Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Seventy Years

associates, equally vigorously admired by others. He was often unreasonable and explosive, yet at other times he displayed unusual tolerance and dignity. He had the rare facility of transforming casual acquaintances into intimate friends, and he possessed a personal attraction for men that made him the center of a group in any assembly. Above all, he had the gift of language, the power to arrange his thoughts in logical sequence and to deliver them in eloquent phraseology.

Regardless of the place in history that was carved by the man, the place of his era is deeply etched. Much of the accomplishment in those twelve years was related to the financial structure of the college. The gain represented a tremendous effort, the effects of which were to be productive for another decade. Although the results of the financial program were below anticipations, they were adequate to fend off impending disaster. Little was added to the campus during those twelve years except the athletic field and the gymnasium, both of which were planned before Dr. Hollis became president. There were also few major changes in educational policy or curricula although changes in administrative and disciplinary procedures were numerous.

The war was the great disruptive influence of the period, not only during the year and a half of America's participation but for several years afterward. It was during this war interlude, however, that the Institute was brought most intimately into contact with the educational and industrial world, largely through the personal activities of Dr. Hollis. In the closing years of his presidency the course of administration was somewhat haphazard and its aims were obscure. The whole twelveyear span was unquestionably a significant period in Institute history.


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Last Modified: Fri Jul 30 11:15:25 EDT 1999