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It is often said that the sense of class unity in the University is attenuated and weak. But it is also said with just as much truth that after graduation this feeling, instead of degenerating into a mere mouth-filling phrase, grows continually stronger so that it draws alumni from afar back to class dinners and class reunions.
That during undergraduate days at Harvard there should be less class unity than at many other colleges is probably inevitable. Numbers are too unwieldy, trees are too thick, the pressure for personal rather than class honors is too great. A few exterior appliances for binding together this loose collection of individuals do exist--the Freshman "phalanxteries" and the annual smokers, for instance. But such means, without the heart for class unity, will always be mechanical and insufficient. Relatively less class unity during undergraduate days is the price Harvard pays for its position as a cosmopolitan college--an educational world in little.
When, after graduation, the class scatters to the four corners of the earth, then the desire to renew acquaintances and associations which before were scarcely appreciated becomes a powerful force. Fortunately when the heart for unity has at last come, there are means ready at hand for bringing it about. Mr. Eliot Wadsworth '98, in an article on "The Future of the Class" in the Senior Album, has set forth these means and their manner of working. Briefly they are the Alumni Association the Harvard Bulletin, the Harvard Clubs, the Associated Harvard Clubs, and the Class reunions. These will still remain names only until they come within the experience of the individual, but to those who read his article they will no longer be vague of unknown terms.
The multitude of alumni who, beginning Saturday and continuing until Tuesday, will flock back to their former habitat will furnish to those about to join their ranks an object lesson in the attractive power of class feeling. They will show the value of joining early the existing graduate organizations in order not to miss anything. But aside from personal satisfaction alone there is, as Mr. Wadsworth points out, the duty of joining. Traditions, policies, material help have emanated from the organized alumni and the members of the University, having benefited by these priceless gifts owe in return at least the service of combining to pass them on.
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