Proposed: The University of the United States


Edgar Bruce Wesley
Introduction by Lotus Delta Coffman

Proposed: The University of the United States was first published in 1936. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.

In Proposed: The University of the United States, Edgar Bruce Wesley claims that a reduction in the number of bureaucrats and special advisers to the government, and fewer “blunders of national proportions,” would result from the establishment of a national university in Washington.

Such a university would be devoted entirely to graduate and research work. Exchange professors and visiting scholars would contribute to its services. Students would pay no tuition fees since the institution, founded and directed by the federal government, would be supported by taxation. It would be empowered to grant the usual graduate degrees and much of its work would be in the training of promising young people for government service and in carrying on “a continuous and inclusive program of social research.”

The establishment of a national university is not a new idea, as Professor Wesley explains, but one that has been proposed by numerous educators and statesmen, including ten presidents of the United States. This book relates the history of the idea, presents arguments in favor of the establishment of such an institution, outlines a plan for its organization, and presents a specific bill for enactment by Congress.

Edgar Bruce Wesley was professor of education at the University of Minnesota. He is the author of Guarding the Frontier: A Study of Frontier Defense, 1815-1825 (1935), and Owatonna: The Social Development of a Minnesota Community (1938), both published by the University of Minnesota Press.

Lotus D. Coffman, president of the University of Minnesota, who also contributes an introduction, authorized the publication of the book, originally printed for distribution to members of Congress.

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