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many sentiments. Put
“ Committee to discover Harvard Sentiment ” alumni from Boston, New York, and the West, and what will be their report ? Each of the Faculties has its own notion of what Harvard is: the Corporation have their joint and several impression; the Overseers sometimes have a very different conviction. It is not so in some other colleges, where students are brought so closely together and into such direct relations with their one Faculty that each graduate carries away something of every other. The new elements which have borne in upon Harvard University, which have created renowned professional schools, which have enlarged and advanced learning, have also broken down the single Harvard type, — if there ever was one ; there is no longer " the Harvard Man,” any more than there is “the North American.” The University is only a diamond-cutting establishment, where each pebble is shaped individually, according to its size and nature. What is true of one man, or one set, or one school, or one generation, is not true of Harvard as a whole.
If there be any distinct “ Harvard sentiment,” it is that the system of developing each man according to his powers is the best way to train men; but it has some drawbacks. Everybody decentraliknows that there must be a lack of solidarity in the University. To be sure the different Faculties now pull together harmoniously; and, so far as methods of education go, the Faculties work them out for themselves ; for the University Council is not, as it was perhaps expected to be, a clearing-house for general objects. So different are the conditions and the methods of instruction that, for instance, the Divinity School has 9 instructors for 41 students; the Law School 9 instructors for 465 students ; the Medical School 91 instructors for 531 students. The A. B. degree is a matter of joint interest to the College and the Professional Schools, but the College sets and changes the conditions for that degree without conference with the Schools and without any very strong feeling that consideration is due them. They, on their side, fix their conditions of entrance without consultation with the College. Fortunately the Corporation and Overseers act as a set of equalizing springs between the different parts of the governing system in the University ; but among students there is no such superior power. Professional students have notoriously little in common with those in the College, and perhaps less with those in other Professional Schools. Within the College there is growing subdivision into sets, groups, and even into units. The four years of College give more than they used of intellectual stimulus, and more of attrition against the minds of men of different types, but certainly less of the geniality of a common social life than in earlier years. The professional students are, in this respect, better off ; they find their friends and their antagonists in the Schools and out; in the College there is a lack of cohesion and common aim which is doubtless more than compensated by the fruitful principle which leaves each man free to follow his own end.
Lack of distinctions.
Perhaps decentralization is an unavoidable result of the individualism
which is Harvard's greatest glory. Perhaps it is no longer possible to have the peculiar social life which Harvard grad
uates used to know. A century ago Harvard was a monastery, with a small number of novitiates, whose imperfect education was one of routine. Thirty years ago the College was a kind of pueblo, a community of kindly disposed kinsmen. Harvard is now a little city, with the city's absolute indifference to next-door neighbors, and the city's artificial standards of social preëminence. It is a democratic place in many ways : any clean and quiet person may come and do his work under the protection of the commonwealth ; the man who can furnish something
1 which the community desires goes forward and makes friends. As in other cities, most of the people have work to do and do it; and the few rich young men find other rich young men, club with them, and withdraw into their corner of the community. The man who does not know how to do anything but routine work is allowed to find such associates as he may among other toilers; the artists, the writers, the men of talents fall in with each other and lead a delightful and exclusive intellectual life. The vigorous and growing man who has neither money nor genius, but feels power within himself, may gratify his longing to associate with other men of force. Nevertheless, just as similar men in other cities, he may miss what he cares intensely to have, the comradeship and participation of men of his own kind who have had a different and perhaps more refined training. But, as it is not so easy a matter to be distinguished among two thousand as among four hundred, the greater number of undergraduates, like most of the well-to-do people in cities, live in comparative obscurity. Men of great wealth, of large intellectual powers, of brawn, may spend four years here and go out almost unknown by the College at large.
From the proceedings of the preliminary committee printed elsewhere, University
it is evident that the University Club will be a decided comfort,
and will tend to bring kindred men together in agreeable relations. The energy of the movement seems likely to overcome the surface difficulties of the project. Possibly the Corporation will grant a site out of those “ University Houses and Lands” which stand on the Treasurer's books. The first cost of the buildings may be met by subscription; the running expenses above resident membership fees, by sustaining guarantees. The committee is ready to face the inherent difficulty of providing space enough for a club which more than one half the members would probably visit every day. The problem of a restaurant cheap enough to be serviceable and dear enough to be good can also be solved. There can, however, be no reasonable expectation that the men whom "everybody would like to know” will frequent the Club; or that it will break down the barriers which have grown up between the groups of students in College. The real bottom trouble in Harvard's social relations is that the man whose reputation is established does not feel responsibility for men whose reputation is establishing, and does not consider men whom he meets in college life as necessarily his friends. We must simply make up our minds that Harvard has got beyond the possibility of any form of general common life. Harvard is probably that institution in which the man of power has the fullest opportunity to develop himself. In no other college is a man so likely to find a few thoroughly congenial spirits ; but there is no general college society, either among students or instructors. If the old College feeling of common interest and mutual brotherhood among the whole body of students were still a strong force, there would be less need for a University Club, for every man's room would be a little mutual benefit association.
