The Path to Public Service at SEAS
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"Class spirit", complains a Cornell paper, "seems to be sadly on the wane. . . . It seems a pity that such should be the case". The annual mud rush lacks the vigor it formerly had. At Dartmouth it is found that this year's freshman-sophomore picture war "lends color to the impression that the fight is a nuisance anyway, and had best be abolished". Such a condition is criticised by a college graduate who recalls in a letter to a Philadelphia paper the "good old days" when "Yea, Rowbottom" at Pennsylvania and "Reinhardt" at Harvard were live traditions.
But college traditions have a way of changing, developing along with the student body. Even those undergraduates who knew the story of Reinhardt, the friendless student who is supposed to have called his own name outside his lighted window, had never heard of an earlier McKean, the senior who leaped from the roof of Harvard Hall to that of Hollis, after a futile attempt to freeze up the bell. Already freshman caps and freshman rules of conduct were held in contempt; yet there were still those who recalled the abolition of "Bloody Monday" as a loss to be mourned.
Today the undergraduate of the University has forgotten McKean, "Bloody Monday", and Reinhardt. He does not even know "Schneider's Band", a song endeared to the graduates. Even the battered bat is passing, though no one has yet thought to shed a tear over it. These superficials of college life are mere signs of the times, out-grown like other fashions. But the memory of the University's past creates a common background for the changing generations. Efforts like those of the Father and Son Societies, recently made effective by the "Sons of 1901", serve to bind the past more closely with the present, and to save the best of these traditions from oblivion.
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