The following article was written for the Crimson by C. Colton Daughaday, Jr., '38, president of Phillips Brooks House.
With the appointment of an associate graduate secretary to work with Freshmen, Phillips Brooks House inaugurates its thirty-eight year of service.
The Social Service committee, headed by Sheldon Ware '38, is doing increasingly important work in the poorer districts of Boston. The traditionally patronizing air which the college men used to have when doing social service has been done away with and in its place a real interest has been stimulated. In the not so distant past the security of their own future insulated their minds to any relative application of the distress encountered to their own lives and position in society. Direct contact with the results of unemployment, insecurity, and poverty has brought today greater realizations of their importance and position to the average undergraduate.
The Social Service committee primarily is interested in introducing the undergraduate to the Settlement Houses. In these settlement houses there is an opportunity for coaching athletics, dramatics, for teaching music, English and civics to naturalization classes, for leading discussion groups and organizing boys clubs. Last year at the peak of activity there were 209 men doing this work. In addition, this committee during the past year has become interested in the problems of juvenile delinquency and the prevention of crime, and they offer in this line an opportunity to visit the local prisons and to meet the men engaged in the work.
The Foreign Student committee has been very active this summer. The chairman, Charles L. Burwell, '39, has just returned from Europe where he interviewed fifteen of the men coming to Harvard this fall. As a recent innovation this has proved successful. This committee is planning informal dinners at the houses and in the Union, which is part of their normal program to help the student from abroad find his place at Harvard. Following initial effort on the part of the committee valuable and interesting friendships have been formed.
During the first five days of operation the Information Committee on the ground floor of Brooks House has answered the questions of more than 800 perplexed individuals. N. H. Batchelder, Jr., '39 is the chief oracle of this committee. A carefully selected list of recommended rooms available in Cambridge boarding houses is also provided by the committee.
The Speakers Committee supplies Speakers for all possible types and sizes of audiences. Women's clubs, Rotary Clubs, church and school groups request speakers on subjects varying from current events to discussion of the niceties of butterfly collecting.
Postcards will be sent to all Freshmen having signified an interest in Brooks House work giving appointments when they may consult the various committee chairmen to discover where their particular interests and abilities lie. During the next two weeks, a series of nightly trips will offord an opportunity to visit Boston Settlement houses.