Broadcasting in the 1942-1943 School Year

Nov 17, 2011

The Purdue Engineer, Vol. 39, No. 1, p. 12, January 1943

Pearl Harbor Day

Script of radio program broadcast over station WBAA on December 7, 1942, by the faculty.

Open with music.

Ladies and Gentlemen, that was the Call to Arms, a call especially fitting today, in this observance of Pearl Harbor Day, not only on the Purdue campus but everywhere Americans may be, whether in this country, Alaska, Africa, Australia, the Solomons, all over the globe.

We have here today some of the principal University officials to take part in this program.

Prof. F. C. Hockema, Assistant to the president of Purdue.

This December seventh is a significant date--the anniversary of the black day when the war lords of Japan made a sneak attack on Pearl Harbor. Japan's act of international treachery welded us into a unified Nation determined to fight and to win for the sake of freedom. The people of this Nation deeply feel the unyielding resolve: to work, to sacrifice, to fight for the right--for freedom. This is the day on which every American should ask himself: What has this year of war meant to me? What am I fighting for? What do I have to face? What can I do? A year from now what will I wish I had done today?

Prior to December 7, 1941, Purdue University was geared to the national defense program. Immediately following this tragic date the Trustees, the President and the entire staff of the University pledged their full resources to the war effort. The year's accomplishments by Purdue University may be summarized as follows:

1. The University has been operating on a year-round schedule for the past year. This makes it possible for a student to complete a regular four-year prescribed course in two and two-thirds calendar years.

2.The curricula of the several schools have been adjusted to war needs. Courses have been revised; new courses have been added. These adjustments have been made without sacrificing course content and without lowering academic standards.

3. The existing physical fitness program for students was intensified.

4. Six thousand seven hundred students are at present enrolled in the University. This number does not include the men in uniform who are being trained here. Colonel Beere and Commander Hart will tell you about these later.

5. Purdue University has adopted a plan to accelerate the admission of qualified high school students. Under this plan high school students with superior scholastic records will be considered for admission to the University if they have earned credit for not fewer than twelve units toward high school graduation.

6. One hundred and thirty members of the University staff have been granted leave of absence or have resigned for active duty with the Army, Navy, Marines, etc. fifty members of the staff have been granted leave of absence or have resigned to assume employment directly related to the war effort. Included in these groups are the president of the University who is serving as chief of the Division of Professional and Technical Employment and Training for the War Manpower Commission; the controller of the University, who is acting as a special consultant for the Army and Navy; the dean of women of the University, who is serving with the rank of Lieutenant Commander, as the director of the SPARS, the women's reserve of the United States Coast Guard; the dean of the Schools of Engineering, who is acting as Executive Director of the National Patent Planning Commission and the chairman of the National Advisory committee on Engineering, Management and Science War Training.

7. Approximately four thousand Purdue alumni are now serving in the armed forces of the Nation. Thirty-five have given their lives in the performance of their duties.

8. Since December, 1938, pilots have been trained at the Purdue University Airport. At the present time ferry pilots and flight instructors are being trained at the rate of approximately five hundred a year.

9. Approximately 200 individuals have received special training in the chemistry of powder and explosives for work in powder and ammunition plants. Approximately 150 persons have been trained for ordnance inspection, at the request of the War Department.

10. At the request of the Signal Corps of the United States Army, over one hundred students and commissioned officers have been trained in ultra-high frequency communication work specifically associated with Radar, the method of detecting enemy aircraft developed by the British.

11. One hundred and fifty officers of the Navy have been trained in Diesel engine work.

12. Later in this program you will hear about the war training program in engineering, science and management from Professor C. W. Beese. You have heard much about food in winning this war. Later you will hear directly from Dean Harry J. Reed the part Purdue University is playing in this very important program.

13. Last spring Purdue University was designated the upper Mississippi Valley center for the training of local civilian defense leaders in various phases of defense for the civilian population in the event of bombing attacks on the United States. Local leaders, selected by the regional director of the Office of Civilian Defense, come to the campus in groups of fifty or sixty for ten-day training periods to learn about bomb protection, fighting incendiary bombs, detecting and offsetting the effects of war gases and other aerial weapons.

14. The several research laboratories on the campus are working overtime on projects which have a direct bearing on the war effort and which cannot be explained because of military secrecy.

15. Purdue University is one of eight colleges selected by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation for training 800 women for employment in that company after one year of training.

