Admitting that what Laertius wrote of Socrates--"He said that there was one only good, namely, knowledge; and one only evil, namely, ignorance"--is a fair creed for a university, how is an undergraduate to achieve that "one only good" and drive forth evil ignorance in the brief span of seventeen or eighteen courses? He is likely either to become so bewildered as to gain practically no knowledge, or to specialize so narrowly as to drive forth ignorance only in one field. The innovation of the Science Symposiums, the second of which will be held tonight, is an undoubted aid in solving the problem. By bringing all the sciences into intimate relation, by reconciling astronomy, biology, and philosophy to the march of "Eternal Harmony," over-specialization in one is necessarily checked and put in its place. And along with the broadening of the view, one can hear professors whose courses do not lie in a certain field of concentration.
Such symposiums need not be confined to the realms of science. Surveys in other realms of human scholarship are just as necessary and should prove to have the same values as the Science Symposiums. The lectures given last year on the four great epic poets were of this nature, and their popularity among the undergraduate body attests the need for them which was felt. Extra-curriculum lectures will go far toward solving the problem of a host of students who wish to be more than specialists in "eighteenth century literature" or "money and banking."