Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Seventy Years



HOW long a perspective an observer must have in order to write the history of a period is uncertain -undoubtedly more than a decade. Much has happened at the Institute in the past twelve years. To sketch the principal events and changes with broad strokes, and to leave comment or appraisal to some future historian, seems to be not only a judicious but a sane procedure. So, this closing chapter contains only an outline of President Ralph Earle's administration from 1925 to 1937.

The new President spent the entire summer of 1925 on the campus, getting familiar with needs of the plant, and studying the problems that he had inherited. By the time college opened in the fall he had developed a five-point program. His first objective was to increase enrollment. The others were: improvements in buildings and grounds, completion of the swimming pool, construction of a dormitory, and the opening of new markets for the Washburn Shops. In order to direct attention to various needs he laid out a project list, which he revised and sent to possible donors each succeeding year.

After the Institute opened for its fifty-eighth year, with an enrollment of 522 -up nine per cent from 1924 - the attention of the college was focussed on President Earle's inauguration, scheduled for October 22, 1925. Much time and


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