We publish this morning a statement of what the Student Volunteer Committee has done in the past year and of what it aims to do. Its office in the University may briefly be summed up in the statement that it provides the opportunity, for the student who feels the impulse, to do good in one way or another in the world about him.
It is not too much to say that the organization and consequent enlargement of all the philanthropic work at Harvard, which was marked by the formation of the Student Volunteer Committee, is a sign of a new era in university life. In the first place the committee was formed by a conference of all the religious societies here, both Catholic and Protestant,- an unparalleled event, as President Eliot remarked in his speech at the time. But the committee stands for something more than a merging of sectarian interests in a common desire for usefulness. It marks more plainly than ever the fact that selfisness as the characteristic sin of the scholar is a thing of the past. The idea of a university as a place where a man could fill himself with learning to his own delectation and whence he could go into the outside world with no sense of responsibility to his fellow creatures, long ago passed away. The advance university men are making now, is in feeling their responsibility while they are still within the college walls,and indeed, in considering it an important part of their training here to acquaint themselves with the various methods of social service in the world at large.