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Challenges and Dashed Hopes   throughout the 1960s, as we have seen, Macalester was renegotiating its role in a world that was rapidly changing but doing so in a way that retained a semantic framework consistent with previous articulations of the college’s mission . The newly articulated goal of academic excellence in the liberal arts built on the earlier conceptions of the role of the liberal arts that had engaged such themes as vocation and democracy. The dedication to service, now articulated in distinctively political contexts, similarly carried on the vocabulary, if not the samemeaning,of earliertimes,andthenewdiscussionof internationalism,now imbued with cold war sensibilities and concerns, built on decades of interest in and engagement with the broader world. One additional central difference that distinguished the period of the 1960s fromearliertimesatMacalester,however,wasitsnewlyfoundfinancialsecurity and expectation of continuing donor largess. As the relationship between the college and the largest of those donors, DeWitt Wallace, developed in the 1950s and 1960s, the mission and identity of the college were very much at stake. At thesametimethatfacultyandstudentswereattemptingtoreconcilethecollege’s missionwiththeongoingnationalcrises,thatmissionwasalsobeingnegotiated at higher levels by the leadership coalition discussed in the last chapter. As we shall see, when that coalition fell apart, the mission and identity of the college itself was dangerously threatened. Macalester Paradoxes There is no doubt that Macalester forged ahead academically in the 1960s. With Lucius Garvin providing the intellectual and scholarly leadership, Paul  | nature & revelation Davisprovidinginformationonbestpracticesacrossthecountry,ArthurFlemmingprovidingacademicideasandadministrativeguidance ,andDeWittWallace providingmoney,expectationswereridinghigh.Yetthereweresomesnags.The selectionandhiringof faculty,whichhadtraditionallybeendonebythepresident, had, of course, been turned over to Garvin, who, following advice from Davis, hired several star faculty members, luring them with individual incentives and salaries higher than department averages.1 As these salary disparities became known, longtime faculty, not surprisingly, were outraged, and morale dipped precipitouslyinsomedepartments.GarvindescribedthesituationtoFlemming in April 1966: “Dissatisfaction on the part of the ‘Old Guard’ has, I am afraid, reached a new peak this year, particularly in the past couple of months since the announcement of salary increases which were smaller than in recent years becauseof limitationsonavailablefunds.Chargesareheardthattherehavebeen created‘twocultures’amongthefaculty.Favoritismtowardrecentappointeesis alleged. Students have joined the refrain, criticizing the ‘new emphasis’ on the Ph.D. degree and scholarly research.”2 Indeed, higher education was professionalizing nationally, and new, more rigorous requirements for faculty performance were being adopted across the country, causing significant disruptions within institutions. If Macalester was to achieve a position of national leadership, a transformation in faculty culture would be required, something not easily accomplished. That transformation would also bring a shift in the mission and identity of the college. With the hiring of PhDs, a new emphasis on research seemed, in the view of many, to threaten the teaching focus of the college. Would these new faculty members, as some students feared, shift the college’s priorities away from teaching and toward research? Even more problematic was the presence of President Harvey Rice, who wasrapidlyfallingoutof favor.Rice’sdifficultieshadbegunfromhisfirstyearin office. Wallace, as we have seen, had very high hopes for Rice in 1958, believing that he could take the college to national prominence by providing innovative thinking and action. Rice plunged into the job wholeheartedly, immersing himself immediately in the details of the college and in Wallace’s ongoing correspondence . By fall of that first year, trustee David Winton expressed concern to Wallace that Rice was “overworking to the point of injuring the quality of what he is doing, finally almost impairing his health.”3 The bad news that Winton did not share with Wallace was that he had just Challenges and Dashed Hopes |  learned that the operating budget would end the year with a deficit of $145,000. DeficitswerenothingnewatMacalester.Thepreviouspresident,CharlesTurck, as we have seen, had struggled almost every year with the threat of a deficit in the operating budget. As president, he shouldered the onerous task of finding donors to balance the budget and was successful throughout his tenure as president. Whereas Turck no doubt planned for this each year, Rice, new to the position in 1958, was likely caught off guard. Turck, who had left office in July, wasastoundedtolearnof thedeficitlaterthatfall.Suspectinganauditor’serror, he asked repeatedly to be sent exact budget figures.4 Whether he ever received them is not known. Winton, knowing that Rice was becoming overwhelmed, suggested to board president Arnold Lowe that the board take on the task of raising the amount of the shortfall or finance it out a few years. Winton himself contributed ten thousand dollars toward the deficit, and his sister likely contributed as well.5 DuringtheRiceadministration,thecollegewouldcontinuetopostandcarry forwardoperatingbudgetdeficitsattheendof eachyearthroughthelate1960s.6 Apparently, DeWitt...

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Additional Information

ISBN
9780816673346
Related ISBN
9780816656264
MARC Record
OCLC
648711615
Pages
424
Launched on MUSE
2014-01-01
Language
English
Open Access
No
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