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Florida State University Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education Collection

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 2004-03

Scope and Contents

The Florida State University Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education Collection documents the founding and growth of the Center since 1977. The materials are arranged in two major groups: Organizational Materials, consisting of Hardee Center Board of Governor Notebooks, Institute of Higher Education meeting records, financial materials, grant information, activity files, conference files (including audiovisual items), committee records, dissertations and student projects, lectures, graduate assistant files, and Dr. Hardee's Professional Files, which include course materials for her "Woman Administrator" class, historical information about the Center, letters, personal materials, photographs, recordings, and writings.


  • created: 1920 - 2004
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1990-2002

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to research.

Conditions Governing Use

To request permission to quote, publish, broadcast or otherwise reproduce from the archives, please contact Heritage & University Archives, Florida State University Libraries, Tallahassee, Florida. Researchers must obtain separate permission from the copyright holders of material held within University Archives collections for which the institution does not hold copyright.

Biographical or Historical Information

In 1977, Dr. Melvene Draheim Hardee founded the Center for Studies of Women in Educational Management Systems to identify and solve the problems of women who aspire to be higher education administrators, offering professional development activities and resource materials. In 1980, she was named the first director of the new Institute for Studies in Higher Education, of which the Center was an affiliate. The Center became the Center for Studies of Women in Educational Administration and Management. When she retired in 1989, the Center was renamed the following year as The Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education in recognition of her vision for the Center and her advocacy for women.

In September 1990, Florida State University's College of Education announced that its Center for the Studies of Women in Educational Management Systems, housed in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, was renamed the Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education, in honor of its founder. That year, a Board of Governors for the Hardee Center was organized. Members of the first Board were Dr. Jean G. Bryant, Jennifer Buchanan, Dr. Jeanne K. Diesen, Dr. Freddie L. Groomes, Dr. Patricia Hansen, Dr. Anita Harrow, Dr. Carolyn Herrington, Margaret La Roe, Dr. Barbara Mann, Dr. Elisabeth S. Muhlenfeld, Sherrill Ragans, Mary Smith, Laurey M. Stryker, Dr. Betty Tilton, Dr. Cynthia Wallat, and Dr. Eva Wanton.

The Hardee Center provided coordination, direction, and focus in the areas of promoting women to management and administrative positions in higher education. Its goals were to promote the professional development of its graduate scholars and other students, including both men and women, in higher education; to provide opportunities for FSU students in higher education to enhance their research skills and to foster research on women in higher education; to solicit financial support for professional development, research, and administrative activities, and to encourage participation in its activities and awareness of its mission at state and national levels.

Students admitted for graduate study in the higher education program at Florida State University were selected for Hardee Center Scholar positions by a sponsoring office. Through these offices, the Hardee Center awarded over 156 Hardee Center Scholar positions since 1991. Through service on committees and participation in events, Scholars assisted in the Center's professional development activities, research, and fundraising, and could enhance their professional skills and knowledge through their involvement with the Hardee Center.

Hardee Center Sponsor/Mentors worked with the scholars on a daily basis acting as a supervisor in the work environment. Sponsor/Mentors were encouraged to build a strong relationship with the scholars, and were invited to join the scholars at numerous professional development activities throughout the year.

The Hardee Center Board of Governors worked together in supporting the activities and efforts of the Center. They provided direction for the Center in carrying out its mission, vision and goals.

In Fall 2004, the Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education and the Center for the Study of Values in College Student Development merged. This merger was implemented to consolidate programs and resources, and to advance the closely related core purposes of the two centers. The newly merged Center was named the Hardee Center for Leadership and Ethics in Higher Education. This new title reflected a commitment to continue the legacy of Dr. Melvene Hardee and to incorporate a focus on ethics and leadership.

Melvene Draheim was born November 30, 1913, in Clarion, Iowa to Hazle Howe Draheim and Arthur Draheim, Sr. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Northern Iowa (1934), the Master of Arts from Columbia University (1937), and the PhD. from the University of Chicago (1948).

Before joining Florida State University in 1948, she served as a visiting professor at the University of Northern Iowa and the University of Mississippi. From 1945 to 1948, she was director of the communications laboratory and chairman of faculty advising at Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri. In 1948, she became the first coordinator of university counseling and advisement at Florida State University. She married Tom Hardee and they purchased a 95-acre farm near Valdosta, Georgia.

In 1958, Hardee joined with Dr. W. Hugh Stickler and Dr. Raymond Schultz in the formation of the Department of Higher Education. She became a full professor in 1959 and held that position until her retirement from full time teaching in 1985. She served as a major advisor to 123 doctoral candidates and supervised the work of more than 120 master's degree students. She was known to all as "The Mentor" and created the "Life Net" for her students, a support network that began during their graduate studies and extended years later into their professional careers.

Hardee was a noted leader, speaker, educator, and author in the field of student personnel work throughout her career. She served as president of the American College Personnel Association from 1962 to 1964, and as a charter member and president of the Southern College Personnel Association from 1955 to 1958. In 1986, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators named its "Dissertation of the Year Award" in her honor. In 1987, she was named a Senior Scholar by the American College Personnel Association. In 1988, she received the Robert H. Schaeffer Award from the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators for her personal inspiration to graduate students, service on doctoral committees, and a distinguished record of scholarly achievement.

Known as a person of many interests and tireless energy, every weekend Hardee drove 89 miles to her Georgia farm using one of her "High Noon Farm" trucks. She oversaw the production of soybeans, corn, cabbages, watermelon, hay, cotton, and trees. Over the years she terraced and fenced the land, developing waterways and fish ponds. Hardee was named Georgia's Alapaha District "Farm Man of the Year" in 1979 for conservation practice on the 877-acre farm. In 1989, she received again the Alapaha District Conservationist of the Year Award.

Twice a year Hardee returned home to Clarion, Iowa, where she founded, and was part-time curator, of a museum housing a history of the state. She established the Draheim Historical Library in memory of her parents. She died on December 16, 1994.


13.52 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The Florida State University Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education Collection documents the founding and growth of the Center as well as Dr. Hardee's professional activities with the Center.

Method of Acquisition

The Florida State University Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education Collection was given by the Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education in May 2004. An additional accession was processed in October 2005.

Processing Information

This collection was processed from October-December 2004 by Burt Altman. Additional materials were processed in October 2005. Materials containing confidential information (such as Social Security Numbers) have been removed from the collection.

Florida State University Melvene Draheim Hardee Center for Women in Higher Education Collection
Burt Altman
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Repository Details

Part of the FSU Special Collections & Archives Repository

116 Honors Way
PO Box 3062047
Tallahassee FL 32306-2047 US