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Valuable Recommendation to Secondary Schools.- Gains in Various Departments.


The President's report to the Board of Overseers for 1894-95, including the reports from the heads of the different departments of the University and the statement of the Treasurer, was published yesterday. In general the Report is the same in form as those of previous years, but each year the growth of the University necessitates the addition of more pages. The present Report contains thirty-five pages more than that of last year.

In the first place the President announces the deaths of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Professor in the Medical School for thirty-five years; Thomas Motley, instructor in farming since 1870; Thomas Henderson Chandler, Professor of Mechanical Dentistry since 1871, and appointed Dean of the Dental School in 1874; Leverett Saltonstall, who served three terms on the Board of Overseers; Fred Homer Woodcock, Instructor in Mechanical Dentistry since 1893. He then mentions the resignation of William Crowninshield Endicott, a Fellow of the Corporation since 1884.

The President then proceeds to a discussion of the elective system with some remarks upon the prescribed courses. He says that from figures published in previous reports it is possible to state with approximate correctness the subjects and courses which steadily attract large numbers of students, and in this connection he gives the following list:

Latin, elementary course and two more advanced courses; Greek, a first and second year's course; English, three successive courses in English Composition extending through the freshman, sophomore and junior years; two courses in English Literature, one usually on Shakespeare, and one on more recent literature; German, two successive courses; French, three successive courses above the elementary course prescribed for freshmen who enter without French; Philosophy, one elementary course; Practical Ethics, one course; Political Economy, one elementary and a more advanced course; History, three and one half courses, one in Mediaeval and Modern European History, one in the Constitutional and Political History of the United States, one in American History down to 1783, and a half course in Constitutional Government; History of the Fine Arts, two full courses; Mathematics, four half-courses, one each in Algebra, Analytic Geometry, Trigonometry, and Solid Geometry; Physics, two consecutive courses; Chemistry, one course in descriptive Chemistry; Botany and Zoology, one half course in each; Geology, one elementary course and two kindred half courses, one in Physical Geography and the other in Meteorology. The President then shows that if the courses in this list are summed up they contain an amount of work at least twice as great as any undergraduate can perform in four years. The amount of instruction on the list may be roughly computed to be about one-eighth of the total amount of instruction offered by Harvard College; but this eighth meets the chief want of the great majority of the students, and the other seven-eighths, although indispensable for an institution with the resources and aims of Harvard College, are really provided at great cost, first to meet the intellectual wants of a comparatively small but precious minority and secondly to meet the higher needs of the great majority.- higher needs which are few in comparison with their lower needs.

This list of subjects also sheds some light on an educational question now under discussion-the question of the most natural and most needed additions to the existing programmes of secondary schools. It suggests that in endeavoring to enrich the programmes of secondary schools, and thereby to carry into schools subjects now dealt with by colleges, the selection of the new subjects now dealt with by colleges, should be made from the most elementary and most attractive courses named above. The indication is that English, French, German, History, and Natural Science are the copies which might be most judiciously added to the Latin, Greek, and Mathematics, which are already well developed in the best schools. Much of the elementary instruction which is now given in college in the five subjects named ought to be given in high schools and academies.

Following this discussion the Report contains interesting figures concerning the numbers of students coming from different schools and colleges from the year 1871 to the year 1895; also a table showing the average age of the entering classes since 1856.

The President then turns to the question of athletics and gives an exhaustive history of the Athletic Committee and its relations to the Faculty. He mentions the football controversy, giving the history of the question, but adding no comments or personal opinions upon the subject. He ends by saying:

"From the beginning it has been the object of the Faculty and of the Athletic Committee, not to cripple or abolish the competitive sports, but to have them conducted with moderation and honesty, and in a generous temper."

The President then speaks of the resignation of Professor Dunbar as Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, which position he had held since 1890, and also of the appointment of Professor Peirce to take his place.

Professor Peirce's Report for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences shows that the membership of the Faculty has increased by two, three members having left and five new ones having been added. The Dean calls attention to the fact that in courses intended primarily for undergraduates the amount of change from year to year is relatively small, while the list of more advanced courses is constantly undergoing important modifications.

In the College, great benefit is shown to have resulted from the establishment of the Committee on Special Students, and the Freshman Advisory Committee

(Continued on fourth page.)

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