The Free lance. (State College, Pa.) 1887-1904, June 01, 1887, Image 7

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    the dollars-and-cents point of view, it is
not worth the effort. The .small value
of the prizes heretofore given is an op
probrium against the dignity of the
contest. When the student puts forth
so much exertion to produce and exe
cute what lie and all his hearers regard
as a representative or summing up of
his literary and oratorical abilities we
think the value of the prize should be
in keeping with the importance of what
it signifies. If not fixed, it should be
confined within certain limits, as is the
case at most institutions.
The insignificance of the prize will
not, we feel sure, be a source of dis
couragement to the student. The ad
vantage gained by thus testing one’s
self, and that recompense which is not
reckoned in money that follows all toil
and trouble—these are the true and sat
isfactory remunerations,
THERE often arises in the mind of
the thoughful student a feeling of
dissatisfaction with his course of study ;
and not unfrequently, he is conscious of
a deeper and a wider feeling that his po
sition in general is a misadjusted one.
We do not refer to those periods of men
tal depression which are common to all,
at least, to all students ; they are consti
tutional, to a great extent, or arise from
peculiar physical environments. We
mean those extremes wherein the mind
suffers the nature of a rational insur
rection ; the conflict of motives hold
their sway and questions like these con
front the student : How will this study
benefit me ? What is the use in both
ering my brain with that problem which
I never expect to haive occasion to di
rectly use? Many a tough problem has
been gotten around in this way, much
to the injury of the student’s mental
powers. Then, too, he is not alone in
the attitude he takes ; he is often de
ceived by the remarks of grown men,
to whom credit for common sense is
given, who cite the old log school house
where readin’, writin’, 'rithmetic and
spellin’ made up the course of study, as
the only college from which many of
the world’s greatest men graduated.
This fallacy is too apparent to need
He who is pursuing a college course
is supposed to be acquainted with the
two great ends which it aims to secure :
(i) Mental discipline; (2) General
knowledge. Of these mental discipline
is really the more important. It is here
that we acquire the facility to lay hold
of the subjects which practical life will
subsequently bring up ; and it is here
that we acquire that power of feeling
forward and selecting from the mystic
unknown the threads of truth .and to
follow them up through all their wind
ings. There is such a thing as one be
coming habituated in the art of correctly
and readily apprehending the lay of facts
and dealing with them legitimately.
There is unity in the course of all