This program will give you a brief review of Purdue's part in the war effort during the past year. These accomplishments would not have been possible without the loyalty of the members of the University staff and the students, and the skill and speed with which they have acted in emergencies. Purdue men and women--wherever they may be--have pledged their all for the sake of freedom. This Pearl Harbor Day is observed here by a rededication of each of us to loyal and double-duty service for home and country.


Col. D. M. Beere, Commandant of the Purdue ROTC

The ROTC is primarily an agency for the production of reserve officers.

You may judge how well the ROTC has served this purpose from a recent statement of Lt. Gen. Lesley J. McNair C.G. of the Army Ground Forces in which he called the ROTC the backbone of the Army. He further stated that more than half of our Army officer personnel has come from its ranks, more than 100,000 reserve officers from the ROTC being on active duty.

General George C. Marshal C. of S. of the United States Army has said: "One of the greatest assets in meeting the demand for officer personnel during the present emergency has been the Reserve Officers' Training Corps. The high professional qualifications of the officers commissioned from this source have fully justified the confidence the War Department placed in this system. Without these officers the successful rapid expansion of our Army during the past year would not have been possible.

The Purdue ROTC has done its share in establishing this high reputation. It has produced approximately 10% of all Reserve Officers of the F.A., who are now serving from Algeria to Australia.

Incidentally, the officers of Military Department at Purdue are almost all reserve officers, who themselves are graduates of the Purdue ROTC.

The ROTC enrollment in Purdue is now 3058. This is the largest enrollment in its history. 458 are in the advanced course. 170 of these will graduate this December and, after supplementary training at Army Service Schools, will be commissioned as 2nd Lieutenants in the Reserve.

Out of 379 students finishing their ROTC sophomore year, 165 have applied to take the advanced course and 135 have been accepted.

Contrary to what pertains at many universities the ROTC course at Purdue is on an equal footing with other courses as concerns allocation of hours for instruction and as concerns academic credit. The high excellence of the Purdue ROTC could not be possible without such cooperation on the part of the President of the University and of the faculty.


Lieut. Commander Hart, Commanding the Purdue Naval Training Units

Ladies and Gentlemen: A year ago this country of ours was plunged into a second and greater World War. It is not easy to change from a country at peace to a county at war. Our war needs were many. We needed materials and we needed to be able to finance the war. We needed man power. We needed to have this man power trained, and in addition we were faced with the usual problems of war: strategy, tactics and logistics. Many schools such as our own electrical schools have been established at universities and college throughout the various states.

With that initial blow struck at Hawaii during an hour and twenty minutes on four airfields and in the spacious harbor, American sentiment was united, American effort was thrown into high gear. A great many things have happened during these past twelve months. After Pearl Harbor was the battle of Java Sea, then the good work of the Navy at the Gilbert and Marshall Islands. The Coral Sea Battle and its counterpart, the Battle of Midway followed. More recently came the invasion of Africa, and following that the Battle of the Solomon Islands.

It is hard for us to realize the tremendous problems with which we were faced. It is hard even for the human mind to grasp the size of this global war. If we were to examine a map of the world and were to ink in the countries engaged in the present war, we would find the world entirely black except for a patch of white here and there. There would be scattered countries in South America that are not directly involved. We would find Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Ireland, and Sweden white spots on our map. Liberia in Africa, Turkey, and Afganistan are not now actually in the war. But all of the rest of the world is black. When the war began with the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, we had a one ocean Navy and seven seas on which to fight. The United States Navy began to fight as best she could with such ships and men she had, and she began to fight defensively. Since that time the pendulum has slowly swung from the defensive type of naval war to the offensive type. The Coral Sea and Midway were really the beginning of the change to offensive war. Midway was a counterpart of the Battle of the Coral Sea even though those battle in point of time were far removed. It was a counterpart because they represented tangible victory. Incidentally the Japanese losses in them were high.

Probably the most important as well as spectacular thing that has yet been accomplished in the war was the invasion of Africa. Five hundred supply and transport ships and 350 war ships made up this tremendous armada. The timing on this invasion had to be perfectly accomplished. In spite of weather and sea these parts of the armada could not be delayed in their landing even as little as fifteen minutes. The timing was perfect. We struck blows at points on the African Coast far removed from one another; all struck at the same time. Not one ship was lost in this tremendous invasion until after it had been accomplished. An eyewitness on board one of our American ships said that it was a thrilling and stirring thing to stand on the deck of a vessel and as far as eye could reach to see all manner and kind of ships. Merchant, transport, and supply ships close at hand, and then on the far distant horizon the warships and battle wagons that protected men without loss through U-boat infested waters.

