Preface | Introduction | Chapter 1 | Chapter 2 | Chapter 3 | Chapter 4 | Chapter 5 | Chapter 6 | Chapter 7 | Chapter 8 | Chapter 9 | Bibliography | Appendices | List of Acronyms | About the Author
The group of projects described in this chapter is less a category than a gathering together of programs which do not readily fit into other categories discussed above. Included in this group are twelve grantees concerned with the education or training of adults plus a research project involving the League of Women Voters. The projects differed widely. The grants to Roosevelt University and the American Council for Emigres in the Professions were designed to help individuals who had had at least a high school education but with most having had the equivalent of professional training and employment in a foreign country. The common goal was to help these persons to make an effective transition, commensurate with their backgrounds, to another culture. In this transition, a functional grasp of English and of cultural expectations was essential. For the most part, those served had been able in their previous experience to cope with societal demands at a technical or professional level. But to become part of their new country at a level appropriate to their already demonstrated abilities required intelligent and sympathetic assistance. The project supported by the grant to the School of Continuing Studies of the University of Miami emphasized an intensive English program for emigres from Cuba, Haiti, and Chile, supplemented by instruction on American culture.
The Chicago Commons Association undertook quite a different task--to improve civic abilities by introducing adult education concepts and skills into a neighborhood house group work program. Subsequently, the focus shifted to a direct adult education thrust into a community largely made up of first- and second-generation immigrants.
The Citizen Information Service (CIS) project sought to learn whether residents of inner city neighborhoods could be reached with a modified version of the nonpartisan information on elections and public issues which the League of Women Voters customarily made available. The CIS project changed, however, toward efforts to train citizens in a neighborhood in, for example, how to elect their precinct captain or to learn where to make a complaint about some public service.
The grants to Penn Community Center and the South Carolina Council on Human Relations, although made separately, involved shared concerns and cooperative activity. The funds were used to help community and organizational leaders learn how to expand voter registration, how to get better candidates and how to use the election process to secure legislation helpful to blacks. In addition, ways to make black organizations more effective were explored.
The grant awarded to the Migrant Ministry had as its purpose the training of its professional staff, primarily in California, in how to adapt to the Migrant Ministry program the concepts and techniques of community organizing as it was being practiced by the Industrial Areas Foundation.
The funds provided to the National Training Laboratories (NTL) enabled the grantee to plan and test the first year's program of the Experimental Laboratory in Community Leadership Training, an outgrowth of the T-Group and the Problem Analysis Group training programs previously established by the NTL.
The three projects sponsored by universities sought to assist citizens in one way or another to learn how to help better their communities. The University of Chicago project was directed to the need to train leadership for improvement of Chicago neighborhoods. The New School for Social Research proposed to offer courses on the community and how the citizen and professional could work more effectively in it. The New York University program was somewhat less focused, but one objective was to help citizens learn to make more effective use of local resources including existing organizations. In fact, however, the university training programs strayed somewhat from the original purposes as staff employed to conduct them imposed their own predilections.
The remaining project to be discussed was a research study with a dual purpose. For the Survey Research Center of the University of Michigan, it provided an opportunity to learn more about the dynamics of private, voluntary membership organizations concerned with the public welfare rather than profit. For the League of Women Voters of the U.S.A., it was a chance to learn more about itself as a basis for decisions about how to increase its effectiveness. In addition, it was hoped that discussion of the results by league members would have a valuable impact on them as they worked to carry out its program.
Before analyzing these projects, however, it is necessary to say something
about the terms "education" and "training," which have been used as a basis
for grouping projects in this chapter. In doing so, I have not applied them
with precision because the projects themselves exhibit elements which reflect
both. In either case, we are concerned here with changes in ways of thinking,
feeling and acting. But it is useful to make a distinction that takes note
of the difference between the more general and the more specific. In the Roosevelt
University project, for example, the objective was a broad one: to develop
the ability to communicate with one's fellow members of society. Furthermore,
it was deemed important that this communication skill be buttressed by an
effective understanding of the values and goals of American society as well
as a functional grasp of the social forms and behaviors customary in the
daily life of that society. These are general behaviors, relevant to a great
variety of contexts, useful for meeting many kinds of challenges as one goes
through life. In the case of the Penn Community Center project, however,
the objective was to improve the quality of some activity or practice, helping
people to do specific tasks better. For example, professional and lay trainees
alike were taught how to organize a voter registration campaign. They were
taught relevant parts of applicable laws, what tricks might be used to frustrate
a would-be registrant, how to keep records as a basis for follow-up, etc.
Not all projects fitted this distinction closely, however. The Citizen Information
Service, for example, began with an educational program to provide information
on and understanding of government and politics to residents of the inner
city. When this proved to be unsuccessful, the CIS changed its emphasis to
helping residents learn to cope with neighborhood problems of a civic nature.
In effect, it shifted from education to training.
Adult Education Programs
Among those for whom Mr. Schwarzhaupt was specifically concerned were immigrants. Although, as I have said, this category as a whole was too large to be served effectively by the ESF, there was a special need to provide educational assistance to persons of a professional or technical background who needed instruction in English in a way not being readily met by adult high schools. With one exception, the four grantees in this group were able to provide effective and functional class instruction in English.
One of the earliest applications received by the Foundation was submitted by Roosevelt College (later to become Roosevelt University) requesting support for its American Studies Program (ASP). The ASP was established to provide English instruction for foreigners who were significantly better educated than typical immigrants arriving in the decades prior to World War II. Many of these persons had held professional or semiprofessional positions in their countries of origin, They were frustrated to be unable to express the ideas with which they could readily cope in their native language but could deal with in English only at the level of a child's vocabulary. This meant that the instructional content level had to be more complex and sophisticated than that deemed suitable for persons who were little more than basically literate in their native tongue. Furthermore, it was strongly felt by the ASP staff that instruction in the language should be directed toward not only its basic mechanics but should serve as a functional introduction to an understanding of American culture as well. The starting point for instruction would be day-to-day experiences of the student, taught in such a way that his understanding of them would be enhanced as he learned how to articulate what he wanted to say in response to those experiences.
To support this effort, a two-year grant of $29,500 was made beginning July 1953. A further grant was made for three years in the amount of $28,725 for continuation of the program and to explore its adaptation to the public adult school program. As work got underway, the staff and consultants identified in somewhat greater detail the goals of the program. The more important goals, from the Foundation's standpoint, included wider reading about and understanding of civic and cultural matters and improvement of social perception with respect to such matters as humor, cartoons and idiomatic expressions. In addition, it was expected that the range and significance of social contacts outside one's neighborhood and nationality group would be increased as well as job prospects improved. Obviously, the improvement of language skills would be prerequisite for significant progress toward these goals.
The program began in the fall of 1953, with seventy persons registered for six classes: two beginning, three intermediate, and one advanced class. For certain accidental reasons involving the method of recruitment, forty-four out of the first group of seventy-two were natives of Lithuania or Latvia. In the spring of 1958, there were fifteen from Italy, ten from Hungary, ten from Mexico, seven from Lithuania, plus fifty-four from twenty-one other countries. In the earlier years of the project, the students tended to have a wide knowledge and appreciation of European culture. All of them spoke one or more European languages in addition to their own.
To get started, a simple leaflet explaining the program was widely distributed through leaders in ethnic communities, agency staff members, foreign consulates in Chicago, personnel directors or nurses in hospitals, priests and ministers in ethnic communities, personnel directors of foreign airlines, directors of research in the medical centers (because many post-doctoral foreign students, knowing very little English, were in this country to do research for a year or two), library bulletin boards, YMCA's, YWCA's and settlement houses. But once the program was started, the most effective recruitment was done by satisfied students or by Americans observing the results in their employees or friends. "The main purpose is to see that the possible candidate is made aware of his opportunities. We believe he should not be coaxed, pleaded with, nor lured. From the very beginning everything connected with the program for the foreign-born adult should have a kind of dignity about it. After all, the purpose of the program is a serious one."2
Registration and Placement
At first, students were permitted to register late. "But most of the time no one was really satisfied with this procedure; the instructor felt he had to give the latecomer extra time and help to get him adjusted to the group; the class didn't like having its routine interrupted; the late entrant often didn't quite know what was going on."3 The decision was made not to interview and place late candidates after the second week.
Placement was obviously a critical factor. When the student registered, a staff member interviewed the applicant using a standard form. If difficulty was experienced in getting adequate answers in English, the individual was placed in a beginning class. For better-prepared applicants, a forty-item test of aural comprehension was used. The forty sentences concerned different aspects of life in Chicago and required the applicant to respond in other than yes-or-no terms. On the basis of the interview, the applicant was placed in either an intermediate or an advanced group. Classes met twice weekly and were offered at each of the three levels on each evening in order to allow changes in placement.
Of the three levels, the staff felt that the intermediate classes were the most difficult to teach because they included those applicants who, although having some fluency, had the most to unlearn. The advanced classes accepted the students whose vocabulary, though limited, was adequate to meet the tests of everyday living. They had acquired speech patterns which, though incorrect, allowed them to function. If those in the latter group could manage with their current level of speech, why, then, would they spend the money, the time and the energy to study further? They, more than the others, were frustrated by the inability to express complex ideas at an adult level. They wanted to improve their accents. They also wanted better jobs and saw improved English as prerequisite. And some wanted to be with people whose ideas and interests were more challenging than those of the persons with whom they worked.
Curriculum and Methodology
It is not necessary here to deal with instructional methodology and materials except at a very general level; our interest in the teaching of English to this particular student population has more to do with the means employed to promote effective integration of the individual into American society. Hence, we are concerned primarily with those aspects of methodology which served this purpose in a way that English language instructional programs not so-oriented have failed to do. At Roosevelt, the individual student was the focus. The instructors were expected to be able to deal flexibly with needs of the learners as they emerged, and the linguistics principles as applied to the teaching of English as a second language, developed at the University of Michigan, were taken fully into account. As Neff summed it up in the final report:
In all our classes, the general principles we follow include discovery of the needs of the particular group, diagnosis of language problems common to the group with attention to individual problems and constant drill on the part of the students until understanding and producing the flow of American English becomes, ideally, a habit. The materials used are those related to the new culture in which the foreign-born finds himself.4
Beginning Classes. Over the years, the preponderance of countries of origin shifted from Eastern Europe to the Spanish-speaking countries. But throughout, the participants had at least the equivalent of a high school education in their native language. Each had been exposed to some English and knew the few phrases essential to getting around in the city, but they were able to articulate or to understand only isolated words or phrases.
Each class met for two evenings per week with the second meeting always on Friday. Activity at the first meeting of the week was directed to problems of pronunciation, vocabulary, sentence pattern, rhythm and intonation. In the first part (up to a half hour), the teacher reviewed some of the typical daily customs that are part of the American social system: how to introduce oneself; how to introduce one person to another, depending upon the differences in age or sex; when to shake hands; whether to rise or remain seated when being introduced; etc. Students learned appropriate forms of greeting and leave-taking. Formal and informal versions were written on the board and discussed. Later in the course, the class discussed simple questions dealing with the weather or with the news. "We stress something they can use, something that is part of their everyday experience. The emphasis is on oral production. The student must repeat and repeat until the patterns become automatic; the teacher must remember to keep these explanations brief and simple."5
Part of the period was given over to drill on certain language problems as, for example, prepositions of time and place. A specific example would be the distinction between saying "in June," "on June 10" or "at noon." Following such drills, the students would quiz each other, asking questions which required responses with respect to the time they did something or where they lived. A great deal of attention was also paid to intonation and rhythm. For this reason, students were urged to listen to news reports. Because such broadcasts were often repeated, it provided an opportunity to improve comprehension through repetition. In the same session, time would be spent on the use of adjectives and the relationship of the modifier and the noun, or attention would be given to imperatives.
The last part of the class period was devoted to everyday situations, such as shopping. Again, the emphasis was on vocabulary development, question-answer patterns, rhythm and intonation drill. Most importantly, all the devices gave the student an opportunity for oral practice about some subject concerned with his daily living. For example, an exercise might be built around a question from a student about an invitation to the home of an American whom he did not know.
The teacher spoke briefly about some of the social customs involved in being a guest and a host. And a question-and-answer game could be developed around this topic. Later in the semester, after some facility had been achieved in aural comprehension and oral production of English, simple readings were used dealing, perhaps, with the city of Chicago.
The exercises in readings used in the class period inevitably led to government and citizenship. We do not offer a course in "Citizenship" as such, but when the class uses the poster picturing a PTA meeting and sees how Americans participate in civic affairs, or when a student reports the results of a NATO meeting attended by the secretary of state, this is citizenship. When their friends talk about politics, our students are encouraged to listen and then to ask in class about statements they don't understand. We encourage them to become interested in what their friends think about politics, in how the school system operates, in how their city government is run.... Their interests led to discussions of the provisions of the Constitution and its Bill of Rights and to the principles set forth in the Declaration of Independence.6
And of course the various holidays and anniversaries led naturally into an exploration of events in the history of the United States. Thus, the beginners class covered a wide range of material, with the emphasis continually on language problems, uses and usages which emerged in the lives of the students.
Intermediate Classes. The students in intermediate classes were different from the beginners because they were less overwhelmed by the strangeness of a new culture and their grasp of the language enabled them to cope better with the tasks of daily life. Nevertheless, they were aware of their handicaps and were anxious to improve themselves by improving their grasp of English.
At the beginning of the semester, exercises were used to review simple grammatical forms, on the basis of which, the instructor became aware of problem areas. Short, written assignments gave the teacher clues about what information and misinformation the students might have about schools, the home, the police, integration, libraries, insurance, democracy, etc. Also, before the class period began, the teacher would talk with students to discover what their specific needs might be:
From the information that the instructor acquires, . . . he proceeds to relate the classroom experience to American life. For example, drills are based on a particular pattern of dealing with the subject that is part of the environment of intelligent adult learners. The exercise may be a drill on like, same as and different from, but the material may be concerned with the inauguration of the President.7
The classroom was open a half-hour beforehand. Maps, charts, dictionaries, reference books were available. Sometimes recordings of folk songs and accompanying texts were provided. There was a bulletin board with the day's headlines tacked on it. Copies of the newspapers from which the headlines were taken were available. Again, students were asked to listen to radio broadcasts, watch the television news, read newspapers and then talk about them in simple sentence patterns. Early in the semester each student was provided with a newspaper, and the class examined the terminology, general format and the kinds of information to be found in newspapers. A list of unfamiliar words was reviewed orally and then assigned for homework. Tied in with the newspaper would be a question-and-answer exercise on the who, what, and where data in the stories discussed. Students were encouraged to read more than one newspaper and to talk about the differences in coverage or editorial points of view that they discovered.
The "news" part of the lesson must move rapidly, and techniques should be varied from session to session. No long, involved discussions are encouraged at this point in the lesson. The news gives the students a common ground on which to use English; they are dealing with adult materials; they are becoming aware of current events that concern them and the people with whom they live.8
After the fifteen-to-twenty-minute warm-up on the news, the instructor wrote on the board the pronunciation and diction pattern problems that appeared in the written assignments, and the students were asked to volunteer the correct usage.
The bulk of the period was devoted to reading and to grammar assignments. Six or seven consecutive sessions might be devoted to trying to straighten out confusion about tenses. Another segment might combine pronunciation and vocabulary drill. About half an hour of the period was built around a reading assignment dealing, for example, with places in the United States and using maps. Other reading assignments might be drawn from the columnists in the daily paper.
The occasion of a student's being hospitalized became an opportunity to learn about yet another area of life. What was a "get well" card and how was it used? The teacher secured several cards, class members wrote a message and then they were asked to locate the address of the hospital. This introduced them to the telephone book and eventually to the Yellow Pages. Finally, a whole exercise was built around idioms concerning illness such as "going to emergency," feeling "under the weather," the cause of a "breakdown," having a nurse "around-the-clock," etc.
The last part of the class period was devoted to announcing cultural events of interest to the students, perhaps for a drill on some special problem and sometimes for brief reports by students about where they had been or where they were going.
In each period, the variety of materials, their timeliness and practical application, the rapid pace, the participation by the students-all contribute to progress in learning English that educated, able, ambitious students at this level can achieve.
Advanced Classes. At the first meeting of an advanced class, the students were asked to keep a small notebook in which they could jot down anything they might see or hear during the week which they found confusing or incomprehensible. They would come early to class and write words, phrases, questions on the board. They wanted to know answers to questions such as, "What should I say when I want to get off the bus and it is crowded?" The beginning of the class might be spent dealing with such matters, and the next twenty minutes or so were usually devoted to the news. At some session during the semester, each student would be provided with a copy of a news magazine, and some time would be spent in each of perhaps four class sessions exploring the differences between a newspaper and a news magazine. Of special value was the "News of the Week in Review" in the Sunday edition of the New York Times, together with the accompanying recording. Originally intended for use with the blind, it became a valuable tool in the American Studies Program.
Next, the class devoted about half to three-quarters of the total class period to reading assignments from a common text, one example being, "What I Want," by Lin Yutang. The minimum assignment was to know in general what the reading was about. But in the advanced class it was possible to discuss, to look for finer distinctions in vocabulary, to appreciate the skill in telling a story, depicting a character, solving a problem. In addition, students might write short papers at home, have them corrected and later confer with the instructor. To improve spelling and punctuation, a paragraph from the text might be dictated. The readings were often topical. A February assignment of reading material about Abe Lincoln elicited questions about why he was called by a nickname, which led into exploration of a cultural value in American society.
Magazines such as Harper's and Atlantic Monthly were found by the students to be difficult but refreshingly challenging. The students were already fairly knowledgeable about the content of articles, especially about international affairs, and could cope with the material.
Then there is a value other than purely intellectual that comes from using this type of material. Too often, educated, foreign-born people feel that all Americans are interested in only material values; that at best their leisure time is spent in going to movies, watching television, taking exhausting vacations, etc. These newcomers need to know that it is not very wise to generalize about Americans from the few with whom they work and live.... The teacher has the opportunity to indicate the cultural and intellectual life that exists here and of which the students may not be aware.9
The session would conclude with fifteen minutes to a half hour devoted to rapid drill. Students were encouraged to ask for exercises on specific problems. Every effort was made to avoid the danger of talking about the language when the students should be using it.
In all of this instruction, the principle was that students should be treated as though they were college-level people, on the basis of their educational background and experience and not on the basis of their level of language skill. The emphasis on cultural content became the vehicle for enlarging vocabulary and gaining the more subtle kinds of insights which would heighten the understanding of the language.
Friday Evening Programs. On Friday evenings, the content of the American Studies Program changed significantly. At first, these sessions were thought of as special events which might take the form of a lecture or a program of folk songs or a celebration of some holiday such as Christmas. Preparing these Friday evening programs in such a way as to promote program objectives was, of course, a complicated task, requiring a great deal of flexibility and a team approach on the part of the staff. It was often necessary as well to enlist the cooperation of a variety of government, business and community agency personnel.
Very often the topics around which the Friday evening program was built came out of discussions in the English classes meeting earlier in the week. Because a student believed that American schools were primarily private, a Friday evening program on the American school system was organized. When another student brought in a copy of Life magazine containing the novel The Old Man and the Sea and because a number of students had read Hemingway in their native languages, a Friday program was organized on "Ernest Hemingway, Nobel Prize Winner." A question on divorce in America led to a lecture by a well-known sociologist.
