John A. Randall

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John Arthur Randall
4th President of the Rochester Athenæum and Mechanics Institute
In office
Preceded by Royal B. Farnum
Succeeded by Mark W. Ellingson
Personal details
Born (1881-07-25)July 25, 1881
Durham, Maine
Died June 9, 1968(1968-06-09) (aged 86)
Boonsboro, Maryland
Resting place Sweeney Cemetery, North Tonawanda, New York
Nationality American
Spouse(s) Georgiana W. Hathaway
Parents Greenfield A. Randall
Julia D. Penley
Alma mater Wesleyan University
Profession Administrator

John Arthur Randall (July 25, 1881 – June 9, 1968) was the fourth President of the Rochester Institute of Technology, succeeding Royal B. Farnum, from 1922 to 1936.[1][2]

Randall was born in Durham, Maine in 1881 and graduated from Wesleyan University, Phi Beta Kappa.[3]

Randall began his career in education at the Cheltenham Military School. He served as the head of the Physics department at the Pratt Institute from 1913 to 1917.

During World War I, Randall served as Under Secretary of War (1918) to Secretary of War Newton D. Baker in the administration of President Woodrow Wilson. He also served in the War Plans Division of the United States Department of War. He and Dr. C.R. Mann developed the Army Alpha Intelligence Test, thought to be the first attempt of its kind to measure vocational and numerical ability. In 1932, he was commissioned as Colonel in the Special Reserves, assigned to the U.S. Army General Staff.

From 1932 to 1936, he served as a special consultant to the Senate Committee investigating crime and racketeering. He also served as President of the Science Department of the National Education Association.

Gravestone in Sweeney Rural Cemetery in North Tonawanda, New York

Randall was instrumental in introducing the method of "case study" to RIT, in further developing the co-op program at RIT, and in the decision that RIT would not grant degrees and would instead provide "short, intensive courses". In 1936, he left RIT to direct the Division of Educational Aids of the National Youth Administration.

He held memberships in many professional societies during his lifetime, including:

He married the former Georgiana Waldron Hathaway in 1936. His daughter, Marcia, married his successor, Mark W. Ellingson.

Randall died in Boonsboro, Maryland in 1968.[4]


  1. ^ Saffran, Michael (March 2007), "RIT's presidential history", RIT news & events, Henrietta, NY: Rochester Institute of Technology, 39 (11), archived from the original on 2008-01-24, retrieved 2008-01-18 
  2. ^ Gordon, D.R. (2007). Rochester Institute of Technology: Industrial Development and Educational Innovation in an American City, 1829-2006. RIT Press. p. 122. ISBN 9781933360232. Retrieved 2014-10-04. 
  3. ^ "John A. Randall Dies; former RIT President", Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, Rochester, New York, p. 6B, June 10, 1968 
  4. ^ "John A. Randall", Hagerstown Daily Mail, Hagerstown, Maryland, p. 9, June 10, 1968 

External links[edit]

Academic offices
Preceded by
Royal B. Farnum
President of the Rochester Athenæum and Mechanics Institute
Succeeded by
Mark W. Ellingson