Education for Public Administration: Graduate Preparation in the Social Sciences at American Universities

By George A. Graham | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 3 SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY

TRAINING for public administration at Syracuse University was a conscious purpose and one of the major activities of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. Students were selected for their apparent fitness for an administrative career in government; a definite program of study, field work, research, and apprenticeship or internship was prescribed for the entire group; and assistance was given to students in finding a place in the government service at the conclusion of their study. The course of study ran for two academic years, and the degree of Master of Science in Public Administration was conferred after satisfactory completion of the program, which included the presentation of an acceptable thesis.

The training program was a lineal descendant of the program developed at the Institute of Public Administration between 1911 and 1924 and drew heavily upon the experience of the institute for its basic assumptions, definition of objectives, and methods employed.1 The formal training program at the institute was discontinued when the Maxwell School was established at Syracuse in 1924; William E. Mosher who was supervisor of training at the institute became director and later dean at the Maxwell School.2


Purpose and Philosophy of Training

The purpose of the Syracuse program was to train for managerial work, that is, for directing and controlling operations. Originally the goal in view was municipal administration with the professional city manager as the symbol. With the tightening of local prejudice and residence requirements in the depression years and with the expansion of state and federal activity, municipal administration became a poor market; state and federal administration were much better. The emphasis upon the managerial problem, however, continued to characterize the Syracuse program. The plan was in 1940 to fit men for managerial work in low or intermediate levels with the hope that

____________________
1
See above, chap. 1, Part II.
2
The correspondence courses formerly given at the institute were also transferred to Syracuse. This activity was later transferred once more, to the International City Managers' Association. Clarence E. Ridley, executive director of the City Managers' Association, had also been associated with the correspondence courses in both previous locations.

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