1922 Encyclopædia Britannica/Princeton University

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14101741922 Encyclopædia Britannica — Princeton UniversityVarnum Lansing Collins

PRINCETON UNIVERSITY (see 22.347).—In Sept. 1910 President Wilson accepted the Democratic nomination for governor of New Jersey and resigned the presidency of the university. In Jan. 1912 Prof. John Grier Hibben, of the faculty, was elected president. His administration was marked by further development of student self-government, the conducting of discipline and general student activities and the regulation of athletics being in 1921 shared by undergraduate representatives and university officers. Especial attention was paid to the scientific safeguarding of student health and physical fitness by careful periodical examinations and required supervised athletics. The potential effectiveness of the alumni organization was increased by the formation of a National Alumni Association, whose working administrative centre was the Graduate Council of about 100, representing the graduate classes, the alumni associations, and different regional districts of the country. The national character of the university was expressly recognized by the addition of regional trustees to the governing board, and also by the establishment of a large number of regional competitive scholarships.

On the scholastic side, the entrance requirements and the undergraduate curriculum were completely revised. To put the university into closer touch with American secondary education, especially the high schools, Greek was no longer required (although strongly advised) for the A.B. degree. The Litt.B. degree was discontinued. The elective principle was broadened so as to bridge the gaps between preparatory school and college, and underclass and upperclass years, giving the student in his underclass years a broad general training in subjects deemed fundamental to real education, and in his upperclass years requiring him to follow continuous work in one of three divisions of studies, the literary-philosophical, the historical-economic, or the mathematical-scientific. The regulations governing admission to the graduate school, and in particular to candidacy for the competitive fellowships, the awards of which depend entirely on scholarship and ability, attracted to the school an increasing number of select advanced students in liberal studies. The erection of the residential graduate college in 1913 rendered permanent what had previously been an experimental and, in America, an unique feature of the Princeton graduate school, namely, the provision of adequate living quarters for graduate students, who there shared a common scholarly life amid attractive conditions. The graduate college accommodated in 1921 about 100 students.

During the World War over 5,000 undergraduates and graduates were in Service; about 3,000 receiving commissions, and 284 receiving 293 decorations and citations. The honour roll of those who gave up their lives numbered 149. The entrance atrium of Nassau hall was converted into a memorial to these men, and a scholarship has been founded in memory of each. During the war nearly half of the faculty was on leave of absence, either in military and naval service, or in the scientific war service of the American, British or French Governments. The student body was cut more than half; buildings were occupied by a Government school of ariation and a naval paymasters' school, while the laboratories were turned over to Government use. With the institution of the student army training corps, and the naval training unit, virtually the entire university and its equipment were devoted to national purposes, the number of civilian students being about 75, rejected from service for physical disabilities. After the return of peace, effort was concentrated on increasing the inadequate endowment of the university, and the sum of over $8,000,000 was raised. A bequest from the late Henry C. Frick, not yet received in 1921, was expected to amount to about $5,000,000. In the year 1920-1 the faculty numbered 213, the undergraduate body 1,814, the graduate students 149, as against, in 1909-10, 169 faculty members, 1,266 undergraduates and 134 graduate students. Besides the graduate college, which includes the Cleveland tower, a national memorial to President Grover Cleveland, a trustee of Princeton, the buildings erected beween 1912 and 1921 were Holder hall (a dormitory), Madison hall (the university dining halls, where all underclass men are required to take their meals), Cuyler hall (a dormitory), the Palmer Memorial football stadium, and the University boat house (headquarters of the rowing activities of the university). In May 1920 Dickinson hall and Marquand chapel were destroyed by fire.

(V. L. C.)