University of Massachusetts Amherst - Index Yearbook (Amherst, MA)

 - Class of 1896

Page 150 of 236

 

University of Massachusetts Amherst - Index Yearbook (Amherst, MA) online yearbook collection, 1896 Edition, Page 150 of 236
Page 150 of 236



University of Massachusetts Amherst - Index Yearbook (Amherst, MA) online yearbook collection, 1896 Edition, Page 149
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Page 150 text:

instructor in German, and we have an able member of the Class of ' 94 serving in this capacity. Upon petition of about two-thirds of the members of the junior class, a course in German preparatory to advanced work in the senior year has been granted by the faculty. The work of the other assistant is worthy of more than casual mention. He has an undoubted ability as a teacher, but he has not been content to confine his labors to the classroom alone. Now, as we enter the Museum and begin, passing round to the right, we trace the scientific evolution from the lowest to the highest forms of life. This task of systematically arranging the heterogeneous collection has been accomplished with no little labor on the part of the assistant in the Zoological Department. On the college grounds there have been several changes. The farm-house has been moved from its location near the Drill Hall to a position west of North College. The debris left after the destruction of the old barn has been cleared away, and the cellar has already been partly filled in. The new barn, which has been for some time in the process of construction, is now occupied by the herd of western cattle purchased during the summer. In connection with the farm, an extensive system of irrigation has been put in operation at considerable expense. This will remove some objectionable features from the " Ravine, " and make possible its continuance as a small natural park. The appearance of the pond, which is so marked a feature of the college grounds, has been greatly im- proved by the artistic arrangement of ornamental shrubs and aquatic plants around its borders. During the latter part of the past year electric lights were placed in South College. The result of this change was so satisfactory, that wires have recently been placed in North College, Old Chapel, and the farm buildings. The electricity which has been furnished by the company supplying the town is now being gen- erated by the college plant located in the new barn. The library, in which the President is deeply interested, still continues to increase in size, and at present contains some fifteen thousand six hundred volumes. Many gifts of valuable books have been received during the year, among them being a set of medical works, given by Dr. George VV. Mills. Most of the books received are on scientific subjects, but it is hoped that in the near future there will be additions of standard fiction. The military department, being in the hands of a competent commandant, is reflecting credit upon the instructor and the college. There has been one slight change, however. Where formerly the senior privates were obliged to drill in J 34

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KevietD of fixe fectr. IT is with a justifiable feeling of satisfaction that we look back upon a year of college experience, marked by progress in many directions. The general business depression and the increased requirements for admission have, no doubt, had their effect on the number of students entering this fall ; but, notwith- standing adverse influences, the tendency of the college has been upward and onward. The system of senior electives has had a year ' s trial, and all unanimously agree that their institution has been a decided success. In all of these great range of study is permitted, and to facilitate work in Botany, this subject has been sub-divided into Botany (proper), Horticulture, Floriculture, and Forestry. Indeed, the acknowledged advantage of special study has led to the hopes that electives will soon be extended to the juniors. It may, however, be wise to ad- vance cautiously in this respect ; for the tendency of the age is rather toward special education based on a narrow foundation, than toward a broad education on which to base the more particular knowledge required by specialties. There are now among us some who are profiting by the opportunity for obtaining the degree of Master of Science. The advantages of the Post-Graduate Course are many and important, and we are glad to welcome all who may wish to take this course. Within the past year, the faculty have made it a rule that all those having term-marks above eighty-five per cent, shall be excused from examinations in those studies. It is hardly necessary to say that this is fully appreciated by the students, most of whom are only too glad of an opportunity to increase the length of vacations. The two new assistant-professors are doing creditable work in their respective departments. The system of electives made necessary the appointment of an



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the ranks with the lower classmen, they now take signal practice instead. The standing of this department of the college was highly commended by Col. Hughes in his report to the Military Department at Washington. Since athletics holds so prominent a position in the minds of students, some mention of what has been done in this line during the year will not be out of place. Foot-ball occupied the attention of many during the fall term and, although not always successful, the team did good work, which was rewarded by a number of victories. With the winter term began a series of weekly indoor athletic meets. These were generally well attended, and the competition for the honor of having their class figures embroidered on the Athletic Association banner was very sharp between ' 95 and ' 96. The former we do not hesitate to say deserved the victory won. In the spring term out-of-door practice in base-ball commenced, as well as preparation for the annual Field Day held at Hampshire Park. This place being situated so far from the college, the long walk and inconveniences prevented many from attending and taking part in the sports. Funds for an athletic field are now being collected by Professor Brooks; and when this project is carried out, there will be a much more lively interest in athletics. In enumerating the events of a year it is possible to touch upon only those whose influence has already been felt. At the same time it should be borne in mind that even small things are not without effect. In looking forward to another year, we join in wishing that it may bring even greater indications of advancement than the year which is past.

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