Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 75.djvu/105

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101
THE PROGRESS OF SCIENCE

Harvard. He was reported in the daily papers to have spoken in favor of inter-collegiate athletics and against the elective system. This would indeed be a cry of "le roi est mort," and explain why one seventh of the members of the Harvard corporation did not vote with the majority in the presidential election. As a matter of fact, Mr. Lowell spoke with skill and with caution. He did, however, argue that the elective system interferes with competition in college studies, and that the cooperative competition of athletic games should be applied to the work of the class room. But he did not tell how he thought that this could be accomplished. His main argument was from the competition in the English universities. He said: "The result is that by the I sis and the Cam there is probably more hard study done in subjects not of a professional character than in any other universities in the world." This is scarcely correct. The "poll" men at Oxford and Cambridge do even less work for their degrees than the average students at Harvard and Princeton. The men in the honor courses are doing professional work of much the same character as is done in the Harvard graduate and professional schools and with much the same rewards in the way of fellowships and positions. The greater direct competition in examinations which does obtain in the English universities is not necessarily an advantage. Indeed the arrangement of men in the order of merit in the mathematical tripos has just now been abandoned at Cambridge on the ground that it led to "cramming."

Scholarship is more highly esteemed in England and in Germany (where there is no class-room competition in the universities) than here. Probably as time goes on there will be an equalization due to greater respect for the scholar here and to relatively higher regard for other forms of accomplishment there. Mr. Lowell said: "Universities stand for the eternal worth of thought, for the preeminence of the prophet and the seer." But the country can not support 80,000,000 prophets and seers.

To one hearer Mr. Lowell's address seemed somewhat naive, and left an impression of uncertainty as to how he would confront the complicated problems which the latter-day university president is expected to manage.

 

THE NEW BUILDINGS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH

In January, 1908, the University of Pittsburgh acquired a new location, consisting of 43 acres near the entrance to Schenley Park and within a short distance of the Carnegie Institute. The ground is partially rising and partially level, permitting an effective grouping of the buildings. Under the direction of Professor Warren P. Laird, an architects' competition was held in which sixty-six designs were submitted. The group plan accepted was that of Palmer & Hornbostel, a reproduction of which is here shown. The style of architecture is Grecian and is well adapted to the natural features of the ground. The location of the several departments of the university is determined and for the most part the exact buildings which will be erected.

The first building of the group, the School of Mines, is completed and has just been dedicated. Its cost is approximately $200,000. The second building, costing an equal sum, is in process of erection and will be ready for occupancy in September. The state appropriation provided by the last legislature permits the erection of another building, which will belong to the medical group. The architects are working upon the plans for this building, the erection of which will be commenced on July 1, permitting the medical department to begin its work in the new location in 1910.

As rapidly as buildings can be provided the other departments, law, dentistry and pharmacy will be transferred to the new location. The university