Presidents of the College




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Donald George Tewksbury was appointed dean of the college by Columbia's president, Nicholas Murray Butler in 1933.Tewksbury outlined a progressive new educational program for the College that was approved by the board of trustees. To signal these modern curricular changes while still honoring its roots, St. Stephen’s was renamed Bard College. Under this plan, sometimes called “the inverted pyramid,” teaching was personalized to the interests and abilities of the student, the classics requirements were eased, and the fine arts were promoted as a division of study equal to other branches of the curriculum. The concepts of what have become moderation and the senior project were also introduced at this time. Tewksbury resigned in 1937 as financial pressures mounted.

In a draft of his famous "An Educational Program for Bard College" written when Bard was still St. Stephen's College Tewksbury states: "These changes that are taking place are in part a function of a rapidly changing social order in this country, and in part a response to a widespread dissatisfaction with prevailing practice in the field of higher education itself. There is an insistent demand on the part of educators, parents, and young men alike that our colleges and universities provide among other things for a greater flexibility in the academic curriculum, for more adequate attention to individual need and abilities, for larger recognition of the arts in the instructional program, for a more realistic approach to the problems of contemporary life, and withal for an increasing emphasis on quality and distinction in the educational program.



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