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Granddaughter Of Former Park President Visits Parkville CampusBy Carolyn Elwess, University Archivist / Brad Biles - November 16, 2009 - 8:10 am
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Dr. Young was one of Park's most dynamic presidents. He is best known for bringing nine Nisei students to the Parkville Campus in 1942, over the vehement objections of some local residents and alumni. After war was declared on Japan following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, all residents of Japanese descent, including the Nisei -- the first generation born in the U.S. -- were deprived of their homes and schools, and sent to internment camps for the duration of World War II. Many Nisei were already in college at the time and several leading educators sought methods of helping them continue their educations. Dr. Young's courageous and highly-principled stand on the issue received national attention -- even a note of commendation from First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt.
"I was pleased to share that the Nisei story is still being researched by many scholars and that Dr. Young often figures prominently in books and articles regarding those dark days in America," Elwess said. "Dr. Young is definitely an important figure, not only in Park history, but also in American history."
Diane Young said, "I was so happy to see that Grandpa Young was a happy man for much of his life and that he was a somewhat rebellious sort. I tend to be that way myself for issues that are really important -- education, peace and compassion for all living creatures. I really did not realize that some of that must have come from him."
According to Elwess, visiting with Dr. Young's relatives has added a great deal to the University's knowledge about his personality and family life -- "Things that remind us that Dr. Young was also human," she said.