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The Bureau of Industrial Relations was established in 1935 as a center for information on employer-employee relations. It was financed with funds donated by the Earhart Foundation. For administrative purposes, the Bureau of Industrial Relations was a part of the School of Business Administration, but served the entire University. The aim of the Bureau was to be of help to all people and groups who were trying to deal with problems in industrial relations. Services were available to business executives, public agencies, labor organizations and students who were trying to obtain information regarding problems resulting from employer-employee relationships. The major activities of the Bureau of Industrial Relations included research in the field of industrial relations, information service provided through the special library of the Bureau, student instruction on campus, and conferences on topics of interest related to industrial relations.

In the 1940s and 1950s, the Bureau of Industrial Relations continued to grow. At this time, its main areas of activity expanded to include a continuing education program and the establishment of a Faculty Research Fellowship in Personnel Administration. The conference program also continued to grow and became a large portion of the activities of the Bureau.

John W. Riegal was the first Director of the Bureau of Industrial Relations and served until his retirement in 1959. He was succeeded by George Odiorne, who added the Center for Programmed Learning. By 1970, the Bureau was conducting seminars in cooperation with the School of Business Administration on 50 different topics. About five workshops or seminars were offered per week, amounting to more than 270 per year.

In 1972, the Board of Regents approved the replacement of the Bureau of Industrial Relations with the Division of Management Education.

(Bentley Library)

Bureau of Industrial Relations