But the most signal victory of the U. S. Navy came practically at the same time in the great victory of the Solomon Islands. There, as you well know, the American Navy met and defeated the Japanese Navy as it came in to land. The Japanese lost 28 ships. It was the greatest destruction in modern Naval History. All in all, faced with problems of distance, faced with problems of opponents well prepared for war when we were unprepared, your fighting forces, your fighting Navy, has performed well.

Yet the American people should not become overoptimistic. We must remember that there is a great deal to be done. Mr. Churchill said of the invasion of Africa that it was the end of the beginning. He said later that Africa was not a seat but a springboard. American must prepare herself mentally and as well as materially for a long war. We must remember that these victories of ours are just a prelude, just a beginning, and in the long hard struggle that we still face we must have confidence in our fighting forces. We must remember that the Army, the Navy and the Marine Corps are fighting and working together practically as a single unit.

We must face a future filled with hope; filled also with more hazards. We must face that future with confidence in our leadership, belief in the united strength of America, and belief in our final success.


Dean Harry J. Reed, Dean of Agriculture at Purdue

I welcome the opportunity to appear today on this radio program, marking the first anniversary of the surprise attack on our Pacific bastion, Pearl Harbor. Yes, a year ago today it was shocking news to Indiana farmers as it was to the other groups of our Hoosier state. You will recall that farmers for many months had been preparing themselves for any attack or emergency that this freedom-loving nation might find herself in, because the farmers knew that the Axis nations were becoming more desperate and dangerous. Secretary of Agriculture, Claude R. Wickard, a 1915 Purdue graduate, had already declared that "Food will win the war and write the peace." In September of last year, national and state food goals for 1942 had been set up. But, with the Pearl Harbor attack, these goals were made larger and Indiana farmers joined their fellow tillers of the soil in other parts of the nation in a grim determination to help avenge the sneak attack through all-out production of food and fiber.

Well, all this is history now--history known to every Indiana farmer. Hoosiers have worked long and hard this year to produce the largest corn and soybean crops in history and the largest number of hogs on record. The feeding of large numbers of beef cattle and the growing of thousands of victory gardens formed other important contributions toward producing record-breaking quantities of food. Tomatoes, onions, and potatoes were grown in war-time quantities. More than 94 million baby chicks were hatched in Indiana, all as a part of the "Food for Freedom" program to give this nation unquestioned superiority in food. All of this was not easy for farmers, who faced shortages of labor, farm machinery, and some materials.

Purdue's agricultural extension service, which includes all the county extension workers, and the agricultural experiment station as well as the School of Agriculture have been operating on a war-time basis all year. Vital information on technical production problems was made available to all of Indiana's 184,000 farmers. Specialists on hogs, tomatoes, sheep, beef cattle, nutrition, gardens, horticulture, soils and crops, dairy, and poultry, to name just a few, went to every one of the state's 92 counties to help farmers in an organized way to meet the war's challenge to produce. To help further in getting out quickly information of great importance to farmers, a neighborhood leader system was organized, with men and women leaders for every neighborhood in the state, generally composed of 10 to 18 farm families. This system is now fully organized and is in operation.

Now just a word about the immediate job ahead. Indiana's 1943 food production goals, which were just announced last week, call for four per cent more corn acreage, six per cent more potato acreage, 10 per cent more spring pigs, 15 per cent more fall pigs, two per cent more milk cows, eight per cent more chickens raised, six per cent more eggs produced, and 15 per cent more turkeys. Of course, we are going to raise several thousand acres of hemp.

So, you can see we have a bigger job ahead than what we had this year--and we have to do this with less labor and machinery and less of some materials of production.

This is a real challenge and responsibility, which we as farmers cannot over-look. Food in some cases recently has been nearly as powerful as ammunition, tanks, and airplanes in taking areas from the enemy. We must keep the food production line operating at full capacity. We must avenge Pearl Harbor.


Prof. C. W. Beese, Charge of War Training Program of Purdue

It is natural that Purdue University, one of the largest engineering schools in the country and which is located in a state with tremendous war activity should assign its facilities and personnel to an "all-out" participation in war training along technical and scientific lines.

The conduct of technical warfare results in a need on the part of both industry and the armed forces for men with engineering training in numbers far in excess of previous requirement. In ordinary times, engineering schools graduate from twelve to thirteen thousand engineers each year. The needs of the airplane industry alone are for a great many times as many engineers as are graduated from all of the engineers as are graduated from all of the engineering schools. Other industries are in a similar situation.

