Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 79.djvu/160

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transition and with the morality of the average educated man or woman, and you have the great, prime essential of a college. Without such a faculty, all the fine buildings, all the magnitude, all the alumni associations and other institutional paraphernalia in the world are dross and tinsel.

It is a popular saying in the colleges that the business of the college professor is to teach. Often this carries the implication that a man can be an ideal teacher and not be doing some original work in his own particular field. No educational fallacy ever did more mischief than this. Different ideals of work and purpose must no doubt govern the college professor and the university research professor, but in the long run it goes without saying that even the college professor will teach better if he has some time for what the universities call productive work. It is an error to suppose that a man can teach a subject without knowing it; and it seems self-evident that his knowledge will be more thorough and more effectively interesting to his students if he himself is trying, in however modest a way, to advance human knowledge within his subject. The man of fine, keen scholarship in his own line, who tries to see the relation of his subject to life as a whole, will develop in the long run not only the strongest intellectual capacity, but also the strongest and most desirably influential personality. Moreover, he will ordinarily be scrupulous in the use of his influence. A scathing criticism might be made of the practise of some college professors who seek by their own personal hold on a student to close his mind once for all to ideas contrary to those they themselves happen to entertain. The net result of such influence is too often an arrested development of the student's mind before it has had a fair chance to open.

Why now do the universities possess so many men of fine scholarship and the great personality that so often goes with it, while the colleges show comparatively so few? Some will deny the truth of this allegation, but no denial can really stand against the fact that the greatest teachers of the country are nearly always to be found in its universities. The colleges can not ordinarily hold their best men permanently and there are two valid reasons why they can not do so—lack of money, and lack of stimuli. It takes stimulating surroundings to develop a scholar. The university affords the stimulus to productive scholarship which the college lacks. The stimulus offered by the college is usually "the opportunity one has here to influence young men and women through personal character." Now it must be admitted that this is an effective appeal, very often, but how much more effective is it when it adds the opportunity of influence through solid, vital scholarship! The universities draft away the men the colleges need most—those who combine large scholarship with fine personality—because these men tire of the restricted horizon of life in a small college town, and because they perceive that they must have larger opportunities for growth and con-