@OhioState @TBDBITL June 4


My daily post theme for 2017 is on Colleges and Universities.

The plan for starting my blog back in 2014 was at the urging of fellow coaching colleagues to share posts on leadership and/or motivation. Somehow that idea got derailed and turned into daily posts on one theme for an entire year.

In 2014 my daily posts were on the “Beer of the Day”, 2015 it was “A Friend of a Friend”, 2016 I wrote about “North Carolina”, and for 2017 I will focus on “Colleges and Universities”.

I have been associated with colleges since I was 18 and I love them. I have coached/worked at four different universities and in my professional and personal travels visited 100’s more. Each college has something in its history that I want to share that to me make it unique or personal.

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Name of University: The Ohio State University

Location: Columbus OH

I have a large collection of friends that have a very strong affinity to Ohio State University. Those friends have caused me to have increased awareness to a random shout of O H immediately needing to be followed by I O. They also break out in song when the opening notes of the 1960’s hit “Hang on Sloopy” by the McCoys starts to play. Ohio State fanaticism runs strong in my social circle.

Some of the history of OSU founding sounds familiar to the political landscape today on what the university should focus on.

In 1870, the Ohio General Assembly established the Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College. The new college was made possible through the provisions of the Land-Grant Act, signed by President Lincoln on July 2, 1862.

Sometimes a fine line is all that stands between excellence and mediocrity. Looking at a pivotal vote many decades ago by the now OSU Board of Trustees reveals that. The college’s curriculum was a matter of bitter dispute among politicians, the public, and educators. One faction, the “narrow gauge” group, held that the college should devote itself solely to the teaching of agriculture and mechanical arts. The “broad gauge” faction wanted a wider program that featured English and ancient and foreign languages as well. Joseph Sullivant, a member of the first Board of Trustees, pushed the “broad gauge” idea through the Board of Trustees, where it passed by a margin of 8-7. I can only speculate what OSU would be today if the narrow gauge mindset had prevailed.

Below is a 1878 photo of Joseph Sullivant.

1878, Joseph Sullivant

Classes began at the new college on September 17, 1873. Twenty-four students met at the old Neil farm just two miles north of Columbus. In 1878 the college’s name was changed to The Ohio State University. In that same year the first class of six men graduated, and in 1879, the university graduated its first woman.

Today the OSU campus is massive. When you have 59,000 students on your campus you need the space.

OSU campus

For the record The Ohio State University Marching Band played “Hang on Sloopy” on Oct. 9, 1965 – one week after The McCoys’ version hit No. 1 on the pop charts. For my friends here is the video. O H

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