Woodson Research Center, Rice University

Guide to the Rice University Faculty Student Advisory Committee for the Selection of a President, 1968-1970 UA 024

creator Rice University
Title: Rice University Faculty Student Advisory Committee for the Selection of a President
Dates: 1968-1970
Abstract: These papers include the correspondence, memos, newsclips, and information on candidates under consideration from the Faculty-Student Committee for the Selection of a President following the August 1968 resignation of Kenneth Pitzer.
Identification: UA 024
Quantity: 1.5 Linear Feet (3 boxes)
Language: English
Repository: Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas

Biographical / Historical

A five-day controversy rose on the campus of Rice University in February 1969 following the appointment of Dr. William H. Masterson by the Board of Trustees as the university's new President to succeed Kenneth Pitzer, who had resigned in August 1968. Members of the faculty and student body protested in particular the method by which Masterson had been appointed, which was perceived as a unilateral decision by the Board without sufficient consultation with the committee of faculty and students appointed earlier by the Board to assist in suggesting and screening candidates' names. A variety of personal objections to Masterson himself were also voiced, along with concern about appointment of a President from within the university (Masterson was a former graduate of Rice who had joined the faculty in the Department of History in 1951 and served later as Dean of Humanities before leaving Rice in 1966 to serve as President of the University of Chattanooga). As a result of the pressure created by the protests and by a campus-wide poll conducted among students and faculty (results of which were made known to Masterson), the controversy ended with Masterson's resignation as President on February 25th, five days after his appointment had been announced.

Scope and Contents

These records contain the papers of the Faculty-Student Committee appointed by the Board of Trustees of Rice University to assist in suggesting and screening names of candidates for the university presidency following the resignation of Kenneth Pitzer in August 1968. The papers include correspondence, memos, newsclips, and information on candidates under consideration.


Access Restrictions

Access requires special permission from the President's Office. Contact the Woodson Research Center for instructions.

Conditions Governing Access

Stored off-site at the Library Service Center. Please request this material via woodson@rice.edu or call 713-348-2586.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish from this material must be facilitated through the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University.

Index Terms

minutes (administrative records)
Universities and colleges -- Administration
letters (correspondence)
Rice University

Related Archival Materials

See also: [Dr. William H.] Masterson Controversy Collection, 1969 in Rice University Archives.

Administrative Information

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Received June 12, 1970 by R.L. O'Keeffe, Librarian.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I: Committee files

Box Folder
1 1 How College Presidents are Chosen
2 Committee letters to H. Malcolm Lovett
3 Correspondence, memos and newsclips
4 Chronological file
5 J.U. Teague correspondence
6 Midwestern universities
7 Prospective candidates for Rice President
8 Report of the President 1967-68
9 A.E.C. announcements of new college presidents 1967-68

Series I: Candidates

Box Box
2 3 Candidates organized alphabetically