FREDERICK J. E. WOODBRIDGE, LL.D. Dean, Columbia University
Really good teachers are admittedly rare. To note their scarcity just now, however, is to do more than call attention to a platitude. For it is very difficult to find for teaching positions, both in the university and elsewhere, those who can fill them with reasonable success and distinction. We are acutely conscious that our national scholarship is not what it ought to be. There is a dearth of good books, able teachers and intellectual leadership. A country like ours, into which has been poured such a variety of stimulating influences and which has been blest with such an abundance of goods, ought to make annually contributions to learning which would give us a position in the world of scholarship at least equal to that of the countries with which we like to compare ourselves. But the comparison is not gratifying. We are forced to admit that in spite of a multiplication of colleges and universities, and in spite of a popular enthusiasm for education which often causes foreigners to wonder and admire, our system of education is rarely productive of intellectual greatness and distinction. Nor is it productive of a reading public large enough to make a steady and profitable demand for books of more than temporary value. The number of text-books is large, but the number of sustained and constructive treatises is small. Learning does not flourish among us.
If we confine our attention to our universities and ask why it is that the supply of really able men for them is so