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Our History

HEFMA was established as a result of a federal grant that commissioned the development of a space classification system for Higher Education in the early 1960’s.  The system is known today as the HEGIS (Higher Education General Information Survey) codes, which is the predecessor to the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS).    The grant was administered by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) with John Yurkovich, from the Wisconsin Public School system, as principal investigator. Early on in the grant’s work, a space conference was held in Wisconsin that was designed to education space professionals and decision-makers on the importance of having a space classification scheme.

It was founded by individuals from many of the Big Ten institutions who were well known for their work in the field of space classification.  Among the founding members were:

  • Harold Bareither; University of Illinois

  • Jim Blakesley; Purdue University

  • Harold Danke; Michigan State

  • John Pace; Iowa State University

It was incorporated on March 25, 1986 and formed “to promote research and education regarding the physical facilities of institutions of higher education and to exchange and disseminate related physical plant data” (… article II of articles of incorporation). The 15 incorporating members from 12 Big Ten institutions were:

  • Richard C. Bumstead; University of Chicago

  • James F. Pfister; University of Illinois

  • William E. Stallman; University of Illinois

  • L. Thomas Swafford; Indiana University – Bloomington

  • Donald E. Weaver; Indiana University – Bloomington

  • Richard I. Gibson; University of Iowa

  • John W. Pace; Iowa State University

  • William A. Dergis; University of Michigan

  • Robert M. Man; University of Michigan

  • James M. Peters; Michigan State University

  • Jeffrey Meyer; University of Minnesota – Twin Cities

  • Richard Arnold; Ohio State University

  • James F. Blakesley; Purdue University

  • Fred H. Wolf; Purdue University

  • Rose Barriolhet; University of Wisconsin

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