As the American Studies Program evolved, however, it became apparent that part of the Friday evening session had to be used for class instruction. In the early weeks of the semester, for example, it was a waste of time for members of the beginners classes to attend unless the focus was primarily social or had significant entertainment value. Thus, when an evening was devoted to teaching square dancing, or a folk song program, or a Christmas party, or the presentation of folk dances by nationality groups, the beginners attended. Otherwise, they met in a regular class session. After their aural comprehension had increased to the point where they could grasp enough of the lectures to make attendance worthwhile, then, of course, they joined the more advanced students. But even for more advanced students, it was found necessary to conduct the first hour each Friday as a regular class to work out the vocabulary, question patterns, pronunciation and background materials--all directed to the topic for the evening. But because of the great amount of work involved in planning and conducting the Friday programs and the need to develop very careful bridges between the Friday evening programs and the competency level of the students, the special programs were offered only twice a month with the alternate weeks devoted to the regular English class format.
Once a month, students were allowed to bring guests, with one class acting as hosts and hostesses. Those with guests were asked to introduce them and to tell the group something about them. This practice in the language and in using customary social forms was an experience of great value to the students.
Although it had not been the intention of the American Studies Program to undertake to prepare students for the naturalization examinations, it soon became apparent that many of the students needed and would welcome such help, especially information on U.S. history and government. Accordingly, a twelve-session series was arranged including such topics as the beginnings of America, revolt and independence, establishing a more perfect union, civil war and its aftermath, the emergence of modern America and the age of reform, and ending with a discussion of municipal government. A topical outline was distributed at the beginning of each session to help the students take notes and to introduce new terms. The lecture, which took about one hour, was followed by a question period. At the end of the evening, a two or three-page summary of the lecture was distributed for study at home. These lectures were considered by the ASP director to have provided one of the best illustrations of the relationship between Friday programs and English classes. Using the outlines, synopses and notes taken at the lectures, instructors were able to devise exercises based on the historical information presented.
Certainly these sessions offered a much richer experience than the typical civics material presented in the adult classes offered through the board of education. One important difference was that the educational level of the students was taken into account, permitting the emphasis to be placed on concepts rather than on the mere mechanics of government, the latter being information which the students could acquire on their own. The readings and factual materials were selected because of their value in helping to understand American society10
The success of the Friday programs owed more than a little to the contribution of Professor Robert W. Siebenschuh of Roosevelt University. His background in European culture as well as in his professional field of political science helped greatly in building a bridge between American culture and the cultures from which the students had come. Of special significance were his lectures on personalities in American history. In them he discussed a wide spectrum of figures, ranging from John Winthrop and Roger Williams to Sam Adams and Thomas Jefferson, to Abraham Lincoln, Chief Blackhawk, and John D. Rockefeller. In hearing about what these persons did and said and how they were perceived, the students' understanding of American culture became more real. In another series, Siebenschuh discussed the contemporary significance of such American historical documents as the Declaration of Independence, the Bill of Rights and the Emancipation Proclamation. This series was followed by a survey of the basic framework and processes of American government, with lectures devoted to the Congress, the presidency, the judiciary and to the whole complex area of American intergovernmental relations.
The use of films in the Friday evening sessions proved to be a more involved matter than had been anticipated. For example, the staff was enthusiastic about The Quiet One, appraising it as an outstanding documentary film dealing with a study of the personality of a black boy. But many of the students merely saw it as a depressing story or as a criticism of the United States which made them uncomfortable. This offered an opportunity to discuss the problem of criticism as a feature of American life, which was useful. But it also indicated to the staff that films must be very carefully chosen with due regard for the level of sophistication of the audience. On the other hand, the film Valley of the Tennessee was a great success, having been preceded in the advanced class by a study of Sherwood Anderson's pamphlet "The TVA." The film The City was also successful in generating a great deal of discussion on the growth of cities and on a comparison of American cities with those of other countries.
Tours provided an excellent means of enhancing cultural orientation. The evening schedule presented certain difficulties, but it was also possible to plan Saturday tours, for example, to Marshall Field and Company, Chicago's large department store. It was instructive for a group of Europeans to observe how the teacher addressed the sales clerk (and vice versa)--not only through the words but also the manner in which the transaction took place. As Neff stressed over and over, the films and tours would have been valueless if the students had not been prepared in advance for what they were going to see. "Cultural orientation" cannot really happen if students are confused about what they are being oriented to. In essence,
. .. the staff of the American Studies Program have consistently held to the principle that the culture of a new country is understood only in the proportion that the language of that country is grasped, and knowledge of the culture of the United States depends upon knowledge of English. The staff believed that the aural-oral approach is the most effective technique for learning a new language that is to be understood and spoken by the learner. They further believe that all materials should be as closely related as possible to the culture in which the learner is living. This requires an awareness of native culture, educational background, level of English, motivation, age, etc., of the learner. They believe that all foreign-born persons must be considered as individuals; they should not be lumped into one group, all to be taught as children. Finally, they believe there is a tremendous potential for democracy, faith in the individual, in many foreign people, once they become part of, for them, a new culture, the culture of the United States.11
From time to time, I had met with ASP staff and on one of these occasions had raised a question about the implications of ASP for the Americanization program of the Chicago public schools. There was general agreement, of course, that the public adult school program could stand improvement, but it was by no means clear that the Roosevelt University approach would work with the public schools clientele. As it turned out, it was not possible to explore the possibility to any significant degree. However, the proposal to the Foundation for a renewal of the grant indicated the desire of the ASP to undertake to provide some carryover of methods and insights to the public adult school program. "We need to determine if the teaching skills developed in our program are communicable, and thus avert the criticism that our results are the work of specially motivated, highly skilled, selected teachers."12
What the ASP staff had in mind was for a seminar in the teaching of English to newcomers to be conducted by Professor Neff with the cooperation of other staff. This seminar would be designed as an in-service training program for Americanization teachers in the Chicago public schools and would carry graduate credit in education. By April 1957 the graduate seminar had been offered four times with a total enrollment of thirty-nine teachers. Although the graduate credit received for the course counted toward progress on the salary schedule, it was, nevertheless, necessary to provide some scholarship assistance from project funds. The rather substantial graduate level course fee was not sufficiently competitive with the in-service credit available through junior colleges in the Chicago school system. Nevertheless, Neff reported that many of the seminar students had indicated that they were going beyond the low-level, Basic English textbook. (Those teachers who had completed the seminar were allowed by administrators of the public schools program to use a textbook different from the Basic English text normally provided. Evidently, this was a major concession.)
Three of the seminar graduates were teaching in Jackson School, the full-time school for immigrants operated on a daytime schedule. And the approximately one hundred Americanization teachers in the Chicago public schools were making increasing use of films available through the program, some even arranging for tours as part of their curriculum. So the seminar courses had some impact, although less than there might have been had the public school structure been more flexible.13
There was an additional contribution by the ASP to the public school Americanization program. To help Americanization teachers become more aware of what was going on in the language teaching field, specifically through the work of linguists at the various university language institutes, Professor Robert Lado, associate director of the English Language Institute, University of Michigan, was invited to speak on April 5, 1957, on methods and materials growing out of the work at the Institute that could be applied to Americanization classes in the public schools.
Early in the discussions of the project, I had also raised questions about the possibility of undertaking to evaluate progress toward program objectives. Several meetings were held by the staff, with the participation of Professor Kenneth Rehage of the department of education of the University of Chicago. In the end, however, it did not prove feasible to undertake an evaluation program based on the use of before-and-after testing or other kinds of evaluation instruments. In this connection Rehage said:
Yes, I do think the Roosevelt project will have general interest. I am especially interested in the proposed extension into public school work on Americanization. Their weakest point to date is on evaluation, and I confess I have been unable to be really helpful to them. All the evidence one sees when visiting the classes points to genuine accomplishment, but it is exceedingly difficult to get the usual measures of growth with a population like theirs.14
He might also have pointed out that the ASP was not an "intensive" program. Contact hours totaled only forty-five hours per semester.
The problem was that previous work in evaluation of language instruction had been done in relation to the objective of developing a reading knowledge of English. For this purpose, appropriate standardized tests could be developed. However, when the goal involved "aural comprehension and oral production," the problem of evaluation became very difficult. How does one determine growth in aural-oral mastery, mastery sufficient for the individual to become part of his new culture?
Nevertheless, the staff sought to discover and use such instruments as might be available. For example, during the second semester of the first year, the "Diagnostic Tests for Students of English as a Second Language," developed by A. L. Davis of the American Language Center of the American University, were administered on a before-and-after basis. Over the four months of instruction, the mean score of the entire group increased 10.1 points, an indication of the students increased knowledge of the English language as measured by this test. In the end, however, none of the instruments available was deemed to be an effective measure of achievement, and eventually only one or two were retained, but used only for placement purposes.
Because there was some emphasis on written assignments in the advanced classes, an attempt was made to discover whether or not improvement in writing could be confirmed. The test consisted of pre- and post-term papers which were to be written about the events shown in a cartoon sequence of ten pictures without dialogue. Staff members, other than the teacher, then compared the papers without knowing which had been written before and which after. In all but two instances, there was agreement that the final paper showed improvement. In attempting to discover progress with respect to cultural information and adjustment, no instruments at all were available. Rather, the evidence consisted of accounts of behavior changes as observed by the teachers or as reported by the students.
From time to time, students were asked to help the staff evaluate the program by writing down how the program had been helpful and in what ways it could be of greater help. Over half the students reported increased cultural knowledge about life in America--its customs, holidays, problems--and about American history. About a third listed gains in knowledge of American government and geography, and a small group mentioned job improvement.
These are very rough measures, but when one reads the individual responses, one sees statements about being able to understand radio programs and to listen to lectures and discussions. The need to refer to a dictionary decreased. Cartoons which before were incomprehensible could now produce a laugh. One middle-aged Ukrainian said he had been able to follow simple conversations, but at Roosevelt he learned to listen and understand the sense of lectures and speeches. A young nurse's aide from Germany remarked that fewer people said, "What?" when she spoke. A young Pole felt that the Friday evening programs particularly had given him a grasp of the real meaning of such terms as "freedom" and "American democracy." An older woman from Germany was able to accept comfortably her reassignment as an aide from a children's ward to an adult ward because her grasp of English had improved sufficiently so that she could communicate with English-speaking adults. A laboratory technician from France had been held back in her employment because she was unable to take responsibility for answering the telephone. Her problem evidently was shared by others in the class, so a series of telephone conversations was worked out as drill material.
There were other important milestones on the way to becoming participating members of American society. Some were able to complete naturalization and vote for the first time. Discussions in class during the political campaign would focus on the positions of the candidates, what was being said about them, what the political cartoons meant and so on. Some students indicated still another kind of progress when they reported that because of what they had learned in class, they were able to broaden their experience by going outside of their nationality group, to movies in English, for example, or by accepting responsibilities on the job which required communicating with others in English.
When asked how the program could be improved, students offered a number of suggestions, not all of which could be readily implemented. Some students continued to be frustrated about spelling, but because improvement in written communication was last on the list of objectives, the limitations of time prevented any significant progress toward this goal. Then there were those who would have liked to be allowed to address the class on a topic which had considerable significance for them, but again, time was a problem. Eventually a plan was worked out whereby someone could schedule a five-minute speech to be followed by a five-minute question period. The instructor noted errors on a slip of paper which the speaker could then take home. This was accepted as a fair compromise.
Even though classes usually averaged about fifteen students, many enrollees
During the first two years of the program, careful attendance records were kept, but because attendance turned out to be well maintained, detailed record keeping was discontinued. In this connection, certain differences between the first two years are of interest. Including only students in their first year of work, the dropout rate in the fall semester of 1954-1955 was only 11 percent as compared with 18 percent in 1953-1954. This reduction in the dropout rate may have been due to more experienced teaching but may also have reflected more effective placement of students in the various class levels. The improvement in holding power of the program was further confirmed by the fact that, whereas 71 percent of the students in the fall of 1953 continued into the spring semester, in 1954-1955 almost 94 percent continued. When the second-year students are included in the 1954-1955 figures, the number of dropouts in the fall semester was further reduced from the 11 percent experienced with first year students only to a level of 9.5 percent overall.
Another attendance measure was the so-called "Persistence of Attendance," obtained by dividing the average daily attendance by the total registration in each class. During 1954-1955, this figure ranged from class to class between 62 percent and 88 percent. For all classes in the fall semester, the figure was 85 percent; for the spring semester, 72 percent; and for the entire year, 78.5 percent. A study conducted by the U.S. Office of Education in 1952 showed that in ninety-eight programs for the foreign-born throughout the country, the median level was 58 percent and the beginning of the upper quartile was 74.5 percent.15
The attendance figures need further interpretation because in1954-1955 at least four of the students who dropped out did so for the purpose of enrolling in other, more advanced educational programs, a purpose which it was hoped the American Studies Program would encourage. By 1958-1959 the percentage of dropouts was only 7 percent. The persistence of attendance ranged from 72 percent in the beginning classes up to 94 percent in the advanced classes. For all classes for the whole year the persistence of attendance was 88 percent. 16 It is worth noting that in addition to the reasons already given for the rise in attendance, the yearly increase in tuition meant that the individual had a larger stake, financially at least, in remaining with the class for which he had enrolled.
Another measure of interest was the fact that the program for 1954-1955 included two classes set up especially for students from the previous year, and, in fact, over half of the preceding year's students enrolled in them. In these classes, the dropout rate was only 5 percent of this small number, and some dropped out to embark on other educational programs for which the ASP had helped to prepare them. It is significant that there appeared to be no tendency for students to drop out of the program after they acquired citizenship. "While such a record is to be expected in a program which emphasizes education for living in the United States rather than education for obtaining citizenship, it is, nonetheless, a further indication that the American Studies Program is realizing its objectives."17
In addition to faithful attendance, students demonstrated their support in another way. A question of perennial concern to the Foundation in connection with various projects was the matter of what would happen once the grant funds were exhausted. In this regard, in the early discussions of the proposal, I suggested that in time it might be possible for this program to become largely, if not entirely, self-supporting. The final report notes the initial skepticism on the part of the staff, but in the end it was felt that this possibility had been largely confirmed. Writing in 1964, Neff noted that during the first five years for which ESF funds were available, the tuition fee had been increased from five dollars per semester to twenty-five dollars. And between 1953-1954 and 1957-1958, annual registration had totaled 146, 184, 159, 147 and 167. When, in the year following the end of the grant, tuition was raised to thirty-five dollars, enrollment dropped to thirty-seven in the fall semester and forty-four in the spring semester for a total of only eighty-one. But in the next four years, yearly enrollment varied from 101 to 123, and in the fall of 1963 it had risen to sixty-nine, a level significantly exceeded in only two prior years, in spite of an increase in tuition to $37.50 per semester. It should also be noted that the announcement of the program now stressed that it was open only to students who had completed high school in their native language. As a result the classes were relatively homogeneous with respect to educational level.
Accounting for Results
It seems fair to conclude that Roosevelt University was successful in its effort to develop an American Studies Program that would assist the better-educated members of immigrant groups through an appropriate program of language and cultural instruction to enhance their ability to contribute to American life and to share in the fruits of the American system. How, then, can we account for the fact that these achievements were realized? While several elements seem to have been involved, the significant ones, in my opinion, were: the character of Roosevelt University and of the staff which it employed; the kinds of students who enrolled; the methods and materials employed; and the facilities available, including their location in the downtown area of Chicago.
The Institution and Its Faculty. As Dean Wayne Leys said in "Comment on the Report on the American Studies Program,"
The institutional setting of the American Studies Program has not been unimportant. The setting is a University in which serious students are welcomed regardless of their origin and regardless of their social standing. It is a University with a cosmopolitan staff, keenly aware of the problems and opportunities inherent in cultural differences. It is a University spiritually as well as physically located in the heart of the great metropolitan area with roots extending deep into the community. It is a University that strives for the highest academic standards but conscious of its own recent origin, with the result that no habits are so firmly established that experimentation is impossible. 18
Because many of the faculty of Roosevelt University were not native Americans, the students tended to feel that their needs would be better understood. The students recognized that the faculty "accepted" them. This was important because an English language program which attempts to utilize the materials of everyday experience runs the risk of touching upon areas involving emotional concerns of the students. Hence, there is a certain risk involved, a risk which is reduced where there is rapport between student and teacher. Furthermore, the common elements in background reduced the concern which some students might feel that a kind of cultural imperialism might be practiced upon them. In any case, it was a very significant plus that the Roosevelt faculty was accustomed to dealing not only with students of foreign background but also with adult students as such. As Dean Leys pointed out, "In the teaching of adults, much more than in the teaching of children, explanations must refer to previous learnings and experiences."19 To help the student grasp or interpret the new experience in terms of the old requires of the teacher a grasp of life experience and a flexibility in pedagogy which many teachers of children find it impossible to marshal when confronted with a class of adults. And, finally, it is evident that the American Studies Program faculty was enthusiastic about what it was doing and willing to give far more than the call of duty required.
The Students. There can be little doubt that the results were due in part to the educational level of the students themselves. By requiring at least some high school education as a requirement for admission, a basis existed for making connections with English based upon understandings previously acquired in the study of one's native language. Furthermore, the fact that the experience of the students included the ability to deal in their native tongue with concepts at a rather sophisticated level, heightened their frustration about their inability to handle similar concepts in English at a comparable level. This frustration was a powerful motivating influence in their application of time and energy to the learning of English. Finally, because they had had a significant amount of education before coming to America, access to a university program appealed to them.
Methods and Materials. It is not my intention to analyze the details of the methodology and materials of instruction employed by the American Studies Program; suffice it to say that the choices of methods and materials seem to have been intelligently made. In spite of the popularity of Basic English as developed by l. A. Richards and his collaborators, the ASP staff felt that this approach was too limiting. Basic English did not seem to them to be well adapted to everyday, colloquial conversation. It would be awkward, for example, to have to say, "Someone he had not seen before" instead of "stranger" or "the house where animals live" instead of "barn." Furthermore,
Basic English ignores the concept of the two-word verb, the verb plus a preposition (or adverb) equaling a single verb. The distinction is necessary in the development of English today. "Get in the car." must be distinguished in pattern as well as in meaning from "Get the car in the garage." "Hurry up" is not analogous to "Hurry up the stairs." He is doing two quite different things when he is "looking around for a job," and "looking around the corner." It seems to many of the critics that this type of construction is very basic to English as it is used.20
This criticism seems to be plausibly founded and would represent one advantage of the American Studies Program approach as compared with the Chicago Adult School program which was tied to a Basic English textbook.
It is important, too, that the ASP staff was prepared to investigate seriously the lessons to be learned from contemporary discoveries in linguistics concerning the teaching and learning of English as a second language. In following the work of C. C. Fries, they found support for their inclination to utilize information from the native language as an aid in learning the second language. They operated on the principle that the aural must precede the oral and that the oral must precede the mastery of reading skills. In this case, the lessons from the field of linguistics would appear to have coincided with the wishes of the students. The emphasis on mimicry, drill, the repetition of materials selected on the basis of linguistic principles and the emphasis on the patterns of form and arrangement of words, which in effect constitute the grammar of the language, together with the principle that words must not be learned out of context but rather as part of the patterns of living, all appear to have produced a substantial, successful result.
