History of Baruch College Book and Exhibit



Update: Introduction

As the 1980s drew to a close, Baruch College was a highly respected campus of the City University of New York. In 1990, it was the second largest of the CUNY campuses and Standard and Poor's ranked it fourth in the nation for the number of alumni who were senior executives of major corporations. (New York Times, April 5, 1990, p.B6) President Joel Segall saw the college through difficult times and after a 13 year tenure at Baruch was preparing to retire, effective August 31, 1990. Many issues still remained unresolved including reaccreditation, minority student and faculty recruitment, and the creation of Black and Hispanic Alumni Association. The Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools in June 1990 approved accreditation of Baruch, efforts were made to hire minority faculty and enroll students from underrepresented populations in April 24, 1990 the administration at the college agreed to recognize the Black and Hispani Alumni Association. With the resolve of these important matters the college was ready to begin a new chapter in its history.

National attention focused on Baruch College when in October of 1990 Harry M. Markowitz, Professor of finance at Baruch received the Nobel Prize in Economic Science. "Still, many faculty members, administrators and students say the announcement of Dr. Markowitz's prize--for developing a theory for diviersifying assets in investment portfolios--was a needed boost to the college's morale and reputation."(New York Times, October 18, 1990, p.B2) With the college's new enhanced status Dr. Matthew Goldstein was named president of Baruch College after a one-year nation-wide search. Returning to the institution where he began as a statistics professor in 1974 he brought to his new position a vision of the college which led to major building projects, successful fund-raising and the addition of new technology.

President Goldstein maintained strong ties with Baruch alumni and as a result the college benefited by receiving major monetary gifts. At a dinner at the Plaza, honoring Bert W. Wasserman in June 1992, the $500,000 proceeds from the affair were used to establish the Bert W. Wasserman Chair of Finance. A year later, in 1993, William Newman, an alumni gave Baruch $5 million--the largest single donation in the history of the City University of New York. It was cause for celebration and with 1993 the twenty-fifth anniversary of Baruch College as a separate campus, an exhibit was mounted in October in the Sidney Mishkin Gallery.

Since the 1980s there were plans for new facilities, aimed at upgrading antiquated buildings and also unifying the campus. In September 1994 Site A opened to house the William and Anita Newman Library and technology center. The renovation of this 1890s Italian Renaissance former cable-car drive station quickly became a model for urban restoration. With Site A completed plans were made for the realization of Site B, and in June 1997, eleven years after it was first conceived, an academic complex for Baruch College moved into construction phase.

Other exciting developments were also taking place during the late 1990s. Baruch followed the trend in secondary education in New York City and opened a college campus high school with one hundred students. In 1998 Carol and Lawrence Zicklin announced an unprecedented gift to Baruch of 18 million dollars and in March 1998 the Baruch School of Business was renamed to honor its benefactor. A successful period of growth was to be passed on to a new president, when Matthew Goldstein announced that he was to leave Baruch to become president of Adelphi University in June 1998.

The decade was coming to an end and 1999 saw the opening of the Subotnick Financial Services Center--a state of the art trading laboratory. Ned Regan was appointed the new president of Baruch College in March 2000 and the new century was off to a wonderful, encouraging beginning. The Newman Vertical Campus was yet to come--the future was bright for a college with a rich tradition in educating "the children of the whole people. . . ." (Horace Webster, January 1849)