History of Land Grant Institutions

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Before 1862, higher education was a privilege for the wealthy and elite members of society. These habits were inherited from the European class system and designed society in an aristocratic way where nobility was viewed more importantly than value and worth. A college education was generally available if you were wealthy, white, and male. Many of the subjects that were available were things such as Latin, literature, law, or the classics, usually held at a private school. Education of the working class was left to guilds and unions, where tradesmen instructed apprentices, their knowledge base with a learn on the job mentality. In the United States throughout the 19th century, the entire education system was at a grass roots level and certainly informal and independent. The idea of education for all people was revolutionary. There was nothing else like it in the world. At the beginning of the industrial revolution and the massive migration into the western United States, the land-grant universities represented a radical idea: public education is fundamental to the nation's economic development. Land grant universities stem from the Morill Land Grand Acts that were adopted throughout the 1800's. The Morrill Act of 1862 was also known as the Land Grant College Act. It was a major boost to higher education in America. The grant was originally set up to establish institutions in each state in America. These school would educate people in agriculture, home economics,
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