Friday, December 09, 2005

The Higher Mathematics

At the beginning of my freshman year at the College I was required to attend a series of lectures in Memorial Hall where the deans of the various graduate and professional schools told us what they were looking for in applicants and what undergraduate courses they required for admission.
Of all these lectures, the only one that I recall was the one by Erwin Griswald who was dean of the Law School.

I recall it not because I was later to attend the Law School, for that was not something that I as a freshman was planning to do, but because he said that the Law School had no prerequisites other than a bachelor's degree in something, a position that I immediately found very attractive.

And then, as I recall, Dean Griswold said that it really did not matter what one's major was, as long as it was not too applied and practical. He said that, if one insisted on a recommendation, classics would be a good major, as would be mathematics. And then he quoted the Cambridge Toast: ``God bless the higher mathematics and may they never be of the slightest use to anybody.''


Blogger Laura Crossett said...

Ah. . . how lovely. I majored in Classics, and when people asked me what on earth I was going to do with a major in Classics, I used to say (rather smugly) that I was planning to enjoy it. And I did.

5:26 PM  

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