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Dean Rusk, Jack Perry, and the Dean Rusk International Studies Program

A guide containing archival and special collections material about Dean Rusk, Jack Perry, and the Dean Rusk International Studies Program from Archives & Special Collections. Guide created for POL 284: U.S. Diplomacy in the First Person, Spring 2020.

Contents of this Guide

Descriptions of the resources and tabs found in this guide are listed below. 

Manuscripts and Special Collections Materials 

The manuscript materials listed in this section are primarily unpublished documents such as diaries, letters, speeches, and sermons. The majority of these collections are connected to alumni and faculty of the college, civic organizations in the town of Davidson, and town records. 

College Archives Materials

This section refers to the institutional records of Davidson College from its establishment in the 1830s to the present day, including president's office records, trustee and faculty meeting minutes, student work, and student organization records.

Photograph Collection

This section highlights the Photograph Collection and points to images photos relating to Dean Rusk, Jack Perry, and the Dean Rusk International Studies Program.

Audiovisual Collection

This section highlights Media relating to Dean Rusk, Jack Perry, and the Dean Rusk International Studies Program.


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About Dean Rusk

Dean Rusk (1909 - 1994), class of 1931, served as Secretary of State under both President John F. Kennedy and President Lyndon B. Johnson. He is also the namesake of Davidson College's international studies program.

Rusk was born on a farm in Cherokee County, Georgia to Robert Hugh Rusk, Davidson College class of 1894. Two years after finishing high school, Rusk entered Davidson College in 1927. Upon graduation in 1931, Rusk received the Rhodes Scholarship and entered St. John’s College at Oxford University. There he graduated with degrees in history and political science, and after teaching at Mills College for several years, Rusk entered the armed services during World War II.

Rusk’s life in public service began just after World War II when he joined the State Department’s division for Far Eastern Affairs. In the 1950s, Rusk left the State Department and headed the Rockefeller Foundation where he stayed until he was selected by President John F. Kennedy to fill the position of Secretary of State in 1961. 

In 1970, he accepted a position as a professor of international law at the University of Georgia, teaching until his retirement in 1984. In October of 1985, Rusk returned to Davidson College to give the keynote address at the inauguration of the Dean Rusk Program in International Studies. Jack Perry, an accomplished former diplomat, served as the first director of this program between 1985 and 1995. 

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