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Page 13 text:
The SENIOR BOOK.
The fliinhuring value uf a Qlullege Qlnurse.
lTo THE MEMBERS OF THE CLASS OF 1907.1
HE four years at a technological or professional school are frequently looked upon as if they
were virtually the sole preparation for subsequent life. And yet, we all know of cases where
graduates of these schools have found honorable, useful and successful careers quite different from
those of their original choice. I know of two artists who graduated in engineeringg and, although
these are extreme cases, they illustrate the point that college work can, at best, prepare for the
immediate future, and cannot possibly anticipate the needs of a lifetime.
In the trade school, the aim is to train the student to do one thing, and do it perfectly:
in the academic college, it is the aim to give a general education without reference to any one line
of professional work. Simmons College obviously stands between these extremes. It is a college
by the terms of the charter, and that means that it is not a trade school. Like other colleges, it
aims to broaden the possibilities of the intellectual lifeg but, at the same time, it prepares its
graduates for some definite work in which they may engage immediately upon graduation. It gives
them the "start in life." Probably, the majority of our graduates will continue in the work for
which they have prepared with usg but, even when they do so continue, it will certainly be
found that the demands of the work continually change, and that continued success will depend as
much upon the power of adjustment, or adaptation to these changes, as upon the preparation
Page 12 text:
The SENIOR BOOK.
ZH Jlzamretnell message.
N old, time-stained engraving, which I wishl might bring to you, pictures a mother stand-
ing in the doorway of a low, thatched cottage shading her eyes with her hand. She
is gazing far down the narrow lane, hedged by its tall poplar trees, following with hungry longing
the boy who is disappearing at the turning of the path. You know that, long after the youthful
figure with its springing step passes out of the reach of the tear-dimmed eyes, the heart of the
mother follows on-yes, never, never to turn back.
If one could paint the vision which the young heart sees so clearly, as the light steps go on,
how full of courage, of hope, of enthusiasm it would be! For such courage, such hope, and
such enthusiasm the world thanks God. Yet we know that the vision of the mother-heart is clearer
yet, and that the eyes which are shaded by the wrinkled, toil-worn hand see farther than the
undimmed gaze of youth. The prayer of the mother goes forth in abounding blessing to guide
the unfearing feet in the untrodden path -a pillar of fire in the night of doubt or temptation,
and in the fierce heat of the noon-day sun, a pillar of cloud with its beneficent and saving shade.
I have no doubt that you have already discerned my message, for it is not by accident that
the College has been termed in gratitude the Alma Mater. The name has been earned by generous
living and giving. The memories of the college days would have a different meaning were it not
for the abiding spirit of loving kindness which watches over the growing lives of the sons and
So, as the mother speeds her boy upon his life-quest with brave Words and reverent blessing,
your College sends you forth. The turn of the road may hide you from her following eyes, but
she will not forget you. She is still with you. Look back, as your path winds up the hill or dips
down into the valley, and you shall still see the waiting figure in the doorway, or listen, in the
hour of the twilight or in the hush of the early dawn, and you shall hear and understand her
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Page 14 text:
The SENIOR BOOK.
received within our doors.
In other words, the line too frequently drawn on Commencement Day between life's
preparation and life's accomplishment is purely arbitrary, and, indeed, largely fanciful. Com-
mencement Day is only a mile-stone in life's journey. Youth is not lacking in the element of
achievement, and the third decade of life should prepare for the fourth just as truly as the second
prepares for the third. In a very real sense, therefore, your days at Simmons College should be
a prophecy of your later life, for these four years represent achievement at the same time that
they have prepared for the immediate future. The strongest argument for technological educa-
tion is that college life thereby becomes vitally continuous with subsequent life.
When, by your graceful act, I became an honorary member of the class of 1907, my thought
at once went back to my under-graduate days at the Johns Hopkins University, twenty years
ago, and I asked myself the question: "What did I acquire then which is of greatest service
to me now?" One thinks at once of the memory of countless incidents, of the facts learned, of
skill acquired, and of friendships which still persist. But a memory of the past is, after all, only
a minor working asset of the presentg of these facts which are in actual use to-day as many have
been learned since graduation as before itg and of the friends, too many have all but disappeared
from view, while others have been claimed by the great Reaper.
The enduring value of college life grows out of the training of the intellect, the acquaint-
ance with literature, and, above all, the association with thoughtful people, whereby the ideals of
the college become real and fixed as ideals of life. The college stands for the duty and the
responsibility of accurate thinking, most clearly shown in the recognition of the distinction between
fact and theory: for clear and accurate expression, for the conservation of the beautiful and
true bequeathed by the past: and for the advancement of knowledge, especially as a guide in
the conduct of life. These ideals may be only partially realized in college, and they are attained
by many who have not gone to college 3 but the fact remains that college work, faithfully pursued,
leads toward this goal.
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