It is an oversimplification to say that Americans were by and large unprepared for the outbreak of War when Pearl Harbor was attacked. This makes the rapidity with which the American Nation placed itself on a war footing even more remarkable.
For the faculty and staff of City College of New York, the War was largely an intellectual exercise. This is not surprising since, for academics, everything is an intellectual exercise. The College has a long standing reputation as a hotbed of radicalism ("the Harvard of the Proletariat"), yet it managed to direct its efforts into supporting the War effort as much as any school in the land. (310 alumni of CCNY gave their lives serving in the US Armed Forces during the WWII.)
The college's primary War role was educating the men and women who would prosecute the conflict, both in uniform and industry. The College had a long-standing relationship with the Navy, and a number of students were commissioned as Ensigns on the day of their graduation.
Only six weeks after Pearl Harbor, the college faculty began broadcasting a series entitled "Our Stake In The War". In the inaugural broadcast, College President Harry N. Wright discusses the school's contributions to the War Effort and goes on to discuss the nature of Democracy. Later broadcasts would include the tools of Democracy, Civil Defense training courses, freedom of Religion, Freedom from Want, "Immigrants All, Americans All" and other topics.
The series was broadcast over WNYC, the same station which had been the first to report the Pearl Harbor attack. The station belonged to the City as part of the Municipal Broadcasting System, established in 1938. The Municipal Broadcast System became one of the first 90 stations that formed National Public Radio in the early seventies.