case western reserve university



Federation: A Process Not an Event


Forty years ago on July 1, 1967, Case Institute of Technology and Western Reserve University federated to create Case Western Reserve University. The goal was to develop "a nationally recognized community of academic excellence, building on what has been achieved already." At that time, CWRU was ninth in size of faculty and graduate enrollment, and tenth in endowment book value among all U.S. private universities.

The architects of the union characterized it as a federation, not a merger, explaining that a merger would imply absorption of the smaller Case into the larger WRU. Federation was intended to preserve the values, traditions, strengths and the potential of both Case and WRU. On July 1, 1967 only the legal framework was complete. Policies, organizational structures, faculty governance, and academic program plans were incomplete. Planning the Federation I cautioned, "'federation' must be a process and cannot be an event."

This web site recognizes the 40th anniversary of Federation. It begins with a timeline summarizing Federation planning and implementation milestones, and includes key documents. The web site will be built over the course of the next academic year with sections on participants, contemporaneous reactions, pre-Federation cooperation, and pre-1967 merger efforts.