Historical documentary of socio-political and socio-economic factors in creating Houston Community College (1967-1971)

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1982

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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine and analyze the relationship of socio-political and socio-economic variables to the decision-making processes leading to the formation of Houston Community College. Specifically, it deals with factors of (1) legislative statutes, (2) political potency, (3) industrialism and multiculturalism and (4) economics as they influence the process of decisionmaking. Research was subdivided into factual, historical data and into the phenomenological interpretation of events that led to the creation of Houston Community College. As a historiography, the majority of data relied on primary sources such as official documents, minutes and personal correspondence. From a phenomenological perspective, the interviews were conducted with individuals who were instrumental in the formation of Houston Community College. These interviews were used as the basis for the analysis and the interpretation of each respondent's role and perspective regarding creation of the college. The most significant findings of the study were: (1) The legislative statutes served more as procedural guidelines than restraints; (2) Political potency was centered around a power elite, committed to the creation of Houston Community College and providing direction in decision-making matters; (3) The increased density of population of Houston, especially unskilled minorities, combined with the industrial progress of Houston, heightened the need for a community college; (4) Economics was the principle concern regarding decisionmaking issues. Implications for other cities contemplating a community college included consideration of the needs of the community and cooperation of all parties involved in the decision-making process.

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Community colleges--Texas

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