The new method of choosing Rhodes scholars, put into practice for the first time this fall, remedies three defects in the old system. The committees of se-Fruition have been reorganized. In the past, when certain College officials were the judges, there was a tendency to reserve the honors for men from their several institutions. The committee is now composed of former Rhodes scholars, and their familiarity with conditions at Oxford makes them competent to select students best fitted to meet these conditions with success.
Formerly two Rhodes scholars were elected every year from each state, thus giving Nevada, with a population of 114,000, as large a representation as New York. The new rules provide that when no candidate is of sufficiently high quality, none shall be chosen. Although the present choices were not made under the new ruling, the change indicates a tendency which may lead to further amendments to remedy the present unequal representation.
Under the new system, the qualifying examinations, which were based on the English public school system, have been eliminated. Instead, men are now chosen on their American educational records--both academic and social--and their personality.
Hitherto, American Rhodes scholars were not a great success at Oxford. They failed to mix with the English, and seldom won the higher honors in scholarship.
America has the material. An effective method of choice will single it out. And the "Yankee" at Oxford will be more truly representative of the best that America can produce.