The municipal university as a community service institution, especially as exemplified in the aims, organization and growth of the University of Houston




Cochran, James Chester, 1886-

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The basic philosophy of the University of Houston, as revealed through its aims, emphasizes those educational services growing out of the individual and community educational needs of the citizens of the area. Present trends in the organization, aims, and growth of municipal institutions indicate a general acceptance of this philosophy. However, no extensive investigation has been made of the organization, aims, and growth of the University of Houston for the purpose of determining what similar patterns, if any, other municipal institutions have followed in their organization, aims, and growth. A study of this nature was recently suggested by President E. E. Oberholtzer, of the University of Houston, and interest has been repeatedly manifested by other educators in such an investigation. The fact that sixteen municipal institutions now exist in the United States offers evidence that there is a growing need for such schools in large cities where the educational services may be made more responsive to the particular needs of the citizens as well as to the industrial and business enterprises of the community. The general interest of municipal university administrators, who are in part responsible for the direction of the organization, aims, and growth of such institutions, indicates that such a study may be of service to them. Typical problems in this field of service are as follows: enrollments have increased enormously at the University of Houston during the last five years. This has affected every phase of the organization, aims, and growth of the University in the fields of instruction, administration, operation and maintenance, sources of income, salaries and welfare of personnel, growth of plant and equipment, library facilities and curriculum. What has taken place during this time in these categories at the other sixteen municipal universities? Do these institutions have any problems in common? Have they grown because of their aims as community service institutions? Answers to these problems have been sought through a check-list or questionnaire to the administrators of all municipal universities in the United States