A University Builder
By ELDEN THEODORE SMITH, Ohio Wesleyan
you drive along U.S. Route 6, past
the rich farm land of northwestern
Ohio, you will come upon an impressive
array of yellow-brick college buildings.
A neat sign will inform you that this is
BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY.
The presidency of Bowling Green
State University presented Brother Prout
with an unusual opportuiiity and an
by chance, you should pause in your
journey to pay a call at the President's
office, you would be greeted by Brother
Frank Jay Prout, Ohio Wesleyan '06.
This last statement is no idle boast for
a warm welcomie awaits all visitors at
the President's office. This "open door"
policy has characterized Brother Front's
administration. No problem is too great
or too small to merit his counsel and cooperation, and students and faculty
members know that they are free to consult him at any time.
Dr. Prout was born on a farm in Erie
County, Ohio, and spent his youth there.
In the summer of 1902 he was planning
to enroll at the University of Michigan
when he became acquainted with one
E. C. Braun, an Ohio Wesleyan Phi,
FRANK JAY PROUT, Ohio Wesleyan '06
who was selling books during his summer vacation. Like many another high exciting challenge. Founded as a Normal
school boy, Brother Prout was soon College in 1914, the school had been
headed for Ohio Beta. He was pledged given a sound educational philosophy
in early October and was initiated the and an excellent physical plant by Dr.
following February, being one of the few H. B. Williams, its first president. Then,
Phis of those days to be in the chapter in 1935, the Ohio legislature chartered
for his entire four years of college. Upon it as a state university, authorized the
his graduation, he taught in the depart- establishment of a college of liberal arts,
ment of history at Ohio Wesleyan, leav- a college of business administration, and
ing there to take a position at Zanesville graduate study leading to the master's
high school. It was here that he met and degree. Thus it was that Dr. Prout came
married his charming wife.
to the college in a period of transition,
School administration became Brother and so found many problems. He was
Front's major interest and he went to familiar with the situation and realized
Chillicothe, Ohio, as principal of the what faced him, for he had served as a
high school, and was later appointed member of the board of trustees for five
superintendent. In 1921 he returned to years and as president of the board for
his native Erie County to become Super- three years. With its change in status the
intendent of the Sandusky Public enrollment of the University had
Schools. Here he remained until 1939 doubled and a serious housing problem
when he took the position he now holds. had arisen. A men's building was opened