Whitney Hale

By

College: Arts and Sciences

A Presidential Visionary

Published: Feb 17, 2011

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Feb. 17, 2011) − Much has been written about the University of Kentucky's goal to become a top-20 research institution by 2020 and the Top 20 Business Plan. Few people, however, know of the earlier push to raise the university’s research standards, diversify the curriculum, and modernize faculty and staff procedures.

 

Frank L. McVey, UK's third president, served as the visionary responsible for establishing academic professionalism as the top priority for the future of the university. The university has McVey to thank for laying the foundation for growth and instilling a passion for research that has been fundamental to its current efforts.

 

UK will celebrate the work of this institutional forefather at an upcoming reception and book launch for Eric A. Moyen's McVey biography, "Frank L. McVey and the University of Kentucky: A Progressive President and the Modernization of a Southern University," published by University Press of Kentucky (UPK). The event presented by President Lee T. Todd Jr., UPK, UK College of Education and UK Special Collections Division is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 21, at the Lexmark Room in the Main Building. The new biography will be available for purchase at the reception.

 

"President McVey was historically responsible for much of the foundation of the academic environment and research enterprise at UK, and provided a model for quality education in the South," notes President Todd. "We are thrilled new generations of UK faculty, staff and students will be able to learn more about this important university figure through Eric Moyen’s biography."

 

"Frank L. McVey and the University of Kentucky" is the newest publication in UPK's Thomas D. Clark Studies in Education, Public Policy and Social Change Series edited by Richard Angelo, associate professor of education policy studies and evaluation. The UPK series is made possible with support from UK College of Education.

 

In "Frank L. McVey and the University of Kentucky," Moyen explores not only McVey’s presidency from 1909 to 1940, but also the challenges that faced a state institution during an era of dramatic social change. President McVey understood the essential role the university plays in the lives of the citizens of the Commonwealth by providing interpretations of social movements, conducting scientific investigations, and exemplifying how higher education can benefit society as a whole. He did not shy away from the university’s inadequacies, but instead faced them head on. McVey constantly focused on academic improvement, eschewing the false sense of excellence that many of his contemporaries at other universities presented.

 

Guiding the university through World War I and the Great Depression, McVey did more than keep the school afloat. By the end of the war, he had reduced professors’ course loads and raised their salaries, hired a dean of men, and implemented a “modern” constitution to involve faculty members in the university’s policymaking. During this time, the university also created a committee on discipline, allowing faculty to focus less on punishing students and more on teaching them. The most dramatic change McVey made was a demand for academic quality from students. Under his leadership, the university began requiring students to earn a certain number of high marks within their majors in order to graduate.

 

The most noticeable impact of the McVey presidency on the UK campus was the expansion of campus and the construction of new facilities. Still visible and in use today, Alumni Gymnasium, Memorial Hall, Margaret I. King Library and Jewell Hall were all developed under the president's guidance. McVey’s leadership also resulted in an expansion of academic offerings at the university. Because of him, the College of Arts and Sciences welcomed the departments of music (now part of the College of Fine Arts), anthropology and archaeology, and library science (now part of the College of Communications and Information Studies). In addition, the College of Commerce (now the Carol Martin Gatton College of Business and Economics) and the College of Education were established by McVey’s administration.

 

"Frank L. McVey and the University of Kentucky" not only chronicles one of the most dynamic times in the university’s history, but also places UK within the greater trends in higher education. McVey’s reorganization of the university gained him recognition as one of the most progressive educators in the South and placed Kentucky at the forefront of academic expansion. Decades later, the university continues to follow his direction, setting ambitious research goals and making contributions to the overall betterment of Kentucky.

 

"In a judicious assessment of Frank L. McVey, a major figure in the higher education of the U.S. South, Eric A. Moyen has produced one of the best biographies of a modern American university president," said William Link, author of "William Friday: Power, Purpose, and American Higher Education" on the former University of North Carolina president. "Through lucid, accessible prose combined with meticulous research, Moyen succeeds in showing how McVey constructed the modern University of Kentucky."

Educator and biographer Eric A. Moyen serves as an associate professor of education at the Helen DeVos College of Education and director of first-year programs at Lee University. He completed his doctoral degree in educational policy studies and evaluation at UK, and holds a bachelor's degree from Taylor University and a master's degree from University of Alabama. Before joining the faculty at Lee University, Moyen served as a research assistant, teaching assistant and oral history interviewer at UK.

