs. Initially- I was having a blast. I was finding a handful of things pertaining to each of the five universities that BizEd focuses on. However, this joy was rather short-lived once I experienced some confusing moments with the America: History and Life database. For example- in the search bar I entered "Arizona State University" (in an advanced search) and entered "funding" into the subsequent search bar so that both terms would be searched simultaneously. This particular combination yielded zero results. This dumbfounded me because I find it hard to believe that zero articles exist pertaining to funding of Arizona State University. Despite these rather odd (and perplexing) roadblocks I encountered, I was eventually able to work with the database in such a way that lead me to some solid sources.
I also found some pretty useful books- which necessitated a trip to Loyola's Lewis Library. There is one book in particular that seems to be absolutely perfect for my field of research. I can't wait to get my hands on it once it comes in via inter-library loan.
When all is said and done- I would consider this week to be a success. It felt great to look up sources other than dissertations and I firmly believe that (like with the Proquest database) I will in time become more efficient with America: History and Life.