A United Methodist College Working with Jewish Federation to Enroll Jewish Youth

A cooperative effort has been initiated here by the Jewish Federation and Morning side College of Sioux City to provide enrollment for Jewish youth losing admissions to colleges of their choice in metropolitan centers because of preferential admissions for ghetto students. The college is a private United Methodist-run co-ed school with full time enrollment of 1300-1500 students. The Federation, reporting on the program in its current Newsletter, asserted that some of the large state universities and city colleges, “under pressure from militant minorities, have recently begun a policy of blocking out a number of admission openings for ghetto students who fail to meet grade-score qualifications.” The Newsletter declared that “these preferential admissions are inevitably made at the expense of Jewish students, good students who meet grade qualifications, but whose places have been given to others.” The Newsletter said that there was no way to determine how many Jewish students were being affected by that policy, either in Sioux City or elsewhere in the United States.

Federation officials agreed that some of the bypassed Jewish young people “undoubtedly could benefit from one or more years of the kind of academic experience offered by a small mid western college, especially if the school is located in a medium-size city with a friendly Jewish population and a well-organized Jewish community.” A meeting to launch the enrollment drive was attended by Dr. Thomas S. Thompson, college president; Dr. Jack Pommrehn, admissions director; Mrs. Sid Shapiro, a faculty member, and Oscar Littlefield, Federation director. It was decided that the college should launch a campaign to recruit some of the Jewish youth and, “given assurance that the Jewish community endorses the effort, Morning side College set a recruitment goal of at least 50 Jewish students.”

The Newsletter reported that a nation-wide recruitment drive had been started, “directed specifically at youth memberships of 200 Jewish community centers located in the most densely populated metropolitan areas.” Youth activity directors at these centers are being personally contacted and, “wherever the numbers warrant, a representative of Morning side College will visit and meet with the students.” Mrs. Shapiro is coordinating the visits. The Newsletter noted that the campaign has so far attracted a favorable response, especially in the larger cities.” According to the Newsletter, the college needs students and “wants to diversify the ethnic and geographic make-up of its total student body.” The Jewish community “can likewise benefit from the infusion of a substantial number of young people from out of state.” The Sioux City Jewish community center was said to be planning a special program of activities” for these new students.

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