After many hours researching into this topic, we now have a definitive answer to the question we asked. From the sources we were able to find, we can summarize that student activism was more focused on civil rights early in the 1960s. However, as time went on, student activism shifted its attention towards the Vietnam War, which continued to grow more chaotic as the 60s dragged on.
As more students were drafted to fight the war, activism at Scranton gradually moved away from the civil rights struggle, and it eventually died out. Additionally, while looking into what motivation was behind student activism, we were unable to find any evidence that would tell us. As a result, we can come to the conclusion that student activism was more in support of what was going on throughout the nation. There was no specific motivation behind the student at Scranton, they just wanted to give support to places such as the South, where change was really needed.
We can say that this ultimately did not have that big of an impact on the university as a whole. The university as a whole was not that concerned with change. However, it is very important to recognize that student activism was prevalent on campus. It is important to remember the students who stood up for equality, since they were actually compelled to see an America where everyone is treated the same. Thus, it is an interesting part of Scranton's black history, but is sadly not that well-known in the area because of its brief time on campus. It is important to share this information because it shows that while it may not have been widely recognized, the university was home to many students who stood for what they believed was right. This shows us that we must always stand in the face of oppression, if we ever hope for true change to occur that will have positive results.
Authors: Anthony Muclada, Alyssa Sendek, Joey Giattino, Wences De La Cruz Garcia
We all are first years in the History 190 course at the University of Scranton. We chose to investigate student activism at the University of Scranton in the 1960s. Our group is interested in how student activism at the University responded to the civil rights movement, and how much of it revolved around either racial civil rights or the Vietnam War. This is an important topic to look into because this helped us learn more about black history at the University of Scranton and how the civil rights had an affect on the University. Our group was also interested in exploring the different speakers and student led demonstrations that occured in the 1960s. This information gives us a glimpse into a part of the University's past that we are still uncovering to this day.
While looking for information about student activism at Scranton, we decided that all of our primary sources would be newspaper articles and clipping detailing the events. We were able to find several newspaper articles from publishers such as The Aquinas, the Scranton Times, and the Scranton Tribune. Each one provided us with tons of information to apply to our project.
We were able to find our primary sources in the University of Scranton Digital Collections archive. For every source, we decided to use the advanced search in order to find sources that directly applied to our project. In terms of search terms, we used a wide variety that related to our research topic. Some of the terms we used included civil rights movement, student activism, protest, speakers, student-organized events, demonstrations, University of Scranton, etc.
For every one of our search terms, we put quotations around them. By doing this, we were able to specify more what exactly we were looking for in the archive. Additionally, we also made good use out of the facets. While searching, we made sure to limit our search results to newspaper clippings and the Aquinas. As a result, we were able to find several key sources for our research.
However, there was one problem that we encountered while searching through the archive. Most of the time, the search results would give us articles on protests against the Vietnam War that occurred on campus. Obviously, we were looking for civil rights related protests, so every time we found a noteworthy article, we had to check that it was the right subject matter. On the positive side, the Vietnam information actually helped formulate a part of our conclusion.
Biondi, Martha. The Black Revolution on Campus. University of California Press, 2014.
Cole, Eddie R. The Campus Color Line. Princeton University Press, 2020
Woodson, Carter G. The Mis-Education of the Negro. Blurb, 1933.
“University of Scranton Aquinas.” Students of the University of Scranton and St. Thomas College. Accessed December 2, 2021. https://digitalservices.scranton.edu/digital/collection/aquinas.