Higher Education for Business

By Robert Aaron Gordon; James Edwin Howell | Go to book overview

chapter 1
THE REASONS FOR THIS STUDY

The extraordinary advances in the application of science to modern life which have made possible the remarkable economic progress and vast improvement in human well-being during the present century have created a multitude of economic and social problems for the solution of which our business leaders must assume primary responsibility. Hence the task to which the collegiate schools of business have addressed themselves, that of training young men for the heavy responsibilities of the business leadership of the future, constitutes an educational problem of paramount importance.1

THE QUOTATION with which we begin this report could have been written yesterday instead of nearly thirty years ago. The importance of the role of the businessman in American society needs no elaboration here. In a world that looks forward apprehensively as well as expectantly to the closing decades of the twentieth century, the American businessman will play a dominant role--not only as the leader in the insistent drive for greater economic output, but as a shaper of opinion and public policies that will affect the welfare of the American people in a thousand directions, from local action to cope with juvenile delinquency to national policy in the precarious field of international relations.

How well prepared will the businessman be for this role of leadership, and will he have the skill and vision needed to cope with the critical decades that lie ahead? It is fair to say that a significant part of the answer lies with the colleges and universities. A large fraction of tomorrow's businessmen will be college educated; this will be particularly true of the leaders among them. A very substantial proportion of these college educated businessmen will be the products of a peculiarly American kind of higher education--the curriculum in business administration, which is today offered on some 600 college campuses in every part of the country, in the ivied halls of many liberal arts colleges as well as in schools of business in the teeming state universities and the grimy downtown universities of the large cities.

____________________
1
J. H. S. Bossard and J. F. Dewhurst, University Education for Business ( 1931), p. 565.

-3-

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