The Facilities and Their Location. Although not a principal contributing factor to the success of the program, the fact that the classes were held at Roosevelt University, immediately adjacent to the Loop, had a number of advantages. Inthe first place, the classroom facilities were well suited to the educational purpose. Classes met in small rooms with a seminar table arrangement. Maps, phonographs, tape recorders and projectors were readily accessible. Any special events such as lecturers or concerts which were free to regular students were also available on the same basis to the foreign students. The example of other students pursuing educational careers was helpful. For those working in the Loop, the university was conveniently located.
It is true that if classes had been held in various ethnic communities, it might have been possible to enroll a larger total of students. The logistical problems would, however, have been great and very likely impossible for the university to deal with. But, more important, it would have been difficult to enroll enough students at any given dispersed location to make it possible to organize classes with relatively homogeneous grouping. By having all classes at one location, it was possible to assign students to classes on the basis of competency levels and, in the event of a mistake having been made, to reassign the student quickly to a more appropriate class. Finally, given the purpose to teach English in its cultural context, the experience of traveling to class, learning about the city's transportation and getting outside one's ethnic neighborhood itself became part of the learning and provided many stimuli for questions and consequent exercises to clear up confusion or to provide information.
As one reviews the record of the American Studies program, one cannot help but be impressed with the dedication, intelligence, ingenuity, competence and positive concern with which the staff carried out its responsibilities. One gets the impression of a hum of activity, of a constant seeking to find a better way to help the students to become more effective and fully participating members of our society. And the basic objectives--improving the ability of the student to function with greater understanding and satisfaction with respect not only to the better performance of his individual tasks but also to contemplate with a sense of responsibility our common tasks as citizens--seem to have been well served. We conclude that for this group of newcomers to our shores, the American Studies Program made a highly significant contribution to the improvement of their civic competence.
We have seen that Roosevelt University's American Studies Program provided a successful model for the teaching of English as a second language which others concerned with such teaching ought to investigate. Yet, I am aware of having pointed out unique characteristics of Roosevelt University which helped it to achieve the kind of result reported. To a point, then, the grantee and its program were unique. But some elements could be adapted to other contexts, given the ability to visualize and the will to implement a quality program because part of its quality resided in the care with which the needs and abilities of its students had been made the starting point.
A high quality program ought, of course, to be our goal in working with any level of student. But here we are concerned with a project which addressed itself to the needs and interests of students whose educational backgrounds and ability to communicate in their native languages were relatively high. If adult schools (such as are administered by the public schools) or community colleges had such a population available with which to work, what conditions would need to be present to achieve the kind of success we have attributed to the ASP?
First, there would need to be a large enough population needing instruction at the postulated level to allow classes to be organized on the basis of differential achievement. To mix beginning and advanced students would present a frustrating situation for all. Second, the possibility of an imaginative and flexible approach, concerned with the realities of student needs and interests, must be present. The "dead hand of bureaucracy" and the qualities of imagination and flexibility are unlikely to coexist. As a corollary, the policy of the agency must allow for this clientele, at least, a program based on linguistic ideas different from those embodied in Basic English, for example. Third, the teachers must be capable of discussing ideas on a level at least comparable to that of the students.
Fourth, the program must be funded sufficiently to allow presentations to be made on the background and context of such phenomena as elections and the party system or U.S. foreign policy. A corollary of this point is that teachers would have to have the ability to utilize the content of lectures, newspapers, radio and television or everyday encounters as occasions to encourage use of new vocabulary and more functional speech patterns and to seize the opportunity to identify and correct errors in hearing/speaking--the principle being that by relating instruction to the life experiences of the students, the motivation to learn will be significantly enhanced.
In essence, what seems to be required is a non-bureaucratized institution and well-qualified teachers with the ability and the courage to be flexible and to connect the learning of English with the life experience of the student. The vision and the abilities of Roosevelt University's ASP staff were clearly what made the difference in the success of its program.
Like the grant to Roosevelt University, the grants to the American Council for Emigres in the Professions, which before 1955 was called the American Committee for Emigre Scholars, Writers and Artists (ACESWA),21 supported one of the few projects which involved an interest specifically noted in Mr. Schwarzhaupt's will--his interest in helping the foreign-born become better citizens of this country. The principal reason for not giving more support to such programs was the sheer size of this group. Because the ACEP's project was limited to the needs of a relatively small yet important group, however, it appeared that the Foundation could hope to make a significant contribution. Specifically, the ACESWA (usually referred to as the American Committee) asked for a grant to make possible continuing assistance to immigrants whose special background of education and experience presented unique problems and opportunities with respect to their effective and satisfying integration into American society. The stated goal of the American Committee was "full integration into American life of newly arrived, displaced intellectuals such as scholars, scientists, artists, teachers, lawyers, and administrative personnel on the professional level, seeking thus to create the conditions necessary to their becoming good citizens....22
The proposal noted that upon their arrival in the United States, these displaced persons would take any kind of paying job, even in unskilled work. It was their expectation that such work would enable them to support their families while learning English and looking about for ways of getting back into their former professions. Unfortunately, their experiences did not meet their expectations. Two or three years later, they were no closer to regaining their former careers nor to learning adequate English than before. The committee's application stated:
They become deeply discouraged and despondent. Until they are doing work that satisfies them and gives them a sense of belonging, a sense of accomplishment, they cannot be said to be truly integrated....
Before such placement can be achieved, however, these foreign-trained professionals need much guidance in learning to understand the differences between basic American ideals and concepts and those of their homelands.
To explain to our applicants the many dissimilarities between America and Europe in concept, attitude, habit and even manners, in general and in their professional fields in particular--this is one of our main functions. Successful placement--our other important function is not possible without it."23
While placement was not an objective of the Foundation's program, the other activities of the American Committee did involve learnings of a kind essential to participating citizenship. Given the émigré’s need to establish effective communication with Americans, the typical evening school class was not satisfactory for him. The émigrés needed assistance in establishing contact with others at their own cultural and educational levels. They needed help to understand the unique character of American institutions and how it differed from what they had known. One such hurdle was the distinction between the strictly systematic European legal code in contrast with the flexibility of Anglo-Saxon law and legal institutions--a difference of critical importance for the emigre lawyer, for example. Another problem was the need to grasp the difference between the rather rigid social strata of one's native country and the much more fluid situation in America. The differences in educational systems and fields of study, in degrees and in the status ranking of various vocations all had to be understood. And one of the more difficult tasks was to convey a sense of the differences in the social relationships among fellow workers and in the relations of superior and subordinate in the United States as compared with the émigré's native country.
In a sense, what the American Committee was undertaking to do was to provide a set of learning experiences tailored to the situations and needs of individuals with quite dissimilar backgrounds from those of other immigrants, together with assistance in gaining entry into vocations as nearly commensurate with their previous vocational experience as possible. This help, including cultural orientation, was generally provided on a one-to-one basis through uniquely qualified counselors, an approach which stood in sharp contrast to that of the Roosevelt University program, in which cultural elements were introduced as content in the process of learning English in specially designed courses.
The work of the American Committee had begun in 1950 as part of the International Rescue Committee pursuant to the Displaced Persons Act. As of May 1, 1952, it assumed an independent status with a caseload of 1,120 clients. At that time, new applicants were coming to the American Committee at the rate of about fifty per month, mostly from countries behind the Iron Curtain. In the fall of 1952, the American Committee made its first appeal to the ESF for a contribution to its budget, which at that time amounted to $46,000. In June 1953, an initial grant of $5,000 was made. Other grants were made on virtually an annual basis to a total of $117,500,
In discussing the application with Else Staudinger, executive secretary of the committee, two main points emerged. First, about three-fourths of the committee's staff time was devoted to orientation (education, counseling) and one-fourth to job placement; and second, the committee thought that the problem would probably end in about four years.24 As it turned out, the problem escalated.
To convey a sense of the disparity among the ACEP clients, a profile of applications received in early 1953 will be helpful. There were sixty-six persons listed, all of whom had been interviewed and counseled at length in regard to coping with American expectations. Their backgrounds had been evaluated and American equivalents in education and experience were determined; their need for retraining to fit American requirements was explored; they were assisted to find bread-and-butter employment, having been recommended to all openings for which they qualified. Their countries of origin included the Soviet Union, Bulgaria, Rumania, Hungary, Poland, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, Albania, Syria, Latvia, Estonia, Iran and China, but they came primarily from Eastern Europe. Their professions were diverse, including art historian, veterinarian, linguist, stage manager, chemist, philosopher, musician, editor, pharmacist, political scientist, Orientalist, lawyer, painter, physicist and mathematician. On the surface, at least, these backgrounds promised a rich accretion of human resources. But putting them to work was not easy.
Perhaps a specific case will help to clarify the problems faced by the committee staff. This case involved a thirty-nine-year-old native of Czechoslovakia, a former professor of economics and business administration, He had, in addition, held a high position in the Czechoslovakian government. Following the Communist takeover, he emigrated to Canada, where he worked for two years as an office boy until his visa to enter the United States was received. It was not easy working with him because of the loss of hope resulting from his having accepted so menial a position. In his homeland, such a step would have virtually barred him from ever seeking professional employment again.
It took a number of interviews to persuade him that there was hope and that his bread-and-butter position did not impose in any way a ceiling on his aspirations. He was persuaded to take advantage of an intensive English language program offered by a staff member, and at the same time he was introduced to a number of Americans working at a professional level. In order to give him a fuller understanding of American group life, we secured an invitation for him to one of the American Friends academic summer seminars. He became an active participant in this group and made amazing progress in his adjustment. After this experience, he was fully prepared to accept an assistantship at an excellent midwestern college, where he is now teaching and working toward an American degree. Added to his European Ph.D., this will make him a full-fledged member of the American college community.25
How the Émigré Was Helped
To assist this process of cultural adaptation, the counselor's role was critical. This was not the typical counselor role, grounded in professional psychological expertise. Rather, counselors were recruited who were themselves foreign-born, able to assess the range and nature of the émigré's education and experience, able to understand the unique character of the traumas suffered by them because of the inability to make an acceptable transition to their new environment, and able to clarify for the émigré what opportunities he might look forward to and what might be expected of him in a variety of situations. This required a knowledge of and sensitivity to the character and requirements of two cultures. It required understanding and perseverance to work with a person who must now be a pioneer but whose culture provided no model for such a role. Being different from his neighbors and no longer having the energies and attitudes of a man who has confidence in his future, . . . he remains a stranger in the American group among whom he works and lives. When he at last finds his way to our committee, we discover that he needs a thorough interpretation of his new environment before we can help him secure more adequate work."26 It was because they lacked this kind of expertise that social welfare agencies referred this category of émigrés to the committee. Social workers were trained to work with the underprivileged and the physically or mentally ill, not with normal, though displaced, professionals.
In addition to counseling, the committee undertook to try to help the individual in other ways to improve his ability to establish himself. Reference has been made to the special programs of English instruction which the ACESWA found it necessary to develop. A special approach was needed because the typical adult school English class proved to be quite unsuitable. One reason for this was the great disparities among the students. Also, the public school classes were often much too large and failed to take into account the educational and professional backgrounds of the students. The ACEP approach was to form small classes of reasonably homogeneous composition, or individual instruction was provided in accord with the needs of the student's professional field. By 1960, the program had been largely converted to one emphasizing individual instruction, using forty volunteer teachers. By 1962-1963, there were fifty-five persons affiliated with ACEP, who taught 900 students on an individual basis. In 1955, the committee received a large number of tuition scholarships for first-rate evening classes in American history and literature. Given the academic backgrounds and interests of its clients, this was seen as a great opportunity "to acquire ... a grasp of our language, our civilization and our tradition."27 Direct assistance was given in other ways as well.
Of particular importance were the steps taken to help the émigrés to find employment as reasonably commensurate with the realities as possible. The committee, for example, was able to rent a studio with good musical instruments. This step enabled displaced musicians who had been unable to maintain their skills while in slave labor camps or barracks for displaced persons to regain their former skills. Teachers of music were able to resume their profession because of the availability of a studio in which to give lessons. Social gatherings held each Wednesday evening at the studio made a further contribution to the integration of these persons into their new life. "Chamber music groups sprang up spontaneously; the musicians gave recitals and found engagements with managers who dropped in on Wednesday evenings in search of talent. In the studio, auditions were arranged with the orchestra conductors, school directors and others. Every day since it was opened it has been in action from 10 A.M. to 10 P.M. continuously, sometimes longer."28
Another new development was a gift of scholarships for library school training. This was significant because many professionals had language skills or other background which were in great demand by libraries. For a good number, the practice of librarianship in, for example, a university library offered an acceptable alternative to the careers in their own professions which for one reason or another proved difficult to enter in this country. The prerequisite was a professional librarianship degree which the tuition scholarships made it feasible to pursue. This option was of special benefit to lawyers for whom a career as an attorney in a totally different legal system was virtually impossible. But their background could be readily adapted to a law library. By 1963-1964, sixty-three lawyers had achieved MLS degrees through five universities. Because so much of the employment market for engineers and scientists required security clearance, it was a highly valuable development that the committee was able to persuade the department of defense to undertake such clearance for persons whom an agency or corporation intended to employ. Previously, already having employment was prerequisite to a security clearance search.
Scope of the Program
The program continued to grow. Between May 1954 and March 1955, the committee conducted 1,657 interviews including 348 with new registrants. A total of 409 names were removed from the active rolls. Of these, 111 had been placed directly into professional work and 298 were able to find positions on their own after counseling.
With the Hungarian revolution, the case load of the committee, now called the American Council for Emigres in the Professions (ACEP), jumped from twenty-eight per month between May and December to 105 (of whom seventy were Hungarians) in January 1957 alone. The percentage of registrants from Iron Curtain countries rose to 70 percent of the total from all sources. Because many were musicians, the American Council undertook to persuade the musicians union to admit Hungarians without a waiting period.
Change of regime in the Middle East and in Cuba again brought an increase in new applicants. The annual report for 1960-1961, for example, indicates that 764 new applicants were added to the active file of 1,200 refugee professionals. Of these, over half were from Hungary and over one-third from Cuba. Engineers comprised 135 of this new group, lawyers eighty-nine, and linguists seventy-two. Because of their legal and language skills, lawyers from Cuba found employment in claims departments of insurance companies. Engineers, scientists and mathematicians were retrained to prepare them to teach in American colleges and universities.
In 1962-1963, there were 1,808 new applicants of whom nearly 70 percent were from Cuba and nearly 30 percent were from Iron Curtain countries. To deal with them required 7,071 interviews. During the year, 360 professional placements were made and as many more secured their own placements after English training and counseling. Tuition and maintenance loans and grants, amounting to over $56,000, were procured. A project to train Cubans as social workers was started with a three-year budget of $194,000.
In 1971-1972, 1,071 registered in addition to the 2,803 in the active file. Of the new enrollees, 359 were from Cuba and 544 from Eastern Europe, including the Soviet Union. The largest number were engineers (164) and next were physicians (138). Professional placements were found for 395, interim (bread-and-butter) placements for 164, educational or training placements for 146; a license or certification was secured by 97.
Contributions to Civic Competence
It is a temptation to report at length the data describing the unique assistance given to the many uprooted persons who came to the American Council. But our concern is not with welfare assistance or job placement per se. Rather, it is with those learnings which made membership in our society more effective. First, there was the special approach to teaching English--an approach tailored to individual needs. For some, it was small classes taught by fellow natives of a given country. Or it was teaching on a one-to-one basis. Or the special language of a profession was emphasized. Second, there was the concern for helping the immigrant to come to understand not only the cultural and value differences faced by any refugee but also those aspects which were specific to a particular profession. There was a third kind of learning as well, and that had to do with efforts to introduce those served to the many voluntary organizations, community and professional, which help to give American society its special character. One woman, for whom a position in a college had been secured, had become some eight years later a member of the American Association of University Women, of Business and Professional Women and of several local guilds and clubs. She had given over 100 addresses to civic groups, PTA groups, schools, clubs and churches about life in Europe. She had become a fully functioning member of American society.
It would have been useful if the ACEP could have supplied more information about some of the outcomes more directly related to citizenship. However, one consequence of the untimely death of the dedicated executive director of the ACEP was that no final report on this activity was ever prepared. Nevertheless, we can see enough of what the ACEP did and how it worked, to appreciate how appropriately its specially selected and uniquely qualified staff functioned through education and supporting services, to connect individual needs with the requirements of a different kind of society. Its program was, like that of Roosevelt University's American Studies Program, an outstanding example of fitting together aim and method and content.
University of Miami, School of Continuing Studies
Several years after the close of the regular grant program, certain sums derived in part from the sale of real property but largely from contributions by Mr. and Mrs. Adolph Hirsch (starting the latter part of 1967) were made available through the Mr. and Mrs. Adolph Hirsch Scholarship Fund administered by the School of Continuing Studies of the University of Miami.
The thrust of the program was much like that of the American Council for Emigres in the Professions and, to a lesser extent, like that of the American Studies program of Roosevelt University. A significant group served consisted of Cuban refugees, some Haitians and Chileans. A number of Russian emigres have been helped in the late seventies. Of particular value has been the Intensive English program which also includes materials on American government and culture. The program is still going on and it is hoped will continue as long as there is a need for it.
Chicago Commons Association
The grant made on July 10, 1958, to the Chicago Commons Association (CCA) differed significantly from those made to the seven neighborhood houses discussed in Chapter 6. The original basis for the grant to the CCA was the wish on the part of its director, William Brueckner, to discover whether it would be possible to reorient group workers in a neighborhood house context so that their skills could be applied to the development of individuals who might become leaders in the community. To succeed, it would be necessary for the group workers to expand their concerns beyond that of helping an individual or group to develop a feeling of belongingness. It would be necessary in addition to help the individual develop a sense of responsibility to the wider community and learn how to join with others to help bring about some desired change. To assist in this process it was his proposal that a staff person trained in the field of adult education should be added to the staff.
The adult education specialist was intended to work directly with a variety of community groups and committees, including the community council which had been organized by the CCA in 1949 but which subsequently had become independent. The specialist would also work with Puerto Rican newcomers to help them become part of the community. In schools where there was no PTA, the specialist would help parents to organize one. An important function would be to recognize any development occurring in a group work program that appeared to have a potential for the development of community outlook and to cooperate with the group worker to capitalize on this development. As an example, a remark in a young adults group about some local problem might be pursued as a matter to be studied, alternatives explored and action sought. Brueckner was concerned also with the fact that adult education programs in inner-city neighborhoods seemed to be limited almost entirely to vocational training and "Americanization" services. Could something be done to broaden adult education programs so that a greater range of adult interests might be reached? Brueckner recognized, of course, that an adult education approach would not be easy to implement, especially if it were to be directed to real issues. He had noted in the application to the Foundation that "neither the existing bonds between families and neighbors in residential areas nor the problems, conflicts, and frictions have been adequately utilized as motivations for learning."29
The CCA project area was located in North West Chicago about twenty minutes travel from the Loop. The neighborhood had originally been settled by Poles and Italians from rural areas who came in the late eighties. In the twenties, Ukrainians from rural backgrounds arrived. More Ukrainians came in the early fifties, but they were generally better educated than their predecessors, and many came from professional backgrounds. Shortly before the application was made, however, Puerto Ricans and Southern whites began to appear in significant numbers. About 20 percent of the 40,000 inhabitants were foreign-born. About a third had seven years or less of education, one-third had completed the eighth grade, and one-third had completed high school. Most children attended parochial schools established by ethnic churches. Neighborhood institutions were strongly rooted in the nationality cultures. An additional factor was that the neighborhood had suffered the impact of expressway and urban renewal construction, one result being the Chicago Commons Association, formed by the merger of two settlement houses: Chicago Commons and Emerson House. In 1958, the Chicago Commons building was closed and its program moved to a new facility called Taylor House.
