Scholars at the Starting Line
Then and Now
Charles Merrill- Osenbaugh
endall, his wife, Susan, and their three children, Glenn, Jr.,
Marjorie, and Fred, moved to Chico in 1950 when Kendall accepted
the position of president of Chico State. All three of the children
graduated from the college. A new faculty member and his family
always received a visit from the Kendalls, who arrived with a
basket filled with produce from their garden. The couple were
known for being warm, gracious, and down-to-earth.
One of the first things Kendall did at Chico State was to reconstitute
the advisory board. Aymer J. Hamilton preceded Kendall as president.
It was under Hamilton that an advisory board was mandated by the
state educational code. Hamilton complied, but his organizational
style, observed Kendall, was not necessarily to share administration.
Kendall called together the advisory board. As he listened to
the members, he noted, "Chico State was not going to be just a
teachers college. It could and should be preeminent." If it were
really to be a good school for a constituency with such a varied
group of needs and interests, he realized that he and the board
must look at every educational need of the area.
During the early 1950s, programs in agriculture, social welfare,
engineering (there was one engineering professor in 1950), and
nursing were developed. Each was derived from a close examination
of what was needed by the people of Northern California. "If it
was an important need, I believed we should meet it," said Kendall.
This belief came from the first part of his educational philosophy,
that is, "Help people do better the desirable things they do."
The second part, "To reveal higher things in life and make them
both desirable and possible," speaks to his belief in every liberal
arts program. "Each one, whether it is literature, music, drama
or philosophy, reveals the higher things in life," offers Kendall.
Both parts are necessary to a full university and a complete education.
This was his vision for what was to become CSU, Chico.
Kathleen McPartland, Publications Office (Much of this article
first appeared in the University Bulletin, November 4, 1996.)