22 June 2015

Morrill Act ~ Catalyzing Land-Grant Universities!

Many thanks to New America Foundation's Ted Widmer, Boston Globe Ideas columnist and BU Presidential assistant, for reminding us all about Justin Morrill, the man behind America’s higher education -- including MIT, UCBerkeley, and a hundred more...
"Morrill is hardly a household name today, but his legacy is immense, felt in every single state. That’s because of a single bill he proposed, the Morrill Land-Grant College Act of 1862. In the midst of some of the worst fighting of the Civil War, Congress passed a visionary piece of legislation that created more than 100 universities and reshaped the way Americans thought about higher education. [...] The result was nothing less than the creation of a new educational order for the United States. Older institutions did not lose their preeminence, of course. But new kinds of universities came into existence, with a broad reach and a public purpose. Both the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology were born of the Morrill Act, a fact of no small relevance to the state’s future economic development. [...] Many of the most eminent African-American colleges, including Hampton and Tuskegee, also owe their origins to Morrill’s bill. Native American schools would also be added. In other ways, the Land-Grant Act became better over time. Many of the land-grant schools were early advocates of co-education and advanced the cause of educating women. Morrill added new legislation to fine-tune the program and secure additional funding. [...] Morrill’s is a legacy that is simply too large to calculate and expands every spring as millions of future Americans [and untold International students too] graduate from public universities."
Wow! Epic and extraordinary.  Truly heroic in the best sense!  Check out Uni map... http://ext.wsu.edu/identity/logos/maps.html

No comments: