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Pinkard, Carolyn A.
Carolyn A. Pinkard oral history interview
h [electronic resource] /
interviewed by Nancy Hewitt.
Tampa, Fla. :
University of South Florida,
1 sound file (42 min.) :
digital, MPEG4 file +
e 1 transcript (20 p.)
USF 25th (1985) anniversary oral history project
Description based on CD version record.
Recorded July 16, 1985.
Carolyn Pinkard, hired by USF in 1960 as a student counselor and professor of behavioral science, discusses a variety of topics pertaining to the early years of the university.
Pinkard, Carolyn A.
University of South Florida
University of South Florida
Hewitt, Nancy A.,
University of South Florida Libraries.
Florida Studies Center.
Oral History Program.
University of South Florida.
i CD version:
Pinkard, Carolyn A.
t [Carolyn A. Pinkard].
USF 25th (1985) anniversary oral history project.
y CLICK HERE TO ACCESS DIGITAL AUDIO AND TRANSCRIPT
1 DR. CAROLYN A. PINKARD Hewitt: Im speaking today with Dr. Carolyn Pinkard, who was a charter faculty member at the University of South Florida in 1960. Could you tell me how you first became acquainted with USF and what attracted you to a j ob at the University of South Florida? Carolyn: I was working in the counseling center at the University of Florida and this was an arrangement where I had just had the job for a year so I was looking for another unive rsity position. I think, as far as I can remember, that someone from USF contacted me, I think it was Dean Johnshoy, who was the first dean of student affairs. He asked me to come over and put in an application and come over and talk to him, so I did. Hewitt: And when you came down that first time you mentioned, when we were speaking before the interview, that you had some trouble finding the university itself. Carol yn: I certainly did. I had the address but that part of town was simply a pasture and I couldnt see any buildings that looked at all like a university. I did find some people to ask and they also had no idea that ther e was a university anywhere in the area. Finally, by just keeping on driving in the roads in that area, I saw two buildings arising out of sand and decided that must be it. I went in and talked to Dean Johnshoy. Hew itt: Now when did you actually start working at University of South Florida? Carolyn: Well, it was just at the same time that the first students and the first classes began.
2 Hewitt: So the fall of 1960, I guess that was? Carolyn: Uh huh, I think it was. It was either 1960 or 1961. Hewitt: Where did youI know theres a College of Basic Studies originally that most people taught in. When you were first hired what was your position and what kinds of courses were you teaching? Carolyn: I had what was called a joint appointment with the university counseling center and the behavioral sciences in basic studies. Also, that next year, I did teach a course in psychology when they started offering some upper level courses. So while I was there, I had always had an arrangement of doing appointment or teaching and also working in the counseling center. Hewitt: Did you get many students, e arly on, who used the counseling center services? Carolyn: Yes, we certainly did. The way that it worked out, there were to be two counselors when the university opened, but the other counselor gave up the job just b efore the year started. So I was the only member of the staff at the counseling center and I was immediately very busy. Hewitt: At a brand new university, what kind of issues did students bring to the counseling center ? Carolyn: They were primarily, in the beginning, vocational. There were not people living there on campus so they were sort of things that you get connected with the residence halls. But also at that time the faculty w ere eligible to come, and so some of them did come. There were just the usual sorts of problems that people have with living. Hewitt: Do you know if most universities start out their planning with a counseling
3 center? It seems like one of those things that gets added on to a lot of places after the university has been in progress. But it sounds like at USF, they initiated it Carolyn: Yes they did. They did it from the first day. Im not familiar enough with others that have started to know whether that would be the usual thing. I think it probably is because people would know that it was needed. Hewitt: Well it sounds like it was needed; it sounds l ike you were kept pretty busy. Now on the teaching side of your appointment, did you teach in basic studies originally? Carolyn: Yes, I taught in what I think remember being called behavioral sciences. H uman behavior, some such title. Hewitt: Now a lot of those courses were either interdisciplinary courses or team taught courses, were you involved at all in developing courses from an interdisciplinary perspective? Caro lyn: Well there were people that were doing that, I wasnt on those particular committees. I was more in the line of getting what the committee had decided in regards to the course. It was true that we did do some team teaching and I thought that was an interesting way to go about it. We also had the opportunity in the beginning, to attend any courses that we had time to attend so that we could see what was going on in other interdisciplinary areas. Hewitt: Did you ever find time to attend other courses, between the counseling center and teaching? Carolyn: I did go several times to one [course] that had to do with the arts, because I was
4 interested in that. Also, the arts and psychology are very closely related so I wanted to see whether they were doing anything with psychological insights, like in drama. Hewitt: Were they? Carolyn: Yes, they were. Hewitt: Now thats interesting. Im not sure that the psychology department and the fine arts departments are very closely linked anymore, so its interesting. Carolyn: No, theyre not. I have a friend that teaches at Eckerd College, where the psychology departmen t is in the arts department. Hewitt: Really? Carolyn: Its not big enough, its possible. Hewitt: Thats fascinating. I assume that there probably werent many women faculty, or women appointed to faculty or staff positions in those early years. Do you have any memory of how many women there were; were there other faculty women? Carolyn: It seems to me that there were no more then 3 or 4, on the original faculty. I remember going t o the opening convocation -a roomful of men putting on robes. But I did try to encourage female participation. I was on a committee that had to do with hiring new faculty. They would sit and say, Where can we find a good man for this?, and I would say Or a woman. I think that now the ratio is much more even then it was then, there were very few then. Hewitt: Was there any attempt to recruit women or minorities specifically on that hir ing committee? Or was it more that given that it was a brand new university that
5 people sort of hired in people they already knew? Carolyn: I dont think there was a particular effort to get women or minorities. I think there was much more an effort to getusually in any department there wouldnt have been more then one, or two, or three faculty so they would need other people that had certain specialties to make the depart ment a well rounded department. That was more of the emphasis than to have that particular gender or minority. Hewitt: A lot of people have mentioned that in the early years at USF, that there was a grea ter closeness among faculty, staff, and administrators, then there seems to be after the university had grown much larger. And Im wondering one, if you recall sort of what feelings there were on campus in terms of the lines between faculty and staff and administration. And two, whether being female amongst mostly males would have made a difference in how comfortable the atmosphere was? Carolyn: Well I think there was more connectio ns, for one thing simply because there wasnt more than the administration building and one classroom building in the library, so everybody was in physical proximity and there wereif you dropped into the copy room there would be people from various departments there rather then now. I suppose you would just see people from your own department. I dont think there was any particular difference between the faculty and the staff; I think that was prettystill a pretty formal kind of relationship. Hewitt: Were there
6 Carolyn: I did know everybodys first nameI did remember their faces. Hewitt: I dont think anyone can say that now. Ca rolyn: No one could say that. Hewitt: Were there any other committees that you were involved in, besides the committee to hire faculty? Carolyn: I was on a committee that had generally to do with developing student per sonnel services. Hewitt: Was that involved with the counseling center directly, or was that in addition to other sorts of services? Carolyn: No, that was as we got residence halls, we were going to need dorm counselors and just generally about student life and when theres a student center what are we going to do? It was those committees that were so much concerned with the future that you almost wondered what year it was because you go to a committee and your pla nning ahead 10 years or you might be talking about whats going on now so it was kind of a never neverland atmosphere. Hewitt: Were any of the residence halls built before you left USF? Carolyn: I think so, yeahone or two. Before I left the re certainly was a lot of landscaping. Originally, there was only the inner courtyard of the administration building that was green. The rest of it was just all brown sand. I remember being impressed an d how much work went into creating that campus, as a place with grass and trees and walks and Hewitt: How did they get sand to turn into grass? That actually must have been
7 Carolyn: No, they had to plant it. I was there when they h ad the opening convocation, I think it was Leroy Collins; he came with his entourage of cars that were highly patrolled. Anyway, seven or eight cars, they came roaring up to theand this was held outside of the administration building and all of us in robes were covered with fine sand from these cars. Hewitt: Someone told me that the first day of registration there was a virtual hurricane on campus. Carolyn: There was, there was one. A tremendous hurricane. All the air conditioning went out, and the lights and everything. Thats when we found some of the disadvantages of having rooms that were inside and no windows. Hewitt: Well I guess while they maintained that architectural design throughout the campus so they must have thought the advantages offset the disadvantages. Carolyn: There were some funny things about that architecture. Once I had a class do some brainstorming on how to keep dry in the classroom building because it was built in such a way that the stairways and stuffit would rain on you. Hewitt: Did they come up with any good ideas? Maybe we should get those on t ape, they could still be used. Carolyn: I cant remember, but I remember thinking about Sunland, at Gainesville, and all the covered archways and how careful they were to keep the patients dry. At USF they didnt seem to care whether the students and faculty got soaked going even inside the building. Hewitt: Were there sidewalks going through all this sand? I mean how did you actually get around campus?
8 Carolyn: Well th ere was just a sidewalk going into the library and into the classroom building. Hewitt: And where was the library situated then? I assume that the library we now have wasnt built yet. Carolyn: No, it was just near th e administration building but theres now a new library. Hewitt: Yeah I was going to say, in a brand new school like that, did the library did they actually have many books when you arrived at campus? Carolyn: Well President Allen had been very insistent that the library was to be developed before the school started. And so I think that he told us once that the very first person he hired was a librarian. And so there really werent a lot of books, of course there was a lot of requests for what books should we add to the library in its first years, too. So it kept growing but it was an ongoing proposition from the very beginning. Hewitt: Do you rec all any involvement with the university book program? Several people have told me that there used to be one book that was selected that everyone on campus was supposed to read? Carolyn: Well I guess I was oblivious to th at. I didnt do any such reading. I dont remember any program like that. Hewitt: In terms of, I guess, a more formal social life on campus, were there any events that brought the faculty together? Either, I dont kno w if they had cocktail parties on campus then or if drinking on campus was restricted. But, were there any kind of events where faculty, since there were so many brand new people there, any attempts to ge t people together as a faculty group?
9 Carolyn: Well, there wasnt really a place to have a large group of people gathered. There were groups that would be invited to President Allens homeI dont remember ever going to anything that was the whole faculty. I dont think that there was any, if there was any there, it wasnt very much of it. Hewitt: So most of your contact was really at the coffee room or over lunch or Carolyn: Yesright. Hewitt: W ere there actually places to eat on campus? Aside from places to get coffee. Carolyn: I dont think at first there was a place to eat. Hewitt: It doesnt sound like it wouldve been a good area for a picnic either! Carolyn: No, it wasnt a good area for a picnic...for a time one floor of the library was a place where the faculty could get some things to eat. Hewitt: You must have all been thin in those days. Carolyn: Oh, I wasnt very thin, I got pregnant very soon after I started work and that was one distinction I had, I was the only pregnant woman on the faculty. Hewitt: Was there any concern about letting you teach while you were pregnant, or serving the counseling center? Carolyn: Nobody e ver suggested that I wasnt able to work. Hewitt: Was there any kind of leave policy in terms of being able to take time off to have a child, or did you just hope it arrived over vacation or in the summer? Carolyn: My child arrived ver y conveniently just after I had given a final exam. Unfortunately, I had to read the exam while I was still in the hospital, which I thought, was pretty dirtybut I did it. I Finished out the semester. I didnt even inquire if there was a leave policy because I just went back to work.
10 Hewitt: Were there any other women on campus, other faculty or staff, who were pregnant? Do you remember? Carolyn: I dont remember there being any. He witt: I guess with more women now it is more likely to see. Well now you also see a lot of students that are pregnant. Now there are a lot of older students and evening students, coming back to school. Was your sense, thinking back on the students that you had, were they a fairly diverse group or was it sort of a group that was straight out of high school? Carolyn: At first there were more just straight out of high school, just a few were older students. Hewitt: Where there any special services, student services, or was there any thought for special services for older students or over traditional aged students? Carolyn: No, that was a requirement t hat came later. I think that there was some concern that a lot of these students came from close knit groups, like from Chamberlain High School and King High School, and there was more talk of how can we get them tog ether to be USF students? And I dont think that there were enough students of an older age to develop something. Hewitt: You mentioned trying to turn these students from various local high schools into USF student s. Since USF didnt have intercollegiate sports, which a lot of people see as kind of what school spirit is all about, do you remember any kinds of programs they had to try and make students feel as though they had an identity with the university? Carolyn: Well it really was hard to come up with things like that. I think that the dean
11 of the Mens Office and the dean of the Womens Office had more to do with that then I did. But I know that they considered that was something that they wanted to try to do. But its hard anyway on a commuter campus. Hewitt: Did they build parking lots early on in the midst of all this sand and building, since it w as a commuter campus? Carolyn: Well yeah, there was one big parking lot. Hewitt: Did you actually have contact since the school was so small, did you actually have any kind of regular or even irregular contact with people like Presiden t John Allen or the people who were the upper echelons of the administration at that time? Carolyn: Well, President Allen used to drop into the copy room every once and awhile. Youd see him there and you could talk with him. The deans were very available; it was pretty much an open door policy. I cant think of anything else to answer to that. Hewitt: But they were, sort of, not so much shut off in separate offices b ut they did mix more with Carolyn: No, it was easy access. Hewitt: One of the events in those early years, and several people have mentioned is the visits of the Johns Committee to campus in the early 1960s. Did you have any contact with the Johns Committee or any memories of that episode? Carolyn: My memories of the Johns Committee are more connected with the University of Florida. They came there and I remember how obnoxious, ge nerally speaking, they were. Seems to me that USF, what I knew about it, it was very
12 minor compared to what it was in Gainesville. Hewitt: It must have been a shock to come from Gainesville, which looks like almost a northern university town and campus, to USF which looks I guess more like at least then must have looked more like a desert campus then anything else. Carolyn: It was just so obviously like an embryo. Where as Gainesville w as so developed and so surrounded by rooming houses and all that sort of thing. President Allen was very insistent that he wasnt going to let that happen at USF. So now USF has little factories Hewitt: And fast food places. In the mission of the university that was drawn up in those early years, theres a lot of discussion about the importance of the urban mission and the importance of community relations involvement w ith the university. Since on your arrival at USF you couldnt even find anyone in the community who seemed to know where the university was actually located, did you feel any push on the part of administr ators or dean or other faculty or whatever, to get involved in community organizations or community services? Carolyn: Well I think from the first there was a suggestion that that would be a good thing to do. As far as I was concerned, as I say I got pregnant and had a baby, and I was pretty well taken up on just being on campus and being at home and I didnt get involved in community service activity. But I think a good many of the faculty members did. Hewitt: Were any of the counseling services on campus open to the community, or was that strictly for students and staff and faculty? Carolyn: No there wouldnt have beenthere wasnt a big enough staf f.
13 Hewitt: You mentioned that when you first arrived there was supposed to be two counselors but one didnt arrive and so you were taking on the whole caseload. Over the course of your years at USF, did the counseling c enter expand in terms of personnel? Carolyn: Yes, added I think it was two counselors that next year and then gradually toI think when I left there were six. Hewitt: So it was multiplying almost at the sa me rate as the faculty in that era then. I actually dont know how many counselors there are now, I sure couldnt keep multiplying at that rate. Carolyn: They kept an arrangement of having the counselors also teaching so that naturally in terms of counselor terms it would be three counselors rather then six. But they felt the counselors would be more in touch with university life if they were also teaching. Hewitt: Si nce, and I dont know when this was actually developed but I assume some time in the 1970s, the peer counseling office opened up where students would counsel other students. Was there any use of the counseling center in t hat period to train students in counseling or to use it in conjunction with psychology classes? Carolyn: Well, no, you see there wasnt anything but just beginning psychology classes. After a few years o bviously we needed to do some peer counseling for training. In the beginning it just couldnt be done and also set up the operation. Hewitt: Now is the basic studies program in place the whole time that you taught at U SF? Was that still in place when you left or had it already started to break up
14 into separate departments? Carolyn: It had started to break up and the team teaching broke up pretty early too. It just didnt seem to work out practically. Hewitt: Did you have any sense of whether the changes in the curriculum were sort of inevitable with the growth of the university or whether there was a real attempt to sort of move away from the early ideal of basic liberal education toward maybe more vocational oriented or professional oriented education? Carolyn: Well, my personal opinion was that the courses that were at work with the number of students coming in a nd the demand from them, for particular kinds of vocational education, that you just couldnt hold in a large university at the size of liberal arts kind of education. And then there was a sort of hope that maybe it could be saved for some of the students anyway. But when you start hiring faculty due to a particular vocational course then you just dont really have the same situation as you would. The pattern ideally is kind of a group of scholars in various arts and science s that teach their subject matter. But if you have people that want to learn engineering, then its not the kind of pattern that you can use for their education. Hewitt: Do you know in terms of hiring, whether there really was an Accent on Learning in the early years in terms of the attempt to hire people who were Outstanding as teachers as opposed to people who were more oriented towards research and scholarship? Carolyn: Well, there was always a great deal of talk about A ccent on Learning and there were never any dearth of applicants for the position at the university, people
15 wanted to come to Florida and teach in Florida. I think they tried to find the best people they could find for t he positions. You get constraints like what salaries you can offer them then all works to coming up eventually with rather a conventional sort of teaching structure. There was a proposal once at the beginning to have j ust everyone who was teaching be on the same status, that was to eliminate the professors, social professors and that sort of ranking. But that very quickly came up against salary increases and, If I want to transfer to another university what do I tell them?. That was abandoned. Hewitt: Thats interesting. Its hard to imagine now ever moving back to that. It seems like a lot of these things are the kind of things you can only do at a new university. Carolyn: Yes, and that was of course the thought that it wouldmaybe we could do something new. But the push thing didnt end up in the conventional stuff. Hewitt: The 196s were certainly widely kno wn as an era of student rebellion, either over civil rights, or womens rights, or anti war. Do you remember whether students at USF were involved in any of those kinds of movements or was the South, with a southern campus, sort of more quiet politically then maybe those that got a lot of notice up north? Carolyn: I think particularly in the first couple of years, there was very little of these typical 1960s activity. The n I think it began to be shown right around campus. I remember at first there would be debating committees like, What should the rules be in the student residence halls?. After awhile there were just no rules in the student residence halls and nobody would have thought of trying to impose
16 any. So it was, at that time, it was a craze in local parentis as a university relationship with parents to the students and after all th at became entirely pass. These students are independent adults and we can make regulations about their coming to class and so on but not about their conduct. Hewitt: Was there any kind of dress code initially at USF, fo r either faculty or students? Carolyn: I did attend a committee meeting where there was great talk about dress and nobody could agree on anything and finally ended up saying you should dress appropriately for the occasion s. As far as I know that was the only dress code that was ever pondered, which seemed kind of like a Solomon like way of ending. But the whole idea that there should be a dress code was part of this loca l parentis thing. Hewitt: I know that the breweries were built across the street from USF, I guess fairly early on or were already there when the university was founded. Was there concern about students visiting the br eweries or being influenced by having breweries and Busch Gardens nearby? Carolyn: No. The brewery, the Busch brewery did give us a welcoming party and it was a lovely party. I think the students did go, the faculty too especially Friday afternoon to the Busch brewery. Hewitt: I guess thats also when Busch Gardens was free in terms of entry fee? Carolyn: Yes. Hewitt: Now its unlikely a student would go on a Friday afternoon unless theyre wealthy or with faculty. Carolyn: Oh no, there was no such attraction there as there is now.
17 Hewitt: Since you did have a child very early in your career at USF, how easy was it in those days to try and balance childcare an d teaching and working in the counseling center? Were there any kinds of day care services or was it strictly you running around trying to juggle all these things at once? Carolyn: Well, I did a lot of running around. I had a nurse who came...I had two children, actually. She would come and stay during the day and take care of the children. Of course, I always felt like I was just going on the juggle principle. I do what Im doing and dont worry about it. How much more is there to do at home, until I get there then Ill do that. So if you just tend to the ball you have at hand, it seems to come out all right. Hewitt: Now you were mar ried to another USF professor? Carolyn: Well, he wasnt a USF professor. He did become a USF professor. He was doing some research at the faculty training center. Hewitt: I see. So you couldnt juggle the baby back and forth with yo ur alternative class schedules or something? Carolyn: No, he wasnt available. Hewitt: Now you left USF in 1966 or ? Carolyn: Yes, I think. Hewitt: Did you still continue any kind of connection with the university after that? Ca rolyn: Well Ive done adjunct teaching for about the past ten, fifteen years, so Ive had that connection. Hewitt: You must be one of the longest adjunct Carolyn: Im sure that if there was an award for adjunct, or longevity, I might be eligible.
18 Hewitt: How different was the relationship of being an adjunct at USF to the relationship of being a faculty? Was it a drastic change moving from one to the other? Carolyn: Well, certainly being an adjun ct just primarily you teach your course and have the contact with the students and not with the rest of the faculty or department that much. Hewitt: Did you continue to work with the counseling center after you left? C arolyn: No. Hewitt: And when you left USF, besides adjuncting for USF, what kind of other work did you do in the community? Carolyn: As far as my professional efforts dealing with clergy training programs for some yea rs. And I worked as a consultant at Tampa General Hospital in the rehabilitation center there. I did some consultant work with the cerebral palsy association. And then Ive been doing private practicing for psychology. As many years as I did it in adjunct Hewitt: So it sounds like you kept juggling things after you left USF. It wasnt that youyou didnt leave to relax. Carolyn: Im doing consulting work at a career center. Hewit t: Now you mention doing consulting work at Tampa General with their rehabilitation program. Was there a program in rehabilitation counseling at USF at that time? Carolyn: No, not at that time. That was developed lat er. Hewitt: And have you ever taught atdid you teach at any of the branch campuses?
19 Carolyn: Yes, thats where Ive been teaching as an adjunct. Ive taught at all of them, St. Pete, Sarasota, and Ft Myers. Hewitt: And was that e xperience radically different from teaching at the Tampa campus? Carolyn: Well of course, theyre very small campuses and of course it is different. Ive found that the students on the branch campuses are eager to learn and happy to see you come and wanting to get just much as they can out of the teaching. Of course that makes it a delightful situation for a teacher. Hewitt: So theres a reward for the traveling at least? Carolyn: I ve been fortunate that the teaching that Ive done Ive often seen students in one class and then in another class, and then in another class, so I could follow them around. It is very gratifying. Hewitt: Do you think t hat the students on the branch campuses have any realization that you were an adjunct rather then a regular professor at USF, since they only seem to see professors on the branch campuses once every two or three years, sometimes they may not see the same person. Carolyn: I dont think that theymost of the students have any idea about what the adjunct system is or why it is or much of anything about it. Hewitt: Theyre just glad to see s omeone come, whatever their status or whatever their position. Since you still remained in the community after you left USF, what would you say looking back are the biggest changes that have occurred at the university since those early years when you were on the hiring committee and student affairs and in the counseling center and teaching at USF?
20 Hewitt: Well certainly the size of the student body and the size of the faculty. Theres no longer any sort of intimacy about it, Im sure. I think that the student body is much more varied and much more mature, I guess I would say. It has so many more student activities. Hewitt: I imagi ne that it seems, although I dont have a lot of contact with the counseling center, it seems as though the counseling services have expanded enormously since those early days. Carolyn: I went to a meeting that was held a t the counseling center a couple of months ago, and I was just astonished. They had a whole floor of a building and must have had at least 15 or 20 people that were on the staff. Hewitt: See what you started! Well hopef ully the other thing thats changed is that now if you came for an interview at University of South Florida hopefully people would know where the university was. Carolyn: It would be hard not to see it, if you could look through all the stuff thats on Fowler. Hewitt: Thats right, thats true, you have more things in your way. Well, thank you very much Dr. Pinkard for spending this time with us as part of the USF Silver Anniversary Oral History Project. Carolyn: Well you are quite welcome.