Responses to the initial efforts to develop adult education offerings were meager at best. An attempt to organize a discussion group which would examine the neighborhood and its problems failed. Residents of the neighborhood were reluctant to get involved. Only a few joined the beginners English class or the more advanced class. in the second year, persons of European or Puerto Rican background were invited to a group which would discuss topics thought to be of immediate concern, such as driving rules or social security. By the third session all of the persons of European background had dropped out and only two Puerto Ricans were left. The adult educator speculated that participation in an interethnic educational activity was seen as leading to a degree of cultural change which the students of European origin could not accept.
The response was so meager and the resistances so obvious that the grantee began to wonder whether it was justified in its efforts to promote change in such a situation. Was it realistic to expect a group to discuss the local political organization when members of the group were or might become dependent upon it for favors? Was joining a literacy class an admission of ignorance, and could students acknowledge this publicly? If there were no precedent in a culture for discussing one's family in a public meeting, would parent education be feasible? Would learning the values and skills of "democratic group discussion" be worthwhile in a community which seemed to provide few, if any, opportunities for the use of such a method? In short, "needs" had been determined by the neighborhood house but had never been articulated or acknowledged by the community. Evidently, local residents were not ready for the kinds of adult education programs which had been offered.
There appeared to be difficulties about the other dimension of the project as well. The attempt to integrate group work and adult education concepts and skills met with resistance. Several possible reasons for this failure were noted. Professional pride may have been a factor. The adult education specialist was a newcomer in an agency in which group workers had been employed for a number of years. Goals were different. The adult educator would identify an educational need in the course of a group work session and want to organize some appropriate response, but the group worker would be concerned about the personal, emotional need that had become evident and would view involvement in an educational program as an additional burden, inhibiting the individual's progress toward solving his own need. Techniques were different. The adult educator used film or pamphlets as a basis for discussion; the group worker used a recreational or craft activity. When a discussion on some public issue was initiated, the group worker would tend to expect the group to arrive at an "enlightened" view of the matter (closely coinciding with the group worker's own view) while the adult educator would encourage an examination of various alternatives as a basis for the group member making his own decision.
It did not help, of course, that conditions in the neighborhood and the characteristics of its residents did not make for success in adult education ventures. Many were illiterate in English. Educational levels varied greatly. Leadership styles in the community were authoritarian. (An attempt to set up a group to explore the discussion process on the basis of group dynamics principles was rejected.) Many of the lower-middle-class residents did not feel comfortable meeting at the center.
Near the end of the second year, a gifted teacher with special competence in working in a multicultural setting and in literacy instruction was recruited to try a different approach. She was given a comfortable meeting place where individuals could come on a Saturday morning to read, get literacy instruction or try to meet whatever educational need might be identified. Wide publicity was given to this opportunity; in eighteen weeks, only fourteen people came. Next, the teacher was sent out into the community to make what contact she could and to see whether a teacher-learning opportunity would emerge from such contacts. The basic premise was that the resistance to education must be respected and instruction would be offered only as requested by an individual and nothing further would be offered until the individual asked for it. It was anticipated that an individualized approach to English language instruction would prove to be a likely tool. But the teacher learned that "to learn English" was already too encompassing a notion. Rather, the individual, for example, a Ukrainian, might indicate an interest in learning the Roman alphabet or in working out some words or sentences. Another obstacle was the fact that the adult teacher had to project a different role from that which the local residents had learned to expect from their childhood experience with teachers. The very notion of learning with the help of an outsider had to be learned.
It was becoming more and more evident that even though promoting individual growth through small group situations was seen as a necessary step in educating for citizen participation and that in the case of parent group education the opportunity to compare experiences, understand differences and to experience support was vital to the process, the residents in the neighborhood house community were not ready for such experiences. The development of the ability to function in a small group situation would take much longer to develop than the project envisaged. Furthermore, even the efforts of a sympathetic, gifted teacher to establish a learning relationship with individuals failed.
The significance of this project lay not so much in the degree to which individuals were helped to progress through education--because very few, if any, were helped--but because it showed how inappropriate the more conventional approaches to adult education are when employed in a community with the kinds of cultural characteristics to be found in many ethnic communities, especially in communities which see themselves under siege as cultural entities. But unconventional approaches were also rejected. We can speculate that, threatened with the dilution of their cultural life from generation to generation and feeling threatened by the immigration of alien elements, their response was to retreat and avoid allowing questions to be raised, the answers to which might lead to further change.
In our discussion of the programs conducted by the Roosevelt University American Studies Program, the American Council for Émigrés in the Professions, and the Chicago Commons Association, we were concerned with activities and results to which I applied the term "educational." We turn now to eight projects in which the activities were, to be sure, educational, but educational within a somewhat narrower framework: To these I have applied the term "training."
Because the results of the Migrant Ministry program seemed to be the most substantive, I will begin by describing it. Next, I will note the projects sponsored by Penn Community Center and the South Carolina Council on Human Relations because they resembled to a degree the Migrant Ministry emphasis on the need to base training on direct and practical community considerations. The National Training Laboratories project curriculum was by contrast much more abstract. The Citizens Information Service approach was also somewhat abstract and, perhaps, suffered from a gap in outlook between those offering the service and those expected to receive it. Finally, I will treat the three training projects conducted by universities, which also experienced difficulty in coming to grips with the real needs of project participants.
In the mid-fifties, the Migrant Ministry staff in California had become increasingly aware of the community organizing activity of the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF).30 Because of IAF success in building mass-based organizations in particular, the Migrant Ministry wished to learn whether the organizing principles of the IAF had relevance and value for its own program. Accordingly, the Migrant Ministry's original application to the Foundation pointed out that training for its own staff should be considered an integral part of the project.
In discussing the proposal, Dean Collins, associate director of the Migrant Ministry, had made the point that many members of the staff had been trained as social workers and they were not well adapted to community organization work (that is, in the sense of organizing citizens rather than social agencies).31 They tended to be too involved with the individual and his needs to see the importance of broader community action which would make it easier to deal with the problems of individuals. The Migrant Ministry saw, therefore, a need for a retraining experience in community organization for its staff members. Because the lAF had demonstrated its ability to work with people on a community basis and to train leadership from the community and because it did not work from the top down but rather from the bottom up, the Migrant Ministry proposed to contract with the IAF to provide training for its staff under field conditions.32 Of the $116,530 granted to cover costs of the project over a three-year period, $30,000 was allocated to training of Migrant Ministry staff who were to be assigned as interns in IAF projects. To indicate the nature and method of the training, the report of one of the trainees, Louise A. Bashford, will be especially useful.
Two Migrant Ministry trainees, both women, had been assigned to work with Fred Ross or Cesar Chavez in an effort to rejuvenate a major Community Service Organization (CSO) which had dwindled to a paid-up membership of only twenty-seven. The reason for the organizational failure was that the leadership had used the organization to further their own personal ambitions. After only six weeks of reorganizing, a general meeting was held with 200 paid-up members in attendance.
The training procedure followed was to involve the Migrant Ministry staff assistants in planning the reorganizing campaign: learning about the neighborhood; making house-to-house calls; attending house, membership and board meetings; building up prospect lists; and calling on membership teams to encourage them, "but always as part of the team that had come into the community to work with the people."33 No deliberations were closed to them. The trainees were fully involved in all the discussions of what should be done and why. The organizing chores were thereby given purpose and direction. Later, there were meetings with the mayor, city engineer, officials in the U.S. Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization, church officers, welfare personnel, attorneys and others--all directed toward advancing the CSO program on behalf of its members.
The activities were aimed at a variety of goals: building up the membership, reestablishing voter strength, expanding the program, developing leadership. Part of the process involved setting up service centers to deal with the gamut of member problems: getting a street in the barrio paved, protesting the arrest of an epileptic as a drunk, late filing of alien registration cards, helping with citizenship applications, arranging for an operation on a child's hand. Each case was used to help the people learn to help themselves by working with and for one another, to realize that only with volunteers could a service center function even if a paid staff worker were available.
The organizers were in the background, stimulating activity but not directing it. Very occasionally, because time was limited, they would point out the direct violation of sound planning, such as a suggestion that the executive board set up a program for older people because it "knows what is best." Again, once a decision had been reached by the membership that "something should be done about it"--such as having an office where there could be service without financial exploitation--everything was done to encourage action. Because CSO is a "working organization," all are helped to see that its leaders must work and not just lend their names.
At one point, I wondered about the value of the blow-by-blow diaries prepared for Mr. Alinsky, but experience proved this to be a sound practice of organizing: all facts are there with interpretation given where needed, scope of activities is shown, the people taking part, the sequence of events. Not only can this kind of recording be done much more quickly than if a weekly summary of "important happenings" has to be pulled out, but here events are shown in relationships, and are available for future reference.34
These kinds of lessons could not be achieved by trainees concurrently responsible for a job. By being a full-time member of the continuing organizing activity, however, the trainees could not only join in the full range of organizing activity but could clear up on the spot any questions about motive, procedure or reaction. So "discussions could be had, clarifications made, questions answered in various contexts--not just in theorizing-as we traveled, at meals, or wherever.
We learned, further, from hearing the two men (Ross and Chavez) compare this situation with others where they had worked-differences, similarities, pitfalls."35 In this way, it was possible to gain a meaningful understanding of philosophy, strategy and method.
There was a further advantage, too, in this kind of relationship, as pointed out by another trainee, who said that by working on an impromptu basis with CSO staff on civil rights, welfare, naturalization and court action, "it is not so frightening as if one had to find things out the hard way."36 In an attachment to her report, a colleague, Doris Scott offered a fervent endorsement of the value of this training for Migrant Ministry personnel. Commenting on the training program, she said:
That which impressed me the most about the principles of the organization was that the leaders were not necessarily leaders of the community, but the least educated had a good chance to become leaders if they had a will to learn. So often I have despaired of so-called established leaders who weren't doing anything, and still monopolized the positions so others could not try for the same positions. I also like the idea of the educational leader and the concepts coming from the group itself.37 Here is the yeast for the bread of life not handed down in fancy slices to be digested by the people, but they are the ones who actually do the "rising."38
The training program was not limited, however, to in-the-field experience. After several weeks of field training, a two- or three-day conference would be arranged with Alinsky so that trainees might achieve a synthesis of experience and understanding of certain common denominators which could be applied to their own organization. "Above all, they spent countless hours in conversation with the people, absorbing firsthand accounts of the problems, the fears and hopes of those whom fate had cast in the status of minority members of the community."39
By the close of the training program, twenty-eight staff members of the Department of Home Missions (later the Department of Christian Life and Mission) had been trained under the direction of IAF staff. The twenty-eight trainees included seven area or state directors from California, Arizona, Florida, Colorado and other states in the Southeast and upper Midwest. Although not participating in the training, the state directors from Oregon and Texas took part in the review seminars. Two staff members of the Migrant Citizenship Education Project (MCEP) took part in the training, as did seven members of the Rural Fringe Ministry in California, six Migrant Ministry field staff in California, Arizona and Texas, four staff of other division units (three from Indian Ministry assignments in the Plains States and one from the Deep South) and two community members of the Valleytown Organization established with MCEP help in Texas.
Subsequently, Alinsky met in Atlantic City with the entire national staff of the Migrant Ministry plus several staff members of the Division of Home Missions. In addition, senior Migrant Ministry personnel visited one or more seminars. "In retrospect it is safe to say that the seeds of change, represented in a radical approach to community development and organization, were well broadcast by this training programs."40 In all, seven seminars were held with Alinsky, providing an opportunity to raise questions unanswered in the field, to challenge the trainers on issues and to place the training experience in a larger perspective--especially in relation to the application to institutions and programs to which the trainees would return. C. Wayne Hartmire, director of the California Migrant Ministry, asserted that the impact on the staff had been revolutionary. As a result of the training they could better empathize with the frustrations of the minority groups whom they were trying to help. The training added understanding to their good will, and they could now see what charity and good will had done to people in the past. Another result was that the Migrant Ministry had become able to give leadership to the whole church in the area of sensitivity to human worth and to the role of poverty in the denial of human worth.41
Hartmire thought then that it was too early to claim success regarding the impact on local church groups. But at least the Migrant Ministry now had a staff which was oriented to a community-directed program. Three years later he wrote to me:
There is no doubt that the original training project sponsored by Schwarzhaupt Foundation profoundly influenced the direction of the Migrant Ministry. We are now in a position to give some leadership in community organization and community development. Our staff people throughout the state ... are committed to making the people strong in organizations of their own. We are increasingly in conflict with the poverty program planners particularly as top-heavy county planning committees develop.... Suffice it to say we would probably be out of this conflict if it had not been for the CSO training.42
In summarizing trainee learnings, William Koch, director of the MCEP, noted the following as especially significant:
1. Exposure to and understanding of new ideas, especially the interrelationship of method and ideology. (This was achieved through competently led discussions of activities and strategy.) In Koch's words: "In effect, the training pattern provided a non-fragmented exposure to practice and theory and a revelation of a new framework of ideas and social actions."43
2. Because of the close personal contact with members of the Spanish-speaking community, the trainees' outlook changed. Even though their jobs involved working with Mexican-Americans, Koch stated:
As a result of the field experience, the "client group" took on new dimensions in their eyes. Observing cultural values and mores at first hand and becoming exposed to the stark reality of the lives and problems of the people were cited again and again as important first-time experiences. Understanding of the migrant as "one not to be cared for but to be helped to stand on his own two feet" was an important learning.
3. The trainees became familiar with methods and techniques of organization, particularly with reference to identifying and drawing out indigenous leadership, motivating them, training them for responsibility and helping them to carry them out. "They observed the solicitude and patience which was demonstrated as Ross and Chavez persisted hour after hour in talking with people, listening to their viewpoints, cajoling them, challenging them, helping them see new alternatives, teaching, coaching, encouraging and supporting them."45 However, while accepting the methods as fully practicable and valid for CSO, some of the trainees had questions about their application in toto to the Migrant Ministry program. Not all could accept conflict as opposed to conciliation.
4. The trainees were struck by the self-help theme in providing service--organization members were encouraged to unite and assist each other in the resolution of personal problems. Trainees considered that the methods used to establish communication among members for the discovery of problems, the training of members in use of community resources and particularly the application of group pressures of one kind or another to elicit action in behalf of the people were very serviceable. They noted the importance of dealing with people in trouble as members of a community rather than as individuals or families. They felt that this approach encouraged a sense of belonging among people who are ordinarily isolated, a sense much needed to maintain dignity and integrity when facing difficult problems, especially when dealing with community agencies, which the people frequently found demeaning. Trainees noted that the wholeness of approach, in which the process of organization leads, among other things, to a more effective use of direct services, stood well in contrast to the fragmented, intermittent approaches which frequently characterized their own Migrant Ministry program.46
At the same time, according to Koch, there were points of doubt, and, in fact, he contradicts Hartmire by stating that what was learned was not generally applied afterwards. (Koch was perhaps reflecting his own doubts, as can be seen in his book, Dignity of Their Own.) And, indeed, in commenting on the MCEP organizing project, Koch noted that although staff members were basically in sympathy with the IAF approach, they did not implement it at first. They were concerned about whether it was applicable to migrants other than Mexican-Americans in California and about the lack of institutional approval. And they wanted to make their own contribution to the development of their project. But eventually, after several unrewarding attempts in other directions, they adopted community organization as the main method of citizenship education. On the wider scene, however, it may well be that the experience outside California was different from that observed by Hartmire in the work of his own staff in California--where there was, of course, a functioning model in the Community Service Organization program.
Koch had suggested, further, that there were ideological doubts as to the use of power, the deliberate use of conflict, the tendency to place a blanket label on church workers and others as tools of the Establishment and the declaration of self-interest as the mainspring of human motivation. (Church people generally believed in love and acceptance, altruism, cooperation and reconciliation as the ends-in-view.) These unresolved doubts led, he felt, to equivocation on the part of Migrant Ministry people upon returning to their organizations. Koch noted, "Although some of the California trainees held strong commitments and took sides, others, lacking forthright institutional endorsement, became unwilling or unable to apply community development and organization concepts to their own program."47 At the same time there was also growing controversy in Protestant circles regarding the Alinsky approach, causing severe strains at the national level. These conflicts were greatly influenced by the uproar in the Protestant press over The Woodlawn Organization and Chelsea projects.
The violent reaction to these projects in the religious press was extended by the spread of IAF organizing efforts to other cities, such as Rochester, New York. These developments had an inhibiting effect on the decision to make a commitment to community organization as one of the tools to be utilized in helping those in need. Koch says of this period:
The California training program afforded the churches one of their first exposures to these ideas and processes in action, exposures which . . affected a number of people in at least one key agency within Protestantism. Further, some of the persons who participated in that program were among those who, by their continuing advocacy, contributed to the survival of the ideas and processes during some lean years.48
Elsewhere, Koch indicated he was referring to debates within the Division of Home Missions and elsewhere in the National Council of Churches. He was aware of this debate during the years he served in the division at the national level, subsequent to termination of the MCEP. Indeed, he asserted that publication of Dignity of Their Own was delayed for five years because of concern about what the national policy should be.49 Eventually, in 1966, community organization was accepted as an "alternative for church action." To this result, Reverend Douglas Still, according to Koch, had made a highly effective contribution. In California, under the leadership of Reverend Hartmire (who succeeded Reverend Still in 1961), the California Migrant Ministry (CMM) continued to expand its efforts through community organization.
Seven staff members of the Rural Fringe Ministry (RFM), directed to recent dropouts from the migrant stream, took part in the training program. If a CSO were active in a fringe area served by the RFM, it would cooperate closely. By 1965, there was active participation by CMM staff in the activities of the Farm Workers Union organized by Cesar Chavez. At the same time, Migrant Ministry staff became actively involved in Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) projects, emphasizing the principle of "maximum feasible participation." Later, when OEO began retreating from this principle in the face of political pressure, the Migrant Ministry mobilized counter-pressure.
In time, change did come. By 1965, several church groups had joined together to organize the Center for Training in Urban Mission in Chicago. And on December 2, 1966, the general board of the National Council of Churches issued a statement of concern for the plight of seasonal farm workers, with community development being recognized as an appropriate means to pursue social and economic objectives in behalf of these people. But change did not come to all. Although they might consider the IAF approach valid for the CSO, some trainees said of themselves that they had a different mission. According to Koch, "They felt their responsibility to be the delivery of traditional services in traditional ways to the selected clients."50 They saw their role as encouraging the giving by the more fortunate to the less fortunate, plus a certain amount of evangelism.
There were several reasons for their reluctance to accept the IAF approach. As concepts, community organization and development lacked a theological base. Many who understood the implications of and wanted to use community organization and development as tools were reluctant to do so within the framework of the church "without the proper language with which to rationalize the concepts to constituents." Only later was this rationale provided.51 These concerns were reinforced by the vested interest which many felt in existing programs. They tended to avoid new approaches. By 1966, however, Koch felt that there was strong support at all levels for the principle of involvement of low-status persons in decision making in programs with which they were concerned.
