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The primary object of the University is to produce the best possible citizens for the country; in other words, men who are qualified to render service in war as well as peace. At present there is actually connected with the University no department in which men are given military training to prepare them for the emergency of war, and a strong feeling has grown up in the University, as it has throughout the entire country, that further steps should be taken in the direction of preparedness.
As a result of this general sentiment the Student Council has adopted a resolution in favor of organizing a company of students for military drill supplemented by lectures on military tactics. A committee of graduates, law school men, and undergraduates has been appointed to take general charge of inaugurating the system.
The plan has not yet been worked out in any great detail, but a general scheme has been mapped out. The course, which is to begin immediately after the Christmas recess, will comprise two hours a week of drill in the fundamentals of tactical formations, and a supplementary lecture of one hour, intended to take up military science from a more theoretical point of view. The drill is planned to be held under the direction of a United States army officer, assisted by those men who have already had some military training in one of the troops, batteries, or summer camps. The lectures will be given by some expert in military science.
The projected plan will be entirely voluntary, and will depend for its success or failure upon the amount of individual patriotism displayed. The company will have a great advantage over such organizations as Battery A, because it will require men to sign up for only one year instead of three. At Yale a voluntary artillery corps was recently formed, and 486 men enlisted for three years, enough to form a battalion of four batteries. In view of the splendid showing made by Harvard men at the summer camps--a showing better than was made by either Yale or Princeton,--it is perhaps not too much to hope that enough men will answer the call to form an entire infantry regiment of 1200. This would mean that a little more than one-quarter of all the men in the University would enlist,--a number which seems reasonable since the military drill will in no way interfere with scholastic work or athletics.
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