Many parts of the University readily adjust themselves to the unusual growth of the last few years. As new departments have been created, such as the Dental School, the resuscitated Scientific poration. School, and the Graduate School, - they have been cared for by corresponding Faculties and Boards. For the College and Scientific Specials there are committees; for the Freshmen, the advisers (irreverently known among
students as nurses ”). The increase of students is more than outrun by the growth of instructors : in 1876 there were 124 teachers for 1,370 students; in 1896 there were 366 for 3,600 students. To this subdivision of labor and multiplication of laborers there is one notable exception: the Corporation have constantly increasing functions and only seven members. The death of Martin Brimmer, following so closely on the loss of Frederick L. Ames and John Quincy Adams, is a double calamity to the University: it not only takes away a friend and benefactor; it deprives the Corporation of one of the three members whose services in their great office have been based on the traditions of twenty years. Of the present members of the Corporation, President Eliot was appointed in 1869; Treasurer Hooper in 1876; Dr. Walcott in 1890 ; Major Higginson in 1893; Mr. Hoar in 1894; Mr. Lowell in 1895. The destinies of the University are passing into the hands of men equally devoted but more heavily burdened. The steadiness of the policy of the Corporation, notwithstanding nine changes in twelve years, is a strong proof of the strength and elasticity of the mainspring of the University. The Corporation are able to manage fifteen millions of property, and to select five hundred officers, and to provide for nearly four thousand students; but are they adequate for twice the burden of funds and numbers, such as may perhaps come within twenty years?
The Board of Overseers might take a part of this accumulated responThe Over-sibility. So far as the control of property goes, ancient custom
has deprived that body of a power perhaps originally intended. Over permanent appointments the Overseers exercise legally a right to refuse confirmation; in practice the nominations of the Corporation are almost invariably confirmed. There remain, therefore, for the Overseers only questions of general University policy, such as have principally occupied them during the last twenty years. In part this is a revising.function; they consider propositions of the Corporation or the Faculties. For instance, in 1886 they finally adopted the College Faculty's recommendation that compulsory prayers be abolished. In 1890 they vetoed and killed the proposition for a three-year A. B., which had gone through the Faculty and Corporation. In such affairs they are a strong conservative force and often reflect the anxieties of the alumni. The Overseers less frequently and less effectively come forward with reformatory recommendations: thus in 1887 they proposed a morning roll-call, which was not adopted ; in 1888 they framed sweeping restrictions in athletics, which were not carried out; recently they have proposed a Commission on College Grounds and Buildings, which has not been created; yet in all these cases they have aroused public sentiment and stirred up other governing boards to good works. The College Faculty was impelled in 1887 to provide a much-needed reform of their system of supervision ; and in 1888 athletics were taken in hand, as a result of the Overseers' prodding, and a new and permanent system was brought about. Another of the Overseers' important tasks has always halted: the Visiting Committees are in some departments perfunctory, and fail to establish the personal relations between instructors and representative alumni which would be valuable to the University. It is safe to say that the Overseers are not likely to take over parts of the University burdens which they have never yet shouldered. One reason for this inertia is the discontent of the Professional Schools because they are not sufficiently represented in the Board. In the Medical School, for instance, there are now only 84 Harvard graduates out of 531 students. Is it very remarkable that the Medical School - like the Law School before it - should have laid down a new and far-reaching plan of admitting only on degrees, without consulting the Overseers? Another reason is that the institution changes so rapidly that the alumni are not always aware what it has become.
The Facul. ties.
The only other group upon which the Corporation can throw off any part of their responsibility is the Faculties. This has been done to some degree by creating new administrative officers, such as the Regent and the Recording Secretary. So far as appointments go, the Faculties are apparently exercising more and more power. In the Medical School the full professors share in the important prerogative of nominating for new appointments and for promotions. The Law Faculty now informally fills up its numbers by coöption. The Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences has never enjoyed any such privileges, but the departments have for some years suggested assistants ; it is now understood that they will be allowed to nominate to one-year instructorships. Since such places have been the gateway through which most of the present members of the Faculty have passed to permanent employment, a function of great importance is thus divided between the Corporation and the teaching force. The proposed“ docents” — unpaid specialist instructors — will also, if established, be subject to department nominations. The Corporation likewise appear disposed to throw upon the Faculty the very difficult task of deciding in what fields new instruction shall be offered and new instructors allowed. The departments, both in the Medical School and the College, tend to grow into what in other institutions are called “schools,” — administrative bodies, including sometimes as many as fifteen instructors, and controlling a large block of instruction with the adherent details of laboratories, honors, special libraries, assistants, prizes, and the like. The three most important recent changes in the University have been the raising of the standard of admission to the Law School and Medical School; the extension of the specialist instruction in the Medical School ; and the building up of the assistant system under the College Faculty. All these have come from the initiative of the Faculties. Perhaps in the long run the teachers of a real University must always control their own methods and establish their own standards.
The same spirit has also animated the College Faculty in its various deliberations on the question of a degree in less than four years. Three-year For two years the Faculty has been trying to raise the minimum degree. on which the A. B. may be taken. This has led to a proposal to establish two degrees, “pass” and an “honor” (described on page 82