The Oregon State University Sesquicentennial Oral History Project

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Joe Hendricks Oral History Interview

Life history interview conducted by Janice Dilg.

August 4, 2014


“The Formation and Growth of the University Honors College”  August 4, 2014  Location: Hendricks residence, Bend, Oregon.  Watch Video | Download Transcript (PDF)

In the interview, Hendricks recounts his upbringing in Seattle, his educational experiences at the University of Washington, the University of Nevada and Penn State University, and the genesis of his scholarly interest in gerontology. He also notes components of his gerontological research that made an impact, including his work on chaos theory.

From there, Hendricks describes his decision to move from the University of Kentucky to Oregon State University, recounting his first impressions of the school and community, the state of the Sociology Department - including his tenure as department chair - and his involvement with the university's Minority Affairs Commission.

The bulk of the session is devoted to a discussion of the formation and growth of the University Honors College. Hendricks recalls the formation of the college, the designation of an honors dorm, the development of admissions standards, and early efforts to recruit teaching faculty into the college. Hendricks likewise shares his memories of the UHC's physical space, including a designated study area called Students Learning Under Ground (SLUG) which was located in the basement of Strand Agricultural Hall. Hendricks then describes the UHC's emphasis on service learning before reflecting on the growth of the college during his years as Dean. The interview concludes with Hendricks' thoughts on life in retirement and his optimism for the future of the UHC.