In California, support for the community organization and community development idea within the Migrant Ministry had proceeded to the point where the rural fringe organizations which it had encouraged were tied in with the successful grape-pickers strike of 1965. "Indeed," Koch noted, "it may be said that this involvement by California's staff contributed substantially to the enlistment of broad support on the part of Protestant churchmen and institutions across the nation for the long-neglected cause of the agricultural worker."52 In conclusion, Koch asserted that the Presbyterian, Episcopal and United Church of Christ denominations had taken strong positions in support of community organization and development as relevant tools for the church and that the Methodist and American Baptist churches were moving in this direction. In his view, they also maintained strong pressure on OEO to keep the principle of involvement of the people being served. It was Koch's hope that "this report will have succeeded in providing some evidence that the training program contributed to a chain of events which led at least one segment of organized Protestantism to a rediscovery of the commonality of religious and democratic values and through this rediscovery to a contemporary stand for human dignity."13
Kay Longcope described this change in the orientation of the Migrant Ministry from its early concern with a non-controversial direct service type of program to one much more involved with helping those served to help themselves. She pointed out that current efforts were emphasizing the establishment of separate nonprofit corporations to administer OEO-funded health, education and welfare migrant aid projects; mobilizing community-wide efforts to make migrants a part of communities they once lived in temporarily; and supporting indigenous efforts on the part of workers to organize for the right of collective bargaining. It was this latter role which resulted in the greatest controversy.
Longcope quoted Reverend Hartmire as saying:
Farm workers are disorganized, weak and poverty-stricken while their employers are highly organized, affluent and powerful. The employers unilaterally make almost all decisions about size of work forces, wages and working conditions. They exercise determinative influence in county and city governments and influence public agencies that are supposed to serve or protect the workers.... It is this radical power imbalance that is at the root of the injustices experienced by seasonal farm workers. Justice demands a countervailing power that will come as workers are organized and have the right to bargain on issues that directly affect their lives.
She noted further that Reverend Hartmire "was the nation's first migrant minister to lead church councils into agricultural labor-management disputes,"55 the California Migrant Ministry having openly supported Cesar Chavez' farm workers organization beginning in September 1965. Similar involvement had occurred in Texas, Florida, Michigan and Wisconsin. "In the meantime, however," Longcope wrote, "it would surely appear that the forty-seven-year-old Migrant Ministry no longer sees itself as a patchwork type of operation." She again quoted Reverend Hartmire, who saw its role as being one of "changing structures to set men free from old patterns of thought and old economic forces so that they may think new thoughts and dare new deeds for the sake of their fellow men."56 Self-determination was coming to be accepted as the goal and community organization as the means.57
Clearly, this program to train Migrant Ministry staff by immersing them in the practical dynamics of community organizing in the IAF mode must have been highly stressful for them, having come as they did out of a background of theology, ministry and social work. Beyond the threat to their preconceptions, grounded in their professional training and experience, there was also the threat to working relations with the establishment figures who served on their county or area committees and determined the activities of the private organizations providing services to migrants. It took courage to suggest that giving benefits to those in need was inconsistent with the development of human dignity, that, instead, the aim must be to help the migrants to learn to help themselves. Fortunately, not all quailed in the face of these and other difficulties. They remained open to the lessons to be learned and sought opportunities to apply them.
In addition to the grants to Highlander, three small grants were made in support of leadership training among blacks in South Carolina. Two grants went to Penn Community Center (PCC), the third to the South Carolina Council on Human Relations (SCCHR). The picture of just what happened and why is unfortunately not altogether clear. First, the SCCHR director became ill before she was able to produce a final report. Second, some confusion arises from the fact that for part of the time the two organizations were working on a joint basis, and part of the time they operated independently. Some materials, however, are available to us.
Penn Community Center was established as the Penn Normal, Industrial and Agricultural School by Quakers at Frogmore on St. Helena Island in South Carolina in 1862 to provide schooling for black children. It was converted to a center for conferences and workshop groups after a public school for black children was started on the island in 1953. When in the mid-fifties, the South Carolina Council on Human Relations was formed, one of its principal concerns was the gross discriminations against blacks in civic affairs. Although not yet working with Esau Jenkins, the organization shared his concerns about voter registration, especially the decennial re-registration required in South Carolina. The SCCHR proposed, therefore, that a grant be made to Penn Community Center to subsidize living expenses for participants attending each of four conferences on this and related problems to be held at PCC. A November 1957 application by PCC for $2,000 was approved.
Four workshops were held beginning July 1958 on an integrated basis. There were several emphases: black leadership on a local level, the role of the clergy, role of the media and the role of social science teachers in secondary schools. In July 1959, a grant of $2,600 was made to be used to subsidize four citizenship workshops over a two-year period. (Actually, the period was extended into 1963, and five workshops were held instead of four.)
Two three-day workshops on voter registration were held in the spring 1960. The first was concerned with promoting voter registration in towns and cities where the problem was primarily a matter of indifference or ignorance. A total of seventy-eight attended from sixteen towns and cities. The group organized an actual campaign for one town as a workshop exercise, resulting in two principal conclusions: registration activity must be continuous and, in those cases where there was substantial black registration, the potential power must be used in order to gain better treatment.58 This would, of course, encourage more registration. The second workshop was held the following month, attended by sixty-one persons from eighteen rural communities. A special effort had been made to attract blacks from communities, primarily rural, where whites were clearly working to make registration difficult. The curriculum emphasized registration requirements, explanation of registration forms and ways to organize local workshops on registration. The most productive sessions were devoted to identifying obstacles to registration and role-playing typical situations to find a way to get around them.59 (It must be understood that most of the participants in these six workshops came from communities where overt and covert obstacles were placed in the way of blacks who wanted to register and vote. The possibility of violence was ever-present.) The sponsoring organizations for these workshops included the NAACP, Committee on Racial Equality (CORE), Palmetto State Voters Association and SCCHR. Esau Jenkins and other leaders from his group were active in these workshops.
These voter registration efforts helped markedly to increase black voter registration in Beaufort County, South Carolina, but Penn's director felt that in practice, the black community vote was being manipulated against its own best interests. The need was seen, therefore, to organize workshops emphasizing more effective use of the ballot through intelligent evaluation of issues and candidates and an understanding of the functioning of the party machinery. Accordingly, two workshops were scheduled for January and February, using the second half of the July 1959 grant. The first workshop emphasized understanding of the political scene in Beaufort County, the party machinery and election procedures as well as the functions of such governmental bodies as the Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Committees and the Farmers Home Administration. This curriculum offered an opportunity to gain a more sophisticated understanding of the local political scene as it related to black interests. Especially important was the fact that the curriculum had been developed in consultation with community groups in the county.
The second workshop dealt with running for office, precinct organization, analysis of results of the previous election and evaluation and selection of candidates. At a meeting in March to elect the new officers of the Beaufort City Municipal Club, blacks outnumbered whites and elected a black to the executive committee--a result which Courtney Siceloff, director of PCC, indicated was clearly attributable to the Penn workshops held the previous month. Because the second workshop did not finish its agenda, a third workshop was held in September 1963 which emphasized how the needs of the black community could be more effectively served through use of the ballot. In October, about 150 blacks showed up to register. (The registration books were open only one day each month at that time.) This was the largest turnout since the county election the preceding June. Emphasis on voter registration on a community basis was having a clear impact.
In addition to the kinds of workshops just described, the SCCHR had seen another need, that is, to help black organizations strengthen their ability to function. Many leaders were cynical about the possibility of stirring the members of the black community out of their apathy. No provisions had been made for training new leadership nor for understudy relationships. The president of the largest Baptist organization was an eighty-four-year-old woman who refused to resign her office.60 In an effort to cope with such problems the South Carolina Coordinating Council of Negro Leaders was formed. This council wanted a leadership training program, and a grant of $5,000 was made by ESF to the SCCHR for this purpose.
Reporting on the results four years later, Alice Spearman, executive director, South Carolina Council on Human Relations, noted some problems. At the beginning, the militants immobilized the moderates as the segregationists did other whites. Many blacks resisted voter registration efforts: "They never paid any attention to me before. What are they trying to get out of me now?" Vulnerability to economic pressure was a continuing factor--whether one was a tenant farmer or driver of a Coca Cola truck. It was difficult to get across the idea that status figures were not necessarily the best leaders for an organization.61
An especially vexatious problem at the start was that no black member proposed or supported any long-range proposal. Everything had to be done now. But when trouble arose, there was no effective structure to deal with it. Nevertheless, by working with a small core of leaders, it was possible to proceed to set some priorities for the project, building on the workshops conducted at the Penn Community Center. One of the decisions made was to work with the SCLC in promoting a statewide meeting of black organizations at Columbus. It turned out to be the largest meeting of blacks ever held in the state.
In furtherance of project purposes, three workshops were held at Benedict College in Columbia, South Carolina. They focused on the nature of the community, the range of social services available to blacks, the extent to which psychological blocks in black communities hinder progress and the impact of economic and political structure on the black community. Attention was also given to the importance of democratic practices in organizations (for example, the need to rotate leadership). In the workshops themselves, various devices were used to stimulate discussion of information and ideas presented rather than the expectation that material should be learned by rote.
Because of a lack of adequate reporting (especially on the SCCHR project), it is difficult to evaluate the results of these efforts. The resources provided to the PCC and the SCCHR were quite small. Nevertheless, there were concrete results stemming from the workshops at Penn. And the objectives of the SCCHR work with organizations must certainly be considered to have been relevant to citizenship education. Even modest results were important, given the fact that in community after community across the South, it was necessary for blacks to learn every basic detail about exercising the franchise-how to register, how to take part in and to influence the party machinery, how to evaluate and select good candidates and, finally, how to wage campaigns. The whole infrastructure of a black political force had to be created from almost nothing. And virtually the same can be said of the voluntary organizations which provide a parallel structure to the political. To this end, the PCC and SCCHR workshops and related efforts made their contribution, a contribution grounded in an effort to build a training curriculum by involving those who acutely felt a problem. The curriculum grew directly out of their perceptions of the problem (although it took longer for this stage to be reached in the case of the SCCHR).
The National Training Laboratories (NTL) project was also funded at a modest level but differed from the FCC and SCCHR projects in that the definition of problems was somewhat more abstract as were the proposed responses to them. The project came about because in 1960, the NTL (affiliated with the National Education Association) proposed to offer an Experimental Laboratory in Community Leadership Training. The Foundation contributed $5,000 toward the planning of the first year's operations of this new NTL venture as well as toward scholarships. The workshop evolved eventually to include both the T-group approach previously developed by NTL and its Problem Analysis Group. The role of the latter was to explore ways to anchor laboratory experience in the context of back-home (that is, community) problems.
In summarizing the contribution of the Community Leadership Training Laboratories program of the NTL, Curtis Mial, associate director of the NTL, noted that the overall goal was to increase "competence for coping with highly complex community problems." The specific goals were to encourage "more effective processes for bringing about change, for solving problems, for achieving interagency collaboration."62 The data provided to us do not tell us what these processes were nor how much of a role the factor of interagency collaboration (as distinct from the activities of individuals and their organizations) was intended to play. We note, however, that the topics in the take-home packet from the first community leadership training workshop included dimensions of community analysis, models of community action, community decision making, individuality and conformity, community power, consultant roles, the change agent, community power structure, interpersonal communication and feedback.
It cannot be said that these topics have nothing to do with what an organizer does when he is working for the Industrial Areas Foundation. But Fred Ross or Nick Von Hoffman or Ed Chambers meeting with a group in a neighborhood bar or Septima Clark meeting by lamplight in some farmer's home would not have articulated any of these topics except possibly for the word "power." To them, the words would be merely that. Rather, they would have asked what the citizens of the community want and how can that be achieved with whose help against what opposition. The NTL approach is highly verbal as compared with the others we have reviewed. The value premises emphasize the process of working together, a process grounded in concepts derived from socio-psychological research.
As I said above, the role of interagency collaboration is not described in any data provided. But the IAF and Highlander would surely emphasize having a functioning citizens group in operation before thinking about interagency collaboration. They would want the initiative in the former and not with the agencies (as occurred in the Migrant Citizenship Education Project's South Metro County Council for Migrants). Lacking other data on how well the results of NTL training worked back home, it must be recorded that response to it seems to have been positive on the part of agency personnel.
By early 1964, the community laboratories had become a self-supporting part of the total NTL program, with summer programs being held at Bethel, Maine, and at Cedar City, Utah (the latter in cooperation with the University of Utah). Participants were broadly representative of the various regions of the country. Almost all were employed by agencies, with only a few volunteer community workers. Of the sixty enrolled in the Bethel program in 1964, fifteen came from religious agencies (of which six were national); nine came from some level of local government and eight from a state agency; nine from universities; and voluntary organizations such as Red Cross contributed ten students, primarily from a community level. Of the twenty-one attending the Cedar City workshop, nine were from governmental agencies (four from the local level); four represented local voluntary groups; three, local religious bodies; and three were from universities.
Several teams were included, a team consisting of several persons from the same organization. This pattern was encouraged by NTL "since experience and research indicates increased impact when people are trained as teams that can go on working together after the laboratory."63 The National Council of the Episcopal Church (NCEC), for example, had sent eleven persons and the National Association of Public School Adult Educators (NAPSAE) had sent twelve. In constituting teams, the NTL especially encouraged those which included both volunteers and professionals who were involved in community action efforts, both local and national level (because the linkage was considered to be important), both public and private interests and both specialized and more broadly conceived community development interests. A further development was the organization of follow-up consultation with NAPSAE and NCEC with a view to planning how to expand the impact of team learning through the respective organizational programs. Follow-up programs were also developed with the Urban League (in Washington, D.C.) and with other community groups which had sent teams.
Unfortunately, we do not have a picture of what happened later in any actual community situation, as we have with the Migrant Ministry training project with its emphasis on actual organizing in the community, recording one's experiences, and then exploring that record with the help of trained organizers. But it seems clear that the NTL method was by comparison highly verbal and abstract. Whether the experience of organizing in the community (on the Migrant Ministry model) together with the opportunity to examine that experience in dialogue with experts in the field of organizing would provide a superior result for those able to deal with the realities involved, we cannot determine incontrovertibly. But certainly a strong argument can be made for the intern model.
The Citizen Information Service (CIS) was established by Chicago's League of Women Voters in the belief that the blacks and Puerto Ricans who were moving into the inner city needed nonpartisan information about local issues and governmental processes. To meet this need, CIS had been provided with staff and was not required to limit itself to the league agenda.
Prior to 1954, a booklet bearing the title "Key to Chicago Government," and several pamphlets based on it had been distributed by the league through some 250 member organizations of Citizens of Greater Chicago, via reading racks in factories and business establishments and through citizen information centers in settlement houses and other locations in inner-city neighborhoods. But it soon became clear that more than pamphlet racks and a telephone information service were needed if information about local government were to be used effectively.
To test other ways of reaching inner city groups, the CIS applied in August 1954 for a grant to help it to provide basic civic information on a widespread and functional basis to low-income areas, possibly through community organizations concerned with problems of urban renewal in Chicago. Based on the league's reputation for objective, nonpartisan public affairs education programs, a one-year grant of $10,000 was made. (Four additional grants were made: $10,000 in 1955, $20,000 in 1956, $15,000 in 1957 and $10,000 in 1958.)
In the first year of the ESF-funded project, efforts were made to work through neighborhood "leaders." But efforts to set up meetings with "leaders" were unsuccessful. Either, very few would come or whole families would arrive, including children, making discussion impossible. Recruiting persons to take materials in Spanish to meetings of organizations also met with suspicion. Booths were set up in shopping centers and movie house lobbies. Distribution continued to decline.
In the following year, CIS took the unusual step for a league organization of employing a male in order to offer consultant help on block organization. It was hoped that as problems with a political focus came to the fore, CIS materials would be found to be useful. In this context, in January 1956, the CIS began working with the Between-the-Tracks Council (BTC) on the South Side. Because of frustrations experienced by the council in dealing with city officials, the first task undertaken was to analyze the local political situation. Having discovered that the precinct captain did not live in the area and that their alderman ignored complaints about this, BTC put up its own candidate for precinct committeeman. Before the election, the CIS conducted workshops on voter registration and how to get out the vote. The ETC candidate won. The CIS assisted next by holding a series of meetings on the duties of club officers and how to get public officials to listen to the community. The BTC learned to put pressure on as well as work with precinct captains, aldermen and other public officials instead of merely "sending a telegram to the mayor." Also, to correct misinformation on the part of local residents concerning the complex implications of a proposed expressway, the CIS developed and provided material, which function it was uniquely qualified to perform. Because the county highway department was apparently unaware of how much residential stability actually existed in the area, the council asked the CIS to train residents to make a survey. A CIS staff member claimed that the highway department was "impressed with the results," but in the end, the community learned about the final expressway route from the newspapers. A fourth activity requested by the BTC was help in organizing block clubs.64 At this point, however, it was decided to invite the Human Relations Center (HRC) of the University of Chicago to provide a twelve-session training program for this purpose. (This activity will be discussed below.)
The 1957 application was directed to further exploration of the kinds of service that could be provided for changing neighborhoods by CIS. This purpose had come into focus for the CIS partly as a result of the BTC experience and partly because of having become involved in the "first major biracial meeting in Parkside," a changing neighborhood on the South Shore. About 175 blacks and whites attended the meeting, the outcome of the efforts of a citizens committee with which CIS had been working. The upshot was a decision to set up a housing program. Assisted by the CIS, the committee sponsored a series of educational meetings on housing. The CIS convened experts, prepared materials and led discussions. The group then reorganized as a permanent Housing Committee with thirty-five persons agreeing to become housing resource persons. Another result claimed by CIS because of project activity was the decision of the only Protestant church in the area to remain on an interracial basis.
What did the expenditure of $65,000 over a five-year period tell us about the ability of an organization, based in an overwhelmingly white, upper-middle-class sector of society, to contribute effectively to the development of civic competence in racially changing neighborhoods of Chicago? Although the CIS reports are somewhat impressionistic, they do provide some basis for conclusions when amplified by evidence from other sources. The original premise was that CIS volunteers could apply what they had learned as members of the League of Women Voters to helping blacks and Latinos moving into changing neighborhoods to gain an understanding of and an appreciation for the responsibility of citizens to work in their own behalf. A second premise was that factual and unbiased information on the political process would be used if couched in more understandable language than that customarily used in league pamphlets and if made widely available in changing neighborhoods. The first premise was only partially validated. For example, in the Between-the-Tracks area, although volunteers did useful work, some staff help was essential. The second premise was not validated.
The CIS experience suggests the following:
1. Volunteers coming from a league background could not, in general, work effectively in changing neighborhoods in the inner city. Nor was it possible to expect women, whether volunteers or paid staff, to work in these areas at night.
2. Didactic information on government was not seen by residents of inner-city ghettos as meeting any of their needs. As one observer said, Puerto Ricans in such neighborhoods were not yet interested in Chicago politics; they wanted jobs.
3. Frankie Boylan, a staff member of Firman House (a settlement house in the BTC area) during the period involving the CIS in the BTC, said that even when material on local government was specially written to meet area needs, it was necessary for the council to rewrite the material to a lower educational level.65
4. Attempts to approach "leaders" in changing neighborhoods were met with reactions ranging from indifference to suspicion.
5. The CIS could point to one success. For reasons not made clear, the CIS was able to establish a working relationship with a lower-middle-class group (so labeled in the final report of the Human Relations Center, discussed below). In this case, its hope was realized that CIS information would become important and would be used if a political issue were to be raised in a meeting of a community organization. The BTC learned enough about ward structure and politics to wage a successful effort to elect a precinct committeeman.
The CIS proved to be useful to the BTC in other ways. It knew how to get a good deal of information about the expressway project which the BTC did not. Two training sessions on duties of organization officers were said to have been very useful. The CIS was given credit by Frankie Boylan for having helped to develop both new and old leadership.
But, of course, strengthening the organization was not part of the CIS mission. The organization was only supposed to be the vehicle for an educational program on local government. Its work with the BTC on ward politics certainly qualified as a good example of this. However, it is difficult to disentangle the combination of contributions by paid staff of CIS, HRC and Firman House to the BTC. (The Human Relations Center [HRC] was another grantee which also became involved with the BTC. It will be discussed next.) And, further, we must ask whether in any event an education/training effort requiring paid staff could be sustained by the CIS operating from a league base which was anything but generously financed.
6. Its membership was such that its assumptions did not easily fit those of a lower-middle or lower-class community. This may have contributed to a tendency to confuse the significant with the less significant. For example, the CIS final report prepared in February 1960 listed a contribution it had made to helping a tenants' council in an apartment building to identify with the larger community. This was accomplished by asking the Near West Side Community Council to invite someone from the tenants' council to attend the annual dinner of the Association of Community Councils. At the same time, the CIS did help the tenants' council to rewrite its constitution so that it could function.
The gap between the CIS group and those served may be illustrated further, however, by a comment about the six-week course in parliamentary procedure (which was useful to the council officers). Soon, it was said, "they were making motions." But to say that "what had passed for mental dullness was only lack of tools with which to work" suggests that CIS expectations could have been higher.66 In sum, we can say that useful results were achieved Between-the-Tracks and in one of two other situations but at a cost which appears incommensurate with the benefits. In seeking an answer for this, it seems to me that it can be found in the gross gap between the CIS idea that Puerto Ricans in a Chicago neighborhood needed information and understanding on an organized basis about Chicago government and their own perceptions in the matter. The CIS was not building on a real interest. The Migrant Ministry and the Penn Community Center and the South Carolina Council on Human Relations training projects were successful to the degree that they involved problems and frustrations acknowledged by people in real situations. They were responding to real needs instead of needs stated by persons on the outside (although this criticism was legitimate in part at the beginning of the SCCHR project).
In July 1954, University College of the University of Chicago applied for a grant to establish a center for community leader training. The grant was intended to help Bettie Sarchet to provide training for leaders of voluntary citizen action groups, including methods of block organization which she and Professor Herbert Thelen had been working out in Hyde Park-Kenwood. The Foundation welcomed the opportunity to support this intention and made a grant for a two-year period beginning September 1, 1954, followed by a supplemental grant in September 1955, allowing continuation until August 1957. The total sum amounted to $34,500. Unfortunately, soon after the initial grant, it became necessary for Sarchet to leave Chicago. As her replacement, the university appointed Dr. Morris Haimowitz, who had been on the staff of the National Training Laboratories. This change in personnel resulted in a significant shift in the focus of the project as implied in the change of name to Human Relations Center (HRC).
The original application proposed, in addition to a focus on block organization, these activities: (1) neighborhood leaders of voluntary citizen action groups would be helped to gain the skills of holding effective meetings, getting people involved in projects for community improvement, and learning how to deal with difficulties arising from human interaction in groups; (2) experiments with methods of university-community cooperation in adult education; and (3) encouragement of neighborhood leaders, professional community workers and students-in-training to work together to discover better ways of solving community problems. That the shift in personnel led to changes in the project is indicated by the fact that the brochure distributed by the HRC featured such course titles as The Nature of Group Experience, Seminar in Human Relations for Executives, Human Relations for Housewives and Training for Board Members. Some of these, especially the latter, had been offered by University College for a number of years. (It must be recognized that the HRC offered some of these courses because they reflected the background and interests of the director but also as a result of discovering that the center was expected to cover certain of its costs from tuition income which neither he nor the Foundation had understood.) There were no offerings listed dealing with block organization although the center indicated its willingness to arrange such courses if requested (as was subsequently done). While community improvement through voluntary group action is not unconnected with improvement in human relations, there was clearly a significant shift in focus from the former to the latter.
The original focus of the project was not lost entirely, however. Because of the fortuitous circumstance that the CIS was working with the ETC and because the latter was concerned about the possibility of block organization as a way of furthering its attack on neighborhood problems, the CIS proposed that the HRC be invited to provide a more intensive leader training program than the CIS felt it could offer. A series of twelve two-hour training sessions was held weekly with a group of fifteen persons at Firman House in the fall of 1956. The center pointed out in its final report that although lower-middle-class people ordinarily do not take an active part in civic affairs, the BTC group seemed highly motivated.
Some examples will indicate how the center worked with this group. When group members mentioned police laxity, the trainers asked what the facts were. No one knew. The trainers saw in this a need to develop certain data-gathering skills, including how to interview, if members were to understand the community and become better prepared to take action. As discussions continued, the trainers asked the group how members of other groups felt about the issues under discussion and whether there were other persons who belonged to no groups at all. Although group members were reluctant to agree that they needed to talk to others, eventually they had to accept the necessity for doing so. To learn how to interview, role-playing was used. At the end of that session, each person was asked to interview several neighbors. At the next session, the absenteeism was noticeable; evidently, the suggestion by the trainers that participants conduct interviews was premature.
The group next decided to try bringing people together at a large public meeting, and a session was devoted to a discussion of how such a meeting could be organized. Because of resistance in the neighborhood to the idea of block organizing, the meeting was billed as a get-acquainted night. Several skits concerning neighborhood problems were presented, with considerable success. It was part of the group's plan that the role-playing would point up problems in such a way that the visitors would see themselves in them and identify with the situations portrayed. The audience became so involved in the small group discussions which followed the skits that it was difficult to reconvene them to report back their ideas to the whole group.
It is important to note what was learned in these and subsequent sessions by a group of fifteen people living in a depressed ghetto which had become 98 percent black in only six years. Although they had not been accustomed to taking part in community affairs, they learned how to conduct a meeting effectively. They developed an awareness of how people feel and react as members of a group. They planned and carried out a successful community-wide meeting. They took the responsibility for organizing three new block groups while the training sessions were still in progress; three existing block groups were revived and expanded; and four new block groups were formed shortly after the course was over. People who had not been part of their discussions were subsequently brought into the neighborhood council: youth and older adults, storefront church members, local politicians and newcomers. How much of this happened as a result of a training program of only twelve sessions of two hours each we do not know. (Frankie Boylan of Firman House credited the HRC with having done a good job.) But we must keep in mind that the staff of the CIS was also working with the BTC, especially on the precinct and ward politics problem.
Another center activity was located in Lawndale on Chicago's West Side. It was a much larger area than Between-the-Tracks, having a population of roughly 200,000, of whom about 185,000 were black. Only seven years before, there were only about 115,000 residents of whom almost all were white. At the invitation of leaders of the Greater Lawndale Conservation Commission (GLCC) and the Greater Lawndale Association of Block Clubs (GLABC), the center agreed to offer a twelve-week training program.
After discussion with leaders of six community councils in Lawndale, the objectives were stated as follows: to strengthen and improve communication among the six community councils, to develop leadership skills of council members and affiliated block organizations, to help local leadership understand local problems in the context of dramatic changes in the community, to strengthen existing block groups and to help to form new ones and to strengthen the working relations between local leaders and public and private agencies. To achieve these objectives, sessions were devoted to the review of various topics and to the practice of selected skills. Topics included Chicago's growth in relation to housing, school and transportation problems; governmental organizations; the relation of citizens to city agency services; community resources; the activities of block groups; and working with delinquents. Skills sessions dealt with interviewing, leading discussions in block groups, organizing a block group, making committee meetings effective, calling on community resources (police, school officials, etc.) and organizing "get-out-the-vote" parties.
Although the HRC was present by invitation and the curriculum, so to speak, had been worked out with local leaders, the HRC encountered the following difficulties:
1. The HRC had stated that it wished to work with all groups in Lawndale. What it found was hostility among groups, especially between the GLCC (white, almost all nonresident and with staff supported by business contributions) and the GLABC (black residents, no staff, but with an active block-organizing program). Mutuality of interests was absent. It was not even possible to agree on a schedule. The GLCC members (nonresident businessmen) wanted to meet at noon; the others, in the evening. The HRC suggested the group meet from 5:00 P.M. until 8:00 P.M., but as it turned out very few persons arrived before 7:00.
By the second meeting, most board members of the participating organizations had dropped out. The number of GLCC members dropped while GLABC members increased.
2. Because University College was expected to be self-supporting, a tuition fee of five dollars was charged. Evidently this was too much for most residents, so the five-dollar "ticket" was handed around from person to person. The average attendance was twenty-seven, but only ten persons attended most sessions, and as many as eighty attended only one or two. The modest income received was to some degree at the expense of continuity of participation.
3. Although the list of topics to be considered was worked out in a meeting with representatives of the six participating organizations, it is difficult to accept the bulk of them as representing keenly felt needs. There is a certain blandness about the list. Evidently this was intentional on the part of the HRC staff which saw that discussion of controversial matters would probably terminate the training program. Hence, the staff emphasized such activities as preparing a resource booklet. For the staff, keeping the meetings going was an overriding goal, an end in itself. Hence, the staff was quite directive about working on non-controversial matters. The question is whether the participants found this worthwhile. If continuity of attendance is a valid test, they evidently did not. Would it not have been better to try to recruit a group which might coalesce around some cluster of significant interests? Would not their motivation to learn have been greater?
It seems fair to say that with a relatively homogeneous group possessing essentially a middle-class set of values, the trainers could be helpful. But where two strong organizations with quite different sets of goals were involved and where the members of one group included some or many with a lower social class set of values, the trainers were unable or, in the circumstances, unwilling to address real needs.
Training at the Downtown Center
In addition to the programs conducted at a community level, the center organized a number of workshops held at the Downtown Center of University College. These were concerned with training for community leadership, training for block directors and workshops in community human relations. It also offered a lecture-discussion series, "Promising Approaches to Community Organization." Those attending were primarily professionals.
The course "Training for Block Directors" was conceived primarily as a way of promoting better communication among Chicago neighborhoods about successes and failures of block organizing efforts. Each participant was interviewed for about an hour prior to the first session to assess the level of sophistication and insight of each trainee as a base line for evaluating progress toward the training objectives. (It is a curious omission that assessment of training needs was not mentioned as a purpose for the interviews--perhaps because the training agenda had already been decided.)
In any case, the HRC staff proposed a training curriculum beginning with six laboratory sessions on group process which would then be followed by six sessions on block-organizing activities. This proposal was rejected by the group in favor of a group-developed agenda dealing with on-the-job, in-the-community concerns faced by the trainees. The trainers were to raise questions (which might become the agenda), provide materials, serve as resource persons and "facilitate examination of group process." It required four meetings to deal with trainee-proposed problems. Only then were they ready to settle on a common agenda: planning a meeting, evaluating a block program, working together with other community organizations, leading a discussion and making a community self-survey.
Several outcomes were noted. A plan for communication among block organizations in Chicago was prepared and forwarded to the president of the Association of Community Councils. A team of three trainees from Parkside, a part of Chicago's South Shore area, organized ten block groups. One person organized a recreational council. Another team of three from Lawndale organized forty-three block groups. They also became more aware of and skilled in working with group process. We can reasonably infer that the experience was valuable for the trainees. We can hope that the staff also learned--especially the principle of building a curriculum which takes account of the needs and interests of students as understood by them.
In addition to the staff's wish to begin a course with sessions on group process, there was another persistent staff theme: identifying and using community resources. This concern seemed to take for granted the character of the need for such resources as well as the question of what it would take to use them effectively. Much attention was also given to intra-group communication, socio-metric patterns of participation, social climate, group standards of behavior and belief, leadership patterns and rules of procedure. What did not receive attention were the tactics and strategy needed to deal with the tasks confronting an organization in the community. The HRC wanted to build a structure of learnings which could be applied at some future time in an indeterminate range of situations; the students wanted help on the problems with which they were then struggling.
In spite of such achievement reports, we must ask whether a program emphasizing intra-group processes to such a degree would be adequate to the needs of community workers. One need would be, for example, what tactics must be learned to deal with opposition to the group's goals? Something more than unevaluated "resources" would be needed. What strikes me about this project is that the HRC staff seemed to have a list in mind of things which any community leader should know. These constituted the content of the course, modified more or less at the insistence of trainees to reflect needs as they saw them. Only in the Between-the-Tracks project did there appear to be a modicum of flexibility. In addition, the HRC staff seemed committed to the idea that in Lawndale it must continue working with all organizations. (This idea was presumably based on the view that an important root of community problems is the lack of communication among groups. Hence, they must be kept together at any cost. Harmony is the goal.) This meant that it must somehow keep a host of disparate elements together which were mutually hostile; resident versus nonresident, white versus black, Catholic versus Protestant, public school versus parochial school and middle class versus lower class. The price was avoidance of anything controversial, that is, anything much worth doing. With the expiration of the grant, the Human Relations Center was terminated.
In 1954, the Foundation made the first of three annual grants in the amount of $12,000 each to fund a Study Center in Community Participation at the New School for Social Research. The project envisioned a group of short courses on communities and community organizations: how they work and how the individual can function more effectively in them. The offerings were modestly successful, but recruitment through the staffs of local offices of national and metropolitan organizations was difficult. Although self-support was a goal, lay persons were unwilling to give the time and effort to attend and pay for the privilege as well. In the second year, offerings were extended into local communities, and enrollment grew from forty-eight to sixty-three. Many participants were Puerto Ricans or blacks. Nearly one-third were housewives; about one-fourth were professional community workers; one-fourth were employed in business; and the remainder, almost one-fifth, were divided about equally between skilled workers and students.
Regrettably, because the grantee failed to complete the final report on the project, we have very few data on the contribution of the program to the improvement of citizenship. We are limited to a report of student reactions following the first year of course offerings. Some student comments were: the problems discussed were not dealt with in books, they liked the fact that practice and theory were discussed together, they could see that an individual could do much and they learned something about the different roles of participants in a discussion. From a program standpoint, however, it is of interest that so few persons out of a population of eight million were able and willing to pay the modest tuition costs for the courses and that it was so difficult to raise scholarships from organizations to send their members. Perhaps part of the problem was that the program may have seemed unduly academic or too bland (in avoiding controversy) to be attractive to pragmatically oriented volunteers participating in community affairs. And we must also wonder whether the statement that citizens must have "continuing guidance in order to cope with the ... problems of themselves and their world" may not have reflected too condescending an attitude on the part of project staff.
In 1954, another grant was made to a university applicant for training in a community context, the Center for Community and Field Services of New York University. The project was based on the idea that while there was no lack of organizations in many communities nor of coordinators in metropolitan neighborhoods, what was needed was assistance to community residents in learning how to use these resources. It was assumed that university staff could begin by providing certain specific services and then move "through process and involvement" to help community residents find solutions for the problems that concerned them. Two related purposes were to encourage more students and faculty to participate in communities as a contribution to more effective use of field work in teacher training and to enable the university to be more useful as a community resource.
As it turned out, the project was not limited to metropolitan neighborhoods as had been indicated in the application. One of the communities worked in was Levittown, in which twenty-one persons (representing civic associations, veterans organizations, PTA's, Boy Scouts and school staff) met to discuss a sequence of materials published under the title, "You and Your Community." With the completion of these discussions, several meetings were devoted to a discussion of what to do next. It was decided to conduct a self-survey of community opinions. (At this point, only about half of the original group remained.) Although a total of 2,134 questionnaires was completed, there was no follow-up. When school board elections split the community, even this minimal activity then ended.
The final report of this project notes that in a three-year period, involvement with community groups led to a self-survey, two study projects involving schools, a self-study of a neighborhood conducted by a church group, a cooperative study by a neighborhood association of an undeveloped area and a study of a community center at the request of a community planning group. Some of these activities, such as the school surveys, appear to be of the kind which a university's school of education might customarily make. The record does not disclose much evidence of involvement of local citizens in the studies of the schools. It would appear that citizens were involved in the other studies, but the results with respect to growth in civic competence are not known. The study-discussion activities do not appear to have pushed toward any action. Evidently, the project did not actively seek to help community residents to identify or to deal with issues or otherwise controversial situations. The principal beneficiaries appear to have been university students who were provided with expanded opportunities for discovering the "realities" of metropolitan communities.
So, in sum, it appears that here and there, citizens were assisted to come together in more or less loosely organized groups for study and discussion. Not much is said with respect to action they may have taken, but action per se was not the stated objective. The project approach did not handle controversial situations or confrontations very well. The university presumably benefited because students had a chance to test their academic learning in community situations, including the question of the proper role of the outsider in a community. A few faculty are said to have participated, but they tended to do so on their own terms. The contributions to the growth of civic competence appear to have been minimal.
Although several grants were made in support of research, three of these were undertaken in conjunction with activities conducted for other purposes, for example, the study of the AFSC Interns-in-Community Service program. The remaining grant to the Survey Research Center of the University of Michigan was by far the most extensive and was made for two reasons primarily. The project appeared to offer an opportunity to strengthen the program of one of the most valuable citizen organizations on the national scene. And even though its focus was on the organization and its dynamics, it seemed possible that there might be significant opportunities to strengthen participatory abilities of individual officers and members.
Survey Research Center: League of Women Voters
The study came about because of the coming together somewhat fortuitously of several interests. For several years the League of Women Voters of the U.S.A. (LWV) had been considering its changing role as metropolitan areas expanded. The national board of the league decided that it ought to know more about the factors in its structure, operations and programs which impinged on its effectiveness. This was the kind of investigation on the basis of which the Survey Research Center (SRC), under the direction of Dr. Rensis Likert, had achieved national renown. Having conducted similar studies of business corporations and governmental agencies, the center was interested in exploring the dynamics of a large voluntary organization. Following conversations between the league and the center, the Foundation was queried as to its interest in funding the undertaking. A Steering Committee of board members of the league worked closely with the research team in preparing a proposal.
The Foundation was interested because of the prospect that the findings reached by a highly competent research group on the basis of study of problems of grave concern to league leaders might result in significant gains in the effectiveness of an influential group dedicated to improvement of the American political process. In support of this proposal, a grant of $110,000 was made for two years beginning March 1956.67 Subsequently, an additional grant of $34,450 was made to support efforts to encourage effective utilization by the league of the study results.
