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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 12, 1975)
By Deb Gray
You can take Ken Bader, the vice-chancellor for
student affairs, out of the country, but you can't take
the influences of an agrarian environment out of Ken
The youngest of seven children, Bader left the
farm to attend an urban campus, Ohio State
University. He earned a bachelors, masters and
doctorate degrees in agronomy (soil management and
At 35, he became dean of students at Ohio State,
the youngest man to hold the position in that
Now, Bader is at a university heavily influenced by
rural trends. In 1972, he became vice-chancellor of
student affairs at UNL. He presides over six
departments: minority affairs, student development,
the Nebraska Union, academic services, the student
health center and university housing.
Included in these departments are programs such
as financial aids, food service, student counseling and
the Union Program Council.
"I am glad to be here," Bader said. "Nebraska is a
great place to live and a great place to work."
Now 40, Bader exudes boy-next-door affability.
He is genial and open, George Apple without the
Last Wednesday, Bader discussed his role as a
university administrator. First, at Ohio State, where
he was considered a bad guy because he representc.l
authority then at UNL which he says is a "great
"Students don't start out in an adversarial
position when they're talking to you," he said. "There
are common threads of concern between
administrator and student."
On another level, the interview could be subtitled
the Greening of Joe (or Jill) College. In only five
years, the temper of students has changed so much
the political causes don't arouse them anymore, said
"Students have gotten much more distrustful of
politics. More people have disdain for government on
the state and federal level, he added.
"Students are more self-centered now. They're
more concerned with tilings that affect them and
their future. They're much more career concerned."
Bader lapsed into the Kent State era, viewing that
time from what campus revolutionaries would have
called the oppressor's viewpoint. There was
bitterness, violence and hatred on both sides. But as
Bader told the story, there was also nostalgia for a
time when students said, "Hell, no, we won't go,"
and set a nation on its ear.
Ken Bader, vice chancellor for student affairs
Spring, 1970. The country was reeling from the
stench caused by a country on the other side of the
world. Prospective warriors were boycotting classes,
sticking flowers in National Guardmen's guns and
getting beat up. Hardly a time to be a university
But Ken Bader was one. As dean of students, he
was in charge of residence halls which were keeping
student inside after 6 p.m. Bader said he'd sooner
forget this part of his career, for it "was not a happy
chapter in the history of higher education."
"You could never talk on the level with students
because before you could say anything, they were
already plotting how to do you in," Bader said.
The situation also polarized the administration,
because, "No one really knew what to do." Bader
said he often felt trapped between two factions: The
people who said talk, talk, talk to the students, but
never show brute force, and those who advocated
showing muscle and putting the skids on students'
This was still the end of the in parentis loco era,
the concept that the university should act as parents
in their absence, Bader said.
"Many people thought, 'Bader, why can't you take
care of the students?' "
Bader said the bitterness and emotion hit him
when he was making a high school commencement
"I was talking about love and compassion and this
lady in the audience started hissing and said, 'Well, if
you don't have a yellow streak down your back you'd
realize that students have a privilege to attend school
instead of burning down buildings and tearing up the
The tumor of hatred didn't erupt at Ohio State as
it did at Kent State, but it easily could have, Bader
said. On campus, there were 5,500 National
Guardsmen, 100 deputy sheriffs: campus and city
police. . .an armed camp, he said.
continued on page 10
than a 8-hour day
or 40-hour week'
it handle itself, and work on
the important things,"
But for the chancellor,
dorm visitation, alcohol on
campus, the budget and faculty
salaries arc far from being
trivia. . -
"I supported the move to
liberalize visitation hours from
By Gina Hills
At 6 a.m. every morning,
UNL Chancellor James H.
Zumberge and his German
shepherd, Lisa, jog a mile and a
half or more before breakfast.
Then the chancellor eats and
goes to work.
But for this 50-year-old
glaciologist, the job means
more than an eight-hour work
day. The chancellor will attend
meetings, luncheons, dinners
and, many evening speaking
engagements on campus.
He said that although he
gets home by 7 p.m. once or
twice a week, he has
commitments that keep him
away most evenings.
