HABICHT RECOUNTS C. I. E.'S HISTORY
Students Have Achieved Both Material and Moral Necessities--Congresses Have Been Successful
"College students in Europe have taken charge of the most important activities in European life since the war," declared Max Habicht Gr. L, official representative in the United States of the International Confederation of Students, yesterday in an interview with a CRIMSON representative. Mr. Habicht is a special student at the Law School and is C. I. E. representative from Zurich, Switzerland.
"Every country in Europe with only two exceptions," continued Mr. Habicht, "has its national student organization. For the most part they have come into existence since the World War in consequence of a movement started at Strassbourg in 1919. Previous to this time, the European student had a relatively small share even in college affairs.
C. I. E. Founded in Strassbourg
"Shortly after the armistice, students from ten different countries met at Strassbourg to found the International Confederation of Students. The aim of the newly created organization was to bring together the students of all countries into a cooperative movement in order to meet the material and moral needs of modern student life. At the time of the foundation of the C. I. E. the European student was faced with two vital problems: one, that of procuring his daily sustenance, the other, that of emerging from a four year's atmosphere of nationalistic orgies and distrust of other countries. The students resolved to meet these needs by themselves, and they did it in an effort unique in the history of university life. The university youth opened their own restaurants, food-shops, and bookstores, thus considerably reducing the price of living. The students began to build their own student-homes, and, after a five-year's struggle, the local, national, and international organizations of students brought into existence a powerful system for meeting the material needs of their members. The student in Europe today can buy more cheaply than others, gets considerable reductions on travelling expenses, and when ill is cared for in special student sanatoriums.
"Material help was not all for which the post-war student sought. He was deeply interested in the question of how the young academic generation might help to make forever impossible a cataclysm like that of the World War. Let us create bonds of mutual esteem and friendship among students of the world' reads the first resolution adopted at Strassbourg, and the founders immediately inaugurated a detailed program for a re-establishment of international academic relations. They inserted the National Unions of Students to establish permanent commissions for international student cooperation and to send annually five delegates from each country to represent the students of their country at the congresses of the C. I. E. Official delegates from over 30 countries have met every year since 1921 at Prague, The Hague, Oxford, Warsaw, Copenhagen, and again at Prague this summer.
"The main task of the first congresses was to reconcile the students of the exbellarent countries and this was fairly well achieved by means of travelling student commissions and orator delegates from the various countries. In 1924, Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria and Turkey sent student representatives to the Congress at Warsaw.
"During the last summer, the C. I. E. Travel Bureau in London extended the work of international organization by receiving over 200 American students as guests of the Nation Unions of the Confederation. The Travel Bureau was founded in order to create an intensive international exchange of students and it has succeeded admirably in this purpose.