EMPHASIS ON ESSENTIALS

The most recent criticism of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences appears in the March issue of the Harvard Graduates Magazine. Bewailing the decline of that once eminent institution, the writer points out that the school is now forced to fill its vacant chairs almost exclusively with men from other Universities, and that in the past few years there has been an alarming increase in the number of refusals of calls to the school.

Incongruous as these conditions may appear, in view of Harvard's relatively happy financial situation, their cause can easily be discerned. While other Universities have used every possible resource to attract preeminent scholars, Harvard has turned her mind toward providing the undergraduate with an expensive physical environment for education. The Graduate School has been left to its own resources and has suffered accordingly. In the open market for scholars, Harvard has been outbid time after time by smaller, less wealthy institutions.

In the academic world the reputation and influence of any University depend mainly on the excellence of its graduate school. The undergraduate House Plan has tended to monopolize the interest of the University at the expense of the Graduate School. There remain in the House Plan many problems still to be solved, but the need for practically undivided attention is past. The efforts of the University ought to be focused on the essential source of its greatness, the excellence of its best scholars.