Time is too short to expect to develop engineers through the traditional four-year program. Short cuts had to be found. Emphasis had to be placed upon up-grading men who were already in technical assignments and to train, previous to employment, persons with natural aptitudes in those fields.

About two years ago, the technical schools of the country foresaw the difficulty which lay ahead. Dean A. A. Potter, Head of the Schools of Engineering at Purdue, took a leading part in preparing plans to meet the emergency. In the summer of 1940 he assembled a committee which worked under the U. S. Office of Education and which formulated a plan for emergency training to be operated through engineering universities. This plan was accepted and an appropriation  was made by Congress to finance the plan until June 30, 1941.

The experience of the first six months was favorable that an additional appropriation was made and the scope of the program was widened to include Science and Management, and additional schools were authorized to participate. With the advent of war the name of the plan was changed to Engineering Science Management War Training. An appropriation of slightly more than $30,000,000.00 is available for the period of July 1, 1942 to June 30, 1943.

With a long tradition of extension experience, Purdue undertook a major share of the responsibility for War Training in Indiana. In order to meet the requirements of Indiana industry, district offices have been set up in East Chicago, Fort Wayne, Muncie, Indianapolis, Jeffersonville, and Evansville, directed through a Central Office on the Purdue campus.

The program is a co-operative arrangement between Purdue University and the U. S. Office of Education. The entire operating expense is handled by Federal funds distributed through the Office of Education. Students enrolled in classes pay no tuition. Their only expense is that for a textbook.

Most classes are held in high school buildings where they meet two evenings per week. Teachers, in most cases, are graduate engineers who have had many years of industrial experience which fit them for the very practical type of training which is given in these classes.

Classes cover many subjects. More than 150 different courses are listed in the catalogue which is published by Purdue. These classes are given in the fields of Electrical Engineering and Radio, Chemistry as it applies to engineering and mechanical processes, Engineering Drawing, the design of dies, gauges, and machines, Motion and Time Study, Production Control, Industrial Safety, Aircraft and Ship Construction, Metallurgy and many other subjects. Related courses are offered in Mathematics, Physics, and General Chemistry.

More than 365 War Training classes conducted by Purdue University have opened in 54 cities and towns in Indiana during the last 4 months with an enrollment of 8,804. During the twelve months previous to July 1, 1942, more than 22,000 persons were enrolled in Purdue's classes. All Purdue War Training classes are open to women. 1,572 have enrolled in these classes since August. A special booklet is available from the Central Office on the campus and from the district offices, describing the courses which are particularly adapted for women.

War Training at Purdue has included full-time classes conducted on the campus. The most interesting of these is a program for Navy officers to train them to operate Diesel engines. 50 officers are now in residence on the campus in a ten-weeks' course. About 250 have been trained up to this time. Additional classes train Civil Service employees in Radio and Ordnance Inspection.

It is certain that the war will bring Purdue, both on the campus and throughout the State, a great many training responsibilities. The industries of Indiana and the armed services can count on the fullest assistance from its State University.


Hon. Henry F. Schricker, War Governor of Indiana

"It is specially fitting that Purdue University should join with all other institutions of the state and nation in observance of Pearl Harbor Day. I am familiar with the outstanding work being done by Purdue and its staff members in the prosecution of the war, the training programs both on and off the campus, the food production campaigns, and other essential activities that must be carried on here in our own state. I compliment the institution on what it has done, is doing and know will do. The Purdue program is an important part in the great contribution being made by our states.

I want to call upon every citizen, every man, women and child, in all Hoosierdom to remember Pearl Harbor, and support the war program as effectively as does our great state institution at Lafayette. This is a day to dedicate anew our faith in America and all of the great institutions for which it stands; a day for each and every one of us to dedicate ourselves anew toward the Victory that we must achieve. No sacrifice is too great nor too hard for us to make to win this war. We can, we will, we must win, and further, we must be prepared to win the peace that is to follow."


As the Governor has just said in his message and other from Purdue pointed out, this is a day for all of us to pause in our daily tasks, whatever they may be, take stock of what we have done and are doing toward the war effort of our country, and then pledge ourselves anew to contribute not only 100 percent of our effort byt 110 percent, as President Elliott said last summer, toward the war effort.

It is time for all of us to dedicate anew our faith in America, the basic things for which it stands not only in the Constitution and the Atlantic Charter, but all of the principles for which this nation stands. It is a time for all of us to resolve more firmly than ever to do our part in this war program, whether we are destined for the armed forces or the home front, in any event, every person must do his or her part.

Close with the Star Spangled Banner.