And, like students, the
chancellor also has homework
His schedule keeps him so
busy during the day that he
said he has little time to do his
paperwork, So, when evening
comes, he stuffs the papers on
his desk into his briefcase and
takes them home, where he
usually finishes in a couple of
But going to meetings,
luncheons and dinners isn't the
only responsibility of the
chancellor. He also is vice
president of the NU system.
"The job of the chancellor
is to be responsible for all
elements of UNL including
operation on east campus, city
campus, Curtis and all of our
stations around the state in
agricultural extension and
research," Zumberge said.
He also said he is the chief
responsible to the president
and the NU Regents for the
function and the operation of
Prior to becoming
chancellor at UNL in 1972,
Zumberge was dean of the
College of Earth Sciences at
the University of Arizona from
1968 to 1972 and president of
Grand Valley State College in
Allendale, Mich., from 1962 to
Being UNL's chancellor "is
much more time consuming"
photos by Ted Kirk
told the regents he "would not
personally reopen the issue of
alcohol on campus for at least
"I think some day it'll
come, but I think that it has to
be worked at diligently, and
it'll come ultimately by
persuasion rather than
coercion," he said.
Zumberge also said he likes
to see student involvement on
campus and added "I'm glad to
see the interest" in ASUN
elections this year.
Three parties, 17 executive
candidates and more than 100
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than the other jobs, he said.
"My private life is very, very
small and I figure that as long
as I'm in Lincoln my life
belongs to the university."
And although Zumberge, a
who has made scientific
expeditions to Alaska,
Antarctica and Greenland,
would like to go on more
expeditions, he doesn't think
there'll be time.
But he said he likes his job
even though "some days I like
it better than others." "You've
got to maintain a very good
sense of humor. If you don't,
things get wearing.
"The most important thing
is to sort out the trivia, letting
the very first week I was on
campus. As a matter of fact,
one of the first major actions I
.took was to modify and
liberalize the rules of
visitation," Zumberge said.
"But I don't believe in
24-hour visitation. I don't have
24-hour visitation in my home
and I don't know why it
should be in the dorms," he
He also supported the plan
to permit alcohol on campus in
June, 1973. But the plan was
rejected by the regents.
Zumberge said he won't
resubmit the plan because he
senatorial and advisory board
candidates arc running.
Now UNL is trying to raise
faculty .salaries to parity with
other Big 8 schools, he said.
"We have a very detailed
study to document the fact
that our salaries are in very
poor shape compared to
comparable institutions in the
Big 8, Zumberge said.
In addition, he said the
budget situation "was
improved last year, but it's not
completely adequate yet."
In 1973, the university's
support was 60 per cent state
and 40 per cent other sources,
such as tuition and federal
grants, he said.
"This year the budget was
improved so that 65 per cent
of our support is from tax
dollars and only 35 per cent
had to be generated from
tuition and other sources," he
Zumberge said it is difficult
to estimate the impact of the
governor's proposed budget
because UNL's share is not
identiried in the lump r.um
Now, UNL receives 58 per
cent of the total university
budget, he said. If the budget is
lump-sum appropriated this
year, "I simply would be
allowed to present our case to
the Board of Regents and argue
for what I think is our rightful
share," Zumberge said.
When Zumberge spoke to
the Legislature's appropriation
committee about UNL's
budget last week, he said, "It
was a good experience. They
were very attentive, asked good
questions and were very
In addition to working with
the budget and other university
projects, Zumberge is trying to
finish his second geology text
book. He said he hopes to send
it to the publisher this month,
but he doesn't think he'll make
His first text is now in its
third edition, and his
laboratory manual is in its
Zumberge is the author of
ten books, 75 technical articles
and numerous p;ipers presented
at national and international
In addition to writing, his
other hobbies include hiking in
the mountains, swimming,
snow skiing and wood carving.
Zumberge said he likes to
travel and usually takes a few
weeks off in the summer to go
to his cabin in the mountains.
Someday he said he hopes
to go on more expeditions,
perhaps to Cape Zumberge,
Antarctica, which was named
in his honor in 1962.
The James II. Zumberge
library at Grand Valley State
College, Mich., also was named
in his honor.
"It's nice to have things
named after you, but then
someone may come along in a
hundred years and say, 'Cape
Zumbcrg, who was that?'," he
"Prestige isn't a very
durable item," he added.
Wednesday, february 12, 1975
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