Professor Emeritus Wise Dies at 80
Published in Inside - Volume III, No. 8
After suffering from a short illness, TC Professor Emeritus of Higher Education W. Max Wise died on February 6 at his home in Paso Robles, California. He was 80.
Wise received recognition in 1958 for his book, They Come For The Best of Reasons. Wise's study, along with the works of Philip Jacobs (Changing Values in College), Edward Eddy, Jr. (The College Influence on Student Character), and Nevitt Sanford (The American College), provided the landmark demographic database about the college student population that offered a rationale for reevaluating the nature of college policies, programs, services and the many competing interests that made the relationships between students and the college and faculty subjects for inquiry.
Wise's study discussed the relationship between student and college along with the social, psychological and intellectual development that curricular and co-curricular experiences could provide for students.
Wise, who received his M.A. and Ed.D. from TC in Higher Education in 1947 and 1948, returned to TC as a Professor of Education in 1956. During the academic year 1958-59, Wise was a visiting professor of higher education at the International Christian University in Tokyo, where he organized the first course of study in student personnel administration in Japan.
In 1963, he left TC to join The Danforth Foundation in St. Louis, as director of The Danforth Fellows Program and vice president of the Foundation.
When various TC programs came together to form the Department of Higher and Adult Education in 1968, the President and Dean of TC and several faculty in the new department encouraged Wise to return to the College. He came back and remained a member of the faculty until his retirement in 1979.
As a faculty member, Wise was an involved member of a number of faculty committees, according to his widow, Marion. "He was good at organizing people," she noted. "I used to hear from people that he was so level-headed."
She continued, "He was a TC faculty member during the student protests at Columbia in 1968. He worked with the faculty as an arbitrator because they didn't agree with what was happening."
Wise began his career as a math and science teacher, athletic coach and dean of boys in public high schools in Iowa, after receiving his B.A. in Chemistry from the State University of Iowa in 1938. Following four years in the Army Air Force, Wise continued his education at TC. After completing his doctorate, Wise was appointed Dean of Student Personnel Services at the University of Florida, Gainesville.
He was a founding member of The American Association for Higher Education and a member of several other educational and psychological associations.
Wise is survived by his widow, Marion, his son, Bill, his daughter, Suzanne, and two granddaughters. A private memorial service is planned for late spring or early summer 1998. The family has requested that those wishing to honor Wise's memory send donations to Hospice of San Luis Obispo County, Inc., 285 S. Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401.previous page