By Dan Meisler, ICPSR Editor
The ICPSR Summer Program staff in May 2011. From left, back row: Director William Jacoby, Assistant Director Edward Czilli, Phil Guichelaar, Hank Heitowit, Assistant Director Deiter Burrell. Front row: Sarah Liang, Gwen Tessier, Dominque Lewis.
From the beginning, the founders of ICPSR thought that a training component was a necessary part of the organization, in order to teach researchers how to use the newly available data the consortium was providing.
The first Summer Program in Quantitative Methods of Social Research was held in 1963, and was attended by 21 faculty members and 41 graduate students from member institutions, according to the Summer Program section of the 1963-1964 ICPSR Annual Report. The program offered nine courses, with the most popular class ("Proseminar in Behavior Research Methods") attracting 46 participants.
The next 48 sessions of the program in many ways mirrored the growth of ICPSR as a whole -- participation grew, the offerings became more diverse, and the program established itself as one of the top training centers for social scientists in the world.
Fast-forwarding to 2011, Summer Program enrollment hit an all-time high of 911. This year, 71 faculty and 34 teaching assistants offered 67 courses. Along with the major component of the program in Ann Arbor, MI, additional workshops were held at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, MA; Indiana University in Bloomington, IN; the University of California at Berkeley, CA; and the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC.
In the following videos, Hank Heitowit, director of the Summer Program for 26 years, and William Jacoby, current Summer Program Director, talk about the evolution of the program over the years.