Offices for the administrative, editorial, production and marketing departments of UPK are found at UK, which provides financial support toward the operating expenses of the publishing operation.
 
For more information on this book or for purchase information, visit UPK online at www.kentuckypress.com/.

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, (859) 257-1754 ext. 229; whitney.hale@uky.edu

cropped_frank_l._mcvey_and_the_university_of_kentucky_colon_a_progressive_president_and_the_modernization_of_a_southern_university_by_eric_moyen.jpguknow_frank_l._mcvey_and_the_university_of_kentucky_colon_a_progressive_president_and_the_modernization_of_a_southern_university_by_eric_moyen.jpg
November
 
 
 
 
 
 
1
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
College of Pharmacy Open House
Iron Pour
UK Women's Choir 20th Anniversary Concert
Adventure Hiking & Rappelling @ Red River Gorge
Pickin' Time Mountain Music and Harvest Day
Purposeful Retirement: Planning Your Next Stage of Life
Diwali Dhoom 2014
Sat
2
UK Percussion Ensemble
Day Hike
Curator Tour: Take My Word For It
Sun
3
Industry Career Week: Resumes and Cover Letters
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Morehead State
Mon
4
Industry Career Week: How to Impress Your Boss in 90 Days
Rock Star Professionalism Series
UK Lab Band
Tue
5
Industry Career Week: Networking and Job Search
Social Enterprise and Innovation / Certified Nonprofit Professional Program Informational Meeting
Dana Harper Gallery Reception
Wed
6
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Zona Sur
LNFS Presents: The Grand Budapest Hotel
UK Jazz Ensemble
Abstract Workshop
Lauren Potter
Thu
7
LNFS Presents: V for Vendetta
Last Day to Withdraw or Reduce Course Load
R.C. May Photography Lecture Series: Marvin Heiferman
Men's Soccer vs. Charlotte
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Georgia
Free Friday Evening Swing Dance
Fri
8
Kentucky Football vs. Georgia
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
The Power of Poetry
The Lexington Lowdown and Free Lindy Hop Workshop
Swing Dance Featuring Live music by"The Metrognomes Orchestra"
Sat
9
UK Combos Concert
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Missouri
Sun
10
 
Mon
11
UK Sax Ensembles
Job Club - Interviewing Strategies
Undergraduate Research Information Session
Jose Abisambra Presentation on Current Alzheimer's Research
Women of the World: Judy Smith
Tue
12
Internship Info Session
LNFS Presents: Reservoir Dogs
Refugee Life in America
Leadership Assessment
Wed
13
Career Assessment Workshop
LNFS Presents: Iron Man 3
#TrendingTopics: Vegetarians vs. Meat-Eaters
Campus Polar Plunge to benefit Special Olympics KY
LNFS Presents: La Demora
Thu
14
LNFS Presents: Pretty in Pink
LNFS Presents: Mean Girls
Fri
15
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Sat
16
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Florida
Greek Cinematography: Critical Approach and Discussion
"Storied Streets" Documentary Showing about Experiences of Homelessness
Sun
17
UK Rep Bands Concert
Stories of Homelessness: Panel Discussion
Mon
18
A Positive Approach to Caregiving Conference
CatWatch Party
Tue
19
LNFS Presents: The Princess and the Frog
Pinterest Party
Caregiver Support Group
OXFAM Social Issues Banquet
Wed
20
Much Ado About Nothing
LNFS Presents: I Travel Because I Have To, I Come Back Because I Love You
LNFS Presents: The Big Lebowski
Bollywood Night
Thu
21
Much Ado About Nothing
LNFS Presents: Water For Elephants
4th Annual Markesbery Symposium on Aging & Dementia
Freedom from Fear: On Black Childhood and Other Dangers
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
Fri
22
Much Ado About Nothing
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Sat
23
Much Ado About Nothing
Bouldering @ Stone Fort
UK Symphony Band and UK Concert Band
Sun
24
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Mon
25
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Job Club - What is your money habitude?
Tue
26
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Free Thanksgiving Shuttle to Blue Grass Airport
Wed
27
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Thu
28
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Fri
29
Thanksgiving - Academic Holidays
Free Saturday Swing Dance Lessons
Kentucky Volleyball vs. Arkansas
Sat
30
 
Sun
 
 
 
 
 
 

Sun, 11/02/2014

Reset Page