A problem to which the SRC called attention in the application was that tens of millions of hours devoted to activities in voluntary associations were being used less effectively than they could be. In many such organizations, there was high turnover as members became disillusioned. The SRC argued, therefore, that there was a need for systematic scientific information about the motivations of volunteers, the forces which attract and bind them into an organization and the patterns of leadership to which they respond. The SRC wanted to compare relevant data from voluntary organizations with results of similar studies of other large-scale organizations, both business and public. More specifically, the aims of the proposed research project were to gather and analyze data which might be used: (1) to increase stability of membership associations, (2) to increase efficiency and effectiveness of voluntary associations, (3) to discover leadership patterns best suited to the League of Women Voters, (4) to use such findings experimentally to increase the effectiveness of selected local leagues and (5) to develop procedures for self-appraisal by local leagues and for constructive use of the appraisal results.
The design chosen involved use of questionnaires and interviews with league members, board members and officers in local leagues in both small and metropolitan cities as well as in state leagues. Questionnaires were distributed to 104 local leagues, 35 state leagues, 250 state leaders and 3,500 members of local leagues. Interviews were conducted in 44 local leagues, 35 state leagues and with 227 league members. Of the mail questionnaires, 78 percent were returned--a very high rate of return. These questionnaires and interviews were designed to explore various aspects of intra-organizational effectiveness. In addition, interviews were conducted with 509 nonmembers in thirty-five states for the purpose of getting a picture of how the league was viewed by women outside the league.
The principal variables examined to probe league operations were: effectiveness (what organizational factors contribute to league effectiveness?); leadership; control structure (who runs a league?); intra-organizational interaction, communication, controversy, subgroup formation, specialization; cultural and regional characteristics. The study, its methodology, its materials and its conclusions were described in a series of five mimeographed reports, published by the Survey Research Center of the University of Michigan between October 1956 and April 1958, under the general title: A Study of the League of Women Voters of the United States.68
Only the highlights of these detailed reports will be noted here. Some of the conclusions may seem obvious and already known. Yet, according to the research staff, pretest discussions indicated much difference of opinion as to what the results would show. Likert himself felt that if the league would provide effective follow-up of the results available to that time, league membership might increase 30 to 40 percent. He expected that even more improvement in league effectiveness would be possible, utilizing data to be gained from studies of the interrelations of leadership and league effectiveness.69 What, then, were the principal findings?
Because the Survey Research Center has reported its results elsewhere, I will not attempt to offer a précis here of its study of the league. I will offer only a very general summary of what was found and recorded in the first three reports published by the SRC. The conclusions concerning factors involved in league functioning and league effectiveness will be reviewed in more detail. Among the more general aspects of the league profile and community perceptions of the league, the following points are of interest: (1) Over half of the members had been so for less than five years; there was considerable turnover. (2) Members strongly valued the chance to become informed on current issues and to associate with other members. (3) Members saw themselves as able to and expected to contribute to building the league agenda. (4) They were aware that the league frowned on typical kinds of local fund raising (for example, bazaars), but the approved method (face-to-face soliciting) was not popular. (5) The league was well known among women whose husbands were at a professional-managerial level. The most frequent misapprehension about the league was that it supported specific candidates, told people how to vote or was otherwise partisan. (6) Friends were by far the most important source for learning about the league--far more important than for other organizations. About 40 percent of the members had heard of the league from friends, compared with only 15 percent in other organizations. This is a crucial point in relation to the wish expressed by many members that the league membership should be more representative of the community. If friends are the channel, representativeness would not be likely to result.
This point is reinforced by the finding that most local leagues drew their membership almost entirely from neighborhoods which were above the average income level. Three out of four were wives of professionals or businessmen; in the community at large, the ratio was one out of five. The members owned their own homes, had gardens, had lived in their locations for three years or more. And according to the SRC, it seemed likely that this would continue to be the case since league membership apparently spread within social or neighborhood groups. Of the 509 interviewed in the nonmember sample, twenty were identified as prospective league members. They tended to be wives of skilled workers or foremen. In income and education, they would tend to approach league members. Of the twenty, eight were thought to be good prospects, but even in these cases, obstacles were foreseen. They had more small children; hence, baby-sitters would become a problem from the standpoint of availability and expense. They were primarily church-oriented. They might consider their homes to be less presentable for small group meetings. If the members were to talk about the children's schools or social get-togethers, new members would feel excluded and would tend to drop out. These points suggest that the SRC estimate of a pool of 200,000 likely new prospects for membership was overstated.
And (7) because level of member activity was thought to be important in league effectiveness, specific attention was given to this factor. The level of activity was affected more by the level of one's interest in the league than by family responsibilities. The study's appraisal of the 227 league members interviewed was that those who are highly active in the league are active in general, are well-poised, interested in the world outside their homes and were able to work well with other women. They were interested in serving the public welfare. These data represented little that was entirely new, but they did provide some guidance to league leadership. I turn now to the question of what was learned about how the league functions in relation to its effectiveness.
Factors in League Functioning
The fourth report is descriptive and characterizes groups in the league on the basis of certain substantive dimensions. This was done as a basis for later study of the factors affecting league effectiveness and membership participation. Five major areas were selected for analysis: (1) patterns of decision making; (2) patterns of interaction within leagues, specialization of activity, transmission of information, controversy and conflict; (3) patterns of leadership; (4) amount of participation and pressures to participate; and (5) differences in regional and community environment of local leagues. Because a large sample was deemed necessary, the study was based on a mail questionnaire as the major data-collecting instrument. Ultimately, the SRC received a 79 percent return from the total local league sample, returns from presidents of all of the 104 local leagues sampled and from 95 percent of their board members. The effective return totaled 3,139.
An analysis of league activity showed that there were four essential elements: voter service (preparing and distributing information to the community, preparing questions for candidates, getting people to register and to vote); research and study in relation to programs (reading up on program issues, giving or listening to reports, participating in discussions); taking program action (such as writing to congressmen); and administrative activities (soliciting money, getting and keeping members, arranging for meetings). For the league as a whole, the proportion of time reported by members as actually spent on each kind of activity was as follows: study accounted for 41 percent; administration, 21 percent; voter service, 20 percent; and action, 12 percent.70 When members were asked what they thought the league wanted to emphasize and what they thought should be emphasized, the results were instructive, as Table 7.1 indicates. Many members did not support the relative emphasis on study as compared with action, yet one-third would continue to emphasize study,71 suggesting a serious issue for the league. This disagreement surfaced in another way, in that there was criticism of board members who got into politics.
Table 7.1. Program Emphases in the League of Women Voters
Member Perceptions of Existing League Emphasis
What Members Thought Should Be Emphasized
Member Attitudes Toward the League and League Policies
1. "An important psychological base in motivating members to participate is their own level of interest in and agreement with league goals and policies, as well as their identification with or loyalty to the league as an organization."72 Apparently, lack of psychological support was not a problem.
2. Respondents indicated that they had confidence in the league, believing that it was doing something and was an important and worthwhile organization for the community. "With such a sound psychological base, it seems likely that most problems in getting members to participate effectively lie elsewhere."73
3. Member support of the league also involved their feelings toward the so-called national agenda items. This was of concern because the final choices at the national convention must necessarily reflect compromises among representatives of a thousand leagues. Yet in the year of the study when individual liberties and conservation were first and second choices, respectively, respondents supported these items to the extent of 78 percent and 72 percent, respectively.
4. An area in which differences did exist had to do with the role of board members in partisan political activity. On this issue, only 5 percent of the presidents and 25 percent of board members, as contrasted with 61 percent of members, agreed that such activity should be permitted (with the understanding that the board member would make it clear that she was acting in an individual capacity).74 There was sharp divergence between members and leaders on this point.
Did board members see dangers in such a policy which the members did not see? Was the discrepancy a cause of some of the member apathy and turnover? Did it represent failure in the process of consensus which operated successfully in the choice of the national agenda? Were some members reluctant to assume positions of leadership in the league because of league policy? These are questions which the study suggested needed to be considered further.
Control and Influence in the League
In addition to getting a picture of participation in league affairs, the SRC attempted to get at some of the issues involving influence (having a say in determining the policies and actions of the organization). A question was asked about the levels of influence exerted by different elements of the league structure and what the levels of influence ought to be. The percentages recorded in Table 7.2 show what the respondents believed to be "great" or "very great" influences being exerted by different league organizational elements as contrasted with what they thought the pattern ought to be.75
Table7.2. Patterns of influence on League of Women Voters Policy
As It Is
As It Ought to Be
Local membership as a whole
It is significant that 61 percent thought the local president had great or very great influence on decisions, but only 48 percent thought that was as it should be. In 92 out of 104 leagues in the sample, the president was said to have too much influence. Apparently the membership thought the league was not democratic enough, yet one could argue that the membership did not avail itself of opportunities to exercise greater influence. "We must ask, however, to what extent the leadership minimizes or maximizes opportunities for membership control; and how leadership might facilitate greater control by the members."76
Communication of Information Within the League. In an organization like the league, although a firm basis for general policies is laid down, there is room for individual and group initiatives.
In order for such varied and complex work to go along smoothly, it is necessary that members be well informed concerning not only broad goals, policies and procedures, but also the specific goals and the state of progress toward these goals of the week to week activities in which they are engaged. A member's efforts to cooperate will be thwarted unless she has such information as is relevant to synchronizing her work with that of others, both in the immediate situation and in regard to long-term ends.77
The report goes on to point out that the flow of information is especially important in the case of the league because it is a voluntary association. As such, there are two major characteristics which have a bearing on the giving and receiving of information. A voluntary association differs from an industrial organization in that there is no wish to have jobs continuously specified and supervised from above. Hence, the league member needs more information about goals and activities than does the industrial worker. Also, league members are free to change their minds about how much work they will do from week to week. In addition, the league has a large turnover, with new members needing to be oriented.
In attempting to get the perceptions of various parts of the membership group concerning the adequacy of information flow, the SRC discovered that there was a sharp difference of perception between presidents and members. Members felt that the president and board should keep them informed but that their efforts were inadequate. The SRC suggested that this might be related to members' feelings that they lacked influence in league affairs.
Factors in League Effectiveness
Since the league was considered to be a significant force among voluntary associations working to develop an informed public opinion in the United States, the question of its effectiveness was posed early in the discussion about the shape of the study. A prior question was, of course, whether one can distinguish among leagues with respect to their effectiveness--and, indeed, what is meant by "effectiveness." In this connection, it was thought that the following criteria of local league effectiveness should be included: size of the league in relation to the size of the community, growth in size of the league, quality and quantity of league materials produced, level of member activity, member interest in and knowledge of league activities, success in fund raising and impact on the community.
For purposes of the study, a group of members who had a broad familiarity with many local leagues was asked to rate a sample of such leagues. The reliability of their ratings worked out to .82. In short, their agreement on what constitutes effectiveness and their judgment about examples of it was high. However, it was possible that they might all have been wrong (the problem of validity in a statistical sense). A variety of tests of validity, involving comparisons of effectiveness ratings with various criteria of effectiveness, showed correlations ranging from significant to highly significant.
Member Activity and Effectiveness
Effective leagues of different sizes were compared with respect to levels of member activity, and a correlation of .52 (.38 was significant) was found in leagues with fewer than 100 members. Larger leagues showed a negative correlation presumably because an active core group could get the necessary work done even though a large membership group might be inactive. This finding suggested the possibility that effectiveness might be even greater if some efficient way could be found to broaden participation of the inactive members. Another question which was explored concerned the kinds of membership activity. "Do members in effective leagues allocate their time differently from those in ineffective leagues?" Among various kinds of activity (administration, voters' service, study and action), a significant correlation (.28 with .18 considered significant) was found only in the case of "study." But when the factor of pressure to be active was felt as emanating from members, the correlation value increased to .41; and when the league president was seen as the source of pressure, the correlation shifted drastically downward to -.24. (The relation of pressure to effectiveness will be discussed below.)
Influence and Effectiveness in the League Leadership
When members and board members were queried separately on the matter of influence in the league, a clear implication emerged, namely, that the effective league was one in which the membership was influential.78 The membership saw no conflict between high membership influence and high board influence, but saw a negative relationship with high presidential influence. Again, those leagues in which membership influence was relatively high and the president's relatively low, tended to be high in effectiveness (r=.31) and high in member activity (r=.38).
According to the survey report, the data developed illustrate three important points: (1) While membership activity alone will not create effective league functioning, membership activity is likely to be one of the underlying determinants of membership influence. This shows the desirability of properly channeling membership activity so as to translate it into influence within the organization. (2) Presidential influence is negatively related to membership activity. And (3) board influence does not seem to have the same negative connotations as presidential influence.
Other data supported the view that "a basic receptivity on the part of leaders toward increased influence by the membership is an important step in creating this desired pattern in the league."79 Furthermore, members tend to judge their league to be high in membership influence when board members judge their president to be high in understanding the views and sentiments of members (r=.22). High membership influence was associated with attendance at unit meetings by board members (r=.28) and president (r=.21). Unit meetings by their nature imply close personal contact. The research results supported the view that joint attendance resulted in the feeling on the part of members of being well informed by the board about league matters and vice versa (r=.20 and .37, respectively). This raised the further question of what the results would be if a league president were consciously to delegate influence she customarily exercises in the league.
But even where members were active in administration, there appeared to be no effect on league effectiveness. On the other hand, the correlation between effectiveness and influence of the president in these areas shows a correlation of .23 with administration, and a negative (but not significant) correlation between league effectiveness and presidential influence in the other three areas of voter service, study and action. The survey concluded that it was even more important to increase member influence than to increase member activity if league effectiveness were to be increased. An important question is: How can the league solve the dilemma of the president: how to lead without dominating? how to stimulate without pressuring?
The data ... suggest the desirability of leaders developing an interaction network in the league through which reciprocal influence is possible. Leaders must provide means through which they can express an interest in the ideas of members and develop a better understanding of members' views.80
Questions with respect to internal conflict produced no evidence that effective leagues have less conflict than ineffective leagues. There is some evidence that in active leagues with high member influence, there is somewhat more conflict that in leagues low in membership activity and influence. This may be because conflict is part of the democratic process. Without exposing and exploring different interests, differences cannot be resolved, a process which is seldom easy. Conflicts are symptomatic of member interest and involvement. If conflict is high, some members will, however, think leaders are doing a poor job. On the other hand, the "existence of cliques (unlike the existence of conflicts) appears to have negative implications for effective league operations. Such groups are likely to create a division in the league which diverts and wastes member efforts."81
Leadership. The quality of leadership in a voluntary organization is of fundamental importance. What then does the survey tell us about the relation of league leadership to league effectiveness?
1. First of all, it was shown that the leadership role is complex: leader, yet follower; controls but is controlled; initiates, yet responds; part administrator and policy setter, but also a mere participant. The president has visibility and status but the society values equality. She must deal with human actions which involve ambiguity and unpredictability. Robert's Rules of Order does not provide the kind of structure which league leadership must create-not only for its own roles but for the group as a whole.
2. Board members defined the qualities of a good league president in effective leagues thus: She is quick to help when needed (which implies that she is not trying to do everything yet has time to help when she is needed). She coordinates various activities of the league effectively. She is an efficient administrator. She understands the views and sentiments of members, which is especially important in relation to the problem of enhancing member influence in the league. And she knows what she is doing.
3. It appeared that the area in which a league president can safely focus her energies with the support and approbation of the membership is in administration:
... soliciting money, getting and keeping members, making arrangements for meetings, taking care of office work, as well as all the routine things which keep the league going. . . . This is the only area in which high influence by the president (as judged by members) appears to be conducive to effective league operations.82
There was, furthermore, a significant correlation (r=.32) between a high
level of member activity and the judgment that the president coordinates
various activities of the league. According to the survey staff, this pattern
of results suggests that the
effective president is one who leads the league in a special way.... She does not try to exercise great influence over program, study or action. She is probably careful about exerting pressure on members or other leaders but is available to help out in a pinch. She may try to understand better the views and sentiments of the members so as to help more effectively translate those views into league policies and actions. She is an effective administrator and coordinator. This means that she is effective in getting things at the right place and the right time and seeing that the behaviors of members and of committees are arranged with a minimum of overlap and conflict. This seems to be an appropriate channel for presidential influence as judged by the members. It is consistent with the general notion that the leader's function is that of providing structure, regularity and predictability to the behavior of members. It is also consistent with the objectives of enhancing membership influence in the league. An important function of the president's role it would seem is that of supporting or facilitating the members' efforts to influence league policies and actions.83
If increased member influence is correlated positively with league effectiveness, what can leaders do to encourage member influence?
Leaders in leagues high on the member-president influence index are seen, then, to differ from leaders in leagues low on the index. They differ in their attitudes toward influence, in their communications with members and interest in their ideas, in their attendance at unit meetings and in the pressure which they (presidents) place directly on the members. Leaders in leagues high in membership influence are probably instrumental in creating an interaction network through which members can inform leaders and he informed by them, and through which the members can exercise influence as a group throughout the organization.84
In ineffective leagues, there was a tendency for leaders to tell others
that they should do more. In effective leagues, board members tended to look
upon themselves as the source of such initiative. Pressure from above seemed
to be counterproductive except at the unit leader level where it may well
have been helpful. "Pressure may be a natural and functional part of the
unit leader's role which members come to expect and accept."85
In sum, an important implication in the study data . ..
is the connection between member activity, influence and leadership characteristics. The opportunity to be part of a group which exercises influence is probably one of the most important stimulants to member activity in the league. Furthermore, leagues high in membership influence are not only active leagues, but they are also effective. Translating the activity of members into influence within the organization is one of the central problems of league functioning.86
To assist local leagues to apply the insights and conclusions of the study to their own activities, the Survey Research Center undertook to outline an approach to a self-survey which might be undertaken by a local league. (A self-survey manual was produced with results which are described below.)
Impact of the Study
What effect did the study have on the operations of the League of Women Voters of the U.S.A.? This question is too far-reaching for a definitive answer, but certain changes, certain effects were seen. An interview with two staff members in the national office of the league in December 1967 produced useful information about ways in which the league did or did not change.87 It was their considered conclusion that the findings of the study had been influential in moves taken in the legislative and membership programs of the league. While the report's conclusions had been slow to germinate within the league, there was clear evidence of their use in the formulation of policy and in organization and operations.
Membership. In the past, concerns about the pattern of membership in the league had been casual. The report stimulated a more deliberate and forthright effort to broaden league membership in new areas of the community. For example, Ebony magazine was encouraged to report on the role of black women in the league. On the other hand, the league felt some skepticism about the success of an effort to recruit more members from blue-collar families. Members were fascinated by the study, which gave the league an image of what it could be and do. "The study has become part of the league's way of life."88
League Operations. To encourage the incorporation of the study findings into league practice, two bulletins were prepared, of which thousands of copies were distributed over a five-year period.89 "They were a Bible for years."90 They were not reprinted thereafter only because the conclusions as to policy and practice had been incorporated into regular league manuals made available to all leagues. For example, a manual was published entitled "Building the League Budget." The basic emphasis, consistent with study findings, was on the involvement of members in the budget process.
More generally, some of the changes in policy and practice were the following: (1) The study reinforced strongly and greatly extended the league commitment to the principle of member participation in decision making. (2) Work by the national office in the field was reshaped. Instead of someone from headquarters visiting a league in the role of expert, the pattern changed to emphasize the organization of field conferences so that participants could learn from each other. This also increased a sense of identification with the program and it heightened motivation.
Viewed another way, the field conference is a move from a "service relationship" from the top down to a pattern of "learning laterally." The staff doesn't see its job as "telling" but rather as one of posing useful questions, the discussion of which helps participants to learn from each other."
(3) When testifying on legislation, an effort was made as finances permitted to bring in people from the field so that this function was no longer considered to be exclusively one for the national board. (4) Occasionally, committees of the national board were broadened to include non-board members. (Again, straitened finances were a limiting factor.) (5) Practically all of the field work came to be done by national board members instead of staff members as was previously the case. The study showed the national board that this was necessary. (6) The national board became more open-minded and flexible about what is considered to be good league practice. (7) The study pointed up more sharply the problem of inactive members in metropolitan leagues. As one result, a conference was convened to consider this problem. League members from Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Philadelphia, as well as a number of state leaders were included. In some cases, metropolitan councils (as in the District of Columbia) were organized, partly as a way of involving former leaders who had moved to the suburbs. The data on the relation of size to effectiveness were an eye-opener to the league. The study also provided data and a rationale for evaluation of experience in New York City as compared with Chicago. In New York, the league formed semi-autonomous branches which had the effect of increasing member participation. In Chicago, the national board had recommended termination of the branch system in favor of neighborhood units. This did not work well. These experiences, examined in the light of the study, were also discussed at the conference referred to above. (8) The study probably encouraged the national board to stimulate inter-league organization and activity. And (9) the league leadership continued to be skeptical regarding the study finding that more members were willing to participate in fund raising than the league had assumed.
Role of Action. The conclusion that league members wanted emphasis on action as well as study reinforced the convictions of action-minded national presidents. They saw the League of Women Voters not merely as a training ground for citizens but, in part, as demonstrating the effectiveness of action through organization. This point of view also supported the trend toward continuous participation of members throughout the country in activities of the national league.
Self-Survey. The Survey Research Center had urged the league to utilize a self-survey technique, and a number of leagues did attempt this task, but with varying degrees of success.92 There were several reasons for this. (1) The self-survey manual supplied by the SRC was rather complex. Accordingly, several leagues prepared their own "short" versions, (2) Most leagues found certain technical tasks (such as phrasing questions) to be somewhat beyond the level of competence generally available in local leagues. (3) The self-survey consumed endless time. It was seen as competing inordinately with the regular program. It was too comprehensive. By the time the survey was completed, a new group of leaders would be in charge. The new group would not feel the same commitment to implementation of the results as the survey group did. The national board decided, therefore, that the self-survey was simply too big and too complex a task to be practicable. And (4) the effective leagues gained most from the self-survey. They did it better and had a better notion of what to do with results. Ineffective leagues which stood to gain the most could not cope with the task. To note a specific example, the self-survey conducted in one league in Indiana showed that members wanted the league to stand up and be counted but that the president and board members were holding back. Subsequently, this community developed a lively, vibrant league.93
Overall, the study appears to have had positive impact on the league. In sum, (1) The bulletins summarizing the study findings were widely distributed and read at the local level. In our informants' opinion, the study had a significant effect on league functioning. (2) Many of the insights, particularly with respect to member participation and the implications for organization, were incorporated in the regular policy and procedure manuals published by the national league and distributed to all leagues for their guidance. (3) Operations at the national level were significantly altered in ways reflecting survey conclusions. In addition, the study contributed to improved understanding of the principles and practices of organization and operation of voluntary member associations. Hence, the capacity of those associations to contribute to the fulfillment of democratic goals could be significantly enhanced.
A commentary on the projects discussed in this chapter must necessarily reflect the fact already noted-that the grouping is to some degree forced. Nevertheless, the projects can all be said to have involved some element of adult or continuing education. Admittedly, the SRC study was the farthest removed from an adult education activity; indeed, it was a research study. Yet there were meaningful educational elements. In any case, my intention here is to indicate in brief summary what to me were the significant outcomes of these projects.
Little needs to be added about the programs conducted by Roosevelt University and the American Council on Emigres in the Professions (ACEP). The Foundation was happy to have had the opportunity to provide support to these projects because they contributed significantly to the enhancement of the citizen function on the part of immigrant groups not served through other programs. Roosevelt University, because it addressed itself to the unique needs of an educated group (many having had professional careers abroad), helped to prevent a waste of talent. But more centrally to the Foundation's interests, such persons, once established, might well become opinion leaders in their respective ethnic communities. To the extent this may have happened, all the better that their understanding of American political institutions and civic affairs should have been nurtured at a much more sophisticated level than would have been possible through the typical adult school program.
Reading the final report of the American Studies Program of Roosevelt University is exciting because it describes so effectively the coming together of a perception of unique student needs, a hospitable and understanding institution, a competent and dedicated faculty and a director employing an apt concept and method. All of these elements were mutually and comfortably interdependent--working together to achieve the purpose. It is sad to compare this, for example, with the results of the project conducted by Chicago Commons Association in which the efforts of a gifted teacher were barren because, presumably, the intended students were unable to see themselves as such. And yet, except for the fact that very competent people tend to be in modest supply, there was nothing so esoteric about the American Studies Program that others could not have emulated it.
The ACEP program also helped to prevent a waste of talent, less through direct educational efforts (as we normally understand "education") than through the two major thrusts of the ACEP programs: first, counseling (which was educational on a one-to-one basis) about American culture and society in general and about the sociology of vocations in particular; and second, skillful efforts to find appropriate placements for these émigré professionals. At the same time, instruction in the English language was provided, including instruction in the terminology and rhetoric of specific professions. The resulting insights helped these immigrants (as did, of course, the reduction of anxiety and frustration over trying to make a living at a level far below one's abilities) to become part of their local communities. It is regrettable that there was no final report which might have documented this more fully.
We may contrast these two projects with those conducted by the Chicago Commons Association (CCA) and the Citizens Information Service (CIS). The CCA and CIS projects were not directed to a relatively well-educated population but to individuals who were mostly at the other end of the scale from the standpoint of schooling. In neither case was the grantee successful. The efforts of the CCA were all unsuccessful in spite of the fact that the CCA director was a person of high intelligence and sensitivity. Most of what was tried by project staff represented the views of a middle-class agency of what members of its surrounding community needed. Several reasons were involved in the failures of this project. There was an unwillingness, even inability, of group workers and the adult educator to merge purpose and method, to cooperate. Ethnic antagonisms of area residents contributed to the failure, but most of all there was the inability or unwillingness of community residents to see certain situations as calling for some kind of educational activity. Even the effort to send into the community a teacher with successful experience in working with poorly educated members of other cultures was almost totally unsuccessful. The persons with whom she tried to work seemed to lack any notion or acceptance of a structured learning experience, even in a one-to-one informal situation, as being relevant to themselves as adults.
It seems reasonable to suppose that there must be hundreds of thousands, even millions, of persons like those who were so unresponsive to CCA efforts in their community, whose lives could be bettered in some way if they would only gain certain information, understanding or skills. But lacking a sense of need, lacking a sense of the appropriateness of learning activity to adult life, perhaps fearing the possibility of a threat to the integrity of one's own ethnic community or of possible reprisals from the local political machine if the individual became identified with matters considered controversial--for these and perhaps other reasons, the CCA initiatives were either rejected or ignored. Yet the problem persists.
The experience of the CIS was not quite parallel to the CCA, but its efforts with inner city residents were hardly more successful. First of all, the kind of educational effort envisaged was inappropriate. It was offered by a middle-class organization staffed by well-educated women--hence, an organization that would be viewed with suspicion in the inner city, entirely aside from the condescension the residents would likely have sensed. The level of the CIS concern with civic affairs was too far removed from the bread-and-margarine concerns of newly arrived blacks and Puerto Ricans. The only example of a clearly successful CIS effort under the project was the work with the Between-the-Tracks Council, and this was not done primarily by the original CIS staff but by an organizer hired at a late stage in the project. The only reason for noting this is that hiring such staff does not seem to have been a feasible move by this organization within the framework of League of Women Voters practice on a long-term basis.
We now shift our focus from educational programs concerned with learning information and gaining understanding of basic concerns in our society to programs which were concerned with learning certain skills associated with community organization and change. The emphasis shifted to activities for which the term "training" appears to be appropriate. In the National Training Laboratories (NTL) project, we can see some resemblance between its trainees and those involved in the Migrant Ministry training program in California. In the NTL training program, there were lay and staff people from churches, from community-oriented social organizations and from universities. There was another element which involved at most a superficial resemblance between the two. The NTL curriculum included attention to the "change agent" as a central concept. The change agent might be a lay person but more likely a professional. The Migrant Ministry did not use the term but it thought of its staff, at least in California, as helping to bring about change where this was needed and wanted. But it came to see (again, especially in California) that in the long run, only leadership developed in and from the community could really help.
To act on this basis was to challenge the whole conceptual framework and working style of Migrant Ministry staff. Its method, therefore, seems to have been most appropriate to the goal. The Migrant Ministry trainees were thrown into situations involving groups of a kind they had worked with previously, but now they were in a role where they were not in charge. They were interns under the tutelage of hardheaded IAF staff. Anything said or done in the course of the intern's activity could be examined and challenged so that the appropriate lessons might be learned. The experience was real. For those who could reconcile the premises of community organization (as understood by Fred Ross and Cesar Chavez) with the irreducible premises of their faith, the experience had a powerful impact. It is unfortunate that we have no comparable data as to what the trainees in the NTL program were able to do with what they learned.
Between these two programs there were obvious differences: (1) For the NTL, the locus of training was at Bethel, Maine (and, later, at Cedar City, Utah), but could have been anywhere. For the IAF/Migrant Ministry project, training took place in communities where people were organizing/being organized. (2) For the NTL, "community" could be dealt with in abstract terms. If defined, the definition could apply to many localities. In IAF/Migrant Ministry training, the community was specific: certain citizens in a particular place confronting an array of problems. It included those in the organization, those who could be recruited and those who had to be dealt with if the identified problems were to be solved. And (3) the NTL approach was theoretical: As a first step, "community" would be analyzed in a certain way. There were several models of community action, among which, presumably, a selection could be made. The training program would recognize that there is a community power structure and what it might consist of would be presented. Improving interpersonal communication and understanding the dynamics of a small working group were important NTL goals. Grasping the underlying theoretical framework of communication and group dynamics was considered essential. It is highly doubtful that in the IAF/Migrant Ministry model, much attention would be paid to these topics. It was more likely to discuss such questions as: What interests are involved? What must be done? If it is done, who benefits? Who is hurt? If it should be done, who can do it? What help is needed? How is it to be given? In short, the NTL training approach was to talk about organizing rather than doing it and then analyzing what had been done. The NTL emphasis was entirely verbal--except for practice in group process.
The Penn Community Center and the South Carolina Council on Human Relations were also concerned with training for community service. Their success, though initiated by middle-class staffs, involved in a significant way members of the groups to be served. In contrast with Puerto Ricans in Chicago, blacks in South Carolina could see that the vote was a principal key to opening the way for them. The training curriculum did not dwell, as it did with the CIS at the start, on a comprehensive review of the structure of government. Instead of relying on booklets dealing broadly with the structure and processes of government, these projects concentrated on immediate problems: how to qualify to register, how to organize a voter registration campaign, how to judge candidates, how to work within the party machinery, how to make organizations more effective, etc. The problems addressed were real. They were seen as important and immediately relevant. And the discussions dealt with the problems in the context of the communities from which the students came and of how they were going to deal with the problems upon their return in order to win their struggle. The ends/means were realistic and concrete, not abstract. And, in fact, the CIS was successful when it helped the Between-the-Tracks Council members learn how to elect a precinct committeeman.
The Survey Research Center (SRC) study of the League of Women Voters, as noted already, although a research project primarily, had, nevertheless, certain educational outcomes. The SRC survey findings were widely discussed within the league, leading to even wider participation by members, board members and officers in league activities at all levels. So, for example, the budget-making process within a league was made a more widely participated-in activity as a direct result of the survey. This necessarily resulted in significant learnings for members. In addition, ways were found to broaden participation by members in the field in the development of the national agenda, in testifying on legislation and in the exploration of policy issues bearing on league functioning. More league members became involved participants in the study of issues as well as in management of league affairs at more sophisticated levels. And the study developed some highly significant insights on the relation of leadership style to league effectiveness. Officers and board members were encouraged to become more effective leaders--contributing, we may reasonably hope, to strengthening the body politic.
1. Ernestine A. Neff, director, American Studies Program, "An Americanization Program: An Experiment in Teaching English as a Second Language," 1958, ESF files.
2. Ibid., p. 40.
3. Ibid., p. 41.
4. Ibid., p. 50.
5. Ibid., p. 56.
6. Ibid., p. 82.
7. Ibid., p. 87.
8 Ibid., p. 92.
9. Ibid., p. 116.
10. Arthur Hillman, letter to Tjerandsen, Jan. 29, 1954, ESF files.
11. Neff, p. 29.
12. Progress report and a proposal to the ESF, April 1, 1955, ESF files.
13. Arthur Hillman and Ernestine Neff, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, April 12, 1957, ESF files.
14. Kenneth Rehage, letter to Tjerandsen, April 28, 1955, ESF files.
15. Grace S. Wright, "Persistence of Attendance in Adult Education Classes," circular no. 353, Office of Education, Federal Security Agency, 1952, Washington, D.C. 20025. 16. Neff., pp. 133-36.
17. Ibid., p. 136.
18. Dean Wayne Leys, "Comment on the Report on the American Studies Program," undated, p. 1, ESF files.
19. Ibid., p. 3.
20. Neff, p. 13.
21. The name of the organization was changed (between May and July 1955) because of the increasing number of scientists and technologists seeking help in dealing with security clearance, in addition to scholars, writers and artists.
22. Else Staudinger, executive secretary, ACESWA, supplemental statement
of March 30, 1953, to application to the ESF, Sept. 1952, p. 1, ESF files.
23. Ibid., p. 2.
24. Else Staudinger, notes of interview with Tjerandsen, April 13, 1953,
25. Else Staudinger, report on the budget year, May 1, 1952, to April 30, 1953, ESF files.
26. Else Staudinger, background for application to the Foundation, April 27, 1954, ESF files.
27. Nelson P. Mead, chairman of the board, application of May 2, 1955,
29. Chicago Commons Association, Appeal to the ESF, April 14, 1958, p.
3, ESF files.
30. The Migrant Ministry was part of the Division of Home Missions of the National Council of Churches.
31. Dean Collins, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Sept. 10, 1956,
32. Apparently, William Koch, director of the MCEP, did not participate
in this training project, but two MCEP staff members and two leaders from
Valleytown did do so.
33. Louise A. Bashford, Activities Report, Jan. 6-Feb. 14, 1958, ESF files.
34. Ibid., p. 7.
37. A reference to the educational.
38. Doris Scott, "Evaluation of CSO Training-Visalia," p. 1, ESF files.
39. William H. Koch, Jr., "Seeds of Change: A Program of Training and Community Development and Organization Undertaken by the National Council of Churches, 1957-1959; a Retrospective Report to the Emil Schwarzhaupt Foundation," Dec. 27, 1966, p. 4, ESF files.
40. Ibid., p. 7.
41. C. Wayne Hartmire, Jr., notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Nov. 1, 1962, ESF files.
42. C. Wayne Hartmire, Jr., letter to Tjerandsen, Jan. 18, 1965, ESF files.
43. Koch, p. 9.
44. Ibid., p. 10.
46. Ibid., p. 12.
47. Ibid., pp. 14-15.
48. Ibid., p. 17
49. Ibid., p. 19.
50. Ibid., p. 15.
51. Ibid., p. 20.
52. Ibid., p. 25.
53. Ibid., p. 33.
54. Kay Longcope, "The Changing Role of the Migrant Ministry," Presbyterian Life, Nov. 15, 1967, p. 16.
56. Ibid., p. 38.
57. Douglas Still, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Oct. 2, 1969,
58. Courtney Siceloff, director, Penn Community Center, Report to the ESF, May 4, 1960, ESF files.
60. Alice N. Spearman, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Nov. 4,
1959, ESF files.
61. Alice N. Spearman, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Nov. 15,
1963, ESF files.
62. H. Curtis Mial, letter to Tjerandsen, Feb. 25, 1964, ESF files.
64. Laura Pollack, letter to Tjerandsen, Jan. 6, 1956, ESF files.
65. Frankie Boylan, conversation with Tjerandsen, April 25, 1957, ESF files.
66. CIS of Metropolitan Chicago, "Five-Year Report, 1954-1959," Feb. 18, 1960, p.
22, ESF files.
67. Actively in charge of the study were Robert Kahn, program director; Arnold Tannenbaum, research associate; Marjorie Donald, assistant study director; and Betty Sears, assistant in research. Negotiations on the project giant had been conducted originally with the Carrie Chapman Catt Memorial Fund, Inc., a grant-receiving entity of the League of Women Voters of the U.S.A. It was later decided at the suggestion of the league that the grant should be made to the SRC although the league would still cooperate fully in the study.
68. The five reports areas follows:
Report I: "The League Member Talks About the League," October 1956, report prepared by Dr. Robert Weiss, Mrs. Carol Slater and Mrs. Dora Cafagua, mimeo, v + 111 pp.
Report II: "Community Attitudes Toward the League," February 1957, report prepared by Dr. Robert Weiss and Mrs. Carol Slater, mimeo, vi + 45 pp.
Report III: "Some Problems of League Membership: Cross-Sectional Membership and Member Activity," August 1957, report prepared by Dr. Robert Weiss, Mrs. Carol Slater and Mrs Ruth Goldhaber, mimeo, iv + 44 pp.
Report IV: "Organizational Phase, Part 1: Factors in League Functioning," August 1957, mimeo, ii + 123 pp.
Report V: "Organizational Phase, Part 2: Factors in League Effectiveness," April 1958, report prepared by Dr. Arnold Tannenbaum and Miss Betty Sears, mimeo, v + 106 pp.
69. Rensis Likert, notes of conversation with Tjerandsen, Feb. 18, 1957,
70. No reason is given in the study report as to why the data do not total
71. Report IV: "Factors In League Functioning," p. 31.
72. Ibid., p. 45.
73. Ibid., p. 52.
74. Ibid., p. 63.
75. Ibid., p. 75.
76. Ibid., p. 78.
77. Ibid., p. 90.
78. Report V: "Factors in League Effectiveness," p. 31.
79. Ibid., p. 39.
80. Ibid., p. 48.
81. Ibid., p. 65.
82. Ibid., p. 76.
83. Ibid., p. 77.
84. Ibid., p. 80.
85. Ibid., p. 84.
86. Ibid., p. 98.
87. Mrs. Alexander Guyol, in charge of public information, and Mrs. Paul Cleveland, finance secretary, interview with Tjerandsen, Dec. 4, 1967, ESF files.
89. Mrs. Rensis Likert, The Members and the League, publication no. 264, and Leadership for Effective Leagues, publication no. 252, League of Women Voters of the U.S.A. (Mrs. Likert was a national board member at the time.)
90. Mrs Guyol and Mrs. Cleveland, interview with Tjerandsen, Dec. 4, 1967, ESF files.
91. Mrs. Cleveland, conversation with Tjerandsen, Dec. 5, 1967, ESF files.
92. Approval of the grant had been based in part on the hope that the educational impact of the self-survey on league members would contribute significantly to their growth in civic competence, that it would serve as an effective training program.
93. Mrs. Guyol and Mrs. Cleveland, interviews with Tjerandsen, Dec. 